Horsetalk changes tack – no pun intended

teeth-stock-featuredIt is hard to know whether it was a bold experiment or a grand folly.

For the last 15 years Horsetalk has provided daily news from the distant shores of New Zealand to readers around the globe, particularly so in North America and Europe.

Today, that determined effort to provide daily coverage of news, issues and events quietly comes to an end. It marks the beginning of a fresh focus.

We will now pursue only content that we consider has enduring value, such as practical information for horse owners, features, and research with useful take-home messages for equestrians.

Has our daily coverage of news, issues and events been successful? We like to think so. The website has drawn nearly 2.85 million visitors in the last 12 months. Its best month in the last year or so hit an average of around 9200 visitors a day.

It has always been gratifying to see stories draw many readers. But it has been an undertaking that required work every day of the year – yes, even Christmas Day.

Horsetalk started about 19 years ago, but did not start carrying daily news updates until around 15 years ago. We have covered a broad range of topics since then. How each day panned out was entirely unpredictable and that, I think, has been part of its appeal.

But the Horsetalk team is small and the daily updates have exacted a toll.

We anticipate the website will remain pretty popular, as many visitors on any given day are looking at content that may, in some cases, be several years old. We are confident its 25,000-plus pages of indexed content, including research and countless hundreds of stories with practical horse-care information, will continue to be a worthwhile resource.

So, over the next week or so, you will see some quite dramatic changes to the front page to reflect the future needs of the website, which no longer has to manage a daily turnover of stories. Rest assured, it will continue to be updated regularly, but not necessarily daily.

Finally, we would like to single out our American readers for special mention. More than half of our readership is North American. They have been especially kind, supportive and engaging over the years. Their feedback has probably encouraged us to continue our daily news operation for some years longer than might otherwise have been the case.

I think everyone in the horse world is aware of the fast-changing and fractured nature of the modern media landscape. Change is unstoppable and we have to live with it.

As for me, I’m looking forward to a day off.

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9 thoughts on “Horsetalk changes tack – no pun intended

  • July 1, 2016 at 10:44 am
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    Thank you for your great content which is diverse and always interesting.
    I admin several FB pages and groups and I have always been able to rely on excellent stories to share around so will miss the newsy side of things but look forward to still seeing the odd useful article.
    You can only do what you can do and online time takes up so much of everyone’s precious spare time so you’ve made the right decision.

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  • July 1, 2016 at 11:46 pm
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    I’ve been following this site for 3-4 years, and I’m very appreciative of the the work that goes into it. Thank you very much!

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  • July 5, 2016 at 12:44 am
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    I love Horsetalk and read it every day. I’m sure the new vision will be equally powerful.

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  • July 5, 2016 at 1:45 am
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    I know there is one horse here in Kansas that is especially grateful to Horsetalk NZ for being there when he most needed a kind word and hand up. Shaun, aka Cusack is standing under his favorite tree with his mares, grateful so many pitched in and made this life possible. Looking forward to future articles and news!

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  • July 5, 2016 at 1:48 am
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    Terrific site, always – and sure, given your real knack for always finding the right line to take, well, I for one am looking forward to where it’s going to trot next! Good luck, and good days off too! I’ve personally shared out so many features you’ve highlighted (I’m currently riding one horse on that Bedouin bridle, let you know on that one!) and kept a stack more printed out for my own research purposes – always solid, dependable. Well done!

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  • July 5, 2016 at 2:38 am
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    Thank you, Team HorseTalk, for your dedication to providing planet Earth with the top stories in the horse world every day for so many years! Your typing fingers must be worn to nubs! We’ll look forward to the new format and schedule, knowing that you are getting some much deserved time off! As a former journalist who knows the effort that producing just one article entails- much less several every single day, and as a hopeless lover of everything ‘horse’, I can honestly say that you are my heroes! You are appreciated! Now- go play a little!

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  • July 5, 2016 at 5:47 am
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    Thank you for keeping us informed and educating us even on a daily basis. Your hard work has not gone unnoticed and very much apppreciated!!! I for one will miss your daily posts, but I can certainly understand why it is time for a change of tack. Thank you for your dedication to the horse and all that it stands for. Hopefully people have learned they are also man’s best friend and a healing force in this crazy world of ours.

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  • July 5, 2016 at 7:01 am
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    Thank you for years of stories and information – am grateful for all your time and efforts to educate and share. Thank you <3

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  • July 5, 2016 at 2:39 pm
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    Sorry to see the change, as you have been providing the only service of it kind that I have been able to find on the internet. And, I believe your readership numbers confirm this outstanding service you have been providing. Your news was always fresh, and important to the industry. I truly believe you helped unify the horse industry in a way no other website has done. There are lots of website with subject matter content, but nothing like you have been providing.

    Reply

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