I stopped commissioning stories for AOL Money this week – Wednesday to be precise. I started commissioning the predecessor site Daily Finance in December 2009. Recently I worked on the design and build of the new site and the integration of DF and its sister title Walletpop into AOL Money.
It has been a labour of love. The old DF CMS tells me “You have written 312,078 words on 522 posts.” I’ve written a fair few thousands words for AOL Money too and I have commissioned millions more. I’ve known it was coming to and end, looked forward to it even, but I’m feeling a bit sad too.
Wot, no staff?
Daily Finance was a big experiment. AOL set up two finance websites and tried to run them with no staff. Our contact in the office was David Hobbs, who runs Autoblog and did a great job trying to keep an eye on finance in his spare time.
Everyone else was freelance, working from home. It was a bold experiment and one that, in the end, didn’t work. We did a great job – make no mistake – but you do need somebody in the office, dedicated to financial journalism and making the economics work.
That came eventually with the arrival of Tom Flack (yes the Tom Flack who was on Insurance Times and went to Yahoo). Tom got the two sites’ finances in hand and started putting together commercial propositions and plans. The change is now complete with a new full-time editor, Trisha Doyle.
We have done some good stuff over the two years, and I hope to still write some better stuff in the future too. We have a website that can better showcase good work and promote it for longer. I am proud to have been involved – and to stay involved, albeit in a new capacity as a writer only.