I have read and responded to most of your e-mails and would like to address a few things here today with everyone.
The e-mail response to this blog has been incredible as has all the folks visiting, as always I would like to thank everyone.
* The amount of first time and returning visitors only keeps growing but it would be great if some of you not only visited and read the blog but took some time and gave your hockey thoughts on the blog itself or message board and let us get to know you beyond the e-mails or polling votes.
I absolutely guarantee not a single person ever will be flamed or insulted here.
All I ask is your discussions are hockey-related and respectful where we all get something out of it and have fun talking Islanders whether we agree or disagree. I have long experience between my own mailing list and moderating the Islander board at HF and can promise if you invest your time talking Islander Hockey here it will be a positive experience without some of the garbage as one person today wrote and told me you see on message boards and forums.
* To answer one person I'm not big on advertising nor do I feel it appropriate to go onto some one's established site or board and talk about this blog or invite folks to join in that manner because I do not consider that respectful at all. I would not want anyone to come here for that singular purpose. To be honest it's not a big deal for me how many page views, mail or responses this blog receives but for all the visitors who keep coming/returning I would like to talk with you beyond your mail.
* Why am I doing an Islander blog?
I do this for my own enjoyment and because I love talking Islander Hockey. That's been the reason since day one back in 1999 when I started Islanders-Sound Tigers at Yahoo. It was why I became a writer at HF and why I agreed to moderate their message board back when it opened. If things become too busy for me or I cannot do the blog to my standard, that is when I will decide to stop.
* My time?
Almost all the of the time I have for hockey I put strictly into posting here and when I'm not doing that everyone can see how many features I keep adding to the blog and yes, it's been a blast finding things to add here and building a blog from scratch. I gotta admit it's amazing I have done this much considering I'm not a computer person and a year ago had no idea what blogger was.
* Message Board?
I have decided to incorporate a better message board to connect with this site which will be released in the near future even though I picked it out last November.
The bravenet forum is ok but not up to my standards but was a nice add-on when I first started the blog. I decided to ride out the season with it because we had a few folks posting there and did not feel it fair to them to make an in-season change. I know from some e-mails the cheesy format at Bravenet was not what you wanted in an Islander message board.
All I could do for my own content was add game threads and major events.
Having written that building a big message board community is not what I'm looking for. I guess I'm trying to do is get all the folks sending e-mails to have a place to talk beyond just what I post on my blog. In other words your own hockey forum to talk about the Islanders and what interests you and just a small die-hard respectful community.
I started with quotes from articles or websites updated but do not like printing copyrighted material so I made a change this season. I now give my own summary of an article and credit the writer whenever possible. I have a very high standard for media sources and will not use bloggers without media credentials as sources of information. That's a tough process because at times it's tough to tell the difference. NYI Fan Central commentary is not a media source nor should be reprinted as such.
* The Isles?
Have been fantastic, first class and have never responded to any negative criticism of the club or the media here. I did follow through on asking if they wanted to keep the link to this blog. I felt if they wanted to make room for new blogs and message boards which I think they should do I want to be fair to them or simply if they wanted bloggers who go and physically sit in the box who are interested in a journalism which is not for me.
Mr Botta told me his intention is to keep the link to this blog on the teams website
and thanked me for the work here. If they decide to change their minds I have nothing but respect for their efforts and thank them. I will keep doing my blog exactly the same regardless because it started before there was a blog box and just an extension of Islanders-Sound Tigers or what I did at HF.
Thank You for taking the time the time to read this and hope to talk with more of you here and not just your e-mails and your suggestions.