38. taz Verlagsgenossenschaft eG

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Coop Name: taz Verlagsgenossenschaft eG N° of Employees: 250
City: Berlin N° of Members: 11000
Country: Germany Year of formation: 1991
Website: http://www.taz.de
About this coop:

The Taz is a daily newspaper with an independent voice. The Berlin cooperative maintains one of the reasons it is able to maintain its independence is through its business structure. More than 11,000 members have joined the cooperative in order to see that independent journalism In Germany can continue.

Photo Credits: Jonas Maron

“Nobody gives us a chance – but we’ll grab it with both hands.” So read the first edition of the Berlin daily newspaper the taz in 1979. The same newspaper embraced a co-operative structure 12 years later. Fast forward to 2012 and the co-operative remains the only publication owned by its readers in Germany. In a dramatically shifting media landscape its co-operative structure ensures the independence of its journalism. Pressure is mounting on daily mastheads to replace ever dwindling advertising revenues and to manage the rising forces of the internet. These forces have had a myriad of effects on the quality of daily journalism around the globe. The evils of self-censorship have pared away at the independence of journalists in all corners of the world through fear for their jobs. This, combined with business imperatives breaking into editorial decision making, have whittled away at reportage which was once made without fear nor favour. The taz co-operative has been able to rise above these travails which plague other newspapers. It is owned by more than 11,000 readers. It has a solid capital base of nearly 11 million euros. It has about 250 contributors to its pages. And, 33 years on from its inception as a newspaper, the taz is still independent. The same deep-seated beliefs permeate the publication. “We can’t let up in our fight to reveal the truth,” writes editor-in-chief Ines Pohl This story is an IYC Yearbook feature: http://ica.coop/en/iycbook

Author of this story
Kate Askew
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