Small publishers need your help • 8 January 2008 • The SnowBlog
Small publishers need your help
And for once I'm not talking about Snowbooks.
Dedalus and Arcadia are having their Arts Council England funding cut this spring, unless they can persuade the Arts Council that they should continue to be supported. You can sign the Dedalus petition here (the Arcadia one appears to be email only, so I hope they don't mind if I provide this email address so you can add your name to the signatories.)
Needless to say, I think it's a crying shame and that I hope ACE can be persuaded to change their minds. I do understand that there are limited finances, though, and they can't create money out of thin air. But my heart goes out to Dedalus and Arcadia. It's a tricky thing, making money out of publishing - sometimes, I think it's impossible, which is one of the reasons why we try to generate our own alternative revenue streams. Having to rely on external sources of income - whether that's fickle investors or public money - means that you cede control, and that's a risky position to be in, as these two independents are finding. Do support them by signing their petitions - but most importantly, by buying their books. It's solid commercial success we all need, so we don't have to magic up money from nowhere.
//update: blimey - a development and a half...// DEDALUS PRESS RELEASE 8-1-2008
Small Publisher to Sue The Arts Council For Not Following Its Own Disinvestment Guidelines
Dedalus Publishers in Cambridgeshire, which is one of The Arts Councils smallest clients receiving a grant of just 24,958 in 2007/8, is to challenge The Arts Councils decision to stop its funding from January 2008, on the grounds that The Arts Council has not followed its own Disinvestment Guidelines.
The Disinvestment Guidelines, which can be accessed on The Arts Council web site outline a seven stage procedure for disinvestment which usually lasts from 6 to 18 months for regularly funded organisations.
The Guidelines exist for a purpose as stated by The Arts Council on Page 1, These stages provide a clear process to ensure that the decision to disinvest is correct and that we can defend such a decision against any challenge.
The seven stages of the Disinvestment Guidelines have clearly not been followed for most, if not all of the 194 organisations who received a letter from The Arts Council dated 12th December 2007 withdrawing their funding with no prior notice.
The decision to disinvest from these 194 organisations in the manner cho sen by The Arts Council is therefore open to legal challenge. Dedalus invites all affected organisations to join in its legal challenge.
An organisation which cannot follow its own rules is not fit for purpose. The Arts Council has lost its way. It is not there to destroy 194 arts organisations overnight but to foster the arts. Eric Lane, M.D. Dedalus Publishers
For further details please contact:
Eric Lane at Dedalus tel: 01487 832382 email: email@example.com
Sir Christopher Frayling at The Arts Council via his PA: firstname.lastname@example.org
Peter Hewitt, Chief Executive of The Arts Council: email@example.com
Andrea Stark, Chief Executive of The Arts Council, East: firstname.lastname@example.org
To view the guidelines go to www.artscouncil.org.uk click Funding, then Regular Funding for organisations and then find at the bottom of the page Procedural guidance for disinvestment, though it appears that in the last few days it has been removed. So please see the attachment downloaded before the document disappeared from The Arts Council website.