Funding the Future: Free riders and Friends

(I promise not to use the word plummeting in the following post. Thank you for reading)

We didn’t have national health care, because we didn’t have it. It wasn’t already in place when we came along. It wasn’t right (that we didn't have it). It just wasn’t.

A) We mostly do what we’ve done before. B) We mostly don’t do what we’ve never done before, because we are committed to a course of action that is well outlined in A.

Here’s the thing.

Currently, we have: JIT acquisitions in libraries; myriad, able new rivals (calling themselves “publishers”) entering the market, from all sides; online vendors backward integrating to join them (i.e., threaten us), and we are certain that it was always meant to be right that we don’t have a national university press foundation? Not one for the ongoing advancement of publishing excellence for the public good? We’re positive of that? No value whatsoever to the American people?

A national u press fundraising entity (centrality)—even one that didn’t accept donations—would bring valuable to the u press network as a strategic hub alone for the sharing of: best practices, resources, enhanced buying power, enhanced negotiating power (chachkies and DVDs to give away), and many other things to be named/discovered later.

95% of donations ($) come in from 5% of donors. “Friends of the Press” programs are largely PR. U presses would realize more $ in donations, under aegis of Friends of U Presses fundraising at a national level than they do now flogging after it endlessly on their own + the brand equity of university presses would rise, significantly, due to attendant, regular national promotion.

+ + Individual presses would still keep their 5% of highly motivated donors; i.e., 95% of current $s raised.

I have thought that universities without presses could be moved to pay into the u press network with such a centralized system, and they could; but, that would more likely be under aegis of Membership rather than as Friends of the Presses.

+ + It would also be better done commercially with centralized services offered through an online, customer-facing site. Or, words to that effect.