December 20, 2005

Hullo. Hopefully some groggy, post-holiday blog readers snapped to attention on that one.

Sale. Yup, once a year (and once a year only!) Hyphen reduces our online subscription rates. From the standard $18 for 4 issues (which is already so cheap, we make no money off of it once you cover printing & postage), to $15 (which is actually less than our barest costs of production).

Why do we do it? Subscribers are more important than the money you bring in. Not only because we can (and we do) make up the costs other ways if we have to -- our events make up a lot of our budget. Also because subscribers are how a magazine is measured, by our potential advertisers, by our potential partners. This is how they assess our value to you. But most of all because that's how we assess our value to you. As we get better at what we do, we need to see those efforts reflected in a growing readership, or else it's as if, in this capitalist society, the people have spoken and they don't need what we offer.

Even if that's not necessarily the case, the funny thing about subscriptions is that every issue you print is the last issue of someone's subscription. So with every new issue, we lose a batch of subscribers who, for whatever reason, haven't renewed. This is the classic one step forward, two steps back -- so our subscription base needs to grow two steps with every issue to stay in the same place, and three steps with every issue for Hyphen to grow.

So this is the pitch I make: If Asian Americans want Asian American media, then we need to support it. With word of mouth, with time and love, but at some point, also with money. If you read this blog, and you like this blog, please subscribe. It won't be around if we're not around. Click here or on the Get Hyphen link above. Consider the $15 you spend on a subscription this month -- whether for yourself or for someone else -- a way of giving yourself independent Asian American media in 2006 and beyond.

That is, if you want it. And we hope you do.


erin K Ninh

contributing editor & blogger

erin Khue Ninh is a former blog editor and onetime publisher of Hyphen, who won't seem to go away. She now teaches literature in the Department of Asian American Studies at UC Santa Barbara. Aside from Hyphen, erin believes in recycling, Planned Parenthood, and Type A first-borns.