A List Apart wants you!
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New A List Apart wants you!

As A List Apart approaches its 20th anniversary—a milestone in independent, web-based publishing—we’re once again reimagining the magazine. We want your feedback. And most of all, we want you.

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We’re getting rid of advertisers and digging back to our roots: community-based, community-built, and determinedly non-commercial. If you want to highlight local events or innovations, expand your skills, give back, or explore any other goal or idea, we’re here to support you with networking and backing from the community.

In recent years, we’ve seen our rich universe of diverse, creative blogs and sites implode—leaving fewer and fewer channels available to new voices. As more content centralizes into a handful of all-powerful networks, there’s a dreary sameness in perspective and presentation.

This creeping monopolization is a sad echo of how media worked in the 20th century. It doesn’t reflect 21st century diversity and empowerment. It’s not the web’s promise. It’s not how it’s supposed to be.

We have no beef with networks like Twitter or Facebook, or with companies like Apple and Google that currently dominate our communal digital space. We just think diversity is about expanding and speaking up—not consolidating and homogenizing.

Define the next decade with us#section1

A List Apart has always been more than a publisher; we’re an ecosystem of practitioners who are passionate about our craft. We’ll keep finding and sharing great articles—we’re just taking it to the next level.

Two ways to pitch in#section2

If you want to put your favorite skills to use, expand your professional experience, or have a goal or idea for A List Apart, we’re here to listen. And if you’d like to support us in some other way, we’ve made that easy, too. Currently there are two ways to pitch in:

Teams#section3

Use the email address at the bottom of this message to let us know if you want to create or join a team that “owns” some area you’re interested in, such as:

  • Design & development
  • Community service and local meetups/events
  • Education and entry level/advanced resources
  • Book/resource coverage and reviews
  • Editorial: Editing, acquisitions, and email
  • Social media, SEO, or marketing
  • Project management
  • Your suggestions!

Membership#section4

If you don’t have time to volunteer but still want to support us, you’ll be able to offer other forms of help—for instance, making a small, monthly donation via Patreon to help cover our expenses. This will also grant you membership benefits. (Details at Patreon.)

Sharing is caring#section5

More about all of this will soon be revealed. Meantime, if you have feedback or questions about what we’ve shared so far, kindly fire away in the comments. (Hey, how’s that for an idea? A comments section that’s positive and not divisive.)

As we imagine the next 20 years of web design, there’s a lot we don’t know—other than a strong hunch that accessible, semantic HTML will continue to be the bedrock of it all. But one thing we do know: the web, in its reach and its potential, is too important to be left to the mercies of a few powerful companies, however well-intended they may be.

If you’ve a mind to do so, please help us keep our little corner of the indie web alive and well. Help the open web stay open. Help us build the future. To get involved, email us at contact@alistapart.com—or share your thoughts in the Comments section below.

The independent content producer refuses to die!

Jeffrey Zeldman, Publisher
Aaron Gustafson, Editor-in-chief
& the gang

14 Reader Comments

  1. Sounds like a great idea, will share the link for people to get involved. ALA has always been an inspiration to me throughout my career, long may it continue.

    Is the Patreon site aimed just at individuals or can companies contribute too?

  2. Congratulations on the milestone! I’m excited about a refresh and hope to find a way to contribute. As more of a content person, I’d love to see some guidance – any time I think about expanding my skills, I’m overwhelmed by the directions I could take!

  3. Wow. I remember being a member when it was just a mailing list (hence the name). That must have been, oh, twenty years ago…

  4. Congratulations! I’ve learned so much from this site and community over the years: from content strategy, inclusiveness, and accessibility, all the way back to how to get PNGs to be transparent in IE6, “Sliding Doors of CSS,” “Suckerfish Dropdowns,” “A Dao of Web Design,” all about lobotomized owls, and of course, RWD.

    Thank you! I’m in—I’ll set up a recurring contribution on Patreon this weekend. And I’ll spread the word on my blog.

  5. This is wonderful! Congratulations! I’d love to become involved and help out on a team(s) where I’d be of use. I will also share this where I can.

  6. I really enjoyed reading A List Apart back in the days when it covered technical stuff (RWD, responsive images, CMSs etc.), that’s why it’s still in my RSS feed (jep, I still use that) and how I got notified of this post. So consider me sympathetic to the cause.

    However, I think you’ll have to clarify your message. Are you going to employ writers “like in the good old days”? Or are you going to be 100%-volunteer-based and the donations are just to cover server costs? The Patreon page is quite confusing to me… Also, what are you going to write about in the future? Before someone gives you money, they’ll probably want to know about that…

    Which leads us to content. I guess currently the biggest question mark for the A List Apart-readership, that grew up on progressive-enhancement, is summarized in one word: JavaScript. There are multiple ways to answer that question, but the magazine/website will look very different depending on which perspective you take:

    – ignore JavaScript and focus on HTML/CSS, in which case you’ll lose out on a lot of what’s going on in current web dev progress (i.e. different approaches to modules/widgets/components)
    – focus on the JS-framework of the day, in which case you’ll have to compete with a myriad of free blogs etc.
    – stay true to the ideal of progressive-enhancement and assume (or talk about) server-side JS rendering

  7. Well, this is exciting! Congrats on reaching this milestone and count me in. Where do you need me? My background is in marketing communications with strong writing and editing skills, however last year I switched careers and have been working as a front end developer (working with membership and e-commerce site development) and providing integrated marketing help to my clients. My interests run deep in UX, rwd, and integrated marketing, but I can write about anything.

    Let me know where you need me to help out. A List Apart was one of my major resources while I was retraining and continues as a go-to resource as I expand my skills as a developer. I’d like nothing more that to give back to the community who has given so much to me!

  8. Not sure if I can be of much help, but I’d like to hear more about what is envisioned for ALA, and maybe help on Design & development or Education and entry level/advanced resources.

  9. Am happy to participate as an author. Hard to keep on top of all the platforms … Medium, BandA, A List Apart, newsletters, podcasts, my own website. I was thinking the other day that I spend more than 50% of my time making content and rather less of it doing actual research work. Heh.

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