My name is John Fischer and I want you - to help here at In Lou We Trust for two specific writing positions. Let's take a step back first, about the site.
Prior to the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, I added three new writers to the site: Tom Stivali, Matthew Ventolo, and Kevin Sellathamby from this open request for writers last year. Each have been very good and important in growing the site further from where it was last year. In Lou We Trust has since soared over the last season despite how poor the 2010-11 season has went. Of course, there was plenty to discuss and analyze between the horrible first half of the season, the much better second half of the season, the NHL entry draft, and two active offseasons that bookended this past season. Nevertheless, the difference in traffic is massive as ILWT is now up to 1,691,800 (and growing) visitors, 3,307,125 (and growing) page views, and over 1,600 active members. It's among the top hockey sites on SBN; and people in some organization called the Devils reads this site regularly.
However, the name of the game isn't necessarily to pile up big numbers, it's to provide some of the best analysis of the team we love, the New Jersey Devils, on the Internet. The site is very much a labor of love, and content is a priority. So I need some additional help in putting up more content on a regular basis and I'm looking to you, the readers, to see if you would be interested to help take ILWT to the next level content-wise.
However, I'm looking for two writers that are willing to perform a specific task this time. One for a daily links poster and another to record scoring chances. If you're interested at what they are, please continue after the jump.
8/15 Update: The scoring chance recorder spot has been filled, do not apply for it anymore. Thank you to all who applied for it.
Regardless of what position you're interested in, here are a few general requirements.
#1) Be a New Jersey Devils fan. This seems straight forward, but there may be a few who think that they can use this site as a platform for some other endeavor. This is ultimately an analysis & opinion site by fans for fans; so it's required that you are a fan.
#2) Be a registered and non-banned user. If you haven't registered for ILWT, then please, sign up as soon as you can. It's free, it gives you access to join 300+ other blogs on the SBN network, and add to their respective communities. If you've been banned, then I don't want to hear from you. After all, if you can't follow the rules, I don't see how you can follow direction on, say, how often to write something.
#3) Write reasoned and write well. You don't have to be a perfect writer - I'm definitely not - but you will have to take this seriously to a point. One of the big reasons why ILWT is where it stands is because that the posts are written well enough, arguments are backed up with facts, and the writing is respectful enough to the reader.
#4) Be willing to deal with the community. Readers aren't afraid to tell you what they think. I or the other writers may even disagree with what you write. Tying into the prior if you present a good argument, then it should hold up; but ideally you should comment with the other users to explain your point further or just to further discussion along.
#5) Be able to communicate easily with the other writers. This seems self-explanatory, but even in these specialized positions, you'll be part of the site. Occasionally, there may be matters to discuss among all writers or perhaps there's something we want to pass along your way.
POSITION #1: DAILY LINKS POSTER
The fellow who did this last hasn't been around for a while due to personal matters far more important than posting links to Devils-related stories every morning. I wish him well and I thank him for what he done. So I need a replacement. Here's what the position requires.
- Daily posting of Links - Sure, circumstances come up, but this is a position that requires a strong commitment. I need someone to post up links to various Devils stories This will give readers something to discuss before other content comes later in the day.
- Able to Research Various Sources - I don't want the post just to be set of links of what Tom Gulitti and Rich Chere put up the day before (though it should include that). They should include other interesting posts at other Devils blogs, Devils-related content at other news sites or blogs like Puck Daddy or the many others at SBN.
Know How to Embed Links - Because this (for example): http://blogs.northjersey.com/blogs/fireice/devils_agree_to_terms_with_goaltender_maxime_clermont/ just doesn't look nearly as good as: Gulitti: Devils sign goaltender Maxime Clermont. If you don't know how to do this, then this position probably isn't for you.
IF YOU ARE INTERESTED: Send me an e-mail before
August 17 August 19 with the subject title ILWT Writing Position #1 - SBN User Name (you type in your SBN user name instead of "SBN User Name" of course) from the e-mail account that you've registered with. Don't comment here, don't write a FanPost or FanShot, send me an e-mail.
In this e-mail, explain to me why you would be the best and provide an example of how and when you would do a daily link post. It can be just a dump of links, or something more like what J.P. does at Japers' Rink with his Caps Clips or the From the Branches posts at Pension Plan Puppets - whatever method you go for is up to you. Just make a persuasive argument as to why I should pick you.
If I'm convinced, we'll give you a trial run of doing daily link posts for a few days and if all goes well, the position is yours. You'll get to be a writer on the site and have your name up on the front page with thousands of Devils fans reading your stuff every day. It's not much, but I can promise that at least. If the trial doesn't go well, then it doesn't - no big deal - and we go with someone else.
POSITION #2: SCORING CHANCE RECORDER & POSTER
As most readers of ILWT know, I'm a big fan of advanced statistics. I feel they have been a massive improvement in how we evaluate players, providing additional insight into a player's role on a team or how they've performed beyond basic stats. They're not perfect, but they get us closer to a more complete analysis. This position will take it a step further by counting scoring chances. This is a big job with the following responsibilities:
Understanding Scoring Chances - The best primer I can provide for what is a scoring chance is this post by Derek Zona at the Copper & Blue. The first step is to grasp and believe in this concept. If you're not into stats, this may not be for you.
- Be Able to Watch Games Closely - In order to count chances, you'll need to be able to watch games closely (much more than most fans, in fact) and record who had the scoring chance, when it happened, and who was on the ice when it happened for both teams. It's a lot of work, but from this data we can get another sense of who's doing well and who's not.
- Be Able to Do This For Every Game - Recording chances for every game is almost necessary, it's not something you can just do for a few games and be done with it. It's a constant process with an 82 game season plus playoff games. I repeat, it's a lot of work. The rewards are worth it just for the analysis, though.
- Store Data Appropriately - Ideally, after recording all of this data, we can use to come to conclusions like finding out who was generating the most chances or who was on the ice for the most against on a regular basis. So it's not enough to record it but be able to store and share it.
- Post Data Regularly - What's the point of collecting data without coming to some conclusion? There are scripts to help out in this regard, but Ideally, the scoring chance data should come out after each game - in the case of games in close succession (back-to-backs), we can stagger the posts, but they do have to be done.
I'm shooting in the dark here, as this position will entail a lot of work for a site that's still very much a past-time more than anything else. The benefit is that you'll be responsible for advancing the analysis of Devils games and players further than what has been done so far. You'll also join a growing group of people who have already done this themselves - 7 are named in Derek's post and there's at least an eighth over at Broad Street Hockey. The conclusions that come from recording scoring chances can be incredibly insightful - like in Derek's summary of the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals series. Such analysis makes all of the work worth it, I just need someone to do it. Plus, others will definitely look to your findings for information beyond just Devils fans.
IF YOU ARE INTERESTED: Send me an e-mail before August 23 with the subject title ILWT Writing Position #2 - SBN User Name (you type in your SBN user name instead of "SBN User Name" of course) from the e-mail account that you've registered with. Don't comment here, don't write a FanPost or FanShot, send me an e-mail.
In this e-mail, explain to me how you would go about doing this (e.g. can you do this every game, how will you view games, etc.), demonstrate that you understand what this position entails, and provide a sample piece of Devils-related analysis. If the explanation is sufficient, we'll discuss further on the details of recording scoring chances and to get used to it in time for the regular season.
8/15 UPDATE: Do not be interested in this position anymore - it has been filled. Thank you to all who applied for it.
WHAT IF I DON'T CARE ABOUT THIS OR I'M NOT INTERESTED IN EITHER POSITION
Well, then please use the comments as an open thread on what you'd like to see at In Lou We Trust in the 2011-12 season. I make no promises on what can be done, but most suggestions are always welcomed. (I say most because the rules aren't changing. The fist is still made of iron. So you may want to hold off on suggesting any changes to the site's rules.) Just as with this post and last year's request for writers, you won't know until you bring it up; so please bring it up. As usual, thank you for reading.