Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Mailbag: SBN Calling

Over Labor Day weekend, Daniel and I received an email from James Mirtle, journalist and hockey blog manager for SportsBlogs Nation. The substance of the email (How would we feel about moving to SBN?) wasn't a surprise. In fact, Daniel and I had discussed the matter shortly after Battle of California posted an informal want-ad for Ducks and Kings bloggers. We decided that we would say 'no' if we were asked.

We were asked. We said 'yes.' And in a couple of weeks, we'll be moving.

A number of things factored into my change of heart and my ensuing attempt to convince Daniel-- I'll get into that shortly. But first, Daniel, what do you really think about moving to SBN? Are we doomed, or was it the right thing to do?

The potential for doom is somewhat unavoidable. My favorite thing about running a blog has been our complete freedom. We don't have deadlines or quotas, but we've somehow managed to generate decent traffic based solely on our posts. By "our posts," I mean your scouting reports.

I'm not looking forward to the ads and the influx of irrational fans who care more about talking trash than talking about hockey. I am looking forward to learning from all the legit fans that will be seeking us out for knowledge on Ducks hockey. By joining SBN, Anaheim Calling will be able to reach more readers and let them know that west coast hockey, and specifically Ducks hockey, has a strong fan base that takes the game seriously. We've talked a lot about why we got into blogging and came to the same conclusion: we wanted to show the rest of the hockey community that Ducks fans weren't pushovers, that we knew our hockey and that we cared about the sport. SBN goes a long way in helping us accomplish that goal.

I suppose, there will always be doubts, but there's only so much you can do with your own resources. I believe we've been doing good work covering our favorite team, and I see no reason why we shouldn't take the risk and see what we can provide to the hockey community at large.

First, I just want to say there ARE deadlines. Your failure to observe them doesn't make them any less real. I foresee you making it to page a lot less when we get to SBN. *stares blankly*

On the move, I think I ultimately weighed what we were losing against what we were gaining. I mean, we always knew we were going to leave Blogger; SBN just called us out of the minors before we knew if we could do it ourselves. At the end of the day, we came up with the name "Anaheim Calling" in, literally, 30 seconds, I built this page from random Blogger tips over a period of hours and the main product (us) is something we can pick up and take anywhere on the web. It just didn't seem that big a sacrifice to try our hand at the big leagues, not after spending a meager 6 months and 82 posts in the minors.

More than anything, I just feel this was the best time to try and get to the forefront of the Ducks blogosphere. Battle of California is already at SBN, Girl With a Puck has closed her doors and a lot of other Ducks blogs are still trying to find their footing, if they haven't settled into supporting roles already. The timing, while it feels too early, is probably just right.

To all our readers, we'll be here a little longer, covering training camp and the preseason. We hope you'll come and join us at SBN and adjust your feed-reader and subscription accordingly.


Earl Sleek said...

Congrats, guys. I can vouch it's a scary step, but hopefully it works out well. Looking forward to seeing the new site.

Kent W. said...

I can also tell you your fears of ignorant, troll-like commenters won't come to pass. In fact, SBN improved commenting for me.

Pension Plan Puppets said...

Congrats and welcome to the group!

I can vouch for Kent's comment. The commenting engine is amazing for not only creating discussion but for ensuring that you never have to deal with trolls (beyond their first comment, of course).

CLS said...

When I found Mirtle was looking for an additional/separate Anaheim blog, yours was absolutely the first that came to my mind.

Hopefully you two won't be too BIG TIME for CLS, now :)

Anaheim Calling said...

Thanks for the well-wishes, everyone. We've never been comment driven; I'm secretly scared Daniel's going to troll the commenters. Heh heh.

@CLS Joining the SBN family will only serve to make us MORE blogospherically social.

Joe said...

Congrats guys, you deserve it!