The Online Citizen to be managed by company to facilitate fund-raising

The Online Citizen to be managed by company to facilitate fund-raising

SINGAPORE - Alternative media site The Online Citizen (TOC) will now be managed by a company set up by its editorial and business team, to make it easier to raise funds for the website. 


Get the full story from The Straits Times.

Here is the press release from The Online Citizen:

With immediate effect, The Online Citizen (TOC), which consists of the domain name www.theonlinecitizen.com, will be managed by The Opinion Collaborative Ltd (TOC Ltd, see Annex A below), a social enterprise registered under the Companies Act.

TOC will retain its full editorial independence, while ceding its administrative and management functions, including those of fund-raising and revenue generation, to TOC Ltd.

This will allow the TOC editorial team to focus completely on its key purpose - bringing news and stories that matter to Singaporeans, and continue in our mission of providing an online platform for Singaporeans to champion causes and values that promote justice, openness and inclusiveness.

What it means for TOC

Having TOC Ltd oversee the financing of TOC provides TOC with a corporate entity with which to raise funds, generate, retain and disburse revenue. At present, this is difficult because of TOC's lack of corporate status.

At present, there will be no new additions to the TOC editorial team, as additional funds have yet to be raised, but we do hope to increase our editorial capacity in the near future.

TOC Ltd will have oversight of the editorial team only in instances where any member of the editorial team contravenes the website's editorial values and mission, as this affects public confidence in the website. The editorial team will be able to pursue the day-to-day editorial concerns independently.

What it means for our readers

As such, from a content perspective, users should not expect any change to what they read on TOC. TOC has always been about writing for the people. This will continue.

Annex A - About The Opinion Collaborative Ltd

The Opinion Collaborative Ltd (TOC Ltd) is a social enterprise registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority under the Companies Act.

TOC Ltd is interested in the development of the online media sphere in Singapore, with the view of promoting an open and diverse media environment that values the constructive collaboration of ideas and views.

It aims to do so by supporting websites that seek to enlighten readers and provide diversity of opinion, so as to ignite passion and responsibility in nation-building.

TOC Ltd does not receive foreign funding, nor does it intend to. It will seek revenue - through means such as advertising and donation drives - by leveraging its business interests, such as its flagship brand The Online Citizen. Nevertheless, as a social enterprise, TOC Ltd is not-for-profit. Its key interest is to seek social progress.

The TOC Ltd Board of Directors consist of:

Howard Lee

Lee Song Kwang

Tan Tee Seng

Terry Xu

Other board members include:

Choo Zheng Xi

Andrew Loh

The Board of Directors will be the key decision makers of TOC Ltd, with support from the board members.

In following the long-held internal practice of its flagship brand, The Online Citizen, no Director of TOC Ltd may be a member of political parties at the point of joining the Board, and will have to step down should they choose to embark on a political career.

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