I like the 'hip, new, independent coffeeshop' analogy. I also like to think of publications as comedy clubs where us writers (comedians) can work on our material in front of a live audience, gauge their response and figure out when we've got something that we should explore further.
I've noticed that my stories in JoJ are getting more and more reads and engagement, and I think a lot of that is to do with the effort you guys have put into making this an inclusive, encouraging place for people to share their work.
I really appreciate the opportunity you're giving to us to work on our craft in front of your audience. I look forward to seeing the JoJ community grow to 20,000 and beyond!