CHANGING OF THE GUARD

It is with a heavy heart that we announce that our partner in crime and friend since grade two – the legendary bingofuel – will be leaving his post as the Manager of the Nation Network to continue on his quest to dominate digital strategy and the social media universe with Calder Bateman.

WHY HE IS THE DOPEST

If there wasn’t a bingofuel, there would be no OilersNation. It’s really that simple. Your ol’ pal Wanye lacks the presence of mind and the discipline for 99% of the back end work that it takes to keep the Nation in tip top shape.

Bingofuel however is a rock and has been there since day one, operating in the shadows ensuring that articles are posted efficiently, comments comparing players to despots (alive or dead) are removed and working with Citzen Alpha and our friends at Ignition Media to ensure that the technology backbone of the sites continues to evolve.

The guy has busted his ass over the past 3 ½ years, from the time we were thrilled to have seven visitors in a single day until today.

One of bingofuel’s key insights in the early days of the Nation Network was to leverage social media as a platform to grow our site. This sounds like old news now, but it was quite revolutionary at the time. We weren’t even on Facebook at the time, much less a part of the cutting edge Twitterati. Nor did we understand how to manage an unruly herd of commenters, bent on crucifying one another with their hockey rage.

But bingofuel always knew just what to do.

Not surprisingly his work at OilersNation – and later launching the very popular podcast The Unknown Studio – caught the attention of the big wigs over at Calder Bateman, one of Western Canada’s top advertising agencies.

He has been with the firm just over a year as a digital strategist, helping companies large and small leverage things digital, just as he did for the OilersNation. This has led to a lot of juggling on his part amidst frantic calls from yours truly with emergencies like “I CAN’T GET THIS JUSTIN BIEBER VIDEO TO LOAD ON MY ARTICLE! DROP EVERYTHING!”

And drop everything he always has.

IT’S NOT YOU…

We asked him to give a brief explanation of the reasoning behind his departure.

“When Wanye and I started discussing this concept, we put together a dream list of things that we wanted to do. With the launch of the other 3 sites and NationRadio, coupled with the landmark deal with the Edmonton Journal there was less and less I felt I could add going forward. And just like in gangster movies an offer was made to me for my shares that I couldn’t refuse. So I didn’t.”

Obviously, we didn’t take to this news very well. First we stamped our feet in denial. Then we stamped our feet in rage. Then finally, we stamped our feet with the dull force of resignation and acceptance.

Bingofuel is the first person named to the newly created Nation Network Board of Advisors and will continue to provide strategy as we continue to do our part to obliterate work place productivity amongst hockey fans. He will just do so with a barrel of cash and a kick ass fancy pants job where he gets to wear a blazer over ironic t-shirts and talk to big wigs who haven’t the foggiest idea how to work the e-internetz.

His side of the story can be viewed here. You can stay in constant contact with him at his beloved twitterport @bingofuel or wish him well in the comments below.

Cheerio old friend. You shall sincerely be missed.