revenge-of-the-fans-is-evolving

Hello, old friends.

It’s been a while since I’ve checked in, and I figured it’s finally time to unveil what the future of this endeavor looks like.

Over the course of the last year and a half, I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside some wonderful contributors who helped make our News Section a robust and comprehensive section of the site. Through most of this time, the goal has been to eventually become a leading site for news and intel on your favorite geeky things.

But then something happened.

See, behind it all, I’ve been having my own sort of awakening about what even counts as news.

In the six years that I’ve closely covered this industry, across sites like Latino-Review, Moviehole, IGN, The Splash Report, and- of course- right here at Revenge of The Fans, I’ve realized that a lot of what gets discussed in the blogosphere (and then intensely-analyzed on social media) isn’t really news, but rather a distraction.

Fans get caught up in trivial bits of speculation, or secondhand whispers, and entire “news cycles” are created around things that are either unlikely to happen, or that are merely one of several ideas that were discussed in a meeting once.

And, through that, I’ve tried to develop as stringent a filter as possible when looking for stories to run for you. Scanning through headlines each day, trying to find the nuggets I think are actually worth sharing every day, though, eventually made one thing very clear:

There’s very little actual news, and when actual news drops, it gets covered by 75 other sites. So when my staff and I put together articles for you, those articles are really just one version of the same story that you’ll see anywhere else. And the only way to stand out, when you’re a site of our size, is to be sensational. Or to create “scoops” that are really just, “Casting announcements the studio would rather announce strategically instead of having some nobody blow it a few months earlier.

And that’s not something I’m interested in.

I don’t like misleading headlines. I loathe clickbait. I don’t care to make mountains out of mole hills for the sake of clicks. And I definitely don’t want to implement any of the creative embellishments I see other sites who are trying to make a name for themselves use.

Not to mention, it’s a ton of work, creating daily content.

Finding the stories, assigning them, editing them, publishing them, promoting them. I had the best staff around, people who’d actually write the stories and make them as strong as possible, but at the end of the day, I had to do all of those things primarily by myself.

Between being a full-time editor-in-chief and producing (and appearing on) two podcasts every week for a year and a half, I hit a wall earlier this year. I’d say around May.

At that point, I had spent over a year pouring 40+ hours a week into the site and its podcasts. I was burning the candle at all ends, getting very little tangible benefit out of it, and- still- it always felt like there were 20 more things to do at the end of each day.

It became thankless.

And that’s not fair. Not to you. Not to my staff. And not to me.

So I’ve taken a few months to sit back and think about what I want this to be, so that it can be fun again, and so that my schedule can be my own again. I have lots I want to do, and all the free time in the world to do it. I only work Friday to Sunday, since I’m a wedding DJ and that’s when people get married. And, being my own boss, that means I’m free to decide how I want to spend that free time.

Therefore I’ve had a lot to consider, in terms of priorities, time investments, and what I want to get out of the time I’ve been given.

That’s why, starting next week, here’s how things are going to look:

The Revenge of The Fans site will no longer be covering daily news stories.

The site is evolving strictly into a sounding board for fans. My team of diverse voices will now focus solely on creating editorial content. That means reviews, columns, features, Top 5 lists, and other exciting, opinion-based content.

When there’s a big news event, or if I come across some credible info, I’ll fire up a Revenge Report about it. But posts like those are meant to analyze news you’re- in theory- already familiar with. And I’m fine with that. I’m happy to give my two cents on a major story, or to add my own intel to what’s already out there. But I don’t need to run a news site to do that, so I’m not going to.

But what about the podcasts?

I’ve got good news for you:

While Revenge of The Fans will no longer be a news site, it’ll still be a media brand. That means that our podcasts will continue, and that our YouTube channel is about to become an integral way to consume our content. As will our Instagram at some point.

Specifically, The Fanboy Podcast (FINALLY) returns next week with Episode 99. The Revengers will live on, but in a different capacity I’ll explain to you next week. And the rest of our great shows like Hops and Box Office Flops (which got some love during SDCC!), The Amateur Otaku, and the Play It LOUDCast, will continue on.

If you’re interested in becoming a contributor on our YouTube channel, or via our Podcast Network, feel free to e-mail me at MFR@RevengeOfTheFans.com

For now, I need to thank my closest allies, whom I’ve sent off to work elsewhere since they’re “News Men” and that’s not something we do anymore: Matt Vernier and Jonathan Brady.

Matt, you were the best right hand man a guy could ask for. Your help, support, insights, and work ethic were always appreciated, and I’m thrilled to see what you cook up for us over at ScreenRant. I’ll miss our morning pow-wows on twitter, and having to keep an eye out for your subtle puns in everything you wrote.

Jonathan, my friend and fellow Batman fanatic. Thanks for your kindness, dedication, professionalism, and passion for the work we’ve done together. Looking forward to CONTINUING to speculate about Matt Reeves’ movie in our DMs. And I’ll continue to cheer you on, as you spread your wings over at GWW.

There’ll be more to talk about next week.

But, for now, thanks for understanding where we’re at and where we’re heading.

I’m looking forward to recording The Fanboy #99 for you, and getting back into the swing of things next Friday.

Thanks for reading!

MFR

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Mario-Francisco Robles

Editor-In-Chief and Co-Founder of Revenge of The Fans. Previously, he's written for Latino-Review, IGN, Moviehole, and The Splash Report. He's also the host of the top-rated show The Fanboy Podcast and the co-host of The Revengers Podcast. E-Mail: MFR@RevengeOfTheFans.com | Twitter: @I_AM_MFR

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