Today, our Tlaxcala network celebrates its 15th anniversary. An assessment of these fifteen years is enough to make one dizzy. During the past 5,479 days, we have published 40,000 pages in 15 languages, an average of 7.3 pages per day. Approximately 240 people have been part of our network, some for several years, others for a short period of time. Some have left us forever, such as Mauro Manno (1952-2009), Isolda Bohler (1955-2010), Manuel Talens (1948-2015) and Ellen Rohlfs (1927-2020).
Our website has received about 18 million visits, or 1.2 million per year, an average of 3,200 per day, from 204 countries and territories.
Quite a few things have changed since our creation. Linguistic unilateralism has declined. The New York Times, The Independent, Le Monde, El País, il manifesto now publish in several languages other than their original language. The number of amateur translators online has increased tenfold. Not all of them have a very clear professional ethic. Some of them, especially activist translators, do not hesitate to publish machine translations without taking the precaution of proofreading them. It is a practice that we literally abhor. We have always proofread translations, regardless of their origin, before publishing them. In our opinion, it is a question of respect: respect for the author, respect for the reader, self-respect.
Faced with the mammoths of globalized communication and information, we are at most a mouse, or rather a mosquito. Faced with their 9-figure budgets, our “budget” makes one smile: it amounts to a total of 1,022.16 € per year, which is the rental price of our server. Our only capital is our elbow grease. And we will continue to do so. For us, information is a common good of humanity that cannot be the subject of any commercial transaction.
This freedom, of course, we pay for it, in terms of tiredness, and in terms of outreach: the texts we publish could and should be read by 100, 1,000 times as many people. The nucleus of people who dedicate their lives to this project has shrunk over the years, and the survivors ask themselves every day if this work of Sisyphus is worthwhile. Then we go back to work, telling ourselves that the people of Greenland, Western Sahara, the Amazon, Burma, need us.
The year 2021 will be decisive for us: we are going to launch an online publishing house that will publish e-books and print-on-demand books. The nasty virus has delayed our preparations, but The Glocal Workshop/L'Atelier Glocal will be available soon. We will let you know as soon as it is accessible.