The Authors Guild Foundation is the educational and charitable arm of the 9,000-member Authors Guild, America’s oldest and largest society of published authors. Founded over 40 years ago out of the Guild’s concern for the welfare of writers and to protect the value of their contributions to the reading public, the Foundation is a tax-exempt organization based in New York. Its founding members—including Saul Bellow, John Hersey, Madeleine L’Engle, Sidney Offit, James A. Michener, Toni Morrison, Elizabeth Janeway, and Barbara Tuchman—were committed to the Foundation’s basic goals:
- Advocating in support of the essential role authors play as the key to a rich, diverse literary community.
- Supporting the profession of writing as the cornerstone of the literary work that educates, entertains, and defines us as a culture.
- Protecting authors’ intellectual property rights, and recognizing that the exclusive rights under copyright are essential to the creation of literature.
- Defending free expression and acknowledging that any restrictions on authors’ speech deprive us of civilization’s critical exchange of knowledge and ideas.
- Fighting for the rights of authors to be paid for their work, litigating when necessary to achieve this.
- Educating and supporting authors in the business of authorship to assist them in their professional lives.
Why Your Support Is Needed
This is a difficult time to be a professional writer. As more and more independent publishers are swallowed up by conglomerates, writers’ works and economic interests are subsumed and threatened. The Authors Guild’s recent member survey showed that, since 2009, incomes from writing have been in steep decline. In an era of increasing access to digitized information, fresh threats to authors’ livelihoods emerge from every quarter.
Certain corners of the Internet, for example, frequently assume that literary property should be available without compensation to its creators. The decision by the Second District Court of Appeals in New York rejecting the Guild’s appeal and permitting Google to scan books without seeking copyright permission is an example of the obstacles we face.
Your gift to the Authors Guild Foundation will support our advocacy for authors and our efforts to maintain a sustainable publishing ecosystem at a time when authors’ rights, copyrights, free expression, and creative content are being challenged on many fronts.
Please pitch in what you can, and we’ll put it to good use. We appreciate your much needed support.
For more information, please contact the Authors Guild Foundation at (212) 594-2167 or firstname.lastname@example.org.