By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Tag: Patreon

If you’re a regular Media Nation reader, I hope you’ll become a monthly supporter

Statue of Samuel Johnson in Lichfield Market Square. Photo (cc) 2009 by Elliott Brown.

If you value a writer’s work enough to read it regularly, then you should be willing to pay a small fee to support that work. That’s why I set up a Patreon account a few years ago. Media Nation will always be free and open to everyone. But I hope that those who do more than drop in here occasionally will decide that it’s worth paying $5 a month to keep it going.

As Samuel Johnson once said: “No man but a blockhead ever wrote except for money.”

As an incentive for you to sign up, I’m going to resume the supporters-only newsletter that I was writing for a while. It will be a modest affair — a photo, a song of the week and a round-up of the week’s posts. That last is especially valuable for many readers who may not be able to keep up with the daily posts. Look for it in your inbox on Thursdays or Fridays, starting this week.

And just to avoid a bit of confusion, my Patreon is separate and apart from subscribing to free emails that you receive every time I post something new. If you’re not getting those emails and would like to, just scroll down the right-hand rail of the Media Nation website until you see “Subscribe to Media Nation via Email.”

In order to become a supporter for just $5 a month, please click here.

Why I’m asking you to become a member of Media Nation

At the beginning of 2021, I decided to shift my online activities — I was going to blog more and use Facebook and Twitter less. At the same time, I decided to start offering memberships to Media Nation for $5 a month, following the lead of Boston College historian Heather Cox Richardson, pundits such as Andrew Sullivan, reporters such as Patrice Peck and others.

Most of these other folks are using Substack, a newsletter platform. I figured I had sunk way too many years — 16 — into writing Media Nation as a blog, and I didn’t want to switch to a platform that’s reliant on venture capital and could eventually go the way of most such companies. So here I am, still blogging at, and asking readers to consider becoming members by supporting me on Patreon.

And yes, I have been blogging more as I try to stay on top of various media stories, especially involving local journalism, as well as politics, culture and the news of the day. Just this week I’ve written about Larry Flynt and the First Amendment, Duke Ellington’s legacy, a new partnership between The Boston Globe and the Portland Press Herald, and a Louisiana reporter who’s been sued for — believe it or not — filing a public-records request.

If you value this work, I hope you’ll consider supporting it for $5 a month. Members receive a newsletter every Friday morning with exclusive content.

And if you’ve already become a member, thank you.

Want this week’s newsletter?

I’m finishing up this week’s Media Nation member newsletter, which goes out every Friday morning. If you’d like yours, please become a member for $5 a month by clicking here.

Newsletter #3 is now up

The third issue of our member newsletter went our earlier this morning. If you’d like to receive it every Friday morning, just click here to become a paid subscriber. The cost is just $5 a month.

It’s the age of paid content — and Media Nation is dipping its toe in the water

Recently I wrote about Substack for GBH News — what was good about it (superior payment tools) and what was unimpressive (it’s just a bloggy newsletter, or a newslettery blog).

Writing the column sparked my interest in paid content, and that only intensified when I read Ben Smith’s piece in The New York Times about Heather Cox Richardson. A Boston College history professor who writes “Letters from An American” on Substack, Richardson is pulling in an estimate $1 million or so a year. She’s working very hard at it — a lot harder than I want to work. But it’s difficult not to be intrigued by the possibility of pulling in some money, even if it’s a tiny fraction of what she’s making.

I don’t want to move to Substack, and I don’t want to put any of my content behind a paywall. What I’ve done instead is set up a page on Patreon that lets you purchase a voluntary subscription to Media Nation for $5 a month. Subscribers will receive the additional benefit for an exclusive newsletter, although, to be honest, I haven’t figured out what to do with that yet.

Media Nation will remain free, and other than the newsletter, I’m not planning at the moment to do more than I’m already doing. (Of course, that could change if this takes off.) If you would like to lend your support to my work in the form of a subscription, I hope you’ll consider signing up.

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