We've talked about a new app/site for several weeks now. But as of this past Wednesday at 1 p.m., officially, it's being built. It's underway.
I'm married to someone who gets really mad when I spill too much -- hey, sorry, but we reporters aren't exactly in the secret-keeping business -- so I'll stay mostly silent for now on any details. But there are a couple things I'd like to share, if only to invite further feedback:
• In addition to commenting under articles, we'll include four open forums: One that's general, and one each for Steelers, Penguins and Pirates. This was based on your feedback to my question here a couple weeks ago. Readers were adamant they wanted to keep commenting under articles, and that's how it'll be.
• Up-cups and down-cups will remain intact, of course. And, in fact, we're not looking to get super-fancy with the comments beyond that, though we're open to ideas related to our community.
• The button on the app that brings readers to our forums will be called Asylum. That was the suggestion of our late friend Jason Rollison earlier in the month when we were discussing this in a staff text, and he was told right then that this was the winner. Because what else would one call a roomful of Lunatics?
Overall, again, the priority for commenting will be behind-the-scenes stuff. It'll be speed, convenience, an ability to navigate with the same ease on all platforms. The basics.
We don't have a timeline for this project to be done. Our priority is to get it right. But I can pretty much promise it won't be in 2019, and there are bunch of reasons for that, not least of which is that we don't want to mess with tech through our busiest time, both for the business and editorial content. Better to stick with the devil we know.
Now, she's wagging her finger, so I'll shut up. But I'm excited. We all are. (She is, too.)
'THE BIG ANNOUNCEMENT'
Remember 'The Big Announcement?'
That goes back nearly a year to when I made known that we were working toward something that would significantly change the company, and it's since referred to only by that semi-cynical term since it never came to the surface.
Well, I can share now that a good percentage of the Announcement was to have pointed toward new technology. And that, since we've opted to do all the tech on our own, whatever happens related to the Announcement will be wholly independent of tech. That doesn't mean the Announcement is dead or even dormant. It isn't. It just separates the tech.
The creation of the new app/site is our No. 1 business priority by a mile. There really isn't even a second.
A SEPTEMBER TO REMEMBER
Back in September of 2016, we sold an insane amount of three-year Lunatic subscriptions. That's because we were about to raise prices in October of that year, and people pounced on the chance to avoid the increase.
So, it's three years later, and we want to make sure we get as many of those people back as possible. That's not simple, since a three-year subscription doesn't auto-renew. It's got to be manually renewed. We've been sending out emails, and we're reminding people here to check your subscription expiration date -- it's available on the 'My Account' page, up near the top.
If you have any questions about this -- and I mean any -- email us at Help@DKPittsburghSports.com, and my daughter Dara will be happy to take you through it.
WE CATER, TOO
Just as no two businesses are alike, no two businesses' needs are alike.
With each of our many business partners, we work together to craft a plan that simultaneously suits what they're seeking and that works seamlessly with the staff we have at hand. PNC, for example, values our street-level connections with subscribers, so they support our travel and out-of-town meetups. Point Park University values our broad reach and ability to enhance branding. Moon Golf Club values our work with veterans. Curtis Pharmacy is pushing mail-order delivery. It's all varied.
So, when we worked with our newest partner, Mike's Beer Bar on the North Shore, and they ruthlessly demanded that we supply a couple of staffers to sip endless beer while talking about sports ... hey, we had to really crack the whip to find a couple of willing participants:
If you'd like to become one of our partners, large or small, reach out directly to my wife: Dali@DKPittsburghSports.com
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