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BallOfSpray -“What now?”

HortonHorton Posts: 30,790 Administrator
edited April 2012 in Rules/Politics/Issues
This week I was talking to one of the very first Ballers about the growth of the site. His comment was something like “Now what are you going to do?”

That is kind of a funny question. “What now?” This site is now arguably the largest media outlet in the sport so what is the plan? What is the mission statement?

I started my first forum because I could not find what I was looking for elsewhere. At its best BallOfSpray is where skiers come to exchange advice and stories. It is a community open to anyone who loves skiing. Some of the content on this forum is pure fun and some is all about buoys.

Sometimes this site is a sounding board for USAWS members. BallOfSpray is not for or against USAWS, AWSA or INT. I am for slalom skiing. I am for three event skiing. I want to see the sport grow and flourish. BallOfSpray is committed to the promotion of the sport. My message to Holy Cow Rd is, “Thousands of skiers read this site every week. Feel free to use this forum to communicate with them”. Same goes for INT.

Occasionally this site is where skiers come to talk about good and bad experiences with the ski and boat manufactures. I hate to read about the bad experiences regardless of the company. As long as the review is first hand and honest, we all should hear it. I know the ski manufactures read the site so they are hearing the feedback also.

I can spend all my free time working on content for the front page but without the Ballers contributing in the forum the site would be hollow. You guys are making the site a success.

Thank you

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Comments

  • A_BA_B Posts: 4,306 Mega Baller
    I still think you need an Annual Ballers Bikini Edition. It would be a great way for us to keep up on the latest fashion while we are consumed in perfecting our water skiing.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 30,790 Administrator
    No one wants to see Eric and MS in a bikini

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  • A_BA_B Posts: 4,306 Mega Baller
    Ok, we ruled them out. Sorry guys.
  • colo_skiercolo_skier Posts: 784 Solid Baller
    @Horton Sounds like your comment should end with "again!"
    Not sure I know what I am doing. The boat goes I follow. Trying to perfect the deep water start. Squirrel!
  • skiron07skiron07 Posts: 83 Baller
    keep doin what you're doin John...it's really appreciated
    btw, is there a "master" list of slalom ski sites in the US where someone can perhaps map a trail
    if going on vacation? That would be helpful
    thx
  • klindyklindy Posts: 2,664 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Keith Lindemulder
    AWSA Chairman of the Board
    AWSA Southern Region EVP
  • The_MSThe_MS Posts: 6,234 Member of the BallOfSpray Hall Of Fame
    "Use the Force Luke"
    Shut up and ski
  • Hugh NicholsHugh Nichols Posts: 111 Baller
    Great website John!
    Hugh Nichols
  • WishWish Posts: 8,295 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Proof today that BOS can save lives.....literally.. Way to go John.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • EssvarEssvar Posts: 22
    +1 to @crashman

    The amount of information I get from this site is quite frankly beyond my comprehension. However even as a long line skier I don't feel alienated here. So I thank you John and to all the others who make this forum what it is.
    Troy McCrae, President of the "Aquaholics" --- Iron Gate Public Secret ---
  • skidawgskidawg Posts: 3,434 Mega Baller
    PUNT! Quit while ur ahead :-)
    NWA....Heaven on earth!
  • HortonHorton Posts: 30,790 Administrator
    @crashman I hear you. I am going to have to think about your comment.

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  • OldutskierOldutskier Posts: 53 Baller
    @crashmand and @Horton. I think someone needs to create a guide/plan on how to get into shoreline and publish it on the internet. There is plenty of commentary/instruction that allows a skier to pick up a length or two who is already into shoreline, but this addresses what BOS already has . . . the hard core short line audience. You have built first class that can't be rivaled at this point, but it primarily focuses on short line. Keep in mind, I am not criticizing the site. I am just trying to suggest a way to increase your users/viewership.

    To increase your users/readership, I think someone should write and article(s) on how to get from 15 off to 28 off in x weeks/months. There is plenty of information out the net that applies to near pro level skiers. If someone would focus on information geared towards the newer or more novice course skier we might grow the sport. If you help people get better faster, then they just might keep skiing.

    I think there is a faction of lake rats out there that want to learn the course or have learned 15 off, but they do not know what to do next. They do not know how to go from 15 off to 28 off. In fact, I know of several guys in the Austin area who have given up wake boarding because of their age (mid to late thirties/forties) and they have not taken the time to advance through the course because they do not know how to do it.

    I am not trying to say that getting into short line is easy. . . we all know that it is not. But if content is provided that makes people believe they can do it and it shows them how to do it, they will keep skiing and your readership will increase.

    Just my two cents.
  • auskierauskier Posts: 461 Baller
    sell it to facebook for $1billion.
    Toby
    ScarletArrow
  • crashmancrashman Posts: 722 Crazy Baller
    @Brent indeed- nobody here has ever balked at a basic question- and I intend to post many of them as we get through the season- it's sometimes a matter of getting to know what I don't know.

    But also- I think there's a fair group of guys who ski 15 or 22 off for exercise and enjoyment and may not...wait for it....gulp... desire to improve. The guy who first got me into the course is 66 yrs old and skis 15off 32 mph and for him that's it. He skis at least 3 times per week and spends a lot of money on equipment- so for sponsors he's a valuable demographic. But how do you engage a guy like that to log onto BOS as part of his waterski lifestyle? Several guys at my club that show up, run -15 at 34 take a swim then go home- they love skiing as much as anybody but don't share the goal of shortening up. They still like to read about skiing, spend money on boats and skis, but how to get them on BOS? That's why @horton runs the site and I don't because I don't know.
    slalom addiction triggering irrational behavior
  • Ham_WallaceHam_Wallace Posts: 533
    With the site in such swing, I think that all anyone needs to do is to "ask a question" and the galactic warriors will respond in such length and detail that it would take the person looking for those answers a week to read the responses. Horton has done an amazing job.
    Am I a jumper that wants to be a slalom skier? Or a slalom skier that wants to be a jumper?
    crashman
  • swc5150swc5150 Posts: 2,527 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Because of this site and its members, I'm considering jumping into the tournament scene this summer (if I can free up some time). I alpine ski raced for 15 years, so I wanted to keep waterskiing a fun hobby, not a "job". I appreciate having this site, where I can get tips on improving, and just like talking tow boats with people. I guess it's a "birds of a feather" kind of site, and I'm glad I was able to find it.
    Scott Calderwood
  • Taelan28Taelan28 Posts: 262
    Develop a maps in each state of all the places to ski with a course or a lake to ski at. I did so with a map of Korea. I actually went into a dealers store and found their own map on the wall, I got 95% of the locations right but zooming in on all the lakes. Of course you dont want to lable 5000 lakes in Minnesota or Florida, but make a map of all the locations with a ski club or a course.
  • ntxntx Posts: 840 Crazy Baller
    It looks like several people are not aware of the feature on the home page of BOS. It lists all the sites by state and has them taged in google earth. Go to the home page and on the home tab, you will get a drop down for google earth. If you click the google earth tab, it downloads a file that when opened in google earth has most private sites on it. It is set up by country, region, state and puts you right on the site. I am surprised that more people are not aware of it. In fact I mentioned it to a skier recently and they were shocked. It is very cool and should be checked out. This is what klindy is talking about above.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 30,790 Administrator

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  • HortonHorton Posts: 30,790 Administrator
    As usual, this thread did not go where I expected. Guess I should know better. I agree with Hambone and others when they say all questions get answers but I will try to get some content designed for 15-28 off skiers

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  • ntxntx Posts: 840 Crazy Baller
    @horton, We did make current user aware of a awesome site feature............LOL
  • Taelan28Taelan28 Posts: 262
    Horton you have the hardcore market cornered. The forum is among the friendliest ive seen so your goals have been met as you already know. The goal now should be to make it as easy as possible to get people on skis. Costs are an issue for people as is accessibility. i gotta go to work now ill explain more some other time.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 30,790 Administrator
    @OB we all need to ski with skiers better than us. That is how you get better.

    Wow I do not know how this thread got here... whatever.

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    MattPBulldog
  • HortonHorton Posts: 30,790 Administrator
    @TylerR Yea I hope to do less review this year but I expect to do the new Mapple and the S2 and the new Connelly bindings and maybe a Reflex or Warp. I have been trying to get to the Radar Vice forever....

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  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 6,066 Mega Baller
    @Horton I do love the ski reviews. It is hard for me to get on different skis and I really appreciate the work you do on different skis. I have seen this work on golf sites but if you don't have time to test every ski you would like maybe having a small group of skiers that test different skis. I know the challenge is to find people that can articulate the way that a ski behaves.
    Mark Shaffer
  • MattPMattP Posts: 6,277 Mega Baller
    edited April 2012
    @Chef23 oh boy thats a can of worms that was opened then closed. @Horton used to do the independent ski tests... Group of skiers, one weekend, factory reps, lots of sets
  • HortonHorton Posts: 30,790 Administrator
    edited April 2012
    @Chef23 that is how we did it in the past.

    It is a long story but I have more faith in reviews done myself or by another skier that has ridden a lot of skis and has a feel for the differences.

    The biggest problem with a group test is that it takes more than 7 rides to really get your head around a ski and that assumes you are starting with good settings

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