GNN celebrates its first birthday today, but your grizzled correspondent and Steve Woods – the under-rated, behind-the-scenes techno half of GNN – aren’t planning to go overboard with any major celebrations.
After nearly 650 stories have been posted on GNN, we only take this quick pause to reflect back to Sept. 15, 2008, when we weren’t exactly sure what we were getting ourselves into as we launched GNN to the Canadian golf industry.
The reasons we decided to go for it with GNN was that printed publications for the industry were serving up old news –often stories that were months old – and we were looking for a medium that could deliver current stories that were still relevant.
Golf media is just a microcosm within the overall media industry in which more traditional forms of communication are realizing they must evolve or die. Several big names have already gone down, while others have acknowledged that increased presence on the web is essential to survival.
Even an old plough horse who had worked in the traditional golf media for years realized that, but that experience required the savvy of a guy more familiar with the web. Enter Steve, who had a pretty good grasp of golf through his work with his dad Norm on GolfScene Magazine in Ontario.
Steve was also a self-taught tekkie, who agreed to build this website and I would highly recommend that anyone who needs similar services to contact him through GNN.
One of the comments we heard as we were launching GNN was that it was a bad time to be starting something new in the already-crowded Canadian golf media, especially with a recession beginning to show its ugly face.
That economic downturn did hit hard in the latter few months of 2008 and became a major story over the first year of GNN’s existence as did the weather, which was every bit as scary for the golf industry as the economy.
Rain kept delaying the RBC Canadian Open, but at the same time, we were laughing along with the humour of Canadian PGA member Kyle German, who was playing in his first PGA Tour event at Glen Abbey. Kyle is now a regular GNN blogger as is the charismatic Kevin Thistle.
Those are just a couple of the stories we covered over our first year, one that took us from New York to Los Angeles to various parts of Florida and Arizona, out in the ocean to places such as Jamaica, Bermuda, Hawaii and the Dominican Republic and into the heat of Las Vegas.
If you’d like to take a more extended look stories from our first year, feel free to browse through our archives as we head into our second year with the same commitment that we had at the beginning, which is the way it should be since news can happen at any time.
There’s more than one reason to not be complacent. Not only do we want to keep GNN active, interactive and lively for our readers and advertisers, but we also need to be heads-up as media continues to evolve.
Completing our first year only means that we have more challenges ahead of us, but it is a nice pause to thank the readers and advertisers who have supported us and not been afraid to try something new over our first year.
Now, it’s time to get back to work.