Well, well. One day we’re sitting around planning a community news site and fourteen years later we’re looking back as if in a Talking Heads’ song. My god, what have we done?
Same as it ever was.
For fourteen years now, almost every day of our lives has had an extra layer to it - iBrattleboro.
I get up each morning and check to see what new stories are waiting. I clean up formatting issues and publish the new stories and events.
Inevitably, there are some fake stories submitted by spammers that get deleted. Some days, spammers submit more “news” than you do. Some days you put them to shame.
I approve new users and answer questions from old users. As with stories, there are often fake identities trying to get accounts to post spam links. Sometimes I get to play detective as I try to find out who is real or not.
Lise handles technical issues as they arise. She does the heavy lifting with code, with maintaining and upgrading the site, as well as being actively involved in writing, commenting, and moderating.
Every day there is site promotion. Every story gets tweeted, other local news gets retweeted, and we post historical events on Twitter. We do in-person promotion, and work ad deals with various organizations, too.
Occasionally, like you, we're driven to write a story or comment on something.
Early on, Lise and I picked the Selectboard as a focus, and we have watched and written about almost every meeting since. I prep for the meeting by reading all board materials, watch the meeting, take notes, then re-live it one more time as the story gets written.
Representative Town Meeting is an off-shoot of this, and live-blogging of the day-long event is a bit of a tradition now. I also write about other things I find interesting in town.
(I really like reading when you write, though, and encourage you to offer up news, views, and opinions. Write where you live!)
I continue to check the site throughout the day for new submissions, and to see how things are going in general.
Moderation can be almost completely hands-off, or very involved. Holidays, for some reason, have a way attracting the most need for moderation. We have spent many a “day off” handling moderation issues.
I didn’t know it when we started that about half of each day would be spent on iBrattleboro. If we had thought about it at the time, we may never have started at all.
Good thing we didn’t think about it.
Today iBrattleboro turns 14.
If you are new here, we look forward to whatever you want to write about. If you are recently returning, thanks for stopping by again. If you’ve been here since day one like us, you have our sympathy and hearty congratulations.
Happy 14th to you. Thanks for dropping by, sharing your news and views, listing events, taking out ads, and keeping it all going.
By the way, we’re currently working a a new, revised version of iBrattleboro. It’s our second major upgrade since we began and we hope to roll it out in the next month or so.
14 is almost old enough to drive. When do we get our free car? WKVT has wheels. WTSA has wheels. Sure, they are a bit older, but we can reach the pedals. What! Get a job and save our money? Argh...
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