Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Digital Sports - My New Age

The new age of reporting (obviously) involves a heavy dose of internet journalism. Today begins my second go around at sports journalism online. Third if you include this blog, which I don't.

It all started fresh out of college when an old high school friend approached me with an idea. He was a graduate of the prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism at College Park. He had caught wind of a fledgling sports reporting web site that was trying to make its mark on the DC Metropolitan area. Aptly named, I quickly and naively jumped on board. I was given complete freedom to write the articles I wanted to write, and in the style I wanted to write, so I requested a position as the Virginia Tech beat writer and was given it. Once the site began branching out a little bit, I was given the opportunity to cover Wizards games (which I did once). In fact, I was given lots of opportunities to cover lots of different things. The one hang up was that the site was not generating any money. I couldn't keep writing pro bono pieces. So, after about six months, I went along my merry way.

I began doing freelance work for the Capital-Gazette high school sports section. This paid peanuts, but I was enjoying it. I asked for more to do and they made me their resident statistics and record guy. So, for two years now, I have been that guy. I had other jobs that limited by availability at night, so I stopped writing for them.

When my boss left the Capital a few weeks ago, sort of abruptly, he called me to warn me he would be gone soon. He also offered me the same job I was doing at the Capital (with more writing) and a 25% raise. Sounds like a lot, but when you're making peanuts, 25% more peanuts isn't really that many peanuts. In any event, I jumped at the opportunity to join I didn't leave the Capital in the dust, though. When they caught wind of the migration to DigitalSports (not mine, they have no idea I'm working with them), they offered me a 20% raise with no strings attached.

Of course, I gladly accepted both offers. Today will be my first day reporting with Digital Sports. I'm not sure if I will get a byline (for those unfamiliar with the industry, that means the author's name appears beneath the headline), but anyone who wants to follow my work is more than welcome. I will post my articles as they are created. It is yet to be determined if Digital Sports is the future of sports reporting. But here's hoping I'm on board if it is.

Today's game: Old Mill at South River girls basketball.

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