Special thanks to MIT and the University at Buffalo Linguistics Departments for their recent first-time donations, joining seven other linguistics departments and programs in supporting the Initiative. We are pleased to announce that the University of Texas has also provided indirect support for the Initiative as a sponsor of the Five-minute Linguist program at the 2017 LSA Annual Meeting.

The purpose of the LSA News Stories Initiative is to increase the quality of linguistics coverage by the popular news media. Created in response to overwhelming demand from LSA members and linguists, the Initiative has been extremely successful in achieving this goal (view a data summary on its early impact). Additional background information and an interim report on its initial activities are posted online.

The Initiative was made possible in its first year (2014) by generous financial contributions from selected linguistics departments and programs at colleges and universities. However, in 2015, donations declined dramatically, and the new staff position created to carry out the Initiative was vacated when the incumbent resigned in November of that year. The position has remained vacant due to insufficient funds. Since that time, the LSA’s remaining staff of three has been working with volunteer leaders, student interns, and paid consultants to continue a minimum maintenance of effort on behalf of the Initiative. This includes promoting research published in the LSA’s scholarly publications and presented at LSA Annual Meetings and Institutes, and also highlighting the research of LSA members made available in external venues.

We need your help now by making a donation to sustain the Initiative as it was originally envisioned:

  • A donation of $35 covers one hour of salary and benefits for the Director of Communications position.
  • A donation of $150 enables the one-time use of the AAAS’ EurekAlert News Release Service for distributing linguistics research news to science journalists around the world.
  • A donation of $415 covers one week of a stipend for the LSA’s Student Intern to maintain our social media efforts.
  • A donation of $1000 covers the cost of hiring a consultant to manage news media relations at the LSA Annual Meeting.
  • A donation of $2500 covers one month of LSA website maintenance and development costs associated with the online News Room.
  • A donation of $5000 covers the cost of the stipend for a Student Intern working exclusively on the News Stories Initiative for an entire summer semester.

The collective donations of hundreds of linguists will enable to the LSA to reach its annual goal of raising $40,000 to hire a new Director of Communications. If every LSA member gave an extra $15 in addition to their dues payment, our goal would be achieved. Please consider making a donation today and help the LSA continue this important Initiative. Donors who give more than $15 will be automatically entered into a prize raffle to win free registration for the LSA Annual Meeting of their choice.