Posted by Brian at 11:16 AM
Earlier this year, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) rejected a postal rate increase plan offered by the U.S. Postal Service. Instead they opted to implement a complicated plan submitted by media giant Time Warner. (Click here to read the decision and click here for a timeline)
Under the original plan, all publishers would have a mostly equal increase (approx. 12 percent) in the cost for mailing their publications. The Time Warner plan overturned this level playing field to favor large, ad-heavy magazines like People at the expense of smaller publications like In These Times and The American Spectator. It penalizes thousands of small- to medium-sized outlets with disproportionately higher rates while locking in privileges for bigger companies.
There's a basic form to fill out that will auto email your request to a number of people, but you can aso change the message if you like. I wrote the following:
As a writer who publishes in predominately in smaller academic and popular journals and who hopes to publish books with smaller presses, I am impacted by this decision on a very personal level. Small presses are already at a disadvantage because they don't have large publishing budgets or advertising revenue streams. Allowing this plan to proceed will harm already struggling and disadvantaged publishers and will likely hasten their demise.
This plan extends beyond the world of political thought. It would impact art and literary journals, collections and novels by up and coming writers, and magazines that appeal to niche markets. We are already feeling the effects of a consolidated media in both the music and television industries; don't further hamper the ability of small presses and journals to provide a wider range of viewpoints and subject matter.
Feel free to rip me off if you want. I don't think anything I wrote was particularly eloquent, but it gives a different perspective than the one on the petition site. It'll only take a couple of minutes to do.