The LA Times has just announced something I already knew, I must confess it, that Tom O’Neil is bringing back his wildly popular site, Goldderby.com:
For the past five years, The Times has licensed O’Neil‚Äôs Gold Derby blog, which provided multimedia punditry for The Envelope. He will continue in his role as a regular Envelope contributor for the upcoming awards season, posting to a new, yet-to-be-unveiled blog and writing for the print editions, while also overseeing the return of GoldDerby.com. The revamped and re-established Gold Derby site, which can be accessed via TheEnvelope.com, is wholly owned and operated by Tom O‚ÄôNeil and The Times will exclusively handle advertising sales.
That’s the big news. Tom will launch his site on November 1, no doubt with the Derby assembled and maybe the forum too? Tom will have one foot still in the LA Times The Envelope. If any of you are curious about the history, I will delve into it after the jump.
I got online in 1994, but I started Oscarwatch.com back in 1999. Back then, there were just a couple of awards sites. There were plenty of Oscars sites already but they were primarily Oscar history sites and sometimes predictions sites. Right around that same time, Tom O’Neil launched Gold Derby — Tom had already written a book about the awards race. Basically, Tom and I had similar ideas about watching the progress of the race. Tom had assembled several journalists and critics who would give him their predictions throughout the season, something David Poland later adopted and now uses with his Gurus of Gold.
Like Oscarwatch, Gold Derby had a lively message board. All of this took place before the whole blogsplosion. Now we all use blog software, with comments, though we each still have our forums — his is at the Envelope, ours is at awardsdailyforums.com.
When Tom moved Gold Derby over to the Envelope, he could no longer use the same structure he’d used before. They dabbled with the buzzmeter for a while, but it seemed like it was too big and unruly to control. For a variety of reasons, they stopped doing it. I have no doubt that when Tom re-launches on November 1 he is going to be a force to reckoned with.
I’m just wondering who will be the derby assembled?