The State of the Blog

Well, welcome back kids. I've been rather selfish these past few days...taking a little break from full-fledged posting to relax and take in some of the off-season. Sure, I really never post anything on the weekends unless it has something to do with huge news that just can't keep until Monday. And as I've said many times, the off-season is now upon us. That glorious time between the end of recruiting (for now) and spring practice.

Of course that doesn't mean there isn't news out there. And in the blogging world, we have the luxury of sort of making up news and making it sound like it's a bigger deal than it really is, like Penn State having the #2 biggest stadium in the country to Michigan's smaller, yet still biggest house of college football. Is this really important to anyone? Of course not. But its mid-February and we have nothing better to talk about.

So take this in the spirit in which it's intended. And that would be like a President giving a state of the union speech...except I'm not going to be as eloquent and as thought provoking. Thus, let us begin...

The world is changing.

And by that I mean the world of sports and how we (the public) interact and receive our sports content. And I don't mean how we watch live sports on TV. That, at least, is not changing much...yet.

I mean how you and I get our much needed fix for sports news and information.

There is absolutely no question that there is a monumental shift in the area of mass media. Accelerated by the lagging economy, outlets like newspapers, news stations, even sports talk radio shows are starting to feel the pinch. Beat writers, on-air jocks...everyone who makes a living in reporting the sports, at least everyone outside of ESPN or a major sports website like CNN/SI or CBS or Yahoo!, is finding it harder and harder to do their job and still make a decent wage doing so.

Why is this happening?

Well, this site is part of it. Albeit, we have just a fraction of the readership of say mgoblog or Varsity Blue...but the traffic on this site has increased by a factor of 10 in just over a year. Now of course it's not my intention to drive good hardworking writers and sports radio DJ's out of work. Heck, I get most of my information from sites like MLive and the Detroit newspapers. I'd be fooling myself if I thought my humble site was responsible for anyone else losing their jobs. We didn't make the internet popular and make print a dying format. That started a long time ago, and has only been accelerated by the recession.

And to put it in perspective, my repeated efforts to obtain a press credential for a Michigan football game/presser have only been rejected on the basis that I do not represent a major media outlet.

And to tell you the truth, I'm okay with that.

I think my blog, as well as the many others like mine, represent the voice of the common fan. The fan that sits in the bleachers or watches from home and doesn't have the luxury of sitting in the press box and getting a free catered lunch during the game. Although that would be sweet!

So, getting back to the point...what does all this have to do with anything?

My point is, my goal for this off-season is to try and expand MBN even more. My blog is run by me and me only. And I do it for the very minimal revenue that these banners you see on the site generate. Luckily my overhead is very low (or nothing) due to the free hosting I receive on Blogger and that I have a 9-5 job that keeps my pretty busy.

The only thing standing in my way right now is time. Time to get all the pieces of the Maize & Blue Nation that I envision, and making them fit together and working correctly. Those pieces include, more regular guest bloggers, and weekly or semi-regular podcast, a more detailed stat section, better and more efficient site design, more content, more content, and probably more content.

I have a vision of what MBN can and should be. Will it ever happen? I think it can with a little effort and a lot of luck. I have the ability to do it, I just need the time. I can see it happening if for no other reason that I love doing this and I enjoy the satisfaction of delivering information to the loyal readers that I have, and doing it with a certain style and substance that the mass media can not.

So, as changes start to happen and hopefully soon they will, you will continue enjoy what I have to say here. I'm not going to reinvent the wheel, but I would like MBN to start becoming a bigger and better source for all things related to Michigan football.

So as we look forward to another season and the 2nd year of the Rodriguez era, we can hopefully look forward to another successful year of reporting the rumors, the speculation, and all the news (both good, bad and everything in-between) that has to do with our beloved Wolverines. Thanks so much for reading and supporting this grass-roots experiment, and I hope you continue to do so.

Tell your friends!

1 comment

  1. For what it's worth... I live in Australia and I read your blog everyday. Keep up the good work, it get's me through the day.

    Go Blue!