Happy National Week!
Jom is ready. We’ve decided to soft launch our website today with two in a series of National Day essays, one by Faris Joraimi, our history editor, and the other by me.
I’ll talk more about this series in a bit, but first, Jom is also pleased to announce that we are now open to paid subscriptions. I want to talk you through our decision to start accepting money.
Those two essays are outside the paywall, meaning they are freely available to anybody. They are meant to allow you to sample Jom’s content. Paid content will be available only from August 26th or so, when our paywall comes up.
So, why are we accepting money now?
Well, some of you, from the moment you received our first newsletter a few weeks ago, have expressed interest in subscribing. “Take my money already,” one of you wrote in. (All of it?)
We’re opening our subscription page now to allow for that. Some of you might want your accounts ready and active before the 26th, so you can immediately access exclusive content.
More generally, it’s also just to familiarise the Singapore audience with our offering. There are three tiers of Jom membership:
- Member (S$10/month) - Get Singapore’s best journalism
- Supporter (S$25/month) - A more intimate relationship with Jom
- Patron (S$950/year) - Jom’s benefactors (number capped)
Please check out our subscription page to understand the benefits at each tier, and think about what’s best for you. And if Members and Supporters pay upfront for the whole year, they get a nice chunky discount.
Some of you, of course, might choose to simply keep receiving this free e-mail newsletter without signing up for any of the above paid subscriptions for exclusive content.
The most important thing I want to say in this e-mail is that we understand and respect your decision. We're just happy that you're here! We know that we are competing with numerous other digital products out there for your limited time and money.
Rest assured that we will never spam you in an effort to convert you. The “jom” we say to you is always going to be a subtle, gentle one, with little teasers here and there.
The reason we have three tiers is because we understand that Singaporeans have drastically different monthly budgets. We’re hoping that we can find some mix of people that believes in independent journalism enough, that can sustain this outfit and community as we grow. Fingers crossed, as we take our first baby step today.
The subscription journey
If you’ve decided on a paid subscription, let me highlight one thing. We won’t prod you to create a password. Instead all account verification is done through your e-mail address. After your payment is processed successfully, you’ll get an e-mail with a link for you to access your account.
If you later want to log in from a different device, like your desktop or smartphone, you’ll have to sign in again with your e-mail, and then click the link that you receive.
So, no password to remember, but you need to have your e-mail account handy.
This is a feature of the wonderful Ghost platform that Jom and many other journalistic outfits are on.
Jom's National Day series
I am super excited about this series. A few months ago, when it seemed likely that Jom might launch sometime in August, we asked each person in our main team to write about something close to their hearts. We came up with the below brief.
“Philosophically, we hope for the series to counter the establishment view that love and belonging can be expressed only through a flattened, stereotypical form of chest-thumping bravado. We want the series, in keeping with what many artists have already been doing, to help broaden the space in society for a more critical, meditative notion of belonging, community and solidarity.”
So today we present you with Faris’s and my pieces. Faris has written a beautiful, introspective piece about a bountiful idea of Singapura, of belonging, one unconstrained by the limits of the nation state. I’ve written about the need for a deeper discussion on National Service.
In the coming weeks you’ll hear from Charmaine Poh, Jom’s co-founder and head of visual culture and media, Tsen-Waye Tay, co-founder and head of content, Jean Hew, head of research, and Fiachra Ross, social media manager.
I’m so happy!!! Finally, from today, you’ll start consistently hearing from all the other voices in our Jom team. And with that, I’ll sign off on my shortest Jom newsletter to date.
Some further reading
Jom is really happy to be on the Ghost platform. It’s an open-source platform built for modern digital journalism, produced by the non-profit Ghost Foundation. (Yayasan Hantu? I guess not all Malay translations work.)
If you enjoy Jom’s work, do get a paid subscription today to support independent journalism in Singapore.