Apologies for the recent outage of worldfootynews.com
The webhost's server is run by a third party located in the United States. Last Saturday they experienced an explosion and fire that resulted in significant downtime for "9,000 servers" and "over 1 million web sites".
Although we are back up at time of writing, periodic breaks may occur over the next week or so as repairs are made, and response times may be slow. Frankly, we're surprised to be back up so soon.
Yes, it's time for WFN to put out another request for assistance. With the steady ebb and flow of work and life commitments of our volunteer reporters we are currently in need of help covering Asia.
Our writers are all volunteers who have a passion for seeing Aussie Rules grow internationally. Our main area in need is Asia, covering such growing areas as Japan, China and many more. Language skills relevant to those countries would be a huge plus but by no means a requirement - we have plenty of English speaking contacts.
Perhaps you're an Aussie that used to play for an Asian club and would like to maintain some involvement, or maybe you speak an Asian language and would like the chance to practice. Or perhaps you're just a fan of spreading our great game and would like to help. Your location isn't particularly important - being based in the region is helpful but not a realistic requirement for the job. More important are reasonable writing skills, a love of footy and the willingness to get involved.
We regret to inform readers that WFN will not be performing a World Footy Census for the 2007 season. Judging by the number of visits (over 7600) to our 2004 census it is a worthwhile exercise and one we had looked forward to doing. Unfortunately we just haven't had enough resources to do the three-year follow-up that we had intended, and we're too far into 2008 to expect leagues to provide accurate information. Perhaps come the end of this year we'll have a chance to track just how far international Aussie Rules has advanced.
Thanks to technical improvements by Tobin Richard, WFN is pleased to announce that the World Footy Atlas now works under Internet Explorer 7, Firefox and Safari (and partially under IE6). The database is also now far more complete for sites outside of Australia, although we still need readers to get online and check the accuracy of locations or let us know if things change!
The array of footy clubs across the world is starting to look pretty impressive on a map, especially the growing density in Europe and North America.
If you know the location of a club that's missing, let us know. Note that at the moment the map data works via our links database, so a team needs to have a website to be on the map. The next step (coming soon) will cover the teams who aren't on the web.
First of all don't get too excited - there isn't a new professional Aussie Rules international satellite network. worldfootynews.com is building a World Footy Channel on YouTube. There's a lot of good Australian Football footage available on YouTube courtesy of individuals, and we've joined in. It's a work in progress, so we're not sure yet how this will turn out, be it hosted through this site or directly on YouTube. Hopefully we can host our own material and also draw attention to some of the other excellent video out there.
We've had some major issues along the way, not least of which was finding the time, but finally we're uploading some of our footage from the 2005 Australian Football International Cup. Check it out on our World Footy Channel.
worldfootynews.com is pleased to release its new page listing most of the AFL players recruited from overseas to play in Australia (such as the many Irish recruits) as well as some of the notable overseas born players who have grown up in Australia and become stars of our great game. Although several months in the making, the list is by no means exhaustive, as Australia is very much a country of migrants, and hundreds of players in the AFL and indeed in the state leagues (VFL, SANFL, WAFL etc) were born outside of Australia.
worldfootynews.com has unveiled its new World Footy Atlas. The new Atlas makes use of Google Maps and displays a small icon at each club or league location. Users can click on the icon to bring up the organisation's web address (if available), and the map automatically centres on the location too. You can use the zoom feature at the left of the map to have a look at the clubrooms or ground they generally play at, toggling between map, satellite image or hybrid of both. Please note a "feature" of the Google Maps is that to do a large zoom step and keep the map centred it is best to keep the info bubble open.
Of course, any such tool is only as good as the data in it, so we welcome (and need) submissions from Australia and around the world. We need your Australian Football club or league's name, web address and location (such as clubrooms, headquarters or usual field for playing or training).
Location should be in latitude and longitude, to 4 decimal places. You can use the map to find your location - when you are satisfied you're centred over it, use the coordinate readout below the map. Google Earth is another method - under Tools / Options / 3D View set the "Show Lat/Long" to Decimal Degrees. Send your information to us by email or login to WFN and add a comment to this story, and we will periodically update our database. Note that currently we are only displaying locations that also have associated websites, but if you do not have a website for the organisation you can still submit the details as we will build an equivalent database allowing that also.
Initially we have mainly entered some Australian clubs and some from the BARFL as their website provided the initial inspiration and their website administrator kindly provided some initial data. Over time we hope this will become a great tool for seeing the spread of Australian Football across the world.
Update 10 Dec 2007 - Our Atlas has been tested and should work under Internet Explorer 7, Firefox and Safari. It is not fully compatible with Internet Explorer 6.
We're pleased to announce the winners of our Footy Darts packages (see Footy Darts - chance to win for your club). An Ultimate Footy Pack will soon be on the way to the Denver Bulldogs in Colorado, USA and the North Delta Junior AFL in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, courtesy of Dale Wilson from Sports Darts. Read on to hear more about their entries.
Footy Darts is a magnetic darts game that simulates the ebb and flow of an Australian Football match. WFN writer Ash has reviewed the game, and creator Dale Wilson has two free sets of the Ultimate Footy Pack to offer international clubs (containing the magnetic football darts game and a markmaster footy, package valued at AUD$50).
We think the game could be used at footy clubrooms or as a prize for an up and coming junior. Readers from clubs outside of Australia are encouraged to write (click here) and tell us about your footy club and how you think you might make use of a set. We'll select two responses and courtesy of Sports Darts send them the Ultimate Footy Pack. Read on for Ash's review.
Yes, it's time for WFN to put out another request for assistance. With the steady ebb and flow of work and life commitments of our volunteer reporters we are currently in need of help covering two countries and one continent.
Our writers are all volunteers who have a passion for seeing Aussie Rules grow internationally. At the end of the day we're only a very small piece of the puzzle, but feedback from leagues, clubs and fans is that WFN helps that community achieve its goals, so getting involved this way is a chance to help with the cause even if you aren't based in any of the place we have vacancies for. In fact your location isn't particularly important - being based in the given country or region is helpful but not a realistic requirement for the job. More important are reasonable writing skills, a love of footy and the willingness to get involved.
Our main area in need is Asia, covering such growing areas as Japan, China and many more. Language skills relevant to those countries would be a huge plus but again, not a requirement, and we have plenty of English speaking contacts. We also require people to write on Canada and Ireland.
In all cases we will give you support, provide plenty of contacts, and no particular computer skills are required - we'll show you how to upload your stories through a relatively simply web page. So if you have an interest in supporting international footy and getting a behind-the-scenes view on the game's growth, then consider volunteering to write for WFN. Contact Brett here for more information, or visit our About Us page to see our current structure.