Thursday, March 23, 2006

Vic's Guide To BlogLand

We've had this blog for nearly 3 weeks now, and I've been reading blogs for a couple of months. So I'm a bit of an expert on the subject. ;)

Turns out that BlogLand beats the hell out of hockey board talk in most ways. Personally, I haven't enjoyed talking about hockey on the internet this much in ages.

I also think that almost everyone who reads us here also reads the other Oiler blogs. In fact I doubt many would even know about us yet if not for mudcrutch and sacamano. Still, if you aren't familiar with BlogLand yet, I thought I'd throw up some pointers, and in terms you can all appreciate:

Good Oiler Blogs

The Battle Of Alberta
If this were a porn site it would feature rough video clips of a guy sitting in a hardback chair, and looking agitated, while the other guy shagged his girlfriend. Which is why it's probably the best hockey blog on the internet.

mc79hockey
If this were a porn site it would start with a video clip of beautiful woman in business clothing doing a strip tease ... and by the end even the gynecologists that were viewing would be cringing and turning their head to the side. Good stuff.

Lowetide
Porn parallel: Extreme hardcore, even Wilt Chamberlain could learn something. Best production values on the net with good 70s style story lines. Curious mix of models (barely 18s and middle aged women). My personal fave blog.

Covered In Oil
Mike W is one funny guy. Well worth a daily read methinks.


Other kinda Oiler blogs


Colby Cosh

He's smarter than you, and he knows it. :-) And I don't think anybody really captures the mood of the Oiler fan better, when he's talking about hockey.

Loxy's blog
Reader's of OilFans OT Forum watched Loxy grow up on the internet. Which isn't quite as disturbing as it sounds. Good photos, though frankly I feel like a 14 year old pervert on occasions when I read the text. This is the step into BlogLand that requires the longest stride. You'll be in the heart of the beast here. :-) It is a stalker situation wiating to happen, bless her heart. mudcrutch is a regular reader BTW (not to worry, I've already alerted interpol, they're keeping tabs on him).

.

And probably a couple of others that I've forgotten, and a few others that I don't know about yet.

18 Comments:

Blogger Loxy said...

I really appreciate that you've posted my link *today*.

Considering the subject matter I am presenting, I'm sure it's the last time anyone will visit.

But as always, I enjoy what you boys have to offer. How did hockeyblogs become such a step up from the rest of the internet-based fanworld?

3/23/2006 4:07 pm  
Blogger RiversQ said...

But as always, I enjoy what you boys have to offer. How did hockeyblogs become such a step up from the rest of the internet-based fanworld?

I'll field this one...

I think it's just raising the barrier to entry just a tad. It seems to be just enough to get rid of the mindless riff-raff. However, as much as I am enjoying it, I do wonder if we haven't thrown out the baby with the bathwater because the comments are few and far between and I don't think that was the idea.

3/23/2006 4:37 pm  
Blogger Dennis said...

I'm trying to drum up more and more posts by sending out emails with naked photos attached.

The response hasn't been positive;)

3/23/2006 4:40 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

I think it's just raising the barrier to entry just a tad. It seems to be just enough to get rid of the mindless riff-raff. However, as much as I am enjoying it, I do wonder if we haven't thrown out the baby with the bathwater because the comments are few and far between and I don't think that was the idea.

I still say battersbox.ca is the appropriate model to go with. You combine some choice over who is starting threads with the ability to post longer pieces and have them more readily searchable/preserved. It just makes sense.

3/23/2006 4:40 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

riversq:

I think that for most people (certainly me until just recently) going to a blog was sort of like entering somebody else's personal space. Even if it was an Oilers blog and other people were responding to posts. The guys who were responding all seemed to have their own blog links, I mean I liked reading them, but it was like it wasn't really open to invitation for comment from outsider smartasses like myself.

Personally, I'm just hoping for a platform that encourages good hockey talk without the riffraff. But even as it is now RQ, if you posted your "Pronger's Minutes" thing on one of the boards, and there were only two responses ... how many times do you think it would even be opened? How many unique readers? The people who are mad enough to come here know what they are in for, Dennis, yourself and me all bring a different perspective to things, but there's a common thread in there ... and I suspect that overwhelmingly they've understood what you have said. I also suspect that many of them had problems with some of your reasoning, or something to add ... and didn't. And that's a shame. And I suspect it will change in time.

I mean lowetide, on his blog, has recently posted some of the best hockey stuff I've ever read on the internet. Just excellent material. And there really aren't many responses. On the other hand, if he'd posted it on HF as well ... there's a very good chance that all of you, me, Dennis, oilswell, mudcrutch, etc would have missed it altogether. It will take a little while methinks, and nothing will replace the hockey boards for a lot of the flowing conversation, trade day mania, "Best Memory From Rexall" type threads and so on. It's just a different thing, and it is painfully obvious that it is the place where a lot of types of hockey conversation have moved. For better or worse.

BTW: That little picture thing that crops up next to some people's responses in blogs still wigs me out. Wierd shit is that. They should have a commentary below like: "Seen this man near your daughter's high school? ... dial 1-800-PEDARAST".

3/23/2006 5:22 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

Mudcrutch said ...
I still say battersbox.ca is the appropriate model to go with. You combine some choice over who is starting threads with the ability to post longer pieces and have them more readily searchable/preserved. It just makes sense.


You've mentioned this before, I take it that this is a direction that you'd like to go with mc79hockey.com? I know it makes sense in a lot of ways, and the battersbox.ca template is there.

You'd surely reach a wider audience. But are you sure that you want that? And doesn't the blog index link thing kind of work the same? I mean I can log in here ... click to go to LT, then click there to go to your blog, click there to go to BofA, click there to go to CoverInOil, maybe click there to go somewhere out of the blue. And voila!... that's her. Similar effect, no? Only thing missing is the number of people who feel free to reply to posts, and that will surely evolve into a more interactive thing. No?

3/23/2006 5:47 pm  
Anonymous lowetide said...

I just want to say that loxy girl shouldn't worry about this being the day people are reading her blog. I found it hilarious, and so did my wife who in our 24 years of marriage has cured me of the idea that the "fairer" sex has to take a back seat in this particular area.

:-)

3/23/2006 6:20 pm  
Blogger sacamano said...

Hey Hey. What a description! I love it.

Readers and commenters will come with time. Lowetide's site, for example, deserves much more visibility and interaction, and it will come once people start linking back and forth.

I also had speeds blog on my speed-dial when he first started, but alas, it didn't take off. Nice to see him here commenting, though.

Check out the early BofA threads. It was just me and Matt jibing at each other.

HF and OF already have that "fan base" built in and so it is easier to get that instant gratification, but the blogs have some advantages too. Longer posts are possible, less riff-raff (for the moment), etc.

3/23/2006 7:11 pm  
Anonymous Julian said...

I'd think an internet porn analogy for CiO would involve clowns and filthy, filthy language. And really obscure hockey players rating the scenes afterwards.



On another note....


I really enjoy reading LT's blog, but frankly, it's so good that I don't even know what I can contribute afterwards, except to ask more questions. If anything, his blog makes me realize how much I have to learn about the game yet.... perhaps when i've been following it intently for a few decades...

So LT (and the rest of you) please keep it up, this is some excellent stuff, and your writing is greatly appreciated.

3/23/2006 11:26 pm  
Anonymous Julian said...

another thought....

Tom Benjamin's blog seems to be an example of a well writen and insightful blog that gets alot of hits and alot of responses (something I'd imagine you guys would all like to see...).

I'd guess there are a few reasons... First, his blog has been around for a long while. Secondly, he focuses more on the whole NHL and hockey in general as opposed to one team. Even when he does talk about the Canucks it's more like he's using them as an example to make a point. Though I really enjoy the focus on the Oilers here, I'm not sure how engrossing it'd be for the avearage Habs fan that's wandering though.
And finally, TB tends to post on more.... normative topics, if that makes sense... ie, he had a few posts a couple weeks ago on hockey literature and culture, which I found more up my alley than the statistical analysis and coaching strategy that seems to be the main topic in this mini oilers blogsphere that you've got going on.


I dunno, just some random thoughts there. I wouldn't really want to see you guys change your blogs in any way, I think you bring some topics up that sorely need to be covered.

3/23/2006 11:42 pm  
Blogger Loxy said...

Well, lowetide, that earns you a link in my fair sidebar.

3/24/2006 1:24 am  
Anonymous lowetide said...

loxy:

Thank you, and if I ever figure out how to add more than the two I have your link goes on my site too. :-)

For me it's all good. I started at HF in 2000 when there was me kim gernack and three people from Ottawa (yokel, Kyle's Mom and Hossa) and we used to exchange everything from thoughts on Jani Rita to some of the worst poetry in the history of time.

We had fun.

HF's site now is just so huge (300 people on the Oiler board alone last night, many with opinions that missed the mark) that you can't possibly read it all.

Which means you miss the good stuff. I started to blog because other people did, which makes me more follower than leader and I doubt it'll be anything more than a chance to chat with friends like it was on HF in 2000.

I like it just fine.

I also love the fact that most bloggers spell the entire word instead of "ur wrong".

3/24/2006 7:04 am  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

You've mentioned this before, I take it that this is a direction that you'd like to go with mc79hockey.com? I know it makes sense in a lot of ways, and the battersbox.ca template is there.

Something is going to have to change with mc79hockey at some point-the spare time of a third year law student with a job in his pocket is significantly greater than the spare time of an articling student seeking to get hired back. I like what you've done here, gathering a group of the entertaining smart writers together-I'm not a fan of the blogger format though. Something like battersbox, in terms of what you can do with the formatting etc is greater than what blogger provides.

You'd surely reach a wider audience. But are you sure that you want that?

Yeah, I like that. I think that the key is the way that the tone of the place is set. I'm not saying that I want a forum where people trade academic treatises-the top story on my site right now is a ramble comparing the Smyth goal to the common law and equity but I can do without the guys providing links to every TSN article, Oilers Pipeline email, rants, raves, 12 threads on the Samsonov deal and pretty much everyone who incorporates the word "dude" or a player name into their handle. It's all about setting hte tone.

As for the clicking through to other blogs, it's absolutely true that it's possible. Still seems kind of pointless though and with a place like battersbox, they've got enough writers that I know there's new content every day while it allows for them to get busy individually or something. I can see my site falling apart once I start articling, in which case I'll be begging for space here.;)

3/24/2006 9:07 am  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

lowetide:

I think you overestimate the number of people that read your stuff on HF. There is a buffet quality about fan forums when they become as popular as HF or OilFans, people tend to just read the things they are into. Be it coaching, video game stuff, anti-coach rants, game analysis, personal stuff about players, trade proposals ... whatever. The threads that get a lot of responses also get more reads, but mostly just because the same people keep reopening the same thread.

I mean you are the most read poster over there I would guess, an average of somewhere close to 145 unique readers per thread you start. I just dumped the last 100 threads you started, which dates back to just after the Pronger deal. And ran the numbers using a rough metric (number of reads proportional to (replies +1)^x, and solve x for least variance, and alternately for maximum sample correlation, it's crude and simple, but both methods yield similar results. I'd be pretty comfortable that within 5 with that guess. Obviously some subjects are more popular than others, and threads that get a lot of replies inevitably get more unique readers too.

My point, and I do have one:
I'd bet that right now your stuff is already reaching a much larger audience than you've ever had ... and they came to your site specifically to read your stuff. I don't think that matters a lot to you though, it's the increase in give and take that you're hoping for. Me as well. Though it is kind of nice to know that when guys like Dennis and yourself put that much effort into a post that it is being read by a lot of people, would be good if a few more talked back to us as well. :-) All in due time.

Personally, I'm really surprised by the large number of people that read hockey blogs, and what a different crowd that it is from the boards. And the number of Oiler blog fans scattered around the continent, and a few around the world, surprising.

3/24/2006 11:56 am  
Anonymous lowetide said...

I agree completely, it's the increase in give and take. It's finding the Julians AND making sure that I get to read the riversq's and the dennis' of the world in a format we all feel comfortable being a part of (which I think this is morphing into).

One thing I honestly believe is that the key is to make sure the Julians of the world (who I have not read on HF or oilfans) are comfortable enough to post their thoughts.

The first time I posted on HF it began "this is a dumb question, but..." and to me that's a pretty typical initial reaction (it was a dumb question by the way).

But if Julian has been watching hockey for a few decades then he knows stuff I don't know and that's the biggest reason I want to be a part of this little community.

It's a great game, but we haven't scratched the surface. I've read hundreds of books on hockey and the best goaltending stuff I've ever seen is mudcrutch's and he's never written a hockey book.

The idea is to close that gap, have fewer "NHL Preview" magazines from ESPN zone and more articles about EV SP and why a kid who never got over .880 in junior isn't going to be Dominec Hasek.

THAT's the common theme all of us share I would guess, and why this blog community is "important".

Because it matters, and we have the time and the curiousity.

And, apparently, the forum. If I could take you bunch back to 1974 you'd build a monument to that poor misunderstood internet inventor Al Gore.

:-)

3/24/2006 1:06 pm  
Anonymous Julian said...

ehn, I'm Injektilo on HF/Oilfans, so you may have seen my posts a couple of times. I mostly just read at Oilfans though.

3/24/2006 3:40 pm  
Anonymous lowetide said...

Okay, I have read your posts. You have posted on the History of Hockey too, am I right? I seem to remember something you posted there.

3/24/2006 5:24 pm  
Blogger Oiler_Kiwi said...

Hi Guys & Girls,

Dennis gave me the heads up re the blogs. Don't have the free time I have have in the past. Dennis and me go back a long way from the early days of OilFans. I must say reading the stuff posted on these blogs in the last 2 weeks or so has been very very enlightening. 2 years ago I had the pleasure of seeing 7 NHL games in 12 days on a trip to Alberta. I've been an Oilers fan since 1984 and have seen a total of 8 NHL games in the flesh. Seeing highlights of the 84 SC finals got me hooked. Being a New Zealander now resident in Scotland I'm more knowledgeable about Football (soccer) or Rugby than (Ice) Hockey. It's through reading the opinions, stories etc on websites such as these that I am gaining more knowledge on what is my favourite sport. Keep up the good work everyone. I turn 40 this year, next month in fact. I'm hoping to convince my good lady to get me to Edmonton later this year to see some more hockey.

Regards,

Oiler_Kiwi

4/12/2006 4:17 pm  

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