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Dear Reader,

In today’s media-rich environment, when everyone with an internet connection has a seemingly endless array of news outlets from which to choose, we want to make sure you understand what makes Honolulu Civil Beat so unique - and why you can trust our brand of public-service journalism. These are a few things that set us apart:

  • We are a 501c3 nonprofit organization. Civil Beat is a nonprofit news operation with no paywall - everything we do is free and accessible to everyone, regardless of their ability to pay. We also have no ads, making us beholden to no one but you, our readers and grassroots supporters.

  • We focus on investigative and enterprise reporting. Civil Beat focuses exclusively on the kind of journalism most at risk of disappearing -- in-depth, investigative and enterprise coverage of important topics. Local industry efforts to expand market share while reducing costs has led to a near-monopoly of media in Hawaii. Civil Beat is the outlier, committed to old-school, shoe-leather reporting. No other media outlet in Hawaii gives public policy issues the attention that we do.

  • Our stories have impact, and often lead to fundamental change. Civil Beat believes that media is truly the fourth estate, playing a vital role in our democracy, especially as an independent check on the three branches of government. Our findings are regularly cited by key political and civic leaders. More and more, our work is showing up in reports and studies and even being written into legislation as the basis for reform efforts.

  • We are good at what we do. Our small team of reporters and editors have won dozens of state, regional, and national awards. has been named the best news website in Hawaii for the past nine years by the Society of Professional Journalists.

  • Transparency is one of our top priorities. We have extended bios of each of our reporters and editors on our website. We hold several monthly community events where you can meet and speak with our reporters in person. On the fundraising side, we’ve published our complete list of donors - so you know exactly how we receive our funding.

  • We rely on support from readers like you. While our founder, Pierre Omidyar, remains our largest single supporter, we rely on over 7,000 grassroots individual donors and a handful of foundations to continue growing our impact. 

We take great pride in our work, and are grateful for your readership. But it takes a community pitching in to maintain our nonprofit, multimedia platform. If you have found value in our reporting, please consider making a gift to support our journalism. Every bit helps.

With gratitude,


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