Newsletters — Reborn
There are a lot of exciting, informative newsletters authored by people who are very established or trusted in their field. At least two companies behind this movement only reassure the entire phenomenon. Honestly, though, newsletters aren’t new at all. They started as digital versions of the information brochures we used to receive on snail mail — for those that actually lived through that time. Then they went out of style because it was primarily corporate and promotional material that got sent out as newsletters. Now the entire idea is experiencing a renaissance.
In the age of massive disinformation campaigns, getting our news from people we can trust makes sense. Many prolific independent journalists have started their own newsletters. It does feel good to read their work directly, knowing well that their motivation is not influenced by a larger faceless organisation. Now, I am not an activist, but I get a good chunk of my news this way.
Finding the newsletter on your specific topic of interest is not easy. We are left with Google to find us the good ones. It works for now, but not many of us will search for very esoteric topics using Google. We can never be sure that the keywords we search for aren’t working against us. So we are better of not doing those risky searches even if the data we are looking for is perfectly naive, innocent and just satisfying our curiosity.
Secondly, newsletters over emails have a significant drawback. Most of our inboxes are filled with stuff we don’t ever get around to reading. I personally have a filter that will just mark all my emails as read. Besides, most of us have at least two email addresses, and we only have time to focus on one. We all know which one we have to pick. So the entire medium is a terrible choice for consuming newsletters. We are often missing out on the good stuff because of the clutter.
Lastly, reading multiple newsletters over email is not feasible even if you have an excellent inbox-zero setup. We, typically, have a fixed duration we spend with emails and often, we don’t want to spend that time reading stuff up. So the newsletter would end up being another open tab on the browser. Most people don’t manage to catch more than 3–4 newsletters a week, myself included. I actually subscribe to 15+ newsletters, though.
The newsletter project is an attempt at a solution to these problems. To start, though, I will just address the consumption problem with an opinionated solution. But if you will work with me, we can shape it into something we all can want and use.
How Does It Work?
The newsletter project compiles all your week’s worth of newsletters into a book and sends it to your Kindle. That’s it. Simple. Well, to start, that’s what the project does. Assuming a lot of us find reading newsletters on a Kindle are actually a better way to read them, there are a bunch of improvements identified for the near future.
Will this be free?
I’ll definitely have a generous free trial so that you can get at least 2 Kindle deliveries before you decide to go ahead with this. For now, the focus is to get this working, with the whole experience being as smooth as possible.
Where do I try this?
Glad you asked :-) I am currently beta-testing my implementation with a couple of close friends who will be honest with me. And if you think you’d like to sample this early on, feel free to register your interest by leaving your email here.
I expect to send out invites starting the fourth week of Jan 2022. By the way, this is not a waitlist, and there is no sequencing as such. You will nudge me to get this out faster by giving your email, though.