A lot of cake. A lot of reasons to celebrate. A lot of big news. In celebration of our birthday tomorrow — we started on January 1, 2009 — we thought we’d share a few anecdotes from the past year. The past twelve months of this silly experiment of telling people the news with big numbers and short blurbs has been a pretty exciting one, and we certainly gained a ton from this year. (In fact, we just hit our 20,000th follower this evening. Whoo!) There were many highlights and lowlights, and we wanted to reflect on a few of those. Hop over to the jump to see them in Summary Sandwich form.
imwithkanye asks: What is the one piece of news you wish you would had written or reported? Whose work do you admire the most?
» SFB says: Regarding the first half of that, I feel like, honestly, I try to catch as much as I can, but sometimes the beast that is limited resources can really get in the way. I wish the site could’ve done more with Occupy Wall Street some nights. I wish I could give equal weight to the natural disasters that come along (we covered Thailand’s recent flooding a little too lightly, for example). But with just a handful of writers, you have to be careful to ensure that your appetite is as big as your stomach. So often we’ll cover one story really well if it’s big enough, or touch on four or five at a time.
As for the second part: I’ve always told people that my two biggest inspirations in doing this blog are Andrew Sullivan and Charles Apple. You guys all know Sullivan. Some of you hate his work or obsessions with Trig Palin or whatever. I tend to think that he set many of the basic templates for mixing news and opinion in a blog; he’s a trailblazer, plain and simple. As for Charles Apple, he runs a newspaper-design blog that is more of a direct influence on what I do. When I started the site, I asked him for feedback; I still cite his site pretty regularly. I came from news design, and while SFB’s focus is broader than that, the numbers and blurbs come from those roots. Beyond that, I find ProducerMatthew’s work to be super-inspiring. — Ernie @ SFB (Alright, Office Hours over for now; we have one or two still sitting around and we’ll get to those over the next few days.)
basicallyenhanced asks: Hey Shortform, whatever happened to Office Hours?
» SFB says: Yeah, it’s been a while since we’ve done Office Hours, hasn’t it? Admittedly, to keep things fresh, we’ll do features for a while and then give them a bit of a break. Office Hours is one of them. We totally take on asks all the time, though. (So, ask us stuff!) But we’ll try to make time for a period of Office Hours one evening later this week. — Ernie @ SFB