Grassroots-Gaa’s Future – 2018 and Beyond

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As you’ll probably be aware Grassroots-gaa began in 2014, and after a year off-line has been back up and running since the second round of the 2016 senior football and hurling championships. As you’ll be equally aware, thus far, it has been freely open to view on-line.

Much as myself and Conor enjoy, and have enjoyed doing it, the amount of time being put into it, simply isn’t sustainable on a long-term basis.

In the last thirteen months we have put up 164 independent Dublin GAA articles, predominantly relating to the senior football and hurling championships. I’ve personally written over 130 of those.

A single statistical analysis article or preview article, alone, takes up a full day’s work, so you can imagine how much time goes into the whole site. In terms of a forty hour work week, I’ll have put in just shy of three month’s work by the end of the senior championships, in this calendar year.

Since I took over as owner last year, there has been absolutely no effort made to secure corporate sponsorship, nor will there be in the future!

GaaProStats, whose software is advertised on the site, is essentially, the same entity as Grassroots-gaa, and it is this software which we use to do statistical and match analysis.

So, in short, if there is to be a future for Grassroots-gaa it is this – from the 2018 season onward, we will be working off a subscription based system – a very paltry subscription.

We are going to run on a basis of a 2 Euro annual subscription for access to all articles from one club of your choice, or a 5 Euro annual subscription for access to all articles (since originally posting this I’ve been advised from a techie guru that the 2 Euro plan could entail a huge work-load from a management point of view, so is currently uncertain).

You don’t need a marketing spiel to explain how flippantly you’d spend that amount of money elsewhere. You know the craic! A subscription of 5, or even 2 Euro is practically nothing.

Before Grassroots-gaa existed, there was no publication reporting on the amount of club games, or in the detail that we have been doing. As far as we’re aware, such reporting doesn’t exist anywhere else in the country on the club scene, and based on our readership numbers, we can only surmise that there’s an appetite for it.

So, the situation is pretty simple, really. I work freelance as a substitute teacher and professional sports performance analyst. Like I say, myself and Conor love doing the articles, but by the end of the two senior championships this year, I’ll have turned down eight weeks of substitute teaching work to do in-depth analysis on the two championships. Much as we love it, it’s simply not sustainable.

So, the future is up to you, the reader. Once we start accepting money, we’re committed to the 2018 season. If we can bring in enough revenue to basically turn it into a job for the key weeks of the year, Grassroot-gaa will continue into 2019 and beyond. If we don’t, it simply can’t and it won’t.

In a best case scenario, we’ll bring in more money than is necessary, and we’ll look to bring in paid journalists to broaden our scope to the Senior B, Intermediate and Junior championships.

Over the coming weeks we’ll be letting you know what the payment options are. If we can garner an agreement from certain avenues, you’ll have the option to pay cash (more like coins) at a physical location you’re likely to be passing, whereby you’ll pay and write down your e-mail address, and be sent a link from there. Either way, you will certainly have the option to pay on-line and follow a link. That system is currently being put in place.

We’ll update you in the coming weeks.

So folks, it’s up to you. We hope you’re enjoying our stuff. We know we’re not everybody’s cup of tea, but hopefully, we’re enough people’s to keep going into the future.

On that note, as we’re looking to go down the professional route, we’ve published an editorial policy which you can click on here. We’d hate you to squander your 2 or 5 Euro on something without knowing principles on which it runs!

Stephen O’Meara

Owner and chief editor.