FishDuck.com Drops Sports News to Serve the NEXT LEVEL Fan

Featured for SNT announcement

You may have noticed that the number of articles published at FishDuck.com has dropped from an average of six per day to three and a half per day this last month, and that is big decline in production for any site. The reason? We have dropped Sports News at FishDuck.com and actually eliminated the former Sports News Team that had its own group of more than 20 writers and editors. Whoa! Why the change?

We are returning to our roots to serve the “Next Level” fan, is why.

For three years we published two articles per day on average and our focus was on higher-quality writing that informed and entertained. When we began, we were a bunch of middle-aged-to-old farts who loved to write, edit and ponder about our beloved Ducks. We did not care about hits or visits to the site; we followed our passion and knew there was a small niche’ out there that would appreciate our approach. We had no idea it would catch fire, but it did.

At first readers came to the site for the football analysis, but then realized the other interesting articles — thus before long these thoughtful stories became the backbone of the site. As an example, no site does a tongue-in-cheek Op-Ed (Opinion-Editorial) like CPA Mike Merrell on Mondays. No other Oregon website has the variety of different style articles as you see at FishDuck.com.

They are "Next Level" fans!

Kevin Cline

“Next Level” fans!

You see we knew our audience was older, professional, and male; and then we received our demographic breakdowns to reveal that more women come to this site than other Oregon Sports Websites, and the majority of our readers are in the coveted 18-34 market segment! Ah, Charles … people of other ages and gender like to ponder too!

So I’ve defined this reader as the “Next Level” fan who wants to learn a little, not as much as a coach, but enough to enjoy the games that much more. If you look at the over 100 Volunteers (below) for six departments — you see a common thread of them being this Next Level fan regardless of age, ethnic background or gender. We have writers and editors that range from age 16 to age 84! I love this group, as they are all very nice people and they love the Ducks!

“So why do you have so many writers when other organizations are much leaner?” It is because we are all-volunteer, and everyone contributes in the way they want from three to five hours per week. Other news outlets can hire full-time people, but we cannot; so we work with people in the way they want, and we appreciate their contributions toward helping to make the site operate.

Last October, we decided to try getting into the Sports News segment by having FishDuck.com reporters at the practices for interviews and as items emerged during the day — we would report it. We had some great successes with it, and it brought a whole new audience that liked the shorter articles that were quick and to the point. Our visits by readers per day went way up, but we noticed that the penetration of readership had not changed.

In other words, those that liked the longer articles that made them ponder continued to read them … but would not read the Sports News articles. Those who enjoyed the shorter ones would not take the time on the other articles that the Next Level fan enjoyed. The audiences did not mix; they were separate and distinct!

If it was working so well — why did you can it, Charles?

NOT a "Next Level" fan...

Craig Strobeck

This is NOT a “Next Level” fan …

The truth is we are not built to maintain ongoing sports reporting; you need expertise that, in our case, was spotty. Some of our Sports News articles were great, some were just mush. We had too many writers who would not do their homework the night before and would get up the next day and write a blah-blah article and post it. We had too many editors let it pass because we all felt the pressure to produce enough content. Too much poor quality was being published on the site, and I could only scream so long.

And we were being way too redundant.

The majority of the time we were not creating unique Sports News, we were just reporting what was on other sites and we became the same regurgitation you see everywhere else. I got sick of it, as this is not what we’re about, and it did not feel right to me. As a publisher — it was not fun anymore.

So, May 4th we began a new schedule of articles that are in over 20 distinct article categories (I’ll have an article about that sometime) so we have very little redundancy with other sites and we get to follow our heart to offer this Next Level fan the type of articles they come to expect and enjoy from FishDuck.com. 

I know — we’ll lose a bunch of readers, but hey — we don’t make any money anyway, so we can do what we do best and embrace who we are and who we serve. Now, this fall, we will still have current player/coach interviews as we have former player interviews now. We will also have game recaps for many of the Oregon sports at their home matches/games, but the daily stuff of finding news and reporting it rapidly is no longer at FishDuck.com.

THEY are "Next Level" fans...

Kevin Cline

… THESE are “Next Level” fans.

“Next Level” fan?  We love you and do come back! You are one of us, and we dedicate this site to you. No, you won’t see the boring 2,000 word tomes here, but you will also not see the 300 word reading candy that leaves you empty. We are committed to quality or we won’t publish it and we have already had some days of fewer-than-planned articles because some writers mailed it in and we kicked it back out.

The good news? We have more great writers and editors than ever in the history of the site, and we have big plans this summer and then fall. Look for some announcements soon! And send your suggestions to me, charles@fishduck.com.

The Best is Yet to Be!

Charles Fischer
Publisher, CFF Network/FishDuck.com
Eugene, Oregon                                                                                                                                                                                            Top Photo from Video

The Volunteers of FishDuck.com!

A group dedicated to serve YOU!

From the Site

A group dedicated to serve YOU!

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 Volunteer Position Openings:

--Media Management/Supervisor:  We are looking for someone beyond college age who can help manage students and mentor in a number of different departments. Expertise is not required as organizational skills and interest in guiding others.   --Assistant Football Analyst: Love college football and enjoy watching it for hours? We need associates to view games and find the techniques/teaching points we identify for them in advance.  You will be recognized in publications, and could have the opportunity to move to full Analyst.   --College Football Analyst: We are looking for Coaches, or retired coaches to help create analysis videos (we do the video part) that will be viewed by thousands, and will help young football players as well as fans understand the game much better. The national recognition will help your resume' as well as make an impact upon the game we all dearly love.   --Video Specialist: We are looking for help in the Eugene/Springfield area to assist with the shooting and editing of analysis videos.   All Positions: Send a resume' with full contact information and any writing samples you have to charles@fishduck.com  Again, these are volunteer positions donating five hours a week each.

Charles Fischer

Charles Fischer

Charles Fischer has been an intense fan of the Ducks for thirty years and has written reports on football boards for over a dozen years. Known as “FishDuck” on those boards, he is acknowledged for providing intense detail in his scrimmage reports and in his Xs and Os play analyses. He and his wife Lois, a daughter, Christine, and their dog (Abbie) reside in Eugene, Oregon, where he has been a financial advisor for 30 years serving clients in seven different states. He does not profess to be a coach or analyst, but simply a “hack” that enjoys sharing what he has learned and invites others to correct or add to this body of Oregon Football! See More...

  • Jon Sousa

    Thanks Jim. The 300 word reading candy wasn’t candy because it generally didn’t say anything. It did give me a tummy ache though.

  • hokieduck

    I stopped coming to your site on a regular basis. I hope the change will bring me back.