Two Years of Pirate Times – Help Us Continue

Two Years of Pirate Times – Help Us Continue

Two years ago, on 13 August 2012, we published our first article. Since then we have covered elections, general assemblies, events and much more related to the pirate movement. This article will be our 500th article. When we started we had two main goals with Pirate Times as an international news service:

  • More international awareness between different pirate parties
  • Spreading news internationally and sharing best practices regardless of borders.

Our Past Year in Numbers

Visitors over the past year by continent

Visitors over the past year by continent

To accomplish these goals we had the help of 36 authors that wrote a total of 411.491 words on Pirate Times. We have published 461 articles in English, made 23 French translations and 16 Spanish translations of our articles = 500 published articles. Our readers have contributed 23.378 words throughout 436 comments to our articles. During the past two years we have received 1083 trackbacks on our posts. 

Our visitors our spread out but mainly from USA

Our visitors are spread out but many from USA

During the past year we have received 81.708 visits from 137 distinct countries. This is slightly lower than the ~85.000 visits we received our first year. Our articles are published to be shared (CC-BY) and many people read our articles outside our website (newsletter, rss, etc.)

At the beginning of 2013 we set some goals that we hoped to achieve by the end of the same year. We are still striving to accomplish them but getting close in most areas. We appreciate suggestions and help on reaching these goals before we revise them by the end of this year:

  • We want to grow our team by at least six more regularly contributing members so we can achieve the goal of one article per day (If you are interested please apply by joining the mailing list and introducing yourself).
  • ~200/1000 readers per day
  • 415/500 newsletter subscribers
  • 2084/2500 Facebook Page likes
  • 2044/2500 Twitter followers
  • Translate Pirate Times to French and Spanish -> translations exist but we need more activity
  • To start a podcasting service (still in planning stages, if you have an interest in helping please give us a shout!) -> nothing yet
  • To get ourselves quoted more by the main stream media -> done but haven’t kept track of where

Current Challenges for Pirate Times

Right now most people are on summer holidays meaning activity is low and Pirate Times is experiencing a downward trend in team activity. The vast majority of work is currently done by a few people and we need to get new people to join the team. Several of our team-members have started in Pirate Times and then moved on to other prominent positions inside the Pirate movement. This is not a problem since we still maintain good contact with old team-members but requires us to continuously find new people to join our team.

Today our only source of funding is through our flattr donations. This is enough to maintain our server space, domain name and a few Euros more. Finding a possibility of receiving more funding would allow us to cover the Pirate movement more efficiently. We would be able to send reporters to important events, improve our infrastructure and become more professional in our reporting. Currently Pirate Times is an informal organization of people but this could be changed if needed. We greatly appreciate any ideas you might have about how to fund Pirate Times for the future!

Another of our concerns is the lack of designers on our team. Something we have needed for a long time is creating a graphical profile and launching a new design for our website that would fit our content better.

The Most Important Members of the Team – You the Readers

What we are doing would mean nothing without our readers. We are constantly striving to improve and thus we are very grateful for any type of feedback, even if critical. A simple way to help Pirate Times to be more productive is giving our authors just a few nice words in the comments, a flattr click or a share of the articles on social media.

The Pirate Movement is nothing but diverse and we share a wide range of opinions as well as our core principles. Writing to an international audience of Pirates means, despite us staying as objective as possible, that we must step on some toes at times. Cultural, political and structural differences can at times create disagreements between readers. Whenever we are in the wrong (or missed a part of the story) we are always happy for corrections and advice.

We want to hear about events and topics that will be of interest to the international Pirate audience. We try to keep track as good as possible but sometimes we miss important events. There is a PPI calendar that keeps track of some of the events but we always appreciate being informed whenever something happens in your Pirate Party. You can inform us by writing a guest article about the event or by just giving us some information about it. We are always happy to receive guest articles for publication on a wide range of topics as long as they are of international relevance, objective and related to pirate topics.

Hopes for the Future

Pirate Times aims to be the obvious place to find information about the pirate movement. With 500 articles published we are definitely the largest source of Pirate information available but we need to make our information more accessible. Some of our older articles are discovered through searches on Google but most of our articles are only utilized directly after publishing.

We hope to curate our content in a more structured manner. This would allow it to be more accessible and searchable for people looking for specific information. One way we will do this is through launching several regular series of articles based on different themes. Another way of achieving more accessibility will be through better categorization and presentation of our related content. What would make you use Pirate Times more often?

Featured image: CC-BY, Pirate Times (some old logo suggestions from before we started)