Today, we’re celebrating the 26th birthday of WND, which I founded on this day way back in 1997, making it America’s oldest independent Christian online journalism organization. Quite a milestone in the world of internet news.
And of course, as we begin our 27th year, we are all hoping and praying for many more years to serve our Lord and the American people by reporting truthfully and courageously on all the critical events shaping our nation’s present and future. But I’m sorry to say that WND’s future is by no means a certainty.
Since many of you are friends and longtime readers, and some are supporters, I’ll be very straight – even a little blunt: We really need your help, and we need it TODAY.
I’ve previously told you about the continual attacks on WND waged by everyone from Big Tech to predatory law firms to power-mad government itself, which have succeeded in reducing our annual revenue from $15 million to $1 million, prompting many layoffs, pay cuts for those who remained and radical cost-cutting measures all around. Yet, although we have survived and continued to produce great journalism even at that much-reduced level, we have run out of funds again.
The dismal Biden economy right now is causing many nonprofits – including ours, the WND News Center, a 501(c)(3) charity – to suffer devastating losses in their fundraising. As a result, we are currently down to less than half of the revenue on which we normally operate. This is now an emergency for us.
Unless something changes for us right now, we may be forced to close our doors, as have other major online news organizations recently, as you probably have read about. That is why I am humbly but urgently asking you for your generous support!
I know some of you are familiar with WND’s unique story, but in light of the dire nature of our current situation, plus the fact that we are observing our 26th anniversary, please allow me to briefly share the amazing journey that resulted in WND becoming the hugely influential online news pioneer it has been for a quarter century.
When WND launched way back in 1997, the biggest problems were technical. There was no easy way to process the content – even text – in the early years. It would be another six years before content management system WordPress was launched. That meant hand-coding every page in html. That task fell to someone who had to learn the tech language from scratch – my very patient wife, Elizabeth.
It was extremely challenging. I would edit all the copy for each day’s edition, find all the supplemental links, write all the headlines, find all the images and hand it all over to her. She would often spend the entire night coding each page – often to find that one misplaced or omitted character spoiled the entire effort!
Nevertheless, in the first 30 days after our launch, we were astonished to find 10,000 unique visitors were coming daily. That may not seem like many by today’s standards, but back in 1997, there were only a couple million people actually using the World Wide Web regularly. So we were certain, at that point, this was going to be a Big Thing.
Within a year, 10,000 became 1 million. Then it became multimillions a day. And there were lots of “firsts” for WND:
In 2002, WND became the first online news source ever to be accredited to cover the U.S. Congress by the Senate Press Gallery. It took a grueling two years of applications, having to appeal denials based on misinformation and bias by the establishment press guardians, and finally, our threatening to personally sue each of the decision-makers. But in the end, we won. And our victory was hailed as a breakthrough that opened the door to many other alternative, online media outlets.
WND became the first online news source to become a book publisher. For 16 years, WND Books had the highest percentage of New York Times best-sellers of any book publisher in the world. We were also the first online news source to spin off into national syndication homegrown columnists such as David Limbaugh, Chuck Norris and Bill O’Reilly. And the first online news service to incorporate an e-commerce operation, the WND Superstore. And the first online news service to begin producing and distributing documentary movies. And to create a companion monthly magazine, Whistleblower. I could go on and on, but you get the point.
We did it! We were successful. We did really good journalism. And we were the biggest conservative and avowedly Christian online news publication in the world. We were at our pinnacle until 2016. And then, over the next few years, we nearly became … extinct. How is that possible?
To make it simple, Google became a monster – as well as Facebook and the rest of Big Tech. I’ve told enough of the story about that – even obsessing about it, crying about it, nearly giving up hope over it.
But that will never happen. Although we here at WND have been crushed financially, having been completely demonetized by the Internet Cartel and basically “running on fumes” … what keeps us going is the tremendous dedication of our staff, the support of loyal readers, and God’s blessing.
By the way, in case you’re wondering WHY Big Tech and the rest decided to go after us, the answer is two words: DONALD TRUMP! Although they were already suppressing us in search results as early as 2014, the persecution started in earnest in 2016 when Trump ran for president. The site was trashed, called “racist” and “extremist,” demeaned, defamed and shadow-banned – then demonetized completely and outright blackballed. At first I believed I could handle it, but soon I was overwhelmed by it, suffering a series of five strokes. But even that could not get me to quit.
Bottom line, if you’re in sympathy with me and with our intrepid staff, for whom – sad to say – we are having very serious trouble even making payroll, I’d like to humbly but urgently ask you for your support.
If I have moved you to donate today, there are a variety of ways to help WND.
In closing, let me just say thank-you once again to all who have kindly and generously supported us in the past, and for however you are moved to help us now in our time of urgent need. We are forever grateful.
May God bless you and yours!
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