The (Slow) Revival of Atlético OffsideBy: Al | March 1st, 2011
Hey guys, I’m back (again). No, this page is not abandoned since I have to log into it every few days to delete all the spam. No, I did not convert into a Barcelona fan and did not stop caring about our beloved Atletico. No, I didn’t die (and yes I’ve used this joke before). Yes, there is stuff going on that has discouraged me from continuing to post on this page that once used to be my baby, and now seems like more of a liability.
Now, I’m not a person that likes to apologize about things like not posting, and normally I would just resume posting as if nothing had happened. However, I don’t want to leave you readers pissed off for my laziness and I thought I should clear things first. I’m not trying to get you to feel sorry for me, nor do I want you to, but I felt that I owed an explanation to the Atletico fans that have stopped by and were glad that an English site existed, and to the handful of loyal readers who still stop by to check if anything has been written. However, I’ll just be blunt and explain why this page, which was on the rise late of last year and has always been fun to work on, has fallen flat since December. It’s actually easier to write a post this long than a paragraph-long blurb about the Sevilla match on Saturday.
You see, writing for The Offside went from being very fun and run by cool people like Daryl and Laurie, to being a drag considering that small blog like these are often ignored. Things were all dandy until the blogger compensation was introduced around a year ago. Basically how it worked, if your blog fell within a certain range of page views you would earn a certain amount. The way that Daryl made it seem was that it would encourage the small bloggers to work extra hard in order to reach those “brackets”, and some blogs for smaller clubs (West Brom, Wolves) made it due to nothing but hard work. I got a piece of that pie over the summer due to my work over the summer helping run Mexico World Cup Blog, so I am owed compensation from the site . Daryl, the person that was originally in charge, set me up with everything to get my payment but he left the site right before I was supposed to be paid. The new people in charge don’t even have the decency to respond to my emails (I’ve sent a few since September). So whatever amount I am owed, even if it’s a few bucks, still hasn’t been given nor does it seem like it will be given soon. Even though that’s a completely different website than this one, the lack of respect still bugs me. They pay the blogs that give them the most traffic, and in order to get paid you need to at least hit 20,000 page views (and guess how many last month hit that mark… seven! Aside from Juve, they are the glory hunter popular blogs of the website). Javier on Valencia Offside also stopped writing often also because of the fact that it sucks that the website only cares about the big blogs, which is a shame because Valencia Offside is terrific. If you look at the front page, they have a section of their “Most Popular Blogs” which actually means “The Blogs We Care About”. Anyway…
It’s not only the compensation that I’m angry about. If you’ve noticed, throughout this whole website, there is a comment system called Disqus which I feel works terrific, and makes moderating comments and deleting spam much easier, since I use it on Mexico WCB. This blog was never given Disqus, and because of that there is automated spam up the ass that, like I mentioned, requires me to log in and individually delete the spam since the old spam filters suck. So imagine logging in and seeing 80+ spam messages to delete. After deleting them, do I feel like writing something? Not really. For how long I’ve been working on this page, I shouldn’t have gotten the shaft from something that I felt was extremely important. So until they notice my emails (not likely), I’ll be deleting those advertisement comments on where to find big black women and how to increase your penis size (sorry Real Madrid fans).
Yeah, I’ve been busy with school, but the most discouraging thing… Atletico hasn’t been doing so well! They are currently 13 points from 4th place, and Valencia and Villarreal are so consistent that it doesn’t seem likely that we will catch up. This was the year to make the Champions League and build a system that would work for the next year or so. But no, if we’re lucky we’ll get to the Europa League and hopefully Aguero and Forlan will choose to stay again, but that’s a matter of crossing our fingers. When you witness Atletico lose 1-2 to Valencia, or see them shamefully concede twice against Sevilla, it’s not fun. I promise you that I’m a true fan but when you combine the suckiness that is writing for a website that doesn’t give a rats ass about you, and writing for a smaller team that isn’t doing so well, is the reason that this page hasn’t been consistent.
I apologize again if I sound like I’m whining. This isn’t that popular of a page anyway; in our peak, we’ve hit a few thousand hits. However, there are lots of you that enjoy reading things from an Atletico fan’s point of view, and some of you who have contacted me, kept on commenting despite my inactivity, or added me on Facebook, who I felt that I needed to explain the lack of activity in this page.
I’ll slowly get things rolling again, with at least posting reviews or highlight videos of matches. A co-blogger would still be terrific to help me bring consistency to the page. I really, really do want to keep on writing about my favorite club. If I can get the gift of a Disqus comment system on here, that would be more than enough. The compensation aspect still sucks (I’m probably not getting my money) but I can accept that this is not one of the top blogs on the website, even though that was my long-term goal. So if I’m lucky, I’ll be working on a new project (Atletico related) and hitting up the few English-speaking Atletico communities for people to collaborate with. Or if you have a project and have an opening, or are just interested in starting something, please hit me up. If you just want to chat about Atletico or about daily life, shoot me an email as well (firstname.lastname@example.org).
I have not forgotten about you guys, and Atletico fans deserve more of an English-speaking presence on the internet. Throughout the next few weeks I’ll find and present you guys Atletico communities and other websites to visit if this page isn’t enough. At least I can proceed after getting a few things off my chest.