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Thursday, July 9, 2009

New Website, etc Poll

It has been a week since the big changes occurred. I am curious about your thoughts on the formal reformatting of this blog, the new Central Iowa Lacrosse Association website, and the new CILA message boards.

The poll gives me a vague idea of how people are responding; the fact that only four people have registered thus far tells me that the boards may be going over like a fart in church. Still, if I could receive some actual feedback -as a comment below, on the boards, or via email - I would consider making adjustments. I received an email a couple of days ago (which inspired the poll & this post) stating that "message boards suck" and that RSS feeds (like in this blog) are the way to go. While that comment was somewhat helpful, I am sticking with the relaunch unless somebody says otherwise.

The launch of the new site came about for a couple of reasons:
  1. People had a hard time finding stuff on this site. Being a blog, this site is very difficult to organize. The new site gave me plenty of options and the flexibility to have things organized efficiently.
  2. I have had inquiries about potential youth programs. While I have nothing specific in mind right now, I definitely think Des Moines needs a solid youth program. Incorporating a tab for such a program seemed like a good idea. Again, the new site helped with the organization.
  3. The same can be said about a womens' program. Yes there is a grass roots movement in Waukee. But they do not have a website of their own or really much organization. I have offered space on the new site to them.
  4. Having all of the metro's programs Incorporated under one organized site should help increase the sport's exposure. This should lead to more participation.
  5. The new website provides me with a place to post forms, rules, etc. Sure I had most of that stuff randomly scattered about this blog, but I think it is much better now that everything can be easily accessed.
  6. There is no longer a need to rack my brain thinking of lacrosse-related posts to keep this blog alive. The Summer Open Lacrosse League is going. The Open Box Lacrosse League should be happening. Valley is set and I have heard jack squat from other interested high schools. Without fresh posts, the blog slips on Google whereas the website does not rely on such ranking.
I know the website is not the greatest thing ever, but it did not cost me anything and I was familiar with its structure after making Valley's website. Since that website went over so well, I figured people would appreciate our new site. I also think that it makes CILA look a little more credible if nothing else.

As far as the message boards go, I wanted to give people a chance to interact online. The adult hockey league uses them (mostly to bitch about the MISF) and they seem to be a useful tool sometimes. What better way, I thought, to get feedback from area players than to give them a forum? I figured the forums would be a way for people to offer anonymous (if they choose) suggestions and advice. YOUR OPINIONS MATTER!!!!! Just give some constructive feedback, alternative solutions, or anything else that can help me make the situation better for you!

I also started the forums to give us a place to hold our polls. People had complained that some polls may have gotten tainted by non-laxers, so I thought this would be a win-win. Judging by the response - or lack thereof - to the box league polls, I guess I was wrong.

Please help me out. Since I juggle the websites and stuff with everything else in my life, and since I have never tried to run anything like this before, I could really use all of the help that I can get. I want the websites to be as accessible and user friendly as possible. I can try to make whatever changes necessary, but I am not sure what those changes will be...

Remember, you cannot please everybody all of the time!

Tribe 7