As in the last fundraiser, this post isn’t pre-approved by Goldy. I’m proud to write here, and I’m proud to give money every fundraiser (and last year when he said there would be a fundraiser that never materialized). It isn’t the only blog I’ve donated money to, but it’s by far the one I’ve donated the most to. Here’s why:
Even with my poor contribution bringing the quality down, HA is one of the best written blogs around. It’s fearless, fun, wonkish and whimsical. Sometimes all in the same day. Sometimes all in the same post. That’s a lot of work for just about every non open thread post, and there’s work keeping up the quality of the blog over several years. We’ve seen plenty of bloggers on the left and on the right bow out in the years that Goldy has been writing here. I value good writing, and contribute accordingly.
And while it’s true that there is good writing elsewhere on the web, another thing I value about HA is the impact it has here in Washington and in the Seattle/King County area. From Brownie to scaring the AG’s office and the proposed Chihuly museum, Goldy has been moving the narrative nationally — but mostly locally — for years. Sometimes he wins and sometimes he doesn’t. This blog has helped push the dialogue and frame the issues better than most elected officials and pundits in the area.
And having seen only a fraction of the work involved, I know that doesn’t come easily. As a poster here, I’ve been privy to various conversations and email exchanges about how to improve the site. And the back end is a lot of work: Despite being one of the least policed comment threads among blogs, just adhering to the minimum standards takes a good deal of work. There’s a whole host of coding and back end work that you (hopefully) never see, but that keep the blog running well.
Finally, we need an alternative to the mainstream media in general. There are things that the Seattle Times does well, including investigative reporting and, um, being on paper. But their editorials are biased toward the powerful, their print edition is tiny, and their online presence is a joke. The rest of the daily papers and TV news in the state are generally worse. While Goldy and the rest of the crew here do a pretty good job holding the Times’ feet to the fire, the best is when we cover stories where the Times and others drop the ball.
This kind of new media, even done right, may not be as expensive as the old was to create, but it’s by no means free. So please join me in giving to Goldy and keeping HA running.