Courtesy of Curtis Pharmacy

Site Stuff: Giving back to our military

From the day this site launched, we’ve never allowed a single active-duty military member to pay for a subscription.

U.S. Air Force senior airman Justin Smith surprised his family Friday at PNC Park. - MATT SUNDAY / DKPS

From the day this site launched in July 2014, we’ve never allowed a single active-duty military member to pay for a subscription. And we never will.

If you’re in that category, first of all, thank you for your service.

Second, if you haven’t already, please sign up for your free subscription. We’re proud if we can play even the tiniest role in keeping you connected to your favorite teams, particularly if you’re far from home like my man John Sankey. He’s a special agent in the U.S. Army, stationed in Afghanistan. And he’s my man, now and forever, for sending me this tweet shortly before last Thanksgiving from Fort Bragg, N.C.:

John’s Twitter bio reads as follows: “In the Army. Wherever I go, I take some of Pittsburgh with me.”

I’m equally grateful for our veterans. But also going back to our site’s inception, when we announced our active-duty program, we had readers stand up to pay for veterans’ subscriptions. The readers, generally from the same small group, took that upon themselves, and they came up huge, matching each request that came along.

Well, we’d like to make this a whole lot more formal. And open it up to more veterans.

So we’ve set up a new system, effective today, that puts this process out to everyone, with a dedicated page for anyone wanting to buy a gift subscription for a veteran, as well as another place on that same page for a veteran to claim one.

We’ll keep a running tally of veterans gifts purchased — and claimed — down at the bottom of the site in the space where we’ve had the Lifetime Lunatics.

SEARCH STILL ON

Last week in this space, we announced the search is on to add to our hockey coverage team. And the response has been great. Outstanding, in fact.

I’ve been sifting through emails and résumés all week long and there are some very good ones. But the search most certainly is not over. As mentioned here last week, we’re not rushing this. We want to find the right fit.

Many thanks to our partners at Express Employment Professionals for assisting in this search.

So if you know someone or have someone in mind, tell them to get us their stuff to us. Anyone qualified and interested, email a full resume: Careers@DKPittsburghSports.com. — Dale Lolley

ALL 500 LIFETIMES SOLD

To repeat, we sold all 500 of our Lifetime Lunatic subscriptions, and that will be the end of that program.

The 500th was bought by one of our frequent proofreading contributors, Eric Seeger. He’s been subscribed to the site since the launch, he’s a New Castle native, and he follows all our stuff on the app while traveling across the U.S. and Canada consulting with law firms on strategy and management.

Thanks, of course, to all 500, now stuck with us until the Browns win the Super Bowl.

I’ve told this story before, but when my wife Dali and I came up with this idea in late 2016, we projected we’d sell 20. And I mean ever. But they took off so quickly that, in all candor, she got concerned about the concept going too far and eventually hurting us in the long term. We’re going to be around for a very long time, so being able to project revenue deep into the future is important. She decided to cut the program off at 500 roughly two months ago, and we sold the final 117 just like that.

One thing holds true: If you’re interested in upgrading to any level at any time for any reason, click or tap My Account in the menu, then click or tap Upgrade Subscription. — Dejan

A FEW SITE CHANGES

• Our home page has a slightly new look at the very top, as we’ve added the ability to include related headlines with our main story. This makes the process easier than ever for our readers, especially when it’s about multiple files from a single event.

• Our up-cups and down-cups now show separate counts. This was suggested by several readers, and the idea was a good one. What’s been even better has been seeing more readers than ever using the up-cups. Hey, when you like something, let someone know. Makes for a happier place.

• Several other much bigger plans are in motion for a significant upgrade on several tech fronts. Too soon to discuss yet, but it feels good just to finally get moving on a couple of these in particular. — Dejan

APP CHECKUP

Both our apps are free and updated regularly. Get your app or update your existing app by tapping the appropriate button below. — Dejan

itunes

BACK TO BUSINESS

• Subscriptions are at 38,517. That’s plus-24 over the past week.

• We had 437,729 page views,  according to Google Analytics. That’s our lowest week of 2018 and a drop of 204,192 from last week, with the Penguins’ playoffs having come to an early end. Our most-hit article — exempting live files — was DK’s column on Andrew McCutchen’s return at 9,528.

• We’re at 28,936 (+100) page likes on Facebook, we’re at 28,474 (+11) followers on Twitter, we’re at 8,765 (+19) followers on Instagram, and we’re at 650 (+6) subscribers on YouTube. These figures are just for our official company account on each platform, not for us as individuals.

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