WHAT IS EXPANDED ROSTER?
Expanded Roster is changing the game. We’re an online publication dedicated to unique, forward-thinking content. Expanded Roster is run by a diverse staff that is both deeply irreverent and deeply passionate about sports. We’re satire and sabermetrics. Bat flips and BABIP. We’ll break down somebody’s new swing and their girlfriend’s latest beauty post on Instagram.
We have a more modern, offbeat vision for what a sports website can be. On our homepage, you’ll be able to find a 1,500-word op-ed on the current state of the MLBPA side-by-side with a primer on sensual baseball. It’s perfectly fine to want some high-quality GIFs alongside your high-quality journalism.
We don’t believe anything exists in a vacuum, and we’re starting the conversation on how sports are going to grow and stay relevant in a more diverse and progressive landscape. We’re building an online space for complex, honest discussion without the vicious toxicity. We also have very strong feelings on high socks.
WHO ARE YOU?
WHAT WILL YOU DO?
We want you to get to know the teams you root for, we want you to see what baseball looks like all over the world, we want you to laugh, we want to make you think, and we want to put an end to the old guard controlling the narrative. We'll be building a platform from the ground up for stories, humor, and conversation. We're going to publish features that explore the history, the highlights, and most importantly, the human element of this sport that we all love.
HOW WILL YOU DO IT?
With your help! We’ve already begun reaching out to writers, developing our branding, and building our website, and now we're ready to bring this home.
We'll be working with writers you love (and we'll be announcing some of them in the coming weeks!) from outlets like The Athletic, Sports Illustrated, The New York Times, The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, and Bleacher Report. Just as exciting? We'll be bringing new voices that you haven't heard yet into the conversation. You can't create unique product without different ingredients. That's why we're here to expand the roster.
HOW CAN I HELP?
We've raised enough money to cover the bare necessities to launch our website, but creating the kind of top-quality content that we want to provide isn't easy or cheap.
We're committed to paying our writers, photographers, editors, and creators industry-standard for their work, and that means we'll need a substantial budget for content. We want to cover stories all over the country, even sometimes out of the country, and we want to do it well. The more money we raise, the more money we can invest into even more ambitious and exciting journalistic projects.
As with most websites, it's very unlikely that we will be profitable for some time, and I am giving all of my time, labor, and love to this project because I believe in it. We're ready to to start a bat-flipping, dinger-hitting revolution online, and we want you to be a part of it.
Here are some of the projected expenses that we're hoping to raise money for:
- Features: $3,000
- Image licensing: $500/mo
- Advertising: $2,000
- Operating expenses: $1,000
- Legal fees: $1,000
- Merchandising: $1,000
With this funding, in addition to the money we have already invested, we will be able to produce the incredible, unique content that you deserve, and fulfill our mission of being able to pay our writers, designers, photographers, and staff an industry-standard wage. This is incredibly important to us, as we came up in the age of unpaid internships, writing for "exposure", and business owners treating creative work like a hobby, instead of a skill.
Our plan is to be able to operate for six months off of the money we raise, and continue to bring in revenue through advertising, ongoing rewards-based promotions, and through our online shop.
There's no way for us to give you the visual experience that a site like ours needs without being able to license images. Photographers work hard to capture incredible images of every dinger, double-play, and diving catch. We think it would be cool to pay them for doing that! That means we will be using databases and wire services like Getty Images and USA Today to access some of the best photos to go along with the work that our top-notch writing team will be producing.
We also want to be able to promote ourselves properly. This is key, as the sustainability of a project like this relies on our ability to take your amazing investment and turn it into something wonderful and enduring and, crucially, fiscally solvent. Most businesses like ours don't begin to turn a profit for a year, so it's essential for us to be able to have the time to build this project without having to resort any kind of paywall or excessive, disruptive advertising.
The goal of $10,000 represents what we feel is the minimum amount we need to create a platform that meets the high standards we've set. But we can do more. We can do so much more.
- A higher budget for features means you'll get more to read, watch, and stare at every day!
- More money for images and photography means more opportunity for us to include visual content in as many articles as possible.
- We're hoping to be able to generate a lot of buzz for ourselves without a large advertising budget, but the faster we grow, the more we can do, and the larger our reach will be. It takes a lot of people to start a revolution, y'all.
Put simply? More money means more content, more giveaways, more writers, and more photos of your favorite pitch faces, bat flips, and baseball butts.
WANT A SNEAK PEAK AT THOSE REWARDS?
WANT TO COVER THIS PROJECT?
That is AWESOME. We would absolutely love to come on your podcast or do an interview or THROW OUT THE FIRST PITCH AT YOUR BASEBALL GAME (*cough*). We're absolutely looking for every opportunity available to share what we're doing.
All media requests should be sent to: email@example.com.
FOLLOW ALONG HERE:
Risks and challenges
One risk is not having enough content. We need to ensure that we have the talent, and the staff, to keep bringing you new articles to read, photos to look at, and videos to watch as often as possible. That's why we've already started working with writers, visual artists, and talent to prepare for our first few months. We are sending emails, reading pitches, pitching ourselves, and hustling every day and we have no intention of slowing down.
Our biggest risk at the moment is financial, which is why we decided to supplement our initial investment with a crowdfunding campaign. Expanded Roster started when we realized that our perspective wasn't being represented, and no one was producing the content we were fantasy-pitching to each other every day. Our experience with baseball online has always been irreverent and loud and colorful. The real, interesting conversations and debates don't make it into the paper over the clickbait and endless projection. We want to change that, but we fully recognize that our goals are ambitious.
How successful this venture will be relies so much on you. We don't just mean in the financial sense, though we definitely mean that also. We need a budget, but we also need readers and fans. No idea, no matter how good, is guaranteed to succeed. But what we can do is give ourselves every chance to connect with a broad audience, seek out the absolute best talent, and create something we can all enjoy together for a long, long time.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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