Writers Wanted: Inquire Within

Who are we?
Tellus News Digest (TND)  is a collectively owned publishing platform operating on a cooperative, profit-sharing business model, so the decision makers are real people, not faceless bureaucrats or algorithms.

The TND home page design:
The TND website was designed from the ground up to give readers faster, easier access to a broader range of content than any other website. It is organized so that readers can see at a glance the most recently published articles in each topical category and select article that interest them without having to wade through articles that don’t. It is also designed to provide room on the home page for up to 39 articles at the same time! We have developed our own proprietary technology that allows us to circumvent advertising blockers to deliver advertising to the consumer, but we restrict our advertising to non-intrusive advertising models that do not assault the reader. Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.

What do we want from you?
Breaking news, commentary, opinion pieces, reviews, humor, fiction, poetry, how-to articles, consumer affairs articles, travelogues and “think” pieces are all okay. Articles should fit under one of the categories listed on the website’s menu bar. All articles must be the author’s own previously unpublished original work that meets our community standards. Articles should be at least 500 words. It is better to write three 500 word articles than it is to write one 1,500 word article.

How TND makes money:
TND‘s income will be generated from paid advertising, rather than pay walls, subscriptions, contributions or membership fees.

A realistic plan for generating traffic:
In order to generate advertising revenues on the internet, you need enough traffic to justify your advertising rates. In order to generate that amount of traffic, you need original content to attract more visitors.  Here’s our plan for generating the traffic we need to generate the revenue required to compensate content creators.

Most people who frequent the internet have personal networks that range from a few hundred to several thousand people. These networks consist of the contents of their email address books and the followers they have accumulated on their social media sites.

Let’s assume you have just 500 contacts in your  personal network. Assume that each of those contacts has a personal network of 500 contacts. This gives you an extended network of 25,000 contacts. Now, let’s assume that 100 people just like you join Tellus and pool their personal networks together. That brings the size of our collective extended network up to 25 million people!

If just one-tenth of one percent of the members of that extended network read an article on Tellus, that article would get 25,000 hits. That enough “reads” to put that article into the “viral” category. Once an article goes viral, the sky’s the limit in terms of the total number of hits it can receive.

By combining your individual output of articles with the output of the other members of the TND community, you cross-pollinate your audience with other writers’ audiences. Your followers see their articles, and their followers see yours, because that how we have constructed the TND website to work. What this means is that you have a constantly expanding audience of readers. It also means that visitors spend more time on the site and that also increases advertising revenues.

How we help you activate your personal network:
The key to activating the extended network is the manner in which you ask the members of your network to help you. That’s right. Just ask for help. Ask the members of your network to share the notices about your recently published stories with their networks. Some will, some won’t. More will than won’t. It’s human nature to want to help out a friend….especially when it isn’t going to cost anything more than a few minutes of their time. We will help you do the asking, with templates for email blasts. You can also sign up for our email blasting service, and we will send out those notices to your network automatically.

How you earn money:
We believe that publishing is a collective enterprise, and that it is the sum total of our efforts that attracts the traffic that generates the advertising revenue. Accordingly, TND operates on a profit-sharing plan. Contributors are paid a percentage of net profits (when there are net profits) equal to the total monthly word count of their articles and comments multiplied by the monthly word rate. The monthly word rate is determined by dividing the total net profit by the total number of words published in that month. Net profits are determined by taking total revenues for the month and subtracting overhead and operating costs. We will publish audited monthly profit and loss statements itemizing the revenues and expenses and justifying the word rate.

Payment method:
You will be paid on a monthly basis, 30 days after the close of the month for which you are being paid. This means that you will be paid during the first week of March for the work you published in January. In order to receive payment, you must submit an itemized invoice showing the names of the articles and the word count for each article. All payments will be made by check. We do not offer direct deposits and do not use PayPal. You will be paid as a 1099 independent contractor, which means that you are responsible for your own taxes. We will report your income to the Internal Revenue Service.

The rationale for our compensation plan:
Writing isn’t and shouldn’t be about competition. Writing is all about coöperation. That’s why we encourage cross-commenting  between contributors, and we like to have contributors reviewing and editing each other’s work to improve the overall value of the site for the reader. Members can also flag offensive articles for suspension and vote contributors “off the island” for repeated offenses.

The Publisher’s Conundrum:
In order to generate original content, you have to pay content creators enough money to make their efforts worthwhile. That’s the publisher’s conundrum: you don’t have the money to pay the content creators until after you have published the content that generates the traffic that produces the revenues. So, how do you reward contributors before you are generating the revenue required to compensate the content creators?

You start out by reminding them that they aren’t making anything from the articles they have been posting on social media where, in many cases, there isn’t even the possibility of getting compensated for your time, effort and talent. Then you point out that they can still post the same articles they are writing for Tellus on Facebook, Twitter, and wherever else they please.

Then you offer them a piece of the action.

Solution: A Piece of the Action:
Joining a start-up is always risky. In order to compensate content creators for taking that risk, we are rewarding early adopters with fractional shares of ownership upon achieving certain milestones. Contributors who produce an average of three articles per week during each 13-week quarterly period over the next two years will receive one-eighth of one percent ownership for each quarter to a maximum of one percent ownership. This offer is limited to the first 48 contributors who meet these criteria and is in addition to your regular compensation as a Tellus contributor. (This offer is subject to certain terms and conditions.)

Copyright Issues:
We take first-use North American rights only. You hold the copyright on all published articles and you are free to republish any article after a 48 hour aging period, as long as the republished article indicates that it was originally published by Tellus News Digest. We encourage simultaneous links to your articles on social media and we also post all newly published articles on our own social media accounts.  Social media postings should link to the actual article on TND. All articles posted on TND are permanently archived on the website. They may not be deleted for any reason other than instances of libel or plagiarism.

Editorial Policies:
TND takes no responsibility for any libel or plagiarism in articles published on TND.  The legal responsibility falls upon you as the author. We reserve the right to remove any articles that violates our community standards. If you are quoting from a published article, the name of the publication must be highlighted and you must include a hyperlink to that source to avoid being tagged for plagiarism.

 Click HERE to become a Tellus Contributor