The Media Co-op

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The Media Co-op is a coast-to-coast network of local media co-operatives dedicated to providing grassroots, democratic coverage of their communities and of Canada.

You can view a full list of editors here.

How the Media Co-op works

The Media Co-op is reader-funded and member-run. This means that we rely on the participation of hundreds of people through discussions of coverage, photography, written accounts, videos and other forms of participatory journalism. We also seek to fund experienced journalists to produce high-quality, in-depth reporting, drawing whenever possible on input and material generated by our membership.

The Media Co-op is formally organized as a solidarity cooperative (also known as a multi-stakeholder co-op) with three kinds of members: readers, contributors and editors. This means that the Co-op seeks to represent the common interests of these various groups. For example: the readers want high-quality grassroots coverage, and are willing to pay for it; the contributors want to cover stories free from the constraints of the corporate press and be paid for their work. The editor members are charged with organizing the cooperative and keeping things running day to day.

To find out more about becoming a Media Co-op reader member click here.

For more on becoming a contributor member, including guidelines for writers, click here.

Our board of directors has representatives from each membership category (one from readers and one from contributors, three from the editors), as well as one rep from each local. Read more about Media Co-op board members here.

Find out more information about our history and how the Media Co-op operates here.

The Media Co-op's Structure

Media Co-op Organizational Chart

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Download the chart (614kb, pdf)

The philosophy behind the Media Co-op

"Grassroots" means that for each topic we cover, we talk to the people directly affected by policies or activities first. Once a journalist thoroughly understands the story of those directly affected, she brings their questions to those making the decisions: politicians, corporate executives, and so on.

This approach stems from a certain kind of common sense: if we start by talking to the people who have a vested interest and experience in spinning, framing or outright lying to their own advantage, then we're not likely to get the real story. This approach also takes the position that what is actually happening on the ground is more important than what influential people are saying about what's going on.

Meet your Media Co-op Locals

Each Local of the Media Co-op consists of:
a) a local group of active contributors and organizers,
b) a web site, connected to the Media Co-op Network, and
c) the membership of the Media Co-op residing in the vicinity.

Each Local has a degree of autonomy, but also contributes to (and benefits from) the operation of the Co-op. In consultation with membership, Local editorial groups decide how to use resources in their area.

Current locals

Halifax: Established February 2009
Vancouver: Established November 2009
Toronto: Established February 2010
Montreal: Established May 2011

A Brief History of the Media Co-op

The Media Co-op was initiated by members of The Dominion's editorial collective in 2006. The project really took form in February of 2007, when The Dominion announced its intentions to establish a Media Co-op with a cross-Canada tour, and re-incorporated as a co-operative.

The idea of the Media Co-op came from a recognition of the limitations of The Dominion's rigorous and labour-intensive editorial process, and the need for a more broadly participatory media organization in Canada.

For more on the history of the co-op, click here.

Working Groups

Working Groups are areas of the web site where Media Co-op members and participants can share information and stories around a topic of mutual interest. Eventually, they will become the engines for generating coverage of a wide variety of topics, to be circulated by the Media Co-op.

The Dominion

The Dominion is a publication of the Media Co-op. Most members receive printed copies of the newspaper, and selected stories from Locals appear in The Dominion.

Special issues of The Dominion (such as the tar sands and State of Mine issues) are distributed through the Locals.

For more information, contact:

General: 514-394-0623

PO Box 741
Station H
Montréal, QC
H3G 2M7

General inquiries and letters to the editor: info [at] mediacoop [dot] ca

Questions about subscriptions or membership: membership [at] mediacoop [dot] ca

Halifax: hmc [at] mediacoop dot ca
Montreal: cmm [at] mediacoop dot ca
Toronto: tmc [at] mediacoop dot ca
Vancouver: vmc [at] mediacoop dot ca