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A project to establish a "citizen's news bureau" in Madison, Wisconsin to cover the movement behind the ongoing budget bill protests

The Wisconsin Budget Protests have captured national headlines, but these stories have mostly focused on the spectacle: the carnival atmosphere, the creative signs and costumes, the rallies attended by tens of thousands, and the occasional Tea Party counter-protest. But behind the headlines is the story of a growing movement composed of a large and sometimes unlikely group of citizens.

The Protests have seen life-long union members and organizes share their stories with college students who had never before considered how organized labor has supported the middle class life they took for granted. Off-duty police officers have camped in the Capital alongside punks and Anarchists. University TAs and professors have marched along side prison guards and bus drivers, while local small business owners have provided free coffee and pizza to keep the protests going. What started as a protest over one bill has become a movement made up of citizens from all walks of life, who have joined together in opposition to the continued sacrifices that have been demanded of the middle class at the same time as moneyed elites are enjoying new heights of wealth and prosperity. What started as a battle of a state budget has turned into national conversation on economic fairness in American during the Great Recession.

Now as Gov. Walker's budget bill has fallen into a legal and legislative limbo and the activists and organizers turn their attention to recall elections and debate calling a general strike, the need for up-to-date on the ground coverage outside of the filter of corporate news takes on new importance.

This project will establish, essentially, a citizen's news bureau in Madison, providing full-time coverage of the movement behind the protests (and if the protests end before the project, its aftermath). While primarily a photographic documentary, the project will include writing reports and articles, all of which will be made freely available to all via a regularly updated blog.

The money raised here will go directly to covering operating expenses related to the project. At a minimum, the project will run for approximately one month, but may continue longer if substantially more money than the funding goal is raised.

To see my photographic coverage of the Budget Protests to date please visit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/akagoldfish/collections/72157626007935625/

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    Postcard from Madison: A 4"x6" photo from the project and a personal note from the photographer, mailed to you from the center of the fight for the middle class, Madison, Wisconsin.

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    A limited print: A signed and numbered 8x10 print of any photograph published on the project blog.

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    A Chapbook: An exclusive chapbook featuring content from the project blog.

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    Protest Portfolio: An exclusive portfolio book of photos from the project, including previously unpublished content.

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    Take Three: A print, the chapbook, and the portfolio are all yours!

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    Print archive: An archive of ten 8x10 prints, signed and numbered.

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    By funding a substantial portion of the project, you receive the chapbook, the portfolio book, and the print archive!

Funding period

- (22 days)