Why TFF is on Substack – and very active there

Why TFF is on Substack – and very active there

Jan Oberg

August 10, 2023

You’ve noticed that TFF is now active on three platform:

• The foundation’s homepage: The Transnational (here) which is on WordPress (more about WP here);

“TFF 2 News” which is on Flipboard;

• TFF on Substack: TFF • Transnational Foundation & Jan Oberg.

It’s different kinds of audiences – readers and viewers – on each and, thus, only seldom do we publish the same post on two of them or all three. In this way, we reach more people than ever.

Substack is an American online platform that provides publishing, payment, analytics, and design infrastructure to support subscription newsletters.[5] It allows writers to send digital newsletters directly to subscribers.[6][7] Founded in 2017, Substack is headquartered in San Franciscoaccording to Wikipedia.

We’ve tested Substack, published energetically, and we are, after a couple of months, among the 15% most active there in terms of publication frequency.

It’s a new concept, different from both the blog, the homepage and emailed newsletters.

It functions very reliably, and it is easy and comparatively fast to post on (when you have learned it) – which is hugely important for a think tank like TFF with no paid staff, a shoestring budget created exclusively by people who like what we do, and in which everything, including administration, is done by all the unpaid contributing TFF Associates and everything else by the two founders.

It feels like we are going to use Substack more in the future.

We are in a predominantly US/Western community but with some of the best thinkers and writers in that declining part of the world who think globally, and there is nothing that precludes it from becoming more global in the future.

Compared with a homepage, you cannot make your Substack platform as “personal” or beautiful as you might like. There is not that much you can do, and we all look basically the same on Substack. But it is a very clean and easy-to-navigate platform. Our subscribers don’t have to go there, but we do recommend that you explore it for all the good stuff it contains. Instead, TFF’s Substack posts wing directly into our subscribers’ inboxes – are you one?? – and you read it on your phone or desktop.

And, of course, you can like and comment on each post. All the clutter and negativity you often find on certain social media are gone here.

This is a model which I believe will spread.

It’s mind-boggling how conventional-to-boring the mainstream media are, devoid of creativity and new ways of doing things. Instead, they put the old newspaper concept behind paywalls. I know all the arguments for that, but I think their days are numbered. Transferring the printed old daily to online format is simply out of sync with our times.

On Substack, you can read a lot – including everything on TFF Substack – free of charge. That’s a principle we have always had: open to students, open to people of all walks of life, open to people in corners of the world where money is not plenty.

We believe in free research and thinking, free media, free expressions and dialogues and free publishing.

But you may also choose to stop wasting your money on the commercial media and their paywalls and spend your savings on free, ad-free writers and institutions on Substack. Then you support those writers and, if you want, also TFF’s work. But we do not demand it. Everything is free. You can also choose to support free-writing individuals financially – that’s what is so easy to do on Substack.

Why support huge commercialised media corporations with dubious interpretations of public service, repetitive narratives and truth when you can support directly person-to-person those who write to enlighten?

In short, Substack – as we see it at TFF – is something new and promising. We are happy to give it a serious long-term try and thereby also contribute our little bit to its future development.

We think you should acquaint yourself with Substack and do something similar. Join Substack and join TFF on Substack.

To learn more, read this exciting vision by Substack’s creators and leading team – Christ Best, Hamish McKenzie and Jairaj Sethi. They’ve got a vision…

A better internet for readers. What you read matters; so does where you read it

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