About Z

Z is a participatory platform to engage with educational content, vision, and strategic analysis that aims to assist activist efforts for a better future. Since 1977, we’ve produced a series of independent media projects that go beyond critique to explore and organize alternatives.

Dedicated to developing vision and strategic activism, resisting injustice, defending against repression, and fostering liberty, we view the racial, gender, class, political, and ecological dimensions of life as fundamental to understanding and improving contemporary circumstances.

ZNetwork exists under a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and operates internally according to participatory principles that elevate equity, solidarity, self-management, diversity, sustainability, and internationalism.

Mission Statement

Z is an independent media platform dedicated to advancing vision and strategy for a better world.

Photograph by Hatem Kotb

Our mission is to accessibly present video, audio, and text, and to sponsor and conduct events, all in service of existing activism and activist organization, in pursuit of societal gains, and ultimately societal transformation.

Z equally prioritizes class, race, and gender relations. Z is anti-capitalist, anti-racist, anti-authoritarian and anti-sexist. More importantly, Z advocates developing and seeking new relations in those areas as well as equally regarding ecology and internationalism.

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Z lives in an oppressive and restricted present but is unabashedly oriented to an equitable and liberating future.

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Click here to support Z. Sustainers receive the monthly digital ZMagazine!


Reach & Performance

ZNetwork.org is a widely distributed radical left media outlet. Our syndication includes MSNFlipboard, Google News, and SmartNews, among others, representing access to a diverse audience of over 700 million users. We anticipate our syndication network to continue to grow in the coming year.

Since relaunching our website in 2023, Z has gained nearly 2M page views and approximately 700K unique visitors. We see consistent growth month over month.

Z is translated into over 50 languages with 100s of thousands of additional monthly multi-lingual requests.

Our monthly digital magazine, ZMagazine, is carried by PressReader, which has more than 12M active users per month. We are also making ZMagazine available to thousands of libraries and educational institutions, expanding its reach significantly.

Third-party Media Bias / Fact Check ranks ZNetwork.org and ZMagazine as Factual Reporting: High and MBFC Credibility Rating: High Credibility.

Why Z?

Z’s name was inspired by the 1969 film Z, directed by Costa-Gavras, which tells the story of repression and resistance in Greece. Comrade Z (a leader of the resistance) has been assassinated and his killers, including the chief of police, are indicted. Instead of the expected positive outcome, the prosecutor mysteriously disappears and a right-wing military junta takes over. The security police set out to prevent “a mildew of the mind,” an infiltration of “isms” or “spots on the sun.”

As the closing credits roll, instead of listing the cast and crew, the filmmakers list the things banned by the junta. They include: peace movements, labor unions, long hair on men, Sophocles, Tolstoy, Aeschylus, strikes, Socrates, Ionesco, Sartre, the Beatles, Chekhov, Mark Twain, the bar association, sociology, Becket, the International Encyclopedia, the free press, modern and popular music, the new math, and the letter Z, which has been scrawled on the sidewalk as the film’s final image, symbolizing “the spirit of resistance lives.”


Z’s History

Z Magazine was founded in 1987, by two of the co-founders of South End Press (f. 1977), Lydia Sargent and Michael Albert. In the opening days, a few writers’ support was critical to the project’s success, including: Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, bell hooks, Edward Herman, Holly Sklar, and Jeremy Brecher. Z developed into a major left-wing, activist-oriented publication that went fully online in 1995, later becoming ZNet.

In 1994, Z Media Institute was founded to teach radical politics, media and organizing skills, the principles and practice of creating non-hierarchical institutions and projects, activism, and vision and strategy for social change.

In 2022, the project was relaunched as ZNetwork.org by an international collective. The new website retains an archive of over 60,000 articles with new curated and original content added daily. Z hosts and participates in diverse events and projects alongside an incredible community of people dedicated to social change.

Z has remained, in broad terms: anti-capitalist, feminist, anti-racist, anti-authoritarian, anarcho-socialist, internationalist, ecological, and heavily influenced by participatory economics, with an overarching focus on vision and strategy.

Over the decades, Z has been a rich source of information and a north star for many on the left.

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Institute for Social and Cultural Communications, Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit.

Our EIN# is #22-2959506. Your donation is tax-deductible to the extent allowable by law.

We do not accept funding from advertising or corporate sponsors.  We rely on donors like you to do our work.

ZNetwork: Left News, Analysis, Vision & Strategy

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