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Eric R Pleiss

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  1. Like
    Eric R Pleiss got a reaction from h2oface in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I started writing this post, and it got so long I probably should have published it as a blog. 
    Please put energy into this.  This sounds like a winning combination of many of the thoughts and comments I've read so far.  

    Also, as someone who has been writing at TD for a couple of years now, almost exclusively doing Minor League Reports once a week, I really enjoy lurking in the comments section and chatting with readers (or finding edits I need to make in the post thanks to the careful eye of the reader). I did like a comment from a reader earlier that mentioned having MiLB-team specific writers, which would be an interesting take as opposed to having the daily MiLB round-ups, or maybe in addition to that.  There is a lot to be gained from following one of those teams daily like Steve has done with the Kernels, that I feel like I miss, even when I'm tuned in deeply once a week for MiLB report writing, and sort of tuned in the rest of the week.
     
    I find myself at the other end from many of the comments above, where I actually go to the blogs and articles and seek to pop some comments in there, rather than wading through the great many forums (I get exhausted just thinking about jumping into a forum topic that is 300 posts long and trying to catch up on a conversation that's been going on for weeks, and can never seem to jump into the ones I want right as they're starting).  

    Someone mentioned the Peanuts from Heaven blog above, as a place where you might not necessarily find lots of research-heavy writing, but where you could find someone writing with a point of view, and something interesting to say about the Twins.  And there have been so many other sites like that along the way.  Twins Fan from Afar, I mentioned Steve before, but Knuckleballs was a fun little site with a handfull of writiers that Steve rounded up thanks to some fun little game chats he hosted on the site, the work that Panda Pete is doing and many others, some of the podcasts that have come and gone over the years (especially Seth's MiLB report show where he interviewed all the players, even with the spotty audio quality thanks to cell phone calls and the suckiness of Blog Talk radio, and even guys like Fanatic Jack who just ranted and railed against everything Twins, but it was a dude with some passion, the ever-present misanthrope).

    Also, Brandon Swanson out there, wherever you are, making bad photoshops (or Microsoft Paint) of Twins players as birds.  All of it out there, people with passion, a bunch of cool stuff. 

    All of this to say, I love the blogs, and I wish there was a way to make that content more relevant to the forum readers and conversation havers, and some sort of hybrid way to get them all connected feels like a great way to re-engage some dormant writers, and encourage new ones to start putting their thoughts out in more than just a couple sentences.

     
  2. Like
    Eric R Pleiss got a reaction from glunn in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I started writing this post, and it got so long I probably should have published it as a blog. 
    Please put energy into this.  This sounds like a winning combination of many of the thoughts and comments I've read so far.  

    Also, as someone who has been writing at TD for a couple of years now, almost exclusively doing Minor League Reports once a week, I really enjoy lurking in the comments section and chatting with readers (or finding edits I need to make in the post thanks to the careful eye of the reader). I did like a comment from a reader earlier that mentioned having MiLB-team specific writers, which would be an interesting take as opposed to having the daily MiLB round-ups, or maybe in addition to that.  There is a lot to be gained from following one of those teams daily like Steve has done with the Kernels, that I feel like I miss, even when I'm tuned in deeply once a week for MiLB report writing, and sort of tuned in the rest of the week.
     
    I find myself at the other end from many of the comments above, where I actually go to the blogs and articles and seek to pop some comments in there, rather than wading through the great many forums (I get exhausted just thinking about jumping into a forum topic that is 300 posts long and trying to catch up on a conversation that's been going on for weeks, and can never seem to jump into the ones I want right as they're starting).  

    Someone mentioned the Peanuts from Heaven blog above, as a place where you might not necessarily find lots of research-heavy writing, but where you could find someone writing with a point of view, and something interesting to say about the Twins.  And there have been so many other sites like that along the way.  Twins Fan from Afar, I mentioned Steve before, but Knuckleballs was a fun little site with a handfull of writiers that Steve rounded up thanks to some fun little game chats he hosted on the site, the work that Panda Pete is doing and many others, some of the podcasts that have come and gone over the years (especially Seth's MiLB report show where he interviewed all the players, even with the spotty audio quality thanks to cell phone calls and the suckiness of Blog Talk radio, and even guys like Fanatic Jack who just ranted and railed against everything Twins, but it was a dude with some passion, the ever-present misanthrope).

    Also, Brandon Swanson out there, wherever you are, making bad photoshops (or Microsoft Paint) of Twins players as birds.  All of it out there, people with passion, a bunch of cool stuff. 

    All of this to say, I love the blogs, and I wish there was a way to make that content more relevant to the forum readers and conversation havers, and some sort of hybrid way to get them all connected feels like a great way to re-engage some dormant writers, and encourage new ones to start putting their thoughts out in more than just a couple sentences.

     
  3. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to ClubhouseDanceParty in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    Multi year lurker here, just upgrading to part time commentator. The request for help has spurred me to do my part and create a membership to help grow the community. Your website is fantastic. I have seem my appetite for your content grow. Twins Daily has turned me into a fan of the minor league system, draft, and advanced stats. 
     
    I would enjoying seeing blog posts about MLB ex-Twins players and how/what they are doing. Seth's piece earlier in the year on Josh Rabe was great, more like these would be great. I can imagine the spirited dialogue in the forums. Call it "Old Friends". Yes, I stole that from Mike Berardino. 
     
    I look forwarded to future commenting and hope other lurkers make the same jump.
  4. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to SD Buhr in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    Confession time: I not only haven't been writing as much at TD for the past year or so, but also haven't been stopping by to read/comment nearly as much as I used to.
     
    The fact that I didn't notice this article until it already had over 100 comments is, in itself, evidence of my lack of attention, I suppose.
     
    I'd like to say it's because I don't have time. But since I retired a couple of years ago, it would be hard to make that argument.
     
    In my defense, it hasn't just been my writing at TD that's fallen off. I probably haven't posted more than once or twice a month at my own Knuckleballsblog.com site.
     
    I don't think it's a coincidence that my writing volume peaked during the 3 year period where I was also being paid (modestly, but paid nonetheless) to cover the CR Kernels beat by a local media outlet. 
     
    I had assignments and, pay notwithstanding, I'd made a commitment to cover the Kernels on a regular basis. Even with that workload, I found myself going beyond my assigned work and writing additional features, which I would post on my blog as well as at TD.
     
    The past 2 seasons, I've continued to attend almost every Kernels home game and I take a lot of photographs. I just don't do the writing I used to. The interest is still there, I just haven't felt motivated to do it without having it be a "responsibility." 
     
    Weird, I know. I don't understand it myself.
     
    I've now read all of the prior comments on this article and my views mirror many of them.
     
    1- You write a blog at TD and the title shows up in the small section on the front page... but only for as long as it takes for a few newer blogs to push it off the list. After that, unless you make a point of GOING to the Blog section, it's never seen again. Sometimes that takes a few days. Sometimes less than a day.
     
    1a- That means you get little feedback, unless your article is promoted (and I have to say that I benefited from having a fair percentage of my articles promoted by the TD owners... probably more than fair). I tried to make a point of going back after a few days and acknowledging/thanking the few comments the posts received, but rarely did it turn into any kind of discussion... and that's fine, but yes, feedback is a factor.
     
    2- I occasionally do take a lot of photos of the Kernels and many of my posts on Knuckleballs feature those photos. However, I found that there's a limit on the number of photos that posts at TD can include. So, I pretty much stopped bringing my photo-heavy Knuckleballs posts over here.
     
    3- Like at least one other person mentioned, I often will decide to write about my views on a Twins/Kernels related topic, but being aware that it's a topic that has already been featured in a TD article, I just post my views on Knuckleballs without re-posting it at TD.
     
    4- It's really not about the money. I don't have advertising at Knuckleballs and, while I certainly appreciated TD making an effort to compensate writers monetarily, the few bucks that even regular, promoted articles would generate are not what motivates me to write (when I write). I simply enjoy writing (tho, apparently, not as much as I used to... and I still don't understand why that is).
     
    5- TD is unique. And even though I don't read it as religiously as I used to, I absolutely would 'subscribe' to it, if that's what the owners decided it would take to make the site successful over the long term. I JUST subscribed to The Athletic, finally, last night, and, other than the Strib online, I don't subscribe to any other paywall site to get Twins content... but I would cough up a couple bucks a month for TD. It's that important to me that it be successful over the long run.
     
    6- I do think that the fact that I rarely read comments in the Forum (unless it's a topic that I care deeply about... which is rare) and participate in Forum discussions even less often. I used to... but I found myself tending to get argumentative and frustrated. Who needs that? I don't and I'm sure the people I was arguing with don't (or hope they don't). That said, I'm sure my lack of participation in Forum topics (I didn't even adopt-a-prospect this past season) has played a role in me visiting the site less often.
     
    7- There have been a lot of great ideas/comments in this thread, though. A lot of them. I can only imagine how difficult it is for the owners to keep this enterprise running while also trying to make a living at their regular jobs. I know I couldn't have done that when I was working full-time. I spoke to 1-2 of the owners a time or two over the past several years about increasing my activity at TD and I couldn't imagine having the ability to even find time to commit to even doing that much.
     
    Admittedly, things have changed a bit for me since those days. And let me just say this to those of you who are wishing you could retire... Don't do it. It is BORING! I'm actually looking at going back to work, at least part time, because I can almost feel my brain soften. Anyway... I digress.
     
    TD guys.... I know an old fart like me is not what you're looking for to help lead TD into the future (after all, actuarial tables tell us I don't have as much of a future as each of you do). I also know I'm not any kind of expert at managing a site like this.
     
    But, after you've put your heads together and reviewed all of the great feedback you're getting in this thread, if there's anything I can do to help you out with a reasonable time commitment, get in touch with me. I'll try to do what I can.
     
    Twins Daily, like any endeavor, has to adapt to survive and it's very important to a lot of us that it not only survive, but continue to thrive.
  5. Like
    Eric R Pleiss got a reaction from lecroy24fan in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I started writing this post, and it got so long I probably should have published it as a blog. 
    Please put energy into this.  This sounds like a winning combination of many of the thoughts and comments I've read so far.  

    Also, as someone who has been writing at TD for a couple of years now, almost exclusively doing Minor League Reports once a week, I really enjoy lurking in the comments section and chatting with readers (or finding edits I need to make in the post thanks to the careful eye of the reader). I did like a comment from a reader earlier that mentioned having MiLB-team specific writers, which would be an interesting take as opposed to having the daily MiLB round-ups, or maybe in addition to that.  There is a lot to be gained from following one of those teams daily like Steve has done with the Kernels, that I feel like I miss, even when I'm tuned in deeply once a week for MiLB report writing, and sort of tuned in the rest of the week.
     
    I find myself at the other end from many of the comments above, where I actually go to the blogs and articles and seek to pop some comments in there, rather than wading through the great many forums (I get exhausted just thinking about jumping into a forum topic that is 300 posts long and trying to catch up on a conversation that's been going on for weeks, and can never seem to jump into the ones I want right as they're starting).  

    Someone mentioned the Peanuts from Heaven blog above, as a place where you might not necessarily find lots of research-heavy writing, but where you could find someone writing with a point of view, and something interesting to say about the Twins.  And there have been so many other sites like that along the way.  Twins Fan from Afar, I mentioned Steve before, but Knuckleballs was a fun little site with a handfull of writiers that Steve rounded up thanks to some fun little game chats he hosted on the site, the work that Panda Pete is doing and many others, some of the podcasts that have come and gone over the years (especially Seth's MiLB report show where he interviewed all the players, even with the spotty audio quality thanks to cell phone calls and the suckiness of Blog Talk radio, and even guys like Fanatic Jack who just ranted and railed against everything Twins, but it was a dude with some passion, the ever-present misanthrope).

    Also, Brandon Swanson out there, wherever you are, making bad photoshops (or Microsoft Paint) of Twins players as birds.  All of it out there, people with passion, a bunch of cool stuff. 

    All of this to say, I love the blogs, and I wish there was a way to make that content more relevant to the forum readers and conversation havers, and some sort of hybrid way to get them all connected feels like a great way to re-engage some dormant writers, and encourage new ones to start putting their thoughts out in more than just a couple sentences.

     
  6. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Parker Hageman in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    There are a lot of great ideas and suggestions in here. Once we make our first million, we will definitely be handing out kickbacks to all of you. 
  7. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Steve Lein in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I think I'm with most people here when I say, don't worry about beating the beat writers on a "game story."
     
    I don't think that's what you're necessarily delivering, and what you do is different than what they will find from those beat writers. That's why it was successful and works in this environment. Don't imitate, innovate like you already have!
  8. Like
    Eric R Pleiss got a reaction from Seth Stohs in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I started writing this post, and it got so long I probably should have published it as a blog. 
    Please put energy into this.  This sounds like a winning combination of many of the thoughts and comments I've read so far.  

    Also, as someone who has been writing at TD for a couple of years now, almost exclusively doing Minor League Reports once a week, I really enjoy lurking in the comments section and chatting with readers (or finding edits I need to make in the post thanks to the careful eye of the reader). I did like a comment from a reader earlier that mentioned having MiLB-team specific writers, which would be an interesting take as opposed to having the daily MiLB round-ups, or maybe in addition to that.  There is a lot to be gained from following one of those teams daily like Steve has done with the Kernels, that I feel like I miss, even when I'm tuned in deeply once a week for MiLB report writing, and sort of tuned in the rest of the week.
     
    I find myself at the other end from many of the comments above, where I actually go to the blogs and articles and seek to pop some comments in there, rather than wading through the great many forums (I get exhausted just thinking about jumping into a forum topic that is 300 posts long and trying to catch up on a conversation that's been going on for weeks, and can never seem to jump into the ones I want right as they're starting).  

    Someone mentioned the Peanuts from Heaven blog above, as a place where you might not necessarily find lots of research-heavy writing, but where you could find someone writing with a point of view, and something interesting to say about the Twins.  And there have been so many other sites like that along the way.  Twins Fan from Afar, I mentioned Steve before, but Knuckleballs was a fun little site with a handfull of writiers that Steve rounded up thanks to some fun little game chats he hosted on the site, the work that Panda Pete is doing and many others, some of the podcasts that have come and gone over the years (especially Seth's MiLB report show where he interviewed all the players, even with the spotty audio quality thanks to cell phone calls and the suckiness of Blog Talk radio, and even guys like Fanatic Jack who just ranted and railed against everything Twins, but it was a dude with some passion, the ever-present misanthrope).

    Also, Brandon Swanson out there, wherever you are, making bad photoshops (or Microsoft Paint) of Twins players as birds.  All of it out there, people with passion, a bunch of cool stuff. 

    All of this to say, I love the blogs, and I wish there was a way to make that content more relevant to the forum readers and conversation havers, and some sort of hybrid way to get them all connected feels like a great way to re-engage some dormant writers, and encourage new ones to start putting their thoughts out in more than just a couple sentences.

     
  9. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to John Bonnes in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    Thanks Thrylos. It's good hearing from long-time bloggers like myself, as we tend to have a different perspective than most.
     
    I agree about the specific content, but that's one of the things I like about the organic model. It lends itself to surprising content. Tom's game recaps are a great example - I knew I wanted something like that on the site for a long time, but he brainstormed it and ran with it. Bat Girl's fan fiction and your spring training posts are other good examples. 
  10. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to iTwins in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    It's been a few years now, but I used to write somewhat routine blogs - and was fortunate enough to have a handful of them featured on the main page. 
     
    Ultimately I stopped writing for a handful of reasons. 
     
    1) Inconsistent feedback. Of the posts that were promoted to the front page, all but one were featured without any comment or feedback from site admins letting me know (a) my blog was posted / featured and ( b ) what they liked enough about it to feature it. It was hard to know what the site was looking for, and what aspects of my writing I should focus on to add value to the discussion. 
     
    2) Wide open topics. This is a weird one to note, but let me try to explain a bit. While one of the perks of writing is being able to choose whatever topic motivates you in the moment, it becomes a challenge on a site like Twins Daily. It was common for me to think "I wonder how Kyle Gibson's splits look when you factor in 'x'?" - I'd begin researching and writing it, only to find that Parker (or another writer, but it seemed like Parker and I were on the same train of thought a lot) posted a story 20 minutes before mine was ready. I deleted quite a few posts because the main stable of writers hit the topic as I was wrapping up my version. 
    That meant I needed to focus on some of the more esoteric perspectives in order to avoid duplicating posts - which got tiring after a while. 
     
    3) The upgraded site's inability to cooperate with Baseball Reference tables. I do a lot of my writing with the support of statistics - I like data to support my arguments, and Baseball Reference was my favorite source. BR has a helpful "embed" feature on any tables you generate on their site - I frequently used this in my blog posts. However, when the site was upgraded, that functionality broke. My old posts were unintelligible thanks to line after line of HTML errors - and my new posts couldn't feature the customized data I wanted. This was the proverbial straw that broke the back of the camel called "desire to keep writing." 
     
    These may seem like minor things, but the combination of all of them made it easier to walk away from writing on the site. 
  11. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to jorgenswest in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    Better received? My guess is the 10 pages are a handful of people quickly reacting back and forth repeating the same conversation seen in many threads. In short order they aren’t responding to the post but rather reacting to each other. That ongoing debate is enticing and draws me in but not what brings me to TD.
     
    I come here for the thoughtful articles. They are often followed by thoughtful responses to the original post that are fewer in number.
  12. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to old nurse in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I make an assumption that page hits are kind of important to the survival of an internet site. One time you and Dave (from New York) each started a thread on the same day. I do not remember what your piece was about.  IMHO it was well written. It had well defined concepts. It got about 5 comments before falling to never never land. One of those was my comment thanking you for writing such a nice piece and that it was unfortunate that a positive spin piece was not well received in terms of the number of comments. I do not remember Dave's topic exactly, either. What I remember was, IMHO Dave threw a fetid dung ball out.  3-4 lines at most. That  thread died out after more or less 10 pages of comments.
      I am not sure but I think Dave brought more traffic out. You might not even had as many lurkers for your thread because people seem to love train wrecks and car crashes.  Audience analysis. on what they want.  When the Twins called up Breslow if there were 2 threads, one detailing  Breslow's efforts to reconstruct himself as a pitcher and one saying  it will never work, which one would be better received?
  13. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Seth Stohs in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    Hey everybody,
     
    I read this article early this morning, but I wanted to not comment on it for awhile and just allow whatever comments to surface. I want readers to know that I read through every comment to this point and really appreciate them. I jotted down lots of notes (3 pages worth) and will spend more time evaluating them.
     
    I do want to share my thoughts on several things... 
     
    1.) I like getting feedback like this. It's a good reminder of what we do well, but also what things we need to improve upon.
    2.) Based on some comments, I do feel I need to explain a few things. First, none of us do this full time. We are bloggers who came together to create this community and we are very proud of what we have created. But I hope people know that we all have jobs that actually pay us money and help us pay our bills. The little bit that we get from this site is nice and helps, but there's no way any of us could do this full time, at least not yet... 
    3.) Twins Daily isn't going anywhere anytime soon. But we did want to provide this community with a way to continue developing more bloggers. The comment early in this thread about going to Thrylos's blog and looking at all of the Twins blogs that are no more was a big eye-opener. Blogging is a lot of work, and to do it almost 14 years like I have is crazy. But I enjoy it. But, life can get in the way and that's understandable. Right now, Nick and I are the two founders/owners that still write. Parker hasn't for 2-3 years. John has worked really hard behind the scenes. Brock does a ton that helps make things run smoothly. 
    3b) It is hard to come up with topics, and writers block is a real thing. During the season, I typically average about 9 articles per week. My point in this is that I am not a journalist. I have no journalism training. I don't even pretend to be a strong writer. I find spelling important, and I find punctuation and grammar important... That's something I'll look for in terms of quality... but a lot of that is fairly easily correctable, so then it comes down to interesting, well-reasoned and provocative. Could be analytical, but we really don't have a lot of deep analytical postings. We also don't have a ton of Twins history on the site. That's an area we would love to see more of, and will starting with the new year. WE don't cover other AL Central teams or competition. But there are a lot of angles. We do cover the minor leagues and the draft pretty well, but there are lots of things that can be discussed.
    4.) There are success stories to this model. Cody Christie writes twice a week throughout the year. He's busy with his job, his wife and kid, and taking some classes. He's still writing, but he's busy. Jeremy Nygaard was huge for this site for the early years. He has the great contacts in the Twins scouting areas and really has a passion for the draft. He'll continue to do that, but he's married, has four kids, a new job, and has become a varsity coach. He has very little time. Ted has been posting blogs (from his site) in the Twins Daily blogs for a while. His topics and consistency made him a good choice for us to have post once a week. The biggest success story of our model has to be Tom Froemming. He's written some other places, but he started writing in the Blogs. We noticed, and we worked with him and we started promoting some of his blogs to Articles/Front Page. Over time, he wrote weekly. He wrote Minor League reports last year, and as noted, he found something that Twins Daily was lacking, a game recap that was different than what the beat writers are doing. It's been a huge success. The concern is that more and more people will continue to get busier, and it would be non-good to lose several writers without adding some consistent contributors. 
    5.) The Blogs are just that, a blog. It's a place that people can write anything they want. It can be Twins related. It could be Timberwolves, Vikings, Reality TV or any other topic you want. I wrote up a blog before Season 8 of The Walking Dead started and posted it as a blog. It wasn't appropriate for Twins Daily's front page by any means, but I promoted it on Twitter and got some readers. It was fun. I always say that I write stuff that I would want to read. That way, I can remain passionate about it. That's what the Blogs are to me, and maybe we need to define that better.
    6.) Regarding forums getting shut down by a front page article coming out, I'm not sure what we need to do there. There needs to be a way to merge them. Frankly, we need an article on breaking news. While I could see something on twitter and go write a forum post in 15 seconds, we need an article, and that can happen as quickly as in 5 minutes. We're going to continue doing articles on big Twins news. So, we just need to find a good answer. 
    7.) I have so many other thoughts, but I do want to encourage people to continue adding more feedback. I personally really appreciate it. We aren't going to hire a consultant because we do care what you think. And we do welcome your feedback. For awhile, I was checking out the Blogs pages daily. I promoted several articles over the course of a year or so, when it was written well, thought out and something that warranted a front page spot. I've unfortunately gotten away from it. But I will commit to going to the Blogs pages daily and reviewing what's out there. I can provide comments to articles or click like. Moreover, I welcome anyone to send me a private message and I will try to reply within a day. I like to think it'll be quicker than that, but I do have an 8-5 job that in the last month or two has often kept me there until 6-7... and with the Prospect Handbook work the last 3 months, time has been at a premium... But please feel free to write me and I will really attempt to provide you as much feedback as I can.
     
    Again, please continue to leave feedback, it is appreciated!
  14. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Brandon Warne in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I'll add this just so I can stop posting and wasting all your time: 
     
    Back when things were rolling (2010), this was a way more inclusive community all the way to the top. 
     
    Now I think it's become a very closed society.
     
    Disagree if you want.  
  15. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Jham in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I must confess, I rarely visit the blog section unless it generates a forum thread.  
     
    I both applaud TD for asking for help and advice, and scratch my head at its apparent lack of self-awareness leading up to this point. As others have suggested, if you would like more featured blogs, then you must feature your blogs!!  If the blogs were as popular as the Articles and Forum Threads, we wouldn't be having this discussion.  Articles get front page status.  Threads get constant dialogue and buzz.  Blogs get...  a spot in the dropdown box.  Right now, your best threads, articles, and yes, blogs, are difficult to share on facebook, twitter, etc.  That's not really acceptable if you're looking for greater exposure.

    My suggestions:
    1) Determine whether a TD model based on free blog content is realistic. Don't ask us.  Ask other sites you want to be like how they make their blog work.  Is there an easier way to make things profitable? 

    2) The blogs need to be boosted.  Getting some blogs to the front page and to the top of the thread list on the forum would be super-simple fixes.  Reference the blogs in articles. Publish some blog postings as TD articles.
     
    3) Boost the bloggers themselves.  Nick, Seth, Parker, and John are on a first-name basis on this site.  Spycake, Thrylos, and Chief, etc. are well respected posters on the threads.  We need to get to know the bloggers. Understand their perspective and credentials.  In short, we need to be told why we should read. Readers award attention on TD based on reputation and respect.  Anyone can post on the forum.  Anyone can start a blog.  Not everyone can get article status.  You've inadvertently created a second class of writer below the article authors and basically on equal plane as the forum posters. This provides little incentive to read or write.  

    4) Go read some of the other team forum sites out there, and realize how amazing the site content is and how special the community you've constructed is, and be proud of what you've accomplished. 

    5) Consider giving up the blog model entirely.  Hire another writer to generate more content.  Make this a pay site.  I do not subscribe to ESPN insider, but I'd subscribe to this site...  for the cost of a 2018 prospect handbook included as a free gift to you...
     
    6) Don't ask us.  Pay a consultant.  There are people who know as much about building and promoting online publications as you know about Twins baseball and the media.
     
  16. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Thrylos in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    Views is not the best way of judging audience engagement with a particular piece of content, since with that metric, someone who is a first and only time user who clicks a link at a third site and spends a second on a piece of content, is treated the same with someone who is a dedicated user and who clicks once and spends 10 minutes reading another piece of content, and does that for a couple hours a day...
     
    Views is easy to calculate; you need  a bit more of advanced analytics to quantify engagement, which should really be the goal of every digital content provider.
     
     
  17. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Old Twins Cap in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I think the "unmentioned" is that someone -- some-bodies -- are doing a lot of work and, though the site was started with an idea that this could be sustainable, reality is, like a lot of start-ups, it just isn't.
     
    So, we started a business, it had a framework for self-perpetuation, but, to get it going and keep it going, we-had-to-do-what-we-had-to-do, the original model has not proven out, and now we need to face up to how to make this work or consider letting it all go.
     
    Maybe this is close?  Some reading between the lines, but that's what I get.
     
    Most Blogs and websites and even internet companies, even large and successful ones, do not have a business model to start with.  They don't.  They either do it out of passion and because someone is crazy, or they just have a really good idea in a particular area, and hope that, over time, a business model emerges.
     
    The ones that survive remain open to possibility and are nimble and adjust as circumstances dictate.
     
    But, push comes to shove, you start an internet website, low barrier to entry, now you have readers, now it's a couple years on, no one is making money, everyone is donating time, but there's no way to monetize and people are getting frazzled.
     
    From the outside, I like to stop by, everyday, see what's going on.  But, no idea you were fundamentally looking to incubate writers.  Not for a moment would I have thought that. 
     
    As an English teacher, I can say, you aren't going to incubate writers readily.  Writers who are good are already working and busy.  The ones who are motivated are already working and busy.  The ones who are passionate are working and busy and willing to help out or to try their hand.  The others.... well, there are a lot of other writers on the Internet and they won't get you anywhere.
     
    The best way to advance a business is to do it yourself.  Countless hours of work.  It's yours, you created it, take pride in it, etc.  People only care about things they create;  they do not care about things that others have created.
     
    The best reason for an outsider like me to write is not money.  It's more about having a forum to put ideas and quality writing out that is going to draw eye-balls and create a reason for me to put more effort into baseball writing.  There's a lot of things to write about, and baseball is profound, but, for me, only in a kind of semi-spiritual way, which takes time to tease out.  Statistics are great and I'm glad to have a window on that world, but in the final analysis, I don't love baseball because of statistics.  I love it because of the human drama.
     
    The best reason for me to write is as a prelude to assembling essays into a book to publish.
     
    But I have no idea that anything I wrote here would ever get kicked up to the front page.  And I think that is what people are saying.  You want open-source, you gotta live with open-source.  You want curation, you guys gotta do that and it isn't self-managing.
     
    I mean, your moderators are hyper-vigilant about even a hint of controversy, but you want open-source on articles?  I'm not seeing internal consistency on that.
     
    But still love the site and hope you figure it out.
     
     
     
     
  18. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Vanimal46 in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    Overall I think there's a lot of talent in this community. Collaboration would help make this place even better IMO.
     
    Game threads for example I've partnered with Barks Lounge who is one of the best photoshop users I've seen. I've also asked Brock if he had illustrations I could use for game thread themes, and Pardon My Dinger for collaborating on parody songs. Unfortunately we weren't able to figure out how to make the music portion work... What software to use that would work on this website.
     
    I also remember Pardon My Dinger did a live game thread where you could listen to his rants and comments throughout the game that I think is very creative.
     
    I've envisioned game threads and other threads with video, pictures, and other creative methods.
     
    Long story short, we could make this place great using each of our different talents together.
  19. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to John Bonnes in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    When we write a story, it automatically creates a forum post and links the comments to the forum post. I wonder if we could do something like that for blog posts. (And then link the comments from the blog post to the article when it is promoted.) Sounds daunting, but that would be ideal
  20. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to PDX Twin in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I'd be one who would be interested in an occasional contribution. But I don't consider myself to be any kind of baseball expert and my knowledge of the players around the league and in the Twins' system is not at the level of the main contributors, so I'm not sure what role I could fill.
     
    I have on a couple of occasions started a thread in the forum section, but they have typically disappeared from the main page quickly as there were other forum entries getting comments and it appears that only the 5 or so more recently commented articles and forum posts stay there. That has discouraged me from using that forum (pun intended?) to share my thoughts. Maybe excluding articles that are already on the main page from the forum section would allow independent contributions that are presented there to flourish better?
  21. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to terrydactyls in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    I live in Maine. I don't have access to any news about the Twins except what I read on Twins Daily. But I do live not far from Stephan King. So maybe I could write scary baseball stories? Like about the time the Twins were contracted and then redistributed among the wealthier teams? Sort of like a Republican tax plan applied to major league baseball...
     
    I am intrigued by the idea someone had (I'm too lazy to go back and find the author) about the perspective of someone not living in Minnesota. Often times I'll be reading about the Red Sox (for New Englanders, there isn't any other team in the world by the way) and I'll think about how Twins fans would react in similar circumstances. I'll watch the articles more closely as spring training approaches and see if I can work up a theme. Now, as a retired Senior Citizen, I have to ask: would this be considered an article, a forum, or a blog? I just read this stuff. Everything is an article to me.
  22. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Squirrel in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    Hey, you could do a regular comedy blog ... everyone wanting to read your 'hawt takes' on a weekly 'whine line' basis might draw traffic to the blogs!
     
    Blogs don't have to be thorougly researched writing ... they can be anything. I think that's why some maybe are hesitant. Yes, many use blogs because they want to write seriously about their favorite sports teams, or whatever else, but not all blogs have to be that. A good humorous or reflective kind of blog on a semi-regular basis is awesome. One I used to read all the time ... but hasn't been around at all recently ... was Peanuts from Heaven. Perfect example of just writing because he had something he wanted to say. That kind of 'human nature' writing is something I  really like along side the more researched topic driven blogs.
  23. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Andrew Bryz-Gornia in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    1) I know the TD crew tried branching out with Wild, Vikings, and Timberwolves sites, but those didn't generate as much traffic. I bet you meant branching further into the baseball world, though.
     
    2) I can't speak for Puckett's Pond, but I know that TT gained its search clout thanks to being part of Vox Media.
     
    The school I teach at has had the same problem, it's a private school that as recently as last year appeared on the ~10th page of results when you searched "private schools Minnesota," and our HR department shared that they had to directly work with Google (i.e. probably pay money) to get our school moved up to the 2nd or 3rd page. 
  24. Like
    Eric R Pleiss reacted to Tom Froemming in Article: Twins Daily's Long-Term Future And Writers   
    One last thing, from a writer's perspective, I see the value in wanting to beef up the blog activity, but there is great content and conversations being created in the forums. I think getting more people to write blogs would be great, but just getting more people active on the site -- resisted and commenting -- would be equally as valuable.
  25. Like
    Eric R Pleiss got a reaction from glunn in Article: Twins Minor League Report (9/7): ): E-Town Dominates, Kernels Sweep, and Lookouts Lose Late   
    The Twins came from behind to win with three runs in the top of the ninth, holding on to the second wild card spot for another day. In the minor leagues, the E-Twins start the championship series, the Kernels look to move on to the championship, and the Lookouts try and build on their Wednesday night victory.
     
    Find out everything that happened in the Twins minor league system on Thursday.
    Transactions: Carlos Suniaga was promoted to Elizabethton from the GCL Twins.CHATTANOOGA CHATTER
    Montgomery 3 @ Chattanooga 2
    Box Score
     
    Chattanooga gave up a pair of runs in the top of the first inning, starting the game with three consecutive singles and a sacrifice fly to plate two runs. After a bumpy first inning, Lookouts starter Dereck Rodriguez settled down and went deep into the game. He gave up no more runs after the two in the first, went 7.0 innings, struck out seven, and walked no one. He was lifted for Cody Stashak, who gave up a run in the top of the eighth, which ended up being the difference maker.
     
    After they fell behind early, the Lookouts battled back to tie the game in the bottom of the seventh, before Stashak coughed up the lead an inning later. The Lookouts were led by Max Murpy, 2-4 with an RBI double and T.J. White, who launched a solo home run to tie the game in the seventh. The bottom of the Lookouts order really struggled on Thursday night, a combined 0-9 for the 7-8-9 hitters. The Lookouts had opportunities, but were 0-8 with runners in scoring position, stranding all eight of those runners.
     
    KERNELS NUGGETS
    Cedar Rapids 7 @ Kane County 3
    Box Score
     
    A big fourth inning led the Kernels back to the Western Division Championship Series for the fourth straight year. The Kernels scored six runs in the fourth, erasing an early two-run deficit, topped by a Trey Cabbage three-run homer, his only hit on a 1-2 night that included a walk. Jimmy Kerrigan had a big night at the plate as well, 3-5 with a pair of runs scored.
     
    Manager Tommy Watkins acknowledged to Kernels beat reporter Jeff Johnson that they found a tip in the Cougars pitcher. "“You know what, we got a hit and got him in the stretch. We had something on him, and it was more out of the stretch than in the windup." Read Jeff's story in its entirety here.
     
    Clark Beeker went 7.0 innings, scattered nine hits and gave up three runs (two earned) while walking three and striking out six. He was lifted for Colton Davis who gave the team 1.2 innings of two-hit baseball before Hector Lujan came in to get the final out of the game against the only batter he faced to preserve the win.
     
    The Kernels will await the winner of the Peoria and Quad Cities deciding Game 3 on Thursday night, and will begin the Championship Series on the road on Saturday.
     
    E-Twins E-Notes
    Pulaski 1 @ Elizabethton 12
    Box Score
     
    In the first game of the Championship Series, the Twins let Pulaski know they were ready to get down to business, blasting the Yankees 12-1. The Twins were led by J.J. Robinson, 3-4 with two RBIs and T.J. Dixon, 3-3 with a double, a home run, a walk and three runs scored!
     
    Nick Brown earned the win with 6.0 innings of one-run baseball. He gave up five hits, walked three, and struck out three. Ryley Widell gave the Twins 2.0 innings of scoreless baseball, and recorded five of his six outs via the strikeout, but he also walked a pair of guys and gave up three hits. Jose Martinez finished the game with 1.0 inning, he gave up just one hit, no runs, no walks, no strike outs.
     
     
    TWINS DAILY PLAYERS OF THE DAY
     
    Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day – Clark Beeker, Cedar Rapids Kernels
    Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day – T.J. Dixon, Elizabethton Twins
     
     
    FRIDAY’S PROBABLE STARTERS
     
    Chattanooga @ Montgomery (6:35pm) – TBD
    Cedar Rapids - Off
    Elizabethton @ Pulaski( 6:00pm) - TBD
     
     
    Please feel free to ask any questions and discuss Thursday's games.
     
    Click here to view the article
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