To all our fans…
It has already been 3 years. Looking back on it now, it is really amazing what we have been able to do in that time. I had always loved writing and having a voice, no matter how small it was, and through the tireless efforts of numerous people, we were able to achieve something with NetSideBar that I never thought possible. In the first year that we opened our proverbial doors, we saw about 39,000 unique hits from 28,000 visitors. Two years later, I sit here astounded looking at the metrics as we have had over 941,000 visitors logging just under 1,125,000 unique pageviews at roughly about 2.2 million total hits in the last 6 months. It sounds weird and it feels weird to say that we’ve finally gone “viral”, but I think it’s safe to say we have.
When we started, we were a team of four friends that loved writing who came together to build something from nothing. The original team of editors included myself, Brian Williams, Jun Kim and Paul Lee, all of whom I still call friends. Our journey saw the loss of some editors, Jun & Paul, the addition of Paul Craft, in addition to folks that contributed regularly like Dan Wiberg and the countless other contributors we had over that time. On the tech side, our webmaster Sung Chong worked without any thought of compensation (aside from the dinners I took him to) to ensure that our vision would be realized and that we would be able to continue to produce content and push it to our readership. Without the efforts of these people, we would not have made it to where we are today and I thank you all from the bottom of my heart.
At this point, I definitely want to thank our fans. I am not an emotional person and there isn’t much that gets me misty-eyed, but it was an amazing and life-changing experience helping build NSB. Thank you for staying with us through our growing pains and helping us stay the course. Had it not been for the few fans we had in our early days engaging us and driving our content, we could not have had the success that we have seen this past year. It was indeed an honor and a privilege. One that I am sure I will never be able to experience again simply because nothing is as good as the first time!
I guess all that leaves on our agenda is where we go from here. As you may or may not know, we are not a full-time team. We all have careers and work outside of NetSideBar and for me, with my upcoming marriage to my beautiful fiancé, my new job and other obligations, I quickly saw that I would not be able to give as much attention to our efforts here and that would be a disservice to all those that have supported us thus far. All these factors led me to the inevitable conclusion that I would have to pass the reins to another capable individual. Someone who would be able to carry the torch and take NSB to the next level. At the same time, someone who will maintain the vision that we developed over the last three years.
To this end, I have decided to pass the title of Editor-in-Chief to Brian Williams. Being one of the founding members and the only editor from remaining from our original team made this decision very easy for me. I also believe that he can truly turn NSB into something more than the sum of its parts. I will still be contributing and assisting with editing, but will take a backseat and let him lead the next generation of editors and contributing writers that will undoubtedly grace the pages you see before you today. I know that NSB is in great hands and who better to advise him than me? *ahem* Shameless self-promotion notwithstanding, I think we make a great team.
Over the next few weeks, you will see many changes on our site. One of our goals is to develop a new, more exciting layout that will be easier on the eyes. Next, will be to assemble a new team of editors that will have more time to focus on creating regular content updates and coordinate the numerous writers who are interested in starting columns so that we can create more content. We will also be exploring new ways for us to engage our readership through social media platforms that we had started, but never really invested the time that was required. Aside from our Facebook fan page which is still in its budding stages and hasn’t matured the way we want, we are going to expand the content we share on Twitter and on larger online mediums such as Thought Catalog among others.
We hope that the changes that are to come will build on the success we have seen thus far. Thank you once again. I cannot stress enough how much joy and happiness I’ve derived from speaking to you all for these past three years through the numerous pieces I’ve contributed and the countless pieces I have had a chance to edit. I have never been more proud of anything else I have accomplished in life than what we have been able to build over the last three years. Thanks for everything, NSB. It’s been real.