Friday, February 1, 2008
2008 Will Bring Change To This Media Project
First of all, thank you very much to the folks who took the time to drop me an email and offer their views on what this Internet project has accomplished in 2007.
Started at the suggestion of some TV industry friends, The Daly Planet was originally intended to be simply a small NASCAR TV blog. It would allow current and former "TV folks" to talk about the first year of the new NASCAR TV deal.
Borrowed with respect from the Superman series, the blog title was a tribute to my father and grandfather, both of whom were newspaper editors. Both were also named...Daly.
In the beginning, I posted a column without comments and we all communicated by email. This went well until smart NASCAR fans, using search engines, discovered my little blog and flooded my email with lots of great opinions.
Once I turned the comments on, things took-off in an entirely new direction. Suddenly, I was getting email from old friends and TV executives who wanted to know what the heck I was doing talking about them. At the time, that was a fair question.
Once the first wheels turned at Daytona, and the multiple NASCAR TV networks hit the air, the question was answered. Without really knowing it, what I was doing was documenting one of the darkest TV seasons in the history of NASCAR.
Looking back through the archives, it seems almost surreal that we actually saw national TV networks who were struggling with the TV coverage of a fifty-plus year-old sport. Even off the track, networks were putting TV programs about NASCAR on the air that were essentially...horrible. There is just no other way to put it.
Fans began to express themselves on the Internet about this very difficult TV situation, and The Daly Planet became a destination. Suddenly, what I said mattered to people who never knew me. That certainly is an interesting transition, and one that continues to this day.
Given an honest opportunity, NASCAR fans expressed their views in wonderful and intelligent posts that began to get the direct attention of the TV networks, the mainstream media, and NASCAR itself.
Jay over at Jayski.com was nice enough to begin listing my columns, and kept a sharp eye on my content. It was nice to have someone who could "suggest" when I needed to step back, take some deep breaths and maybe a nice walk around the block.
As my visitor numbers changed from hundreds to thousands, I appreciated the opportunity to get help and input from some veteran NASCAR journalists. It certainly is interesting to get email from the Infield Media Center...during a race. Thanks to all of the "friends" who kept me informed and on-track.
Now, as the 2008 season approaches, there needs to be some changes to this project in order for it to continue. After getting some good advice from media and Internet veterans, I think those changes are well within my reach.
So, I have decided to continue The Daly Planet for 2008.
While the upside of this effort has been meeting the wonderful fans and readers, the downside has been the individual attention that running a blog with multiple stories and live comments requires. The long hours of email and writing and moderating have taken a toll both personally and financially.
So, the plan for 2008 is to switch-over to a stand-alone website that will contain a forum for readers. This way, the big problem of readers only being able to discuss the one or two topics that I raise in my columns will be solved. Registered members can come in and begin a thread on TV topics that are on-going, or maybe even update breaking NASCAR TV news.
The idea is to empower you, plain and simple. Many of my columns come from ideas sent to me by email. Often, I may have many great topics in-hand and can only address one or two in column form. Why not let you talk about them from your own perspective?
The switch to a stand-alone site will also allow me to let you actively participate in several projects that are NASCAR TV-related. Rather then only typing and swapping opinions, I have several ideas that will challenge you to create and then provide different kinds of content that we will then feature.
Along with a group of other NASCAR-related sites, I am also going to participate in a limited sponsorship program. Any participating sponsor will be sports-related, non-intrusive and will be asked to participate in actively providing discounts, free services or merchandise.
Finally, I had to learn the hard way that opening the Internet door all the way was sometimes just a little to much of a temptation for some folks with keyboards. Asking regular readers to simply sign-up one time without cost and register to post is hopefully going to calm down the folks who need to hate. The benefit will be that all of the registered users now get to originate posts and threads of their own.
So, while I tiptoe into the site design world, we will continue in blog format until the changes are complete. Since I only arrived at this decision late Thursday night, needless to say things are not too far along.
I will keep you posted, and pass along any good stories of me trying to talk "html" and site design with the professionals while trying not to disclose that my formal computer training consisted of being really good...at PONG.
Thanks again for your patience, and I look forward to "opening up" even more of the world of sports TV, empowering you to voice your opinion and allowing you to show your creativity. What a year it's been!
If you would like to add a comment, just click on the COMMENTS button below and follow the easy instructions. Thanks again for taking the time to stop by.