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For the past forty-three years, the Unitarian Universalist Association has provided a subscription to a denominational newspaper or magazine to every certified member of each congregation. First it was known as the Unitarian Universalist World newspaper, then WORLD magazine, and then UU World. The costs of producing and distributing the magazine are paid for by each congregation’s contributions to the Annual Program Fund. But printing and postage costs continue to rise, and contributions from congregations are dropping. So as the UUA must keep tightening its belt, we have to ask, What does the magazine mean to you?
It may mean the world to you. You may read every issue, leave it out on your coffee table as a conversation starter, or donate your copy to a doctor’s office or library as a way of sharing Unitarian Universalism with others. Or you may wish we stopped printing a “dead tree” edition, and simply made it available for your Kindle or iPad. You may subscribe to our weekly email newsletter, or know us only through our website, uuworld.org. How would you like to see the UUA’s communications evolve in the twenty-first century?
That’s part of what we hope to learn from a survey we’re launching to chart the magazine’s future course. We do not merely hope to find out what you like about the magazine or would wish to change. We need to know what it means to you to receive the magazine. This survey won’t just ask which parts of the magazine you read. It will also ask how you get information and would prefer to get information about Unitarian Universalism, where you turn for inspiration, and how else you feel connected to the Association.
Please take a few minutes to complete the survey at uuworld.org/survey. If you cannot complete the survey online, or prefer to receive a copy of the survey in the mail, please complete the postcard between pages 12 and 13. You may also request a copy of the survey by calling 617–948–6502 or by emailing world [at] uua [dot] org.
We are also surveying a random sample of members so we won’t only be hearing from UUs who actively read the magazine. Beyond helping us understand what we’re doing well and what we could be doing better and differently, the survey will give the UUA the most current and accurate demographic picture of our religious movement. Please take part.
On a celebratory note, we’re thrilled to mark the ordination this spring of the Rev. Christian Schmidt, our production specialist, who is leaving us soon to serve a UU congregation. He is the third member of our staff to join the ranks of UU clergy in a dozen years, and we’re very proud of him.
This article appeared on page 3 of the Summer 2013 issue of UU World.
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Christopher L. Walton is editor of UU World. He holds degrees from Harvard Divinity School and the University of Utah and is a member of the Church of the Larger Fellowship.
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