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Is The Polio Chronicle Worth It?: A Misplaced Editorial

Creator: n/a
Date: February 1934
Publication: The Polio Chronicle
Source: Roosevelt Warm Springs Institute for Rehabilitation Archives


Is the Polio Chronicle worth the cost of publication? Does it, in its present form, justify its existence?


It is difficult for the editors to appraise fairly the value of their work, because they are so close to it. There is a considerable favorable comment on the Chronicle in the editorial correspondence, but this must be discounted for two reasons. One is that adverse critics may refrain from writing us, not having been invited. The other is that we undoubtedly receive some reflected prestige because of the link between President Roosevelt, Warm Springs, and our work.


To adverse critics, we extend an invitation. We want the benefit of their reactions and suggestions. To the friends drawn by President Roosevelt's name we submit that Mr. Roosevelt would want a work, in which he had the closest interest, to be judged on its merits.


This is the twenty-sixth issue of the Polio Chronicle, the twenty-first consecutive. We can give representative figures on the eighteen months ended December 31, 1933. In that period: people were delivered 73,800 copies, an average of 4,100 a month.


They cost, delivered, $5,200, an average of $290 a month, or 7.05 cents a copy.


Increased printing costs due to the N. R. A. are pushing these costs sharply upward. We are frank to admit that in making maximum use of donated funds, we had driven hard bargains on printing prices.


Smaller printing orders, due to cutting out free circulation, will force the per copy cost up, even though the total cost is lowered. A growing subscription list should soon offset this effect, however, second-class entry, which we should be able to obtain soon, should allow savings which would largely offset increased printing costs.


The question we ask is this: Does the Polio Chronicle do $290 worth of good a month? We think it does. Do you agree with us?


A great deal of voluntary, unpaid, work by Warm Springs patients goes into the Polio Chronicle, so we feel that we are holding the money cost reasonably low. However, we have an open mind on that, too.


Finally: Does the reading content of the Polio Chronicle measure up to its possibilities? In answering this, remember the three distinct classes of readers:


Doctors and others with a professional interest.


Contributors to the Crusade against infantile paralysis, with a humanitarian interest.


Polios and friends of Warm Springs, with a direct interest in the Chronicle and its sponsors.