Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Love Letter to You, our Noble Audience

I received a very interesting comment recently. Someone mentioned that I ought to collect sponsor funds and send Ted Navarro to finally surf some good waves. I agree.

Dealing with "business" was never my intended objective. However, this 1 Hour in HB project has become something much more than I ever anticipated, mainly due to your viewership, and I think we certainly do now have certain responsibilities.

The way I see it, surf media should be free for all. My films will always remain free for viewers. My concern is for the surfers. They are paid (or underpaid) by sponsors. Sponsors want exposure and an audience. This is where you come in. You are the audience and your sole responsibility is to click "Play". The more you watch, the more the surfers are likely to earn and the more they are able to travel and produce more content.

The media landscape has changed. Surfer's compensation is slowly catching up. 1 Hour in HB currently has between 2,000-10,000 "plays" (not "page loads", actual "plays") per week. If we had, say, 20,000 plays a day, sponsors would be forced to take note. If we had 100,000 plays a day, sponsors would be forced to compensate surfers for that exposure. Ryan Carlson can't keep pulling flips if one day he has to get a day-job. If you like watching the video of him stomping a backflip, watch it again, and then send it to your friends. Send the video to Cole Surfboards and tell them to shape you a board just like his.

I have begun to receive monetary offers from companies to support 1 Hour in HB. I have been reluctant to accept any compensation because I want to maintain objectivity and sole creative control of all content. However, as 1 Hour in HB continues to demand more of my time and attention, monetizing it is inevitable. My main concern is that my focus will shift, so I burden you with the task of always sending me feedback. If you want more of something, tell me. Less of something, tell me. If you like something, say it. If you hate something, let me know. This is a collaborative project between myself, the surfers, and you the audience, and all of us share equal responsibility. The main reason that I keep producing films is because you keep watching. The more you watch, the more inspired I am to produce.

I, too, want to see Ted Navarro surf good waves. My role in that effort is to expose how well he surfs in HB, and your role is to watch. If we do that enough, his sponsors will send him to Hawaii and then the world can watch.

Thank you for watching 1 Hour in HB, and thank you for reading this rant. 1 Hour in HB is aimed to be my contribution back to the sport that has given me so much. If you would like to continue supporting my effort, just keep clicking "play".

And maybe tell your friends to watch too.

David Scales

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