Phillip Smith

Why I support independent media, and why you should too.

I was just sent this PDF from the November/December 2012 issue of Briarpatch Magazine where I was profiled for being a monthly donor.

I’ve re-posted the text from the PDF below, because it’s probably the best pitch I can give you to support Briarpatch, or a magazine like Briarpatch in your community, or – failing that – to support independent media in general.

(If you in the US, might I recommend Democracy Now?).

Currently based in Oaxaca, one of the political, cultural, and culinary centres of Mexico, this itinerant digital media maestro is a mover in more ways than one. By day, Phillip Smith is a digital publishing consultant who works with innovative news organizations like The Tyee. By night, he’s a digital activist experimenting with creative ways to get people active.

How would you describe yourself to Briarpatch readers?
Roughly six feet tall, pushing 40, and almost always wearing a hipster beard and a jaunty hat.

What is the most important issue facing Canadians?
The lack of support for a vibrant independent media sector. Corporate media consolidation, plus a lack of support for independent alternatives, confines many Canadians to an information prison that is almost impossible to break.

What do you like best about Briarpatch?
I can sit down on the couch with Briarpatch and enjoy it from front to back. That readability comes from a commitment to quality writing and journalism that I’ve not experienced in many other Canadian magazines.

What do you like least about Briarpatch?
Having seen the inside of the vegan sausage factory that is the Briarpatch headquarters, one can only be left with a sense of awe at how such a consistently great publication can be produced with such a small staff and budget. What I like least about Briarpatch is that it has to exist in an environment of scarcity and not abundance.

How would you describe Briarpatch to a friend?
I don’t bother trying to describe Briarpatch to friends; I simply subscribe them at holiday gift-giving time

Is there anything else you’d like readers to know?
Supporting Briarpatch is effortless and painless. How much does the average Canadian spend on corporate media? All Canadians should think about investing at least as much with independent media each month - how can we expect things to change, if we don’t invest in alternatives?


Hi, I'm Phillip Smith, a veteran digital publishing consultant, online advocacy specialist, and strategic convener. If you enjoyed reading this, find me on Twitter and I'll keep you updated.


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