The must-anticipated I Want My Rocky news site, created by former Rocky Mountain News staffers, didn’t exactly live up to expectations when it launched earlier this year. It fell far short of its goal of 50,000 subscribers, and many staffers (largely unpaid) departed in search of greener pastures (see Poynter story here).
What remains of the I Want My Rocky site shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. It is now, essentially, a beefed up, better staffed version of this blog.
The site, much like Poynter.org, monitors the media. It reports on the sales of newspapers, organizational shifts, and even organizations like itself. It also provides the small former newsies an opportunity to become commentators on the industry that gave them the bum’s rush.
This may sound a bit strange from someone who is, essentially, doing the same thing, but I’m not sure I understand the need for another large media watchdog.
Let me rephrase that: I don’t understand a media watchdog with the name “I Want My Rocky.” That name conjurs the image of a niche publication; one that serves the Denver community that specifically misses one particular newspaper.
Why give up so quickly?
Instead of expanding to “monitoring the media,” perhaps I Want My Rocky would have better success if it pared things down further. Why not start with one small community in Denver? A neighborhood, even?
If they have the mindset to foster a new audience (certainly they’re not going after the old one with the new format), why not start within your own community? Take a page from newspapers, such as The Times-Tribune, which has had success targeting smaller audiences.
Obviously, the time has come for a new idea. I just don’t know if Denver needs another old one.