Last year, I co-founded this Malaysian youth magazine, thecicak.com. So far we’ve published 120+ articles, been on newspapers a few times, and today, we’re giving away RM800 for a short article you can write..
But I’m not satisfied with it at all. It’s good, but it’s far from optimal. I’m bent on getting the system right, on 3 levels
– The website design
– The team
– The business model
For the website design,
I’ve been working with Firdaus, of Josh Lim & Associates. it looks like I’m going to have to do it myself. The website’s most wanted response is for people to read articles. Next most wanted response is for them to comment. Then, write an article, or get to know theCicak.
To achieve this, our v3 will have a seperate, accesible, consistent navigation area for articles on the right, and non-article related sidebar on the other side. We’ll expand the width of container, shrink the artwork, to enable more vital info above the fold. Click on the thumbnail to view our planned wireframe layout.
For the team, we’ve recruited a marketing-savvy bunch. They are heading the writing competition now, and I’m observing who’s got the right stuff…
We also have 2 new editors! Krystle is now the managing editor, and doing a darn good job. More editors needed! Put your brains and good English to use yo Click here.
But in the longer term, I’m grooming someone to manage volunteers and get things done… to build a tight, commited team. Personally, I’ve dedicated more time to mentoring compared to doing things myself. Anyone want hands on experience running a fast-growing online non-profit, working alongside some very capable young Malaysians? Click here.
For the business model, we hope to bring in money, to give out to our readers and commenters. This is our strategy towards sustainable, long-term growth…
Giving out $$$ is an incentive to contribute. Where to get the money?
While the v3 suggestion integrates Adsense wayyyy better, considering we’re pulling in a targeted segment of Malaysian youth, we have in mind a couple of corporate sponsors, as well as larger non-profits who are looking to fund project like ours.
The Big Picture
My personal stake in this? I just think it’s important to be critical about the issues which affect us, and I like being surrounded by people who are smarter than I am.
Also, through theCicak, I’d like to think a more pressing issue is addressed.
In 2010, Malaysian polulation aged 20 to 34 = 6,295,411
Malaysian population aged 20 to 80 = 15,294,591
Which means % of voting population aged 20 to 34 = 41%
You see, I don’t know how to vote. I don’t know much about Malaysian politics. Many of the so-called educated English urban Malaysian youth are as jakun as me… guess it doesn’t look like we’ll be having many informed voters to represent our section of society in the near future…
Let’s change that by spreading the word and promoting awareness of the issues! Click here to see theCicak