Mute magazine produce high-quality, thought provoking radical content online and in print, and are one of the few of their kind able to actually pay their writers. After a 100% budget cut from the Arts Council, their future is in the balance, and they are appealing for donations to keep them in print. Read their appeal below...
Mute Needs You!
Mute magazine urgently needs your help to continue to pay all the writers, artists, illustrators and photographers who generate our web and print publication. Mute is an essential voice in a publishing landscape gradually being purged of its independent and critical voices as a result of market homogenisation, the internet's impact on sales, and post-Crunch funding cuts.
The 100 percent cut by the Arts Council of England in 2011 gave Mute a final year of funding which ran out in April 2012. Over the past year we have been busy finding new ways to sustain a magazine which helps give a voice to those resistant to capitalism’s lobotomised conditioning. This hunt has resulted in our collaboration with the Post-Media Lab [http://postmedialab.org] at Leuphana University’s Centre for Digital Cultures and won part-time salaries for some of our staff members.
This has produced a little breathing space to work out new sources of funding, partnerships and technical infrastructures that can support our work without compromising our autonomy. However, one of the urgent areas still necessary to address is the lack of any commissioning budget for the next year.
We need you to help us raise £5,500 so we can keep making the magazine for another year at least, while we continue to find models of survival. The urgency of keeping Mute alive in these times has been brought home by news that critical publications, Third Text and Variant, are also in crisis after suffering funding cuts. The money you donate will go straight back to the community of writers, artists, activists and practitioners who co-create Mute.*
What Does Mute Do?
Mute publishes weekly articles freely accessible online and then compiles many of these into two biannual print editions which allow our content to reach new audiences in different ways, cutting through the info-overload of the net and standing the test of time on public and private bookshelves. We have also started to produce Mute in e-pub formats, providing e-reader versions of articles for subscribers or full issues for people to download. Over the next year Mute will be publishing Volume 3 issues 4 and 5, and we are looking to raise £5,500 to cover the costs of commissioning the content.
What is Mute Planning?
With this additional funding, we intend to develop and refine key areas of analysis and coverage which help to stir up complacent thinking around politics, technology, labour, the city, art, music and everything in between. This coverage will continue to target:
- The materiality of production which underlies our ‘immaterial times’ and the fantasy of ‘living on thin air’
- The production of culture within the cramped spaces of standardised technologies, neoliberalised institutions, post-modernism’s exhaustion of forms and austere times
- The depth of capitalism’s crisis which no amount of Euro bailouts nor ‘march of the makers’ will fix
- The impasse of organisation and revolution after the demise of the workers’ movement and within ‘decentralised’ and globalised networks
- The enclosure and repurposing of the commons - from the human body to the World Wide Web to the National Health Service to the Lammas Lands of East London
- The ‘creative economy’ and its cannibalisation of resistant forms, such as participation, history from below, dematerialisation and self-organisation
- The correlation and discontinuity between new dynamics in capitalism and aesthetic practices
Mute’s editorial team has also been developing a book imprint - Mute Books - over the past few years. The imprint has provided some of the contributors to the magazine with the space to work out issues and ideas that can’t be contained within single articles. The imprint expands Mute's publishing ecology of free and priced content in multiple formats which can act across a fragmenting landscape of media, reading and consumption habits.
Any and all donations are deeply appreciated. With all our thanks,
The Mute Team
[Josephine Berry Slater, Darron Broad, Tom Clark, Omar El-Khairy, Caroline Heron, Matthew Hyland, Anthony Iles, Demetra Kotouza, Hari Kunzru, Mira Mattar, Raquel Perez de Eulate, Pauline van Mourik Broekman, Laura Oldenbourg, Benedict Seymour, Stefan Szczelkun, Simon Worthington]
With special thanks to Mattin, Melanie Gilligan, Brian Holmes, Shu Lea Cheang, Evan Clader Williams, Suzanne Treister and Graham Harwood for their help in making the video.
* Wefund charges 5% commission that is taken from the total donated should the funding campaign reach its target. 'Wefund adds a 50 pence transaction fee to each Backer's pledge which is passed direct to the Creator at the successful conclusion of the campaign to cover part of, or all of Paypal's fees. Should the Creator's Campaign fail to reach the Pledge Target within the Timeframe, Wefund will cancel all Pledges and no-one is charged anything.' For further information about Wefund's terms and conditions see: http://wefund.com/terms-and-conditions/