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Welcome to The Roanoke Rambler! We're thrilled that you are considering a subscription to our weekly newsletter, which brings you exclusive stories, including coverage of local government and politics, the environment and racial justice, as well as original fiction and poetry. You can now sign up for a three-week free trial here. You may cancel your subscription at anytime, but we cannot process refunds at this time. Please note that benefits at the member and patron level are available only at the yearly level or equivalent monthly level (i.e., 10 months).
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Who are we?
We are a local and investigative news site and weekly newsletter serving the people of Roanoke and the region. To learn more about our vision, please visit our About us page.
Why do I have to pay to read The Rambler?
Good question. When the Internet emerged, many publications posted their journalism online for free, and many of us have become accustomed to accessing such news for free. Unfortunately, the rise of the Internet also tanked print advertising revenue, which still makes up the bulk of most newspapers' funding. Today, the vast majority of new digital ad revenue goes to Google and Facebook. A digital-only news outlet premised on ad revenue is nearly impossible.
So rather than rely upon advertisers, our publication must depend on the support of you, our readers. Subscriptions start as low as $8.33 per month. Individuals and businesses can sponsor newsletters through a text-only message at the patron level. But on The Rambler, you'll never find any pop-up ads, clickbait, moving pictures or other unfortunate advertising gimmicks.
How does my subscription support The Roanoke Rambler?
Your subscription, which renews automatically monthly or annually, provides us with a reliable and predictable source of revenue. About 70 percent of our expenses go directly to personnel, whether to pay our founding editor/writer salary or to pay our freelance journalists, according to our latest financial report (below). The remaining 30 percent of our costs go to spreading the word about The Rambler through marketing and member swag, paying for public records requests, and paying for the technology that makes this website and newsletter possible.
I want to give a gift subscription!
Great! Thanks for the support. Please fill out this form, and you're all set!
Where's my swag?
Thank you for subscribing at the member or patron level! We sent our first shipment out to members in January 2022. If you haven't received your swag, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please also note, as above, that swag, naming rights and newsletter sponsorships are available only at the yearly level or the monthly level at 10 months. If you want your swag sooner, please join as a yearly subscriber!
Is my subscription tax deductible?
No. The Roanoke Rambler is incorporated as a private company in Virginia called Big Blue Press LLC.
Can my business sponsor The Rambler?
You sure can. One of our subscription tiers, the patron level, allows individuals and businesses to pay $1,000 per year, or $100 a month at a minimum of 10 months, which comes with the ability to sponsor two newsletters per year. Businesses or individuals can submit a message of up to 25 words that will appear at the top of the weekly newsletter. For businesses' tax purposes, this subscription can be cited as an advertising expense.
Does The Rambler accept other types of advertising?
We do not. We want to make sure our journalism shines and our readers have an unobstructed experience. Sponsorships are the only way to advertise.
Who is giving you money?
We believe strongly that you should know how your journalism is being funded, and by whom. To that end, we publicly post the names and contribution ranges for subscriptions or gifts of $200 or more. We also intend to publish "thirdly" reports, which every four months will explain to the public where our money is going to and coming from. You can find a list of our backers on our Supporters page.
Thirdly Report September 2022 to December 2022:
Thirdly Report May 2022 to August 2022:
Thirdly Report Jan 2022 to April 2022:
Thirdly Report Sept 2021 to Dec 2021: