Today, CNYRadio.com marks its 12th anniversary. Scott Jameson launched the site on March 1, 2001. Back then, the site focused exclusively on the Syracuse radio scene. Today, the site covers radio happenings in three markets, and local television news in two of those markets.
A quick history recap (there's a full page with more): during Scott's reign, CNYRadio.com expanded from Syracuse-only to include news about radio in Utica, Ithaca and Watertown. But, after a little more than four years, Scott -- who ran the site on his own, during his spare time -- decided it was time to focus on other priorities. He put the site on hiatus in 2005.
Having been a fan of the site, and looking for a reason to get back into web design/programming after taking a few years off from the hobby, I asked Scott in 2007 if he'd allow me to revive CNYRadio.com. He graciously agreed. After a few months of design and testing, the "new" CNYRadio.com officially launched on February 22, 2008 -- exactly five years and one week ago (here's a screenshot).
Perhaps the biggest change since then -- aside from the occasional cosmetic changes -- was the 2010 addition of CNYTVNews.com, after that site's original owner decided to focus on other priorities.
For me, the past five years have been a blast. Having formerly worked in broadcasting myself, it's been a great way to stay in touch with old friends, and to make some new ones. And, I'll admit, I love having that "breaking news" adrenaline rush when something really big happens -- especially when this site is the first to have the story. In many cases, those big scoops have been the result of awesome readers who have been kind enough to take a few moments to send a quick email, an anonymous message through the Contact Form, or even a message via Twitter or Facebook.
I also have to thank the many station managers -- program directors, general managers, promotions staffers and on-air talent -- who've been kind enough to take time out of their day to remember to include CNYRadio.com and CNYTVNews.com when they send out announcements about news within their stations... or to answer my questions when I'm trying to confirm a "hot tip" or to get more details behind a particular story.
Each week, the site gains more Twitter followers, and more Facebook fans. Each year, the number of views has been higher than the previous year. Like Scott, I also run the site on my own, in my spare time. Even though spare time can be pretty sparse now and then, it's motivating to know you're there reading the site, and I'm always grateful for your news tips, your Facebook likes/shares, and your Twitter retweets.
It was also rewarding for the site to take home awards from the Syracuse Press Club in 2011 and 2012. Even though the site won second place for the Internet Public Service category both years, it was still a great honor, considering the first place winners were professional websites for major local businesses, each supported by a full-time team of people.
When I started out, I wondered if I would be able to keep the site going as long as Scott did. Five years later, it's all still here and running strong. And much of that is thanks to you, the readers. I hope I can continue to bring you the news you expect (and of course, I hope you'll continue to help by sending along your press releases, informal announcements, Picture of the Week submissions, and those great insider tips)!
And in case you're wondering, here's the classic Sesame Street cartoon that inspired the idea for the "counting to 12" graphic at the top of the story: