We're a co-operative

Co-operatives are a democratic, fair and fantastic way to do business that are owned and run by its members. And to prove our commitment to equality and fairness co-operatives align themselves with the following Seven Principles:

One: Voluntary and Open Membership
Co-operatives are voluntary organisations, open to all persons able to use their services and willing to accept the responsibilities of membership, without gender, social, racial, political or religious discrimination.

s.coop is brought to you by Co-operative Press Ltd, it's very easy to become of a member the Press just drop us an email for further details.

Two: Democratic Member Control
Co-operatives are democratic organisations controlled by their members, who actively participate in setting their policies and making decisions. Men and women serving as elected representatives are accountable to the membership. In primary co-operatives members have equal voting rights (one member, one vote) and co-operatives at other levels are also organised in a democratic manner.

Once you're a member of Co-operative Press you have a right to attend the annual general meeting, stand for election on the board and vote people onto the board. Through these mechanisms you can have democratic control over not just s.coop, but the world's oldest co-operative newspaper too.

Three: Member Economic Participation
Members contribute equitably to, and democratically control, the capital of their co-operative. At least part of that capital is usually the common property of the co-operative. Members usually receive limited compensation, if any, on capital subscribed as a condition of membership. Members allocate surpluses for any or all of the following purposes: developing their co-operative, possibly by setting up reserves, part of which at least would be indivisible; benefiting members in proportion to their transactions with the co-operative; and supporting other activities approved by the membership.

Members can add to the capital of Co-operative Press when they join up, there is no limit, but there is still one-member-one-vote. Interest from the capital is used towards developing the co-operative, such as helping to enhance the press digital portfolio, s.coop and thenews.coop.

Four: Autonomy and Independence
Co-operatives are autonomous, self-help organisations controlled by their members. If they enter to agreements with other organisations, including governments, or raise capital from external sources, they do so on terms that ensure democratic control by their members and maintain their co-operative autonomy.

Co-operative Press has been running as an independent co-operative since 1871 with a mission to help the spread of information. Some of our supporters are retail co-operatives in the UK, who also sit on the board of the Press.

Five: Education, Training and Information
Co-operatives provide education and training for their members, elected representatives, managers, and employees so they can contribute effectively to the development of their co-operatives. They inform the general public - particularly young people and opinion leaders - about the nature and benefits of co-operation.

We are here to spread the word of co-operation. Through our websites we aim to raise the profile of the co-operative movement and help people within the movement to easily access information.

Six: Co-operation among Co-operatives
Co-operatives serve their members most effectively and strengthen the co-operative movement by working together through local, national, regional and international structures.

Our strength is co-operation between other co-operatives. s.coop is one of the largest tools on the internet for co-operatives, it links many co-ops through the dotCoop domain and ensures we all work together as one movement.

Seven: Concern for Community
Co-operatives work for the sustainable development of their communities through policies approved by their members.

Co-operative Press thinks about its impact on communities and their environment. Therefore we strive to use ethically-sourced supplies, for example vegetable-based inks and recycled paper for the printed version of Co-operative News, and on s.coop we use wind-powered energy.

To find out more about the worldwide co-operative movement, visit the International Co-operative Alliance.