WATCH: INSP and street paper staff discuss their work and its impact on panel hosted by Society of Professional Journalists
‘Empowering The Poor: Street Newspapers and their Global Impact’ was panel hosted by the Society of Journalists on Wednesday 18 August. Moderated by founder of Real Change and INSP board member Tim Harris, the discussion included members of staff from INSP and its associated member publications. Watch the panel again here.
Sea, sun, fun and solidarity. Shedia’s new venture, the summer English-edition of the Greek street paper, is hitting the streets of Athens, offering – among other things – visitors a unique guide to responsible tourism in Greece.
Despite the uncertainty caused by pandemic lockdowns, Street Sense has made progress and is now going weekly. Located in the US capital, Street Sense Media will start publishing street papers every week starting today (14 April). This increase in frequency is also predicted to attract more vendors and increase their weekly earnings. Testimonials from vendors and INSP show excitement and anticipation for this growth in the street paper.
Earlier this month the news broke of the death of Dimitri Koutsomytis, who dedicated 14 years of his life to working with street papers, specifically Norway’s =Oslo. Here the magazine presents some of his best photography, which was just one skill Dimitri used to better the fortunes of the street paper and, in turn, its vendors.
For society’s most vulnerable and marginalised, 2020 – and the pandemic that has defined it – has exacerbated problems already familiar to them: food security, unstable housing, social isolation, income, and access to social services as they are weakened at a time they’re needed most. Street papers, which exist to alleviate that strain, have been impacted too. It’s been hard, but the effects they’ve felt have not been uniform. As the new year approaches, INSP checked in with street paper vendors of differing circumstances across the world to reflect on these past months and to look forward with some hope.
Pope Francis sends message to the street paper network: “The coronavirus pandemic has made your work difficult, but I am sure you will return stronger than ever”
In a personal message to the street paper network – expressing his solidarity with its journalists, its frontline staff, its volunteers and its vendors – Pope Francis hails the work being done by street papers to help “the vulnerable and invisible” in the testing circumstances created by COVID-19.
Street papers provide global update on how the world’s homeless population is facing the coronavirus
The Big Issue took stock of how coronavirus is affecting the world’s homeless community, providing another update on just how severely the spread of the virus is impacting street papers and the people for which they provide an income.
UK street papers The Big Issue and Big Issue North will, for the first time, be sold in select shops and supermarkets across the country in response to the effects of the crisis caused by the outbreak of COVID-19. Vendors of both magazines had been advised to no longer sell on the streets after the UK government enforced lockdown measures in an attempt to stop the spread of the virus.
As the world reacts to the outbreak of COVID-19, street papers are having to adapt to an environment of social distancing and isolation, a situation not conducive to selling street papers in the traditional way – by vendors on the street. They are now facing up to the challenge of how to continue providing a livelihood for those that rely on them. Supported by a global network, they are coming up with innovative ways to keep going.
Days before Christmas, communities across the US joined together to memorialise those who had died while homeless that year. INSP North America director Israel Bayer summed up the tragedies that have beset countless homeless Americans, while a group of the country’s street papers collaborated on making sure these remembrances, and the people they were about, were noticed.
Megafon, the street paper of Bergen, Norway, has been going since 2007 but, this festive season, its annual Christmas book will be its last edition. However, Megafon’s closure is an example of the stellar work it has done rising to the challenge of addressing homelessness and poverty, to the point that it is no longer needed as an alternative income source for the city’s poorest people.
US street papers collaborate with non-profit Law@theMargins on series centring voices from the homeless community
Four US street papers have collaborated on ‘The Right to a Home’ series with non-profit media organisation Law@theMargins and its Community Based News Room project. The stories produced amplify voices from within the homeless community, exploring how homelessness is being addressed at a local level across the country.
The street paper network was represented at a recent gathering of the best in the magazine and publishing industry by INSP, Nikoleta Kosovac of Liceulice and Big Issue editor Paul McNamee. Spreading the word of the work of street papers, Kosovac and McNamee were involved in a panel, joined by individuals from other extremely influential publications, talking about how magazines can make change in the world.
Last weekend marked the first time a street paper was sold on the streets of Peru. The first edition of Peatón was sold by the fledgling organisation’s first two vendors, Olga and Eremia, in Piura, a city located in north-western Peru. Peatón is a brand new member of INSP, and joins a contingent of Latin American street papers hailing from Mexico, Uruguay, Argentina, Brazil and Colombia. INSP spoke to Peatón founder Jorge Ledesma to find out more about the project.
To kick off 2019, UK street paper The Big Issue is implementing cutting edge augmented reality technology with an edition of the magazine to create an interactive reading experience, allowing Big Issue vendors to tell their important stories of experiencing homelessness directly to readers, as well as much more.
As the rest of the country gears up for Christmas, US street papers mark National Homeless Persons Memorial Day
Since 1990, communities across the US, while shoppers frantically prepare for Christmas, meet on the first day of winter and longest night of the year to commemorate those who have died while homeless in the last year. This year, 150 such gatherings took place on what is known as National Homeless Persons’ Memorial Day. Among them were those attended and organised by US-based street papers, accounts of which are collated here.
This week, Italian broadcasting network TV2000 will air a four-episode documentary series celebrating the work of Italian street paper Scarp de’ tenis, the lives of its vendors and those who work with homeless people in their daily lives. The show is gaining national interest thanks to the participation of film star Giacomo Poretti, who presents with “irony and a lightness of touch”.
2018 marks 25 years since the launch of Munich-based street paper, BISS. To mark this significant landmark, Karin Lohr, the CEO of BISS, talks to Christoph Gurk, one of the leaders of the BISS writers’ workshop, about loyal customers, why permanently employing vendors is so important to the magazine and why deeds, not words, are vitally important.
As Russia prepares this week to welcome legions of soccer fans to the country for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, editor of St Petersburg street paper Put Domoi, Arkady Tyurin, reflects on the life of a street paper in Russia, its vendors, the homeless population, and how the international tournament will affect them.
Andy Murray: “If you’ve given everything you have then you can be proud, regardless of the result on the tennis court or in life”
Ahead of his imminent, but as yet unspecified, return to the court, multiple Grand Slam winning British tennis star, and recently crowned knight of the realm, Andy Murray took a break from his focused rehabilitation to talk to INSP about his experiences of street papers across the world, the transformative power of sport and triumphing over adversity.
American street paper The Contributor has been going for over ten years as a traditional news print publication. But, last week, the Nashville, Tennessee publication reinvented itself with a sleek new magazine format and updated design.
This month, Canadian street paper Megaphone, which is based in Vancouver, British Columbia, but has stretched its patch to include Victoria, turned 10 years old. In this retrospective piece, individuals involved with the street paper, from founding members, to editors, to vendors, look back on the magazine’s decade long life so far.
Apropos, the street paper of Salzburg, Austria, recently its 20th anniversary. To mark that, one of its longest serving vendors, Luise Slamanug, sat down with the publication’s chief editor, Michaela Gründler, for an interview about what life has been like at Apropos over the last 20 years.
After 15 years at Portland street paper Street Roots, Israel Bayer has stepped down from his position as director. Speaking to INSP, he reflects on his time there, what it has been like working as part of the global street paper network, and what’s next for him and the organisation.
This week marks the 600th time the INSP News Service email will drop into the inboxes of members across the global street paper network. To celebrate, we looked back at some of the stories that have spread throughout the world thanks to the service, and hear from some of the beneficiaries of this unique editorial support platform.