As a reader, we hope you will do two things on Byline – read articles, and support the journalists who write them!
Thing One: Byline is a platform for journalism that takes out the editor, proprietor, and advertiser, and gives you the journalism you want to read. No agendas, no hidden ads, just pure reporting from the journalist to you.
We want to host any journalistic work, regardless of ideology or subject. So far, we have attracted an impressive group of writers, including one of the International Press Institute’s top fifty World Press Freedom Heroes, one of Prospect Magazine’s top ten ‘World Thinkers’, and a host of journalists who have written for the likes of The Economist, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post and many more.
Eventually, you will be able to ‘make your own front page’, based on your personal tastes. So, we don’t have editors choosing what will be on the front page – and in fact, we don’t edit the journalist at all. Our job is to host journalists’ work, and collect reader contributions to make it pay.
Which brings us to...
Thing Two: Please support our writers!
Journalism costs something – but these days, there are many people who think of it as something you don’t have to pay for. Now that the ad market is declining as well, many journalists have lost their jobs, and many others are subsisting on declining freelance rates.
We want to change that.
Support journalists on Byline and receive rewards – you’re not just paying for the article itself, but rather engagement with the journalist and a whole host of attractive extras. We've featured all kinds of amazing rewards already - from the right to ask questions to the journalist in a private 'Supporters' Cafe', to the chance to shadow a photojournalism assignment for five days in Iraq Kurdistan.
There are two types of funding on Byline:
This is where a journalist wants to raise a lump sum to do a particular job. Julie Bindel, for instance, is now investigating the sex industry in dozens of countries around the world, thanks to the £6,500 she raised on Byline. Your money is only taken if the journalist’s target is hit – so, your credit card will not be charged until that point.
This funding can be divided into what we call Milestone Goals. The purpose of this is to allow the journalist to first raise a smaller amount of money, and start building up trust with readers. Once that trust is established, it becomes easier to raise the full amount.
This is where a journalist writes regularly on one topic, and asks you to pay them a small sum of money each month. With enough Supporters, they could make what amounts to a proper salary. When supporting a Column, you can choose how many months you want to pay for. You can also cancel at any time - you are always in control.
In return for either Exclusive or Column funding, you will of course be able to receive rewards from the journalist.
Julie Bindel is a journalist, writer, broadcaster and researcher. She has been active in the global campaign to end violence towards women and children since 1979 and has written extensively on rape, domestic violence, sexually motivated murder, prostitution and trafficking, child sexual exploitation, stalking, and the rise of religious fundamentalism and its harm to women and girls.Julie has authored over 30 book chapters and academic reports on a range of topics pertaining to gender inequality and abuse, and writes regularly for The Guardian newspaper, the New Statesman, Sunday Telegraph and Standpoint magazines, and appears regularly on the BBC and Sky News. She was Visiting Journalist at Brunel University (2013 - 2014) and is now Visiting Researcher at Lincoln University (2014 - 17). Julie’s book on the state of the lesbian and gay movement in the UK (Guardian books, 2014) has been praised for being thought-provoking and challenging.
Joanna Chiu is a Beijing-based correspondent for Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA) news agency, one of the world’s largest international news wires. Responsible for English-language reporting on China and Mongolia, she covers a wide range of issues including China’s economy, foreign relations, legal reform, and civil society, producing breaking news as well as deeply researched features. Joanna has also been a staff reporter at the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong, worked as Hong Kong correspondent for The Economist, and served as a freelancer for The Associated Press (AP). She continues to provide text, radio and television coverage of East Asia for media outlets, including The Atlantic, Al Jazeera America, National Public Radio (NPR), BBC World Service, GlobalPost, The Daily Beast, and The Nation.
Peter Jukes is a dramatist and author who began blogging about US politics during the Obama election campaign in 2008 and since 2011 has closely covered the hacking scandal, authoring ‘Fall of the House of Murdoch’ and appearing on BBC, ABC, CNN, Al Jazeera and Sky News as a commentator. Since the phone hacking trials began last year his live tweets have proved a must-read for anyone following the ongoing phone hacking saga. His innovative crowdfunding model that raised £20,000 has attracted the attention of the world media.
In April 2014, he was named the UK's best reporter on social media by Press Gazette. One month later, his blog covering the hacking trial was nominated as one of the best three news sites in the UK by the London Press Club. Press Gazette editor Dominic Ponsford said: “Peter Jukes’ coverage of the hacking trial made him a worthy winner. His prodigious coverage has been rigorous and fair and it has been in its own way historic.
Daoud Kuttab is an award-winning Palestinian journalist and former Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University. Mr. Kuttab is active in media freedom efforts in the Middle East. He has co-produced a number of award winning documentaries and children’s television programs. His op-ed columns have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angles Times, The Daily Telegraph and Shimbun Daily in Tokyo. He has received a number of international awards, among them the CPJ Freedom of Expression Award, the IPI World Press Freedom Hero, PEN Club USA Writing Freedom Award, the Leipzig Courage in Freedom Award and the Next Foundation (UK) Peace through Media Award. He is a regular columnist for The Huffington Post, Palestine News Network, Al Arrabiya.Net and The Jordan Times.
Metrography was founded in 2009 by Iraqi photographer Kamaran Najm and American photojournalist Sebastian Meyer, with the objective of establishing a thriving, independent photography and photojournalism industry in Iraq that breaks down ethnic, cultural, and religious barriers; fosters peer-to-peer collaboration and learning; and celebrates Iraq’s diversity and history by telling its story through professional photography, videography and multimedia productions. With a core-group of 9 Iraqi photographers the agency has provided training to hundreds of photographers and journalists in the region, documented news throughout the country – including an extensive coverage of the current crisis – and organized festivals and exhibitions, and collaborated with both international and local NGOs.
Steven T. Jones is one of the last guardians of progressive San Francisco, a veteran newspaper journalist who has been chronicling and fighting the slow fade of leftist politics and alternative arts and culture from my beloved city over the last decade. He was the editor-in-chief the San Francisco Bay Guardian when that fiercely independent newspaper was suddenly shuttered in October 2014, leading led him to create the Guardian in-Exile Project to prevent the paper's new corporate owners from having the final word or sending 48 years of journalistic history down the drain.
Graham Johnson is an author and investigative journalist who has contributed to a variety of publications including the News of the World, Sunday Mirror, The Observer, Vice, The Guardian and Liverpool Echo. He often publishes crime stories under several different bylines. He has appeared on Sky and BBC as a crime pundit and reporter. He has also made documentaries for Sky, Panorama and Germany's ARD. For Vice, Johnson has produced two documentaries: Fraud and The Debt Collector, which are based on his own investigations. The Debt Collector was based on his books The Cartel and Young Blood. He worked at the Sunday Mirror from 1997 to 2005 and for six years was the newspaper's Investigations Editor. He has been a finalist for "Reporter of the Year" three times and been described in parliament as an "investigative reporter supreme". Johnson has covered stories including drug dealing in Britain, people smuggling in Europe, child slavery in India and Pakistan, and war in the Balkans. To research his debut novel, Johnson spent several years on and off embedded with some of Britain's most notorious gangs. He currently lives in London. His books have been published by Mainstream Publishing and Simon and Schuster.