Older age often has negative connotations but a movement is building towards a richer celebration of later life, reports the new issue of Positive News magazine, which launched at the media co-op’s Annual Inspiration Meeting
From the world’s oldest professional fashion model, to the oldest person to scale Everest, the new issue of Positive News magazine features people who are challenging negative stereotypes around later life.
From the online communities railing against “the sagging, the invisibility, the no-shagging”, to those redefining how older people should live, work, and behave, the cover story uncovers how older age – despite its challenges – can bring wisdom, freedom and the confidence to embrace new experiences. The magazine’s cover star is 89-year-old Daphne Selfe, the world’s oldest professional fashion model.
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Positive News editor Lucy Purdy said: “Modern culture, led in part by the media, seems to leave many older people feeling invisible and marginalised. But we picked up on the signs of how this gloomy, limiting narrative is being challenged – from where people are choosing to live, to how they’re embracing social media, for example. It was a pleasure to uncover some fascinating stories that showed older age isn’t necessarily a barrier to being fulfilled and joyful.”
Other key articles in the new issue include a special section on how co-operatives are set to disrupt the economic status quo, including the co-op of London cabbies who have formed their own app to rival the likes of Uber. It also includes a report on projects in prisons that are helping inmates transform their lives to the benefit of themselves and others, and a feature exploring how society is tackling digital addiction.
It was a pleasure to uncover some fascinating people’s stories that showed older age isn’t necessarily a barrier to being fulfilled and joyful
The issue (#91) was officially launched at Positive News’ inaugural Annual Inspiration Meeting (AIM) in London on Saturday. The event brought together co-owners who invested in the #OwnTheMedia crowdfunding campaign in 2015, which turned Positive News into a co-operative owned by readers and journalists.
Taking place at Mary Ward House, during the afternoon co-owners took part in workshops, socialised, and discussed key matters – with every co-owner having an equal vote no matter how much they invested. Co-owners had the opportunity to pitch article ideas to the editor, get involved with planning new developments, feed back on the magazine and website, and contribute to a vision for Positive News’ future.
Subscribers, supporters and other Positive News readers joined for the second part of the event, in which the new issue of Positive News magazine was launched. The evening saw an inspiring panel discussion take place, which included people who are featured in the issue and was chaired by journalist and Positive News director Martin Wright.
Panelists included Suzanne Noble: co-founder of Advantages of Age, an online magazine and thriving Facebook community which aims to challenge the media narrative around ageing; and Nicky Goulder, founding chief executive of Create, which through its Inside Stories project helps young adult prisoners to connect with their children through storytelling.
We inspire our community through our journalism as they too inspire us through their passionate input and support
Also on stage was Katy Jon Went, a writer, activist and speaker on equality, diversity and intersectionality, who is one of the Human Library’s ‘bestsellers’; as well as Anastasia Dedyukhina, the founder of digital detox consultancy Consciously Digital, who after more than 12 years working for global media and internet brands, ditched her smartphone in the middle when she realised how dependent upon it she had become.
The event was a celebration of how far Positive News has come since relaunching in print and online in 2016, following its groundbreaking #OwnTheMedia campaign that saw it become the first global media co-operative to be established through crowdfunding.
Positive News editor-in-chief Sean Dagan Wood said: “It was exciting to get our co-owners and others in our community together in person at our first ever Annual Inspiration Meeting, and give them an opportunity to directly contribute to what we do. We inspire our community through our journalism as they too inspire us through their passionate input and support.”
Get your copy of the new issue of Positive News magazine at www.positive.news/join