Cartoonist Matt Bors, who recently went to Afghanistan undercover, writes to tell us about Cartoon Movement, a new site devoted to editorial comics from a worldwide cadre of cartoonists. In his letter he notes that “Unlike other websites, we pay our contributors and and are working to make this a sustainable enterprise.” He’ll be covering his Afghanistan trip for the site. Above cartoon by Israel’s Shlomo Cohen. PR below.

Cartoon Movement – A collaborative publishing platform dedicated to high quality political cartoons and comic journalism.

The journalism industry is in transition. It’s clear that the way editorial cartoons are created, commissioned, distributed and consumed is changing. Through this initiative we hope to find new creative (and collaborative) solutions to ensure that political cartooning can be both accessible and sustainable in the digital age.

On the 15th of December 2010 we’ll be launching Cartoon Movement with a comic journalism exclusive from Matt Bors on his recent (unescorted) trip to Afghanistan with fellow cartoonist Ted Rall.

From there on in we’ll be publishing timely, political cartoons four times a week. The cartoons are ‘pitched’ by our ever expanding network which currently stands at 65 editorial cartoonists in over 50 countries. We’ll publish the most popular cartoons as decided by a public vote. We expect to
run new comic journalism at least once a month.

We’re already providing the following services to a growing number of international clients: ‘on demand’ cartoons, syndication, licensing and education services.
Who’s behind this?

The VJ Movement was founded by web veteran Arend Jan van den Beld and Thomas Loudon, who worked as a video-journalist in Iran and Egypt. The Cartoon Movement (an initiative of VJM) was set up by Tjeerd Royaards, a Dutch editorial cartoonist.  The rest of the team is comprised of Ric Bottomley (digital strategy and revenue) and Matt Bors (editorial cartoonist and comic journalist).

For the community (+)
We offer a platform where you can discuss cartoons, and vote on the cartoon ideas submitted by our international network of professional editorial cartoonists. The best cartoons are published online 4 times a week.

For political cartooning and political cartoonists (+)
We think that it’s prudent to assume that the future of cartooning is probably online.  We hope that with this platform we’ll not only be able to continue paying a just fee for your work, but together we can also find new revenue models which will ensure that editorial cartooning can be financially sustainable in the digital age.

We hope to foster an environment of mutual promotion, revenue, and fair use for the work of political cartoonists. All of our members are accomplished freelancers and there’s no application fee to join. For more information see our application page here.

For editors and media professionals (+)
Together with our constantly growing network of political cartoonists, we offer a unique and lovingly curated collection of international political cartoons. In addition to granting publishing/syndication rights for this collection, we also commission ‘on demand’ editorial cartoons for a global list of clients. Our terms are deliberately flexible to accommodate your editorial needs.