Want to see the future of them Internets? Just point that browser over to FirstArkanasNews.net and gaze at the site in wonder.
I feel just like Sheriff Buford T. Justice on Smokey and the Bandit when he complained of “decorating up the whole town at a cost of $40.” I went and spent around $60 to reserve a couple of domains and host the aforementioned site for a year. I’m amazed at how cheap things are on the Internet – if that project fails, I’m out $60 and that’s not a bad deal.
So, what is that site? It’s something I came up with after watching online publications like Fort Smith’s The City Wire thrive. I visited with some other public relations guys, some freelance reporters and a newspaper (we need a content partner, right?) as I figured a bunch of us “professional” writers from around Arkansas could have a lot of fun and offer people a statewide source of news.
I told the writers I mentioned that my newest blog wouldn’t make money for at least a year so I wasn’t going to pay anyone who worked on the blog until we have some, like, revenue to share. Amazingly, a lot of those talented folks still accepted my invitation to help by submitting articles and photos.
The site is barely a day old and I’ve already learned that, well, I’ve got a lot to learn. Maintaining your own site can be a chore. Still, I figure I’m not too far away from modifying my template to my liking. After that work is done, the fun begins.