Last Wednesday afternoon, my fellow offshoreonly.com columnist Jason Johnson and I were informed that the popular online community was returning to its original message board format for its home page, meaning it was eliminating the weekly stream of original editorial content—more than 1,100 articles worth—we have been producing for the popular online community for the past seven-and-a-half years.
With its home page reverting to a message board format in a COVID-19 pandemic cost-cutting move, offshoreonly.com columnists are on hiatus. Photo from the 2018 Miami International Boat Show courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
Translation? As of tomorrow, our freelance writing services will no longer be required. We were told via email that “with the ongoing pandemic and economic climate, we’re not able to continue publishing on OSO beyond next week.”
Economics we understand. We don’t presume to know the budgets of Internet Brands—the website’s parent company—or any company for that matter beyond speedonthewater.com, the daily high-performance powerboating news site we own and operate. Though disappointed, we understand that we simply have become economic casualties of the novel coronavirus. As problems in our current world go, this one is a fly speck.
We thanked our OSO editor—a gracious, hardworking guy clearly distraught at the difficult news he had to deliver—for the years of work we were given. OSO got editorial content. We got paid to produce it. Win-win. And though we really didn’t expect such a longstanding arrangement to end so abruptly, freelance gigs do come and go.