A message to our readers: Goodbye for now

A message to our readers: Goodbye for now

You’ve probably seen the headlines: the snarky, left-learning alt weekly you’ve learned to love or love to hate is coming to end. Over the last two years we’ve taken many of you to places you haven’t been before, shown you things you might not have seen otherwise.

Katie Cusack took you into the Capital Region’s indie basement scene, gave a platform to the under covered hip hop scene, exposed the impediments female musicians face in the area’s music scene, and introduced you to the stars of the burgeoning burlesque scene. Her story on the Momentive strike brought you to the picket line, helped you feel the cold that the workers felt as they picketed, hear the snap of the embers of fire that kept them warm, shared the anxiety felt by their families. I’ve witnessed the impact of her work on the local music scene–she’s inspired collaborations, connected artists and influenced the booking of shows across the region.

Luke Stoddard Nathan’s reporting on SUNY Poly, corruption in the Cuomo administration, and the Buffalo Billion fallout was sharp and impactful, his chronicling of Troy’s economic development unparalleled; he produced scoop after scoop while competing with reporters with far more resources at their disposal. He’s developed a following as a beat reporter in Troy–exposing an incident of alleged police violence and detailing the revitalization of a city that had at one point been written off.

It is tough to break into media–especially locally. My proudest achievement at The Alt has been giving a platform to these young, hungry, insightful reporters.

The truth is that in some ways we tried to be too many things to too many people with a tiny staff and minimal outside support.

While I consider this experiment a resounding success in many ways, it also delivered a humbling lesson–to serve the community in the best way possible, you need to become invaluable in at least one area.

We think we’ve figured out how to do that, and we will with the full backing of Proctors Collaborative.

Our new monthly magazine will take the name The Collaborative—not because we will be a house organ for Proctors, but because it very concisely states what our new mission is.

We want to focus on helping Capital Region creatives of all disciplines excel. We want to be a tool that helps them connect, overcome artificial boundaries, cross the river, and build the region into what it should be. We want to empower them let them hear from the experts, give voice to the needs of the up and comers and defeat parochialism one issue at a time.

You won’t see any more snarky political columns from me, but that does not mean we are going to avoid the hard issues. We will still tackle the culture of the Capital Region. We’ll deal with issues of race, poverty, education, infrastructure and housing. And we will take on these issues thoroughly with a long view.

We can’t do it without you. In the coming weeks we’ll be reaching out to experts in various disciplines to be involved in the new publication. We want your input. We want your trust. We want your readership. We want your voice.

We hope you’ll pick up our first issue, which is tentatively scheduled for November.

All of us here at The Alt want to thank you for your readership, we want to thank our advertisers, and especially the people we wrote about who believed in us enough to trust us with their stories.

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