Haters are gonna hate, but we believe in what we’re doing.
Recently, New Nation had the privilege of being featured in the Straits Times alongside blogging luminaries like Andrew Loh, formerly the Chief Editor of The Online Citizen, and Mr Brown. We appreciate the coverage, and the reporter who bothered to interview a bunch of nobodies like us.
To be frank, when we started New Nation, we had no freakin’ clue what we were doing. None of us knew how to modify a WordPress blog, let alone start a new site from scratch. We fumbled and stumbled along the way, making mistakes here and there, and even got our site wiped out once due to a hacker attack.
And to think we actually tried to seek an investor for our project. How naive we were!
But soon, we found our voice. And it is not a voice that everybody likes. While we write about serious issues, our goal is not to reach out to people who are already actively reading the socio-political blogs out there. We don’t need angry feminists and preachy activists reading us.
Our goal is to reach out to the common man (and woman): People who care somewhat about politics, but aren’t interested enough to read in depth, as well as people who don’t give a shit about politics. These are the folks that serious political blogs aren’t reaching out to.
We know that we have to write differently. We have to entertain.
So we tweaked our editorial style. Socio-political bloggers often take themselves too seriously. So we don’t. Socio-political bloggers write in cheem language that no one understands. So we write simply. Socio-political bloggers preach about the same narrow issues that cater to a niche audience. So we broaden our scope. Socio-political bloggers have a political stand. So we make sure we have none.
Our articles are kept short, informal, and entertaining. We go for the talking-at-a-bar kind of feel, where we can talk about anything and be politically incorrect. We’re casual, tongue-in-cheeck, irrelevent, irreverent, ironic, and serious, all at the same time. We don’t have a political agenda or social cause we advocate as a publication, because we feel that alienates many readers.
Anyone can write for us, whether you’re misogynistic, polygamist, or a believer of other weird shit like aliens. We only discriminate against boring, pretentious writing. And angsty writing too.
Some people find us too crass of course. They think they are above us. So be it. When you do things your way, some folks are bound to hate it.
But we’re gaining an audience. We’ve got a Worker’s Party supporter who volunteers with us. We’ve got a girl gamer who wrote something for us. We’ve even attracted a bboy who don’t give a damn about politics.
They all have one thing in common: They’re all young and passionate. And many of them have a life.
At New Nation, we keep things loose. We’re free to publish whatever we want, and we only send stuff to one another for vetting when we’re not sure.
We break boundaries between news and opinion, between serious writing and humor, because we believe in breaking rules. We break decorum too, mostly for the heck of it. No rule in journalism is safe from us.
We meet every week at an ice-cream place. Our meetings are casual, and we chat and gossip about everything. Nothing is taboo for us, that’s part of the creative process that leads to stuff that’s actually different.
But we know we’re not there yet. The Straits Times report is good for us, but our primary aim is not to get news clippings. It’s to grow and sustain a crapload of readers.
And have lots of fun along the way.