Slingshot intro – issue #94

Slingshot is an independent, radical, newspaper published in Berkeley since 1988.

Sometimes travelers who’ve seen our Organizer and paper all over the place visit our collective expecting to find some kind of huge, well organized, experienced group and they’re rather surprised to find out how tiny and rag-tag we are — a cluttered office, antique equipment and sometimes only three or four people at meetings keeping things going.

The gap between what people think about our project and the reality causes a problem for us — people treat us like we’re an institution that magically provides “services” and they’re passive consumers. In this model, the consumers may wonder why we’re not providing more quality service, never stopping to think that perhaps behind the Slingshot Wizard of Oz are a few volunteers barely keeping up with the orders.

For example, a number of folks have written us recently saying our cover art on recent projects wasn’t so good. Our response: PLEASE create a cover and send it to us! The only way we get covers is if someone draws ‘em — we have no consistent artists in our collective nor a pool of artists. Since we don’t pay anyone (including ourselves), it is hard for us to find everything from art to articles.

And yet we keep publishing! To make this issue, people came out of the woodwork from everywhere at the last minute to work hard and make the issue a reality. It was as if a secret “underground collective in hiding” briefly surfaced. Doing this project is one of the funnest and most inspiring moments in our lives — there’s a huge sense of community and shared creativity up in our tiny loft.

Recently local paper Faultlines questioned whether it is worth it to still be doing a print publication in the internet era. They noted grimly the number of publications that went under recently and admitted the long gap between issues nearly put them on that list. One thing that drained and helped destroy morale for their project was trying to raise the funds needed to regularly publish. We are by no means immune from similar dilemmas.

As soon as we finish this issue, we’re going to scramble to make the 2008 Organizer so we can pay for the paper. Please send us your suggestions for dates, radical contact listings, DIY features for the back, or anything else you want to see in the Organizer. The deadline is July 31. It should be out around October 1.

Slingshot is always looking for new writers, artists, editors, photographers, translators, distributors & independent thinkers to make this paper. If you send something written, please be open to being edited.

Editorial decisions are made by the Slingshot collective, but not all the articles reflect the opinions of all collective members. We welcome debate and constructive criticism.

Thanks to all who made this: Astrogirl, Aunt B’s Catering, Eggplant, Glenn, Hefty Lefty, Hunter, kathryn, Molly, PB, Rachel & Terri.

Slingshot New Volunteer Meeting

Volunteers interested in getting involved with Slingshot can come to the new volunteer meeting on Sunday, August 19 at 4 p.m. at the Long Haul in Berkeley (see below).

Article Deadline and Next Issue Date

Submit your articles for issue 95 by September 15, 2007 at 3 p.m.

Volume 1, Number 94, Circulation 16,000

Printed April 19, 2007

Slingshot Newspaper

Sponsored by Long Haul

3124 Shattuck Ave. Berkeley, CA 94705

Phone: (510) 540-0751

slingshot@tao.ca • www.slingshot.tao.ca

Circulation Information

Slingshot is free in the Bay Area and is available at Long Haul and Bound Together Books (SF), plus lots of other places. Subscriptions to Slingshot are free to prisoners, low income and anyone in the USA who has a Slingshot organizer, or cost $1 per issue. International is $2.50 per issue. Back issues are available for the cost of postage. National free distribution program: Outside of the Bay Area, we’ll mail a stack of free copies of Slingshot to distributors, infoshops, bookstores and random friendly individuals for FREE in the US if they give ‘em out for free.

Circulation Information

Slingshot is free in the Bay Area and is available at Long Haul and Bound Together Books (SF), plus lots of other places. Contact us or come by if you want to distribute Slingshot for free in the Bay Area.

Subscriptions to Slingshot are free to prisoners, low income and anyone in the USA who has a Slingshot organizer, or cost $1 per issue. International is $2.50 per issue. Back issues are available for the cost of postage. National free distribution program: Outside of the Bay Area, we’ll mail a stack of free copies of Slingshot to distributors, infoshops, bookstores and random friendly individuals for FREE in the US if they give ‘em out for free.

Back issue Project

We’ll send you a random assortment of back issues for the cost of postage: send us $2 for 2 lbs or $3 for 3 lbs. Free if you’re an infoshop or library. Or drop by our office. Send cash or check to Slingshot to: Slingshot 3124 Shattuck Ave. Berkeley, CA 94705.