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The Almanac launches membership campaign

Support Local Journalism drive asks readers to invest in community reporting

The Almanac has launched a campaign to secure a healthy future by asking readers to begin paying for a portion of the costs of operating the newspaper and its website, AlmanacNews.com.

Through a letter to all residents and a print and online advertising campaign, the Almanac aims to replace the recession-driven decline in print advertising with membership subscriptions from people who value local journalism, regardless of whether viewed in print or online.

"As more residents turn online to stay informed about the community, and businesses rocked by the recession suspend their advertising or turn to inexpensive marketing alternatives, the traditional business model that allowed local journalism to be primarily supported through advertising is quickly evaporating," said Almanac Publisher Tom Gibboney.

"These changes threaten the viability of quality local journalism everywhere, including in our community," Mr. Gibboney explains in an editorial on Page 22 of today's paper.

At SupportLocalJournalism.org/Almanac, readers can sign up for a monthly payment program of at least $5 per month (17 cents a day). They can also sign up by returning the form being mailed to residents this week, or by calling the office at (650) 854-2626. Annual payments are also welcomed. Subscribing members will receive a Support Local Journalism bumper sticker; a choice of a coffee mug, T-shirt or shopping bag; plus special offers and invitations to member events.

"Recent surveys show that our print and online readership is greater than ever," Mr. Gibboney said. "But rather than requiring a newspaper subscription fee or restricting our website to subscribers, we are hoping that residents will step up and do their part to fund the quality local journalism that we create day in and day out," he said.

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