At the beginning of the month, Hockey’s Future, one of the sites that I write for was sold to Crave Online, a site targeted towards men, covering things like action movies, gaming, babes, cars and yes..sports.
So far I still don’t know what that will mean for HF or more specifically for myself and my work with HF. All I have been hearing from the management is that for the time being things will remain the same.
Obviously, I have some concerns about the future of the site and so on, simply because I’ve been working with HF for 5 years now and the fact that I don’t know what to expect is weighing on me a bit. We’ve been handed a few documents of legalese to agree to about our writing and stuff and it’s all a bit too confusing and overwhelming.
From what I do know, Crave is owned by Gorilla Nation, an online advertisement company. The sale allows GN to serve ads to the HF network (replacing previous ads that were provided via our previous owners, First Beat Media). As pretty much the leader in hockey prospect news, as well as running the busiest hockey message board on the Internet, the attractiveness of the HF network to the advertisers is obvious.
With Crave and HF sharing roughly the same target demographic (for the most part males between the ages of 16 to 40 or so), the match becomes apparent. What’s a concern right now, for me and others, is how much of a match will it be and whether any integration into the Crave network will upset the “norm” of HF and the HFBoards. Will the scope of our content change? Will there be editorial changes? HF has worked hard to establish itself in a niche of the hockey world, which is a small part of the overall sports journalism pie, but still, there’s plenty of room for change and growth in many directions, not all of them positive and not all of them negative.
There are direct benefits, of course. We’re getting shiny new servers which should mean we will finally survive a trade deadline day, a draft and the first day of the free agent season. Our server load at those peak times has been too much to handle at times.
Anyway, that’s just something that’s happening and on my mind right now. Mark me down as being apprehensively optimistic.