Nations State of the Union – July 20, 2012



In Wanye’s Nerd Camp update, there were some questions about the Nation’s platform and some requests for some new features in comment section. With news winding down and hockey coverage entering the doldrums of August, I figured it was time for a state of the union address. Or, at least, state of the union cogent bullet point list.

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Slow and Steady Builds the Platform

– First up, as mentioned by Wanye, we have a wishlist a mile long when it comes to additional functions we’d like to add to the platform – like buttons! Share buttons! Tweet buttons! Dig buttons (well, not anymore)! Etc! And that’s just the stuff you guys see; there’s a whole other list of things our writers want added to the back-end.

One thing we can say for sure is it will happen. Some day. We don’t make wishlists just for the fun of it around here. The issue always comes down to time and resources and we choose to pour a lot of the latter into the talent. That slows our tech development a bit, but we think it’s worth it to find and keep some of the good folks you see appearing across the network.

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Of course, if you have any recommendations, requests or suggestions for new things or functions you’d like to see here down the road, feel free to comment or shoot me an email ([email protected]).

– So our medium term goal is to redevelop the whole thing from stem-to-sterm to give the writers a better place to write and, more importantly, give the readers a better overall experience. Our short term goal is to get a few of these other sites on their feet and bringing in some coin. OilersNation carries the load for the entire shebang right now, but we’re on the verge of getting a few of other sites over the hump. Once sites like FlamesNation, CanucksArmy and LeafsNation start selling a few ads of their own, we’ll be able to hire half a dozen more mad scientists to slave away in Wanye’s basement on behalf of the Nation’s.

Great Success!

– Speaking of CanucksArmy and LeafsNation, those two sites have experienced massive growth over the last calender year or so (300%+), thanks in no small pat to the singular efforts of guys like Thom Drance, Cam Charron, Jeff Angus, JP Nikota and Danny Gray. Next up, we want to find some Jason Gregor’s and Robin Brownlee’s for other markets so we can replicate the MSM+blog+humor+Wanye rants which has worked so well in Edmonton.

– JetsNation remains uh, well…it’s potential is unrealized right now. Finding capable fans and media to write consistently for our Winnipeg site has proven to be a big challenge so far. If you know of any knowledgeable Jets fan or writer you think would be a good fit for us, don’t hesistate to send him or her my way (again, [email protected]).

– The NHLNumbers project continue to evolve. Like the network in general, we have a long list of things we’re working on to improve both the new content side of NN as well as the stat and salary resource. We have grand plans for NHLNumbers, which may or may not include adding more stats, creating new stats and web apps, developing other databases and ruling the world. That’s on top of securing about a dozen new writers to pump out bleeding edge analysis, a process that has already begun with the work of Eric T.

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The project is its infancy right now, but it will continue to grow and evolve.

And Now For Something Completely Different

-Many of you have probably noticed the new banner popping up across the network:



Kidoodle is actually an Alberta-based company that is in the process of developing a kids-only IP TV/web portal service. That is – all kids oriented shows and such (0-12 years old), all hi-definition and with the added ability to "gate" the content so a child can’t exit a program and surf through to other, potentially inappropriate media.

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Full disclosure: some of my family members are involved with the venture. They let me know recently that the company is in the process of developing a beta version of the service. They’re inviting folks to subscribe now to become beta testers of Kidoodle, which will allow them to test the service as well as collect critical feedback from users. In return, they’re giving anyone who signs up for the beta two months free once everything goes live. The beta is on schedule to be up and running within the next 60 days or so.

So if you’re a parent or if you know anyone who is and might be interested in trying something like this out, click on one of the banners or simply follow this link and input your email address to sign up.

And finally, on a personal note, I will be away for a few weeks starting next Tuesday. My Wife of about a month and a half assures me that newlyweds typically go on these things called a "honeymoon" and that there are places with "sand" and "beaches" where they don’t even know what hockey is. I remain skeptical, but have granted her a few weeks to prove her case.

In the meantime, I leave you all in the capable hands of Jason Gregor, Jonathan Willis and Thomas Drance. Inquires can be directed to these assorted fine gentlemen during my sabbatical. And to Wanye, I suppose, if you are into that sort of thing.


  • I’m surprised there isn’t much traction on JetsNation. Winnipeg seems like a hockey mad city.
    Maybe Wanye needs to go on a ‘business trip’ (aka drunken bender) and plaster the town in stickers!!

  • vetinari

    Possible suggestions (if Wanye robs a bank or liquor store or something and is willing to part with some of the funds):

    Like AND Dislike buttons

    Fist/FIST BLOCK buttons

    Ebersqueeeeeeee! button (during the season, and dare I say it, future playoffs)

    Wiki section (regarding past & present players & management sections/draft history/etc.)– can hot link it to bio’s etc. You can also give regular & trusted members of the Nation access to edit entries to take some of the load off your backs

    Next game odds a la sportsline

    A perpetual clock counting up named the “Tambellini Decision-tracker Clock”

    On Flames site– a “you build” FA contract radio button form — if Feaster is in charge, it will always have the NTC/NMC box checked off

    On the Leafs site– a parade route planner

  • RexLibris


    Don’t think of this “Honeymoon” as a time away from hockey, but instead as a missionary venture to spread the Good Word of brothers Orr and Howe.

    I read the comment about JetsNation not getting much traction as the team being interchangeable with the site. I’m thinking they need something to actually happen with that team, aside from returning to the city, for the traffic to increase.

    Perhaps they should offer sheet the next available Leafs player. I think Brian Burke is usually good for a quote or two.

    Is Scott Taylor no longer writing for JN?

    As a suggestion perhaps for NHLNumbers there could be a series of counters keeping track of the years, days, hourse and minutes since the last cup win for each team. Or just a blank space for the Canucks until they actually win their first. 😉

  • Things sound like they are in good hands here. Imaginary developers building features, encouraging literacy among Jets fans. Yep, ITS REALLY HAPPENING

    *bursts into a waterfall of sadness tears*

  • Ad banner? What ad banner? I’ve been using AdBlock Plus for a few years and have yet to see an ad on this site.

    BTW, you guys still got a deal going with Postmedia? Can’t you get writers like Matheson on here?

  • Oilfan69

    Zap Apper while I fully endorse the use of ABP ( on other sites), I definitely disable it for the nation sites as it only makes sense to support the people who actually bring us the content that we seek on a daily basis. Without the ad revenue these site more or less cease to exist. So next time you think it’s cool to brag about not seeing ads think for a minute what it would be like if 90% of the people here blocked the ads. I’ll give you a hint..

    On a funny note I have a 2 year old who gets me in trouble whenever I’m reading Oilers nation as he sees the boston Pizza ads and wants to go out for supper 🙂

  • Oilfan69

    You have to Get the illegal curve guys from Winnipeg on the nation and that might help. I know a bunch of people in Winnipeg who follow that blog.

    I like the suggestion of getting Mathewson on the nation, a guy like Howard burger or Chris botta might be great for a leafs/ general NHL angle.

    Really like the strudwick addition!

  • The Soup Fascist

    A “block” button would be nice so you could ensure you don’t see certain Nation subscribers comments. Some of these guys are just so juvenile and tasteless.

    PS. Your Venn diagram looks like boobies!

  • I tried it at home

    With Gregor broadcasting from the Pint, if another watering hole wanted to come on board would that be considered trespassing, IE the Pint having proprietary rights of some sort?

  • @Benoit

    Howard Berger? Seriously? The man is nothing but a professional troll. The closest I’ve ever heard him get to using a stat is his repeated bleating of ‘1967’. No thanks.

    I enjoy the work of the present Leaf Nation writers. I come here for intelligent analysis based on statistics.

    • That’s the plan down the road Stephen. We want to prove out the model, get the existing sites on their feet and then expand to the rest of Canada.

      Personally, I want to move to MTL sooner rather than later. There is a lot of talent writing about the Habs that I would like to add to the network.