When SB Nation first started over a decade ago, I had to sign legal documents that ensured I wouldn't start my own site with a similar format. Specifically, that I wouldn't swipe the "diaries" (now FanPosts) idea, in which community members could write their own posts and have them featured on the side of the page.
Do you know why? Because the idea was a great one, and it really, really helped the site grow. It was a way for people to get five times as many readers as they would on a new blog, and it was a way for me to grow the blog with the help of unpaid serfs. I mean, uh, that is, it built a sense of community.
In the latest SB Nation redesign -- which was absolutely awesome in so many ways, especially when it comes to editorial control -- the FanPosts were pushed down the right side of the page, and they became less visible. They fell out of fashion, like the Queensrÿche shirts of my youth. SB Nation responded to the feedback and moved them up again, but it was too late. The FanPosts weren't coming as frequently.
So this is a reminder that the FanPosts are still there for you. And it's a reminder for me to scour them for good content to fill out the front page when it makes sense to do so.
Not only that, but I'm always looking to add writers, and the FanPosts are the perfect way to write a sample of what you could add, in the exact format and context of the site. I've probably received 100 different inquiries and writing samples over the last year, and one of the reasons they usually don't lead to a new writer is because I have trouble imagining the voices on McC. That wouldn't be an issue if I'm seeing it in FanPost format.
Now, the community can be tough. You might be met with snarky comments or, worse, indifference to your brilliant FanPost idea. So be warned. One tip is to not have daily FanPosts if you're getting those kinds of reactions. Try again, certainly, but spamming the board isn't the path to love and universal acclaim.
But I'm hoping for a FanPost renaissance that will lead to a better variety of content on the site and, hopefully, some more paid writers to add to the stable. Paid in the sense of "well, this is a nice little stipend that I wouldn't get if I wrote Giants stuff on my own Tumblr" and not "smell you later, corporate world! I'm a professional baseball writer now!", but still.
- Grading the offseason
- Previewing the Giants' (position or what have you)
- Here's why I'm (scared/not scared) of the (stupid/stupid) Dodgers
You can find the FanPost section on the right side of the page if you're on a desktop, or the top left of the page if you're on mobile. Or you can just go directly here. Thanks, and happy FanPosting.