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AlterNet logo MED.gif
Commercial? No
Type of site news, political analysis & commentary
Registration Optional
Owner Independent Media Institute
Created by Independent Media Institute
Launched 1998
Current status Active

AlterNet, a project of the non-profit Independent Media Institute, is a progressive/liberal[1] activist news service. Launched in 1998, AlterNet now claims a readership of over 3 million visitors per month.[2]

AlterNet publishes original content as well as journalism from a wide variety of other sources. AlterNet states that its mission is to "inspire citizen action and advocacy on the environment, human rights and civil liberties, social justice, media, and health care issues."[2] AlterNet's tagline is "The Mix is the Message."



Founded in 1998, AlterNet publishes a combination of policy critiques, investigative reports and analysis, grassroots success stories and personal narratives. Their coverage emphasizes the discovery of workable solutions to social problems, and their editorial philosophy is "to uphold a commitment to fairness, equality and global stewardship, while making connections across generational, ethnic and issue lines."[2]

Coverage is sub-divided into several categories, including Drug Reporter, EnviroHealth, ForeignPolicy, MediaCulture, Movie Mix, Rights & Liberties, War on Iraq, WireTap & WorkPlace.

Alternet searches the alternative media for content, as well as accepting some freelance content. The selection is carried out by a staff headed by Executive Editor Don Hazen, a former publisher of Mother Jones.[3]

Alternet is financed by the syndication of articles, through individual donations, and by grants from major donors.[3] In 2001 - 2005, the top three financial backers of the Independent Media Institute were the Nathan Cummings Foundation, David and Lucile Packard Foundation, Ford Foundation.





  1. ^ a b It has been described by NPR as a "left-liberal news and opinion site". Media Online: A Few Firms Thrive While Many Fail
  2. ^ a b c The Case for AlterNet
  3. ^ a b Melissa A. Wall, "Social Movements and the net: Activist Journalism Goes Digital", in Kevin Kawamoto (ed, 2003), Digital Journalism: Emerging media and the Changing Horizons of Journalism, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
  4. ^ Webby Awards, 12th Annual Webby Awards Official Honoree Selections

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