The Flock is an ethically driven women’s magazine site, launched in June 2020 amid the UK’s first Covid-19 lockdown. Covering everything from progressive politics to parenting, sustainable fashion and ethical beauty to careers, culture, and the arts, it aims to address the issues affecting adult women in Britain today.
Launched as an advertising-free platform, The Flock offers the user experience of a traditional magazine, while removing the detrimental influence traditional advertising so often has on both editorial integrity and reader wellbeing.
The Flock aims to support female creatives, women-led businesses, and charities by offering them exposure to an engaged audience based on merit, and not on marketing spend while supporting a diverse group of women writers, paid at a fair rate for their work.
The Flock joins the Resident Entrepreneur programme at a crucial time in its growth. Without advertising and with only one staff member, the platform has been able to reach more than 20,000 women per month in its first six months. Now, the aim is to explore non-advertising funding models for media that better suit the needs of both readers and writers and allow the platform to grow and employ a diverse team of writers. The journalism industry has been decimated by the pandemic. Freelance rates are falling, thousands of journalists have lost work, and at a time when representation in the media has never been more important, writers from working-class backgrounds are leaving the industry in their thousands.
The Flock, wishes to address this through their RE project, exploring innovative reader-funded models that ensure sustainability and that allows them to pay contributors at a fair rate for their work. In addition, their goal is to find innovative new profit models that eschew traditional advertising, which is not only failing to adequately fund traditional media platforms but also contributes greatly to mental ill health, low self-worth, and comparison culture among women. The Flock comes to the RE programme having completed Creative Informatics’ Creative Bridge pre-accelerator programme during the platform’s launch stage.
The Flock won the Start-Up prize at the Creative Edinburgh Awards 2020 and was long-listed for a UN Women Special Recognition Award in November 2020.