Hello everyone! Site manager Sam here.
In case you weren’t on the internet yesterday, it was... a day.
At 8:14 in the morning on Friday (the best time to break huge news) I received an email explaining that Vox Media — the media company the owns and runs SB Nation — will no longer be supporting or monetizing Stumptown Footy.
Hi friends. Stumptown Footy received the news today that the site will “no longer be supported and monetized by Vox Media.”— Stumptown Footy (@StumptownFooty) January 20, 2023
We are unsure what that means for the future of the site, but for now we just want to say one thing: Thank you. (1/4) #RCTID #BAONPDX
This is connected to larger layoffs that Vox made and it impacts most, if not all, of the MLS SB Nation blog sites. The email gave the reasons of “a downturn in advertising” and “the economic climate” as the reasons that Vox had to make these “difficult and careful decisions”.
For however difficult this decision was and for however much care went into making the final decision, the reality is that Vox making the move to cut SB Nation’s MLS blogs is cutting ties with an integral part of the American soccer community. And in cutting Stumptown, it’s cutting a signature institution of soccer in Portland. One that has been an ever-present piece of the media landscape for the past decade-plus.
And that is unbelievably sad. Vox, through SB Nation, has built perhaps the largest and most prominent fan community in the United States, spanning all sports and fandoms. For me personally the Stumptown Footy comment section was how I first became engulfed in the Portland soccer community. That the sites that foster communities like this will “no longer be supported” by Vox is undeniably a blow for fans and for the growth of the game.
What does “no longer supported” mean? At this time, I’m not exactly sure. That same email explained that the sites may not “necessarily” be shutting down, and expressed hope that “many of the impacted sites and their brands will continue to operate and thrive.” So there is still a lot to figure out over the coming days and weeks about what’s coming next.
What I am sure of is that our independent contractor agreement ends at the end of February. And there is still a heck of a lot to be written about between now and then.
The Timbers have their first preseason game today (no stream, of course). The defending champion Thorns open training camp at the end of the month. There’s new players to write about, new coaches to analyze, new storylines and narratives to be told.
So for now, Stumptown Footy is going to keep doing what we’ve always done: writing about the game and teams we love and generating spaces for all of you to share in that love with us.
That shared love by the way has been overwhelming. The outpouring of support and appreciation and love on social media yesterday meant more to me and to the team than we can ever express. While we all ran the gamut of emotions in fear of this beloved site going offline, the support that we felt from the Portland and global soccer community was the thing that kept us afloat.
Thank you all for having our backs. For reading, for commenting, for tweeting, for being, well, you. The beauty of Stumptown Footy is that it isn’t just the posts or the writers — it’s the whole dang beloved PTFC soccer community. I cannot say it enough but I’ll say it again: thank you.
The Stumptown crew is still figuring out our next move. The contributors we have on board are too talented and too passionate to just pack our bags and let this be the end. Everyone here will land on their feet, and we will be sure to update all of y’all once we figure out what that next move is.
If you’re active on Twitter and there has ever been anything that we’ve said, written or tweeted that has caused you to chuckle, smile or nod your head in agreement, I humbly ask that you give our fine team below a follow to keep up with whatever (or ahem “wherever [sic]”) they do next:
Lastly, here’s the current group of writers so you can keep up with wherever awesome stuff they do next:— Stumptown Footy (@StumptownFooty) January 20, 2023
Love y’all. (4/4)
❤️ #RCTID #BAONPDX
We’re not saying goodbye just yet. We might inevitably have to. But my hope is that if we do it’s less of a “farewell” and more of a “see you soon.”
But until that happens, we here at Stumptown Footy will keep continuing in the only direction that we know: Onward.