Welcome to the Recombobulation Area!

My name is Dan Shafer, and I’m an independent journalist in Milwaukee. I write and publish this weekly opinion column called "The Recombobulation Area.” It is 100% reader-funded (which we’re pretty proud of!).

Each edition of “The Recombobulation Area” features opinion and analysis of key issues, primarily focused on what’s happening in Milwaukee and Wisconsin. In 2020, this has meant coverage of covid-19 pandemic, the Black Lives Matter movement, the presidential campaign, state and local politics, and much more.

While the weekly column is free to all, the growth of this effort depends on paid subscribers. The Recombobulation Area is 100 percent reader-funded, independent media, and paying subscribers make this effort possible.

You can subscribe to support this project here.

For those who don't know me, I have been a staff writer, reporter and editor at several publications over the past decade. I've worked as the digital managing editor at Seattle magazine and Seattle Business magazine; a reporter at the Milwaukee Business Journal; an assistant editor and digital editor at Milwaukee Magazine, a reporter at BizTimes Milwaukee; and managing editor at ThirdCoast Digest. I have also contributed at the The Daily Beast, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Shepherd Express, WisBusiness and Milwaukee Record. I have won seven Milwaukee Press Club Excellence in Journalism Awards for reporting, digital editing, and opinion writing. I am on Twitter at @DanRShafer.

This column gets its name from the post-security area at the Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport where one “recombobulates” (which is not a real word nor something that exists anywhere else in the world, making it basically perfect).

After years of disruption — most of it harmful to journalism — today’s media could use some recombobulation. That is what I hope to deliver in this column and with this project as it grows.

I invite you to gather your things, put your shoes back on, and join me. It could be quite the ride.

Subscribe to The Recombobulation Area newsletter here and follow us on Facebook and Instagram at @therecombobulationarea.

If you’re interested in contacting me, or if you have any other questions, news tips, column ideas (or even just a funny story to share), email headquarters at therecombobulationarea@gmail.com.