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ShaymenOnline was one of the earliest Town websites online and it lasted about a decade before we called it a day. Its heyday was back when Town didn't have an official site, and it included a mix of match reports, exclusive news reports and interviews, as well a daily summary of what the Courier and other newspapers had printed.

It also had a large statistical archive, much of it provided by Johnny Meynell, and did some seriously good - even if I say so myself - reporting of off-field matters such as when Philip Pride tried to buy the club, and the ongoing saga of the rugby club failing to pay their redevelopment dues, etc. We even provided a free SMS match update service back in the day before this became a thing.

Both this forum and the HTST sprung from ShaymenOnline.

I almost re-launched the statistics side of SOL about five or so years ago but was approached by someone who told me that the club was preparing to launch something similar 'in house' so I didn't bother, though that doesn't seem to have happened unless I've missed something.

The reason I'm putting this out there is because I was thinking about where we get our news about Halifax Town from nowadays as opposed to 20 years ago. The Courier is a shade of its former self though admittedly has been much improved recently, but still not at the level it would have been at back when it was a daily. We're almost never covered by the Yorkshire Post these days, and their sister Sunday paper the Yorkshire Sport no longer exists. The NLP rarely has anything other than a brief match report about the club, and there hasn't been an unofficial club website for at least 15 years or so. Social media has picked up some of the slack but most of it is simply reactive commentary about what the club or other clubs have released.

What with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and so on, it wouldn't really be necessary to cover the day-to-day stuff like ShaymenOnline used to do, but is there still room for the statistical history, the occasional editorial and/or investigative reporting? Is there anyone who has a critical eye on the club? Will the next 'Philip Pride' or 'Tony Abbott' have their feet under the table before anyone notices? Or was ShaymenOnline over-zealous or even a complete waste of time?

Genuinely wondering what people think?

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As we know from history, the Courier will never get involved in anything slightly controversial.

Even when they finally covered the Philip Pride saga, they used ShaymenOnline as their source - without giving it any credit. With regards Tony Abbott, they didnt investigate anything in relation to what was an absolute scandal locally; everything was done by users of this message board.

ShaymenOnline wont have been everyones cup of tea - especially those who dont believe the club can do any wrong. The same can probably be said of this forum.

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SOL was my life line to what I as going on at the club and combined with The SDS magazine provided great coverage in the days when there was little information to be found 

now the club are doing a great job .. this season the things coming out from the club have been excellent add to that there is all the supporters social media ..

I worry very little about how the club is currently run .. but whose next to take over .. and we need as supporters need to vigilant .. as who knows what the next caretaker owners or even worse the council will do 

nick 

 

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I practically post something statistical or historical about the club on a daily basis if possible. 

Understandably though it is something done in my spare time and would if I had time do more. 

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1 minute ago, Shaytrev said:

Without SOL Jim Brown would be still in Town, The Shaymen probably not, most definitely not at The Shay.

I'd like to give the TRA some credit :D 

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4 hours ago, ColinCanberra said:

All the reports in the Courier were just cut and pasted from SOL

Thankfully not the case now. Tom is usually first with his match reports and will speak to the new signings or old players of note and publish many an interesting article. I’ve been impressed with the quality this season.

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5 hours ago, Shaymen Stats said:

I practically post something statistical or historical about the club on a daily basis if possible. 

Understandably though it is something done in my spare time and would if I had time do more. 

I know and as someone who enjoys and appreciates the club's history, I look forward to them. But SOL was more stats than historical articles/photos. For example, you could sort games by home attendance, biggest wins, etc. See who had scored the most goals for the club in the FA Trophy and stuff like that. See which manager had the best win %, when a player signed and for how much, how many red cards and so on. There were historical articles in the A-Z but it wasn't a particularly developed part of the site.

4 hours ago, ColinCanberra said:

All the reports in the Courier were just cut and pasted from SOL

In the very early days it was very much the other way around. :D 

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The first appearance of the site actually came in the 1997 close season, prepared on Microsoft Publisher, and it was a nightmare to keep up to date and keep online. But I was using work's time and resources so hey ho.

I learned a lot in those early days. Quickly moved onto Microsoft Frontpage which was much better, but still a lot of work. Then came Rivals in 2009 offering to pay me for what I was already doing, providing I used their content management system. I sold out very quickly.

The cash allowed me to pay photographers and news agencies, give out shirts and season tickets as prizes, buy the ShaymenOnline domain name and covered all my Town related expenses. It was amazing. 

The Town site was one of the network's best performing ones and that led to them offering me the site that covered European football. It worked out well for me because my now-wife was able to send me all the headlines from the various European newspapers she had access to at work, which allowed me to dish up a lot of rumours and some actual stories that hadn't reached the British press yet. Doubled my income overnight, it was great :)

I did leave in order to concentrate on the Trust, but also because I had three other jobs at the time, plus I was playing in pool leagues four nights a week so didn't really have the time any more.

Once things calmed down a bit we started it up again independent of the Rivals network, I think either because they had a new Halifax editor (Adam Lees) or because the platform hadn't been as successful in the UK as it had been in the US and they were slowly winding down. Maybe a bit of both. 

It was a good time to be a Town fan. There were many downs but it didn't seem to matter so much because we'd had the high of the Conference win and a return to league football. It didn't last of course. I loved it all, the away days mostly, but also the open to question nights, race nights, crap cup competitions and friendlies.

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7 hours ago, Lammie said:

You do enjoy a monopoly at present but things might change when the official site moves out of maintenance mode!

Collect £200 any go past Jail 

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