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Daily Kos office quilt
The new Daily Kos community quilt, finally hanging in our office (crappy iPhone photo)
It's been a while since I've provided an update, but lots has changed and evolved in the subsequent months. So it's time for one of these.

First of all, it's nice to have Meteor Blades back, right? We also finally hung up our fabulous Daily Kos Community Quilt in the office. Here's a virtual tour of that quilt from the artist herself, Sara. (And on a pleasant aside, how about this for a concentrated dose of amazing?)

Scott Wooledge photo
Scott Wooledge
And I've got more good news. I have the distinct pleasure of announcing our newest Featured Writer -- Clarknt67, aka in the real world as Scott Wooledge. Here's his bio, which will soon be up on our About page:
Scott Wooledge is a New York City writer and activist. He has worked on many campaigns, including Obama 2008, Hodes for Senate 2010, the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," and New York's marriage equality.

Hmm. He wrote that himself, so it's larded up with modesty. We'll have to work on that. Also, he's apparently too shy to mention that he's a GQ model. Or at least he should be.

He's a fantastic writer and thinker, a great activist, and obviously popular around these parts. It was an easy call to make!

Now on to site news.

Close up of Daily Kos community quilt
From the Daily Kos Community Quilt
Odd numbered years have always been my "down" time, but this year may have been the busiest. We went from nine full-time employees to 17. We launched three new verticals -- Elections, Cartoons, and Labor. We pulled of a major redesign, and it didn't kill the site, which was a nice bonus. We then did a design refresh that got rid of most of the stuff you guys hated, which was the cherry on top. The Cranky Users haven't been cranky enough lately. Makes me nervous.

We have a full-fledged development team, which has rocked. We have a development to-do queue that is a mile long, and while we hoped to be further along scratching things off that list, the reality is that the site is on a creaky obsolete platform, and they've been spending a great deal of time shoring up the underlying infrastructure as we transition to a new Rails framework.

Which leads us into the "obnoxious nagging" part I alluded to in the title...

Daily Kos Community Quilt closeup
From the Daily Kos Community Quilt
Through the end of the year, we're going to be making a strong subscription drive. We need to continue staffing up to speed up development times and do the kind of cool things we want to do, like adding new verticals, bringing aboard more cartoonists, and directly supporting community projects like the Kos Katalog.

Subscriptions are cool -- they allow you to view an ad-free version of the site, which isn't just more attractive, but also downloads much quicker. It's a lifesaver if you're on dial-up.

We're also adding new benefits to subscribers. We'll be rolling out three new downloaded e-books for subscribers over the next three weeks.

And we're creating new subscriber features. The first such feature will be our image uploader and organizer, which will be ready by the end of Q1. It'll allow subscribers the ability to upload photos to Daily Kos and access photos uploaded by others (including the Daily Kos editorial team's). No more having to mess around with Photo Bucket or whatever.

daily kos quilt closeup
From the Daily Kos Community Quilt.
Here's the thing -- we're changing how subscriptions are handled.

We have eliminated monthly subscriptions. If you have one on auto-renewal, it'll work for the time being. But they can no longer be purchased new. Also, after this year, we will no longer offer lifetime subscriptions. That's a big one. If you buy a lifetime subscription now, or already have one, then you're good for pretty much forever. If you don't have one, you have three weeks left to get one. Starting January, only annual subscriptions will be available. That's not a bad thing, it just means that if you want the benefits of a lifetime subscriptions (it saves you money after year two), you'll have to act soon.

Subscriptions are great for yourself, but they're also great for your favorite diarists. So consider gifting an annual or lifetime subscription for those community members you value the most. They'll love it, and it is the season, after all!

So yeah, lots of nagging about that up ahead. As always, I'm indebted to you guys for helping us grow to where we are today. Your help and patience in allowing us to fundraise for even greater growth is incredibly appreciated.

daily kos quilt closeup
From the Daily Kos Community Quilt

Originally posted to kos on Thu Dec 08, 2011 at 11:38 AM PST.

Also republished by J Town, Cranky Users, Meta Groupies, and KosBusters!.

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