I just had a look at the new site layout on Chrome and the iPad, and all I can say is, I've never seen a bloody elbow look so beautiful. It has more of a lifestyle look to it, rather than a straightforward hardcore sports angle. And personally, the further we can get away from the alpha-male dominated skull and flames look that MMA seems to have adopted over the years, the better. The UFC may have been catering to the lowest common denominator for the past decade, but that doesn't mean Bloody Elbow has to.
Yes, I have my complaints, mostly surrounding browser crashing and speed, but those are all technical difficulties that will work themselves out over time. I did have complaints about how things were prepositioned to the community, but those are arguments I won't rehash here. Do I think the community has overreacted? Yes. The site has only been live for a few hours, and people are ready to crucify it. I say give it time. However, do I think the complaints have merit? This is also a yes.
Here's my take: I come to Bloody Elbow for the insightful analysis and opinion, as well as the amazing community. Yes, being user friendly matters, but I do believe over time we will all get used to the new layout. It's like driving a new car. It takes you a little while to know the dimensions of the car, how much you can push it, what it can take, etc. But eventually, you won't even remember your old car.
Ultimately, I know that Bloody Elbow is part of a larger machine called SB Nation which is in turn part of an even bigger machine. There are only so many things Nate Wilcox and crew can control when they are part of SB Nation. I know things are very competitive, so anything that can be done to improve the number of eyeballs coming to Bloody Elbow, the better. The way I see it: more page clicks, more readers, more ad revenue, all equals growth for Bloody Elbow and the possibility of hiring and retaining great talent. And that's a great thing. It may not necessarily pay off in the short term, but this is a long play, folks.
I am not sure what plans Nate had when he first started Bloody Elbow; maybe it was just to talk a bit about a little obscure sport called Mixed Martial Arts and hopefully someone would care. I don't know. I'm not Nate, so I can't speak for him. But what I do know is that people do care. And now, a lot of people care. I am not ashamed to admit Bloody Elbow is a huge part of my life. And while most of this is growing pains, and it will take time to adjust, all I ask is that us faithful not be forgotten for the sake of new tail, if you get what I mean.
So if you're upset about the site, just relax, go have a beer. After all, the sun is shining, and it will shine tomorrow. If it's not shining tomorrow and it's raining, well, at least you know it's probably shining somewhere else in the world. Cheers, all.