The Who will pay for journalism?

Hard times breed new journalism models. Donation driven journalism is nothing new. Christopher Albritton was something of a pioneer at the beginning of the second Gulf War. Sandeep Junnarkar used donations to fund a long form journalism project – Lives in Focus – on AIDS patients and access to medicine in India. He continues along the same lines with Family life behind bars – focussing on the impact on American families when one or or more members is incarcerated. So, it’s with some interest that I opened an email from a Dutch photojournalist called Gitta van Buuren this morning. As the media wonks ponder who will pay for journalism in the future, Gitta has already found the answer. The Who will pay,

I am not only a photojournalist and cultural anthropologist but also a big fan of The Who – always in the frontline at their shows :-). As a photojournalist I have visited Afghanistan three times so far. Since 2007 I am also working there as a volunteer, supporting Afghan photojournalists in their professional development. I have started a photography library and given a workshop photo story and a Photoshop course. I organize and finance this project myself, working there independently from any organisation or institution. This summer I will visit Kabul again to work as volunteer for the Afghan photojournalists. To support my project financially, and purchase some necessary items for the photojournalists, I am selling items from my Who collection in an online auction. link

Gitta aims to volunteer for the Aina Photo Agency in Kabul where she did some work in 2007. As she says, this is an "independent initiative, organized and financed by myself… Hopefully the result of this auction will support the Afghan photojournalists." The auction started on Sunday February 15 and runs until Saturday March 14, 24.00h (GMT + 1.00h). And, for the record, my favourite Who song is the one in the video above.