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Why be a Webmaster?

Is it the money or power? Or is it for fun?

     
11:00 pm on Jun 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I'm coming up on one year of being a webmaster. I currently own 18 domains. Almost all of them are hobby driven. Money has been an afterthought.

I started my first site, about fishing, on July 4th of last year. I put it up because I wasn't a good fisherman and wanted to learn more about it.

What I discovered was being a webmaster has advantages beyond what I expected. It's INSTANT authority. It's a POWERFUL job that can sway people to an opinion. It's DANGEROUS to do when you've been tipping the late-night adult beverages:>)

I just finished having a meeting with the representatives of Minnesota DNR and North Dakota Game and Fish. I called the meeting to hash out some border water problems with tournament fishing.

What were my credentials? Webmaster. That's it. As webmaster I'm pretty well known in 3 states, and in Canada. I'm not known for FISHING, but for a lousy set of hobby websites. (Which happen to score very high in SERP's thanks to THIS site:>)

Has anyone else found out something they never expected to get by being a webmaster?

Money? Power? Fame? Sued? Bought out?

So why did you become a webmaster?

11:14 pm on June 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Formerly, tv and radio execs have been the gatekeepers of information. Now, the Internet has enabled little old you and me to quietly slip into the forefront of information systems and delivery. Power.

For me, it is really a fun job. I never though I could make the transition from buidling doorway pages to designing full on sites but I learn something new every day. It is a combination of creativity, compiling information, and making good resources (and a little money), that is really motivating.

11:16 pm on June 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Definitely not for the money, for the chicks.
No seriously I thinks it's probably the power. It's cool being able to do the design, programming, hosting, marketing of a site. You just don't always get control of all of them.
11:21 pm on June 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

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For me it is about a few things.

First of all, the money. It pays the bills for me and keeps food on my table. Second of all, it allows me as much free time as I need. If I need a day or two off to do something I can do that knowing my sites are still there making money. Third is the freedom. If I get an idea for a site I can research it and build it whenever I want. I don't have any specific job description or formula I need to follow.

Those are a few of the better reasons I can think of.

11:27 pm on June 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

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its a bit of both, if i could extrapolate my mind into a website, it would be a killer, but the theory is easier than the practical.

power - yes, one does this, one does that, i'm slowly becoming a keyterm man, not yet though !

11:34 pm on June 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I suppose I could offer up a few other items I've been able to do, again going back to my only credential is being a webmaster.

Ran for city council, lost by 92 votes. I took on a 'junior mayor' and nearly beat him.

I've been asked to host fishing reports 2 times a week on a local radio station.

I get free guided fishing trips.

The TV station of our city uses my website to get fishing reports for their weekly fishing reports.

It's a weird thing. Don't get me wrong....I like it! It's just weird that I can get to this level...sipping my beer....smoking my Marboro...all in the comfort of my favorite chair.

I can't thank you folks-Brett espescially-for providing this resource. Without it, I'd be on page 342 of a SERP instead of where I am now.

11:37 pm on June 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I Webmaster for myself. I did the whole consulting bit dealing with clients but they didn't want what was good for them. :p

I do the design for myself - its great and it is a power trip. I can say my thoughts and people read them and take into account what I said. I do the web design as a hobby and a few extra bucks. The SEO goes hand in hand with the web designing it gives me the oportunity to fine-tune the site the way it needs to be and stick whatever info I want on it.

I love competition :) Or maybe crushing competition (:

11:38 pm on June 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

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In the field my site is in, it is so controversial that it was by necessity that I developed a website for it just to get it out. When your material steps on the toes of the establishment that controls what gets published and what doesn't get published, you don't have much chance of getting published. Imagine a hot new book release in a storefront display that results in much of the other stock becoming irrelevant. Not gonna happen. Thank God for the web.
1:41 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I enjoy the freedom and flexibility that this occupation allows. I simply pick up my laptop and decide where I want to be today. I can work from anywhere. The $$ isn't too bad either.
1:45 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Cash obviously - self employment - forever learning ....sounds like a good job description you know ;)

I like the idea of a webmaster being a "portable job" meaning you dont have to be in any one place to do it!

1:51 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I make all my money off the web. So it is about making a living for me. Sure I have power. But power is not all that it is cracked up to be. I rather deligate my power.
1:54 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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For me it's just like doing word puzzles.

Coding and designing, it's the same challenge.

It's a fun hobby and I'm making very good money from it as well.

I can stay up late and sleep late.

2:01 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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For me its like a control game like sim web site. I like being able to tweak this and that and seeing my traffic raise and lower.
2:34 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I've always been fascinated by magic and wizards. I enjoyed role playing games and such for almost 10 years. I guess working with computers and especially the web makes me feel like a modern wizard :) I especially enjoy the aura of mystery around our line of work. After all, it's all about putting a spell on your user to push them to buy your goods ;)
3:28 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Money? You mean you can make money doing this? Man, I must have missed a FAQ somewhere...

;)

3:30 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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must be the power... sure ain't the money - yet. :)

Seriously, give it 12 months and hopefully I'll be making a living.

I hear what you're saying about the power though. I'm on the edge of having more local recognition as a web-guru than I want... and a load more than I deserve given my (currently) limited skillset. But relative to most people locally, I'm miles ahead of the game. *shrug*

5:23 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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$$$$ - and working in my bathrobe

truth be told I find most of what I do mundane and tedious and not all that challenging but the money is far beyond what I ever made in a cubicle

8:16 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I do webmastering just for the fun of it, although if I get enough traffic to one of my hobby-oriented sites (which is getting more visitors than I ever imagined, courtesy of what I've learnt thanks to everyone here) I see potential for a small return on it.

Plus if my daytime (non-SEO/web) job ever vanishes, this is something I may be able to pursue as a replacement job, if I ever get to the stage where I think that I'd be good enough to have a fair stab at it. Way to go yet, but its an option.

(I still can't get over people from all over the www taking time out to read/view my humble pages either! this is a fascinating hobby)

DoU

8:48 am on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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...cuz then people stop laughing at your funny hairstyle and disheveled appearance...
6:52 pm on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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$$$$ - and working in my bathrobe

You have a bathrobe? I bet your wife bought that for you.

6:55 pm on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Either that or his neighbors that got tired of seeing him with no robe on through the windows!
7:00 pm on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Money? Power? Fame? Sued? Bought out?

So why did you become a webmaster?

one word..

Chicks

You should see all these groupies constantly following me around :) I swear, it's better than being a rock star or a movie star... :)

7:03 pm on June 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

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roflmao

sure seth, I know I get the best tables at the best restaurants etc..;)

I love crunching code and webmaster seems to be the name they stick you with if you run a couple sites.

I wish it came with amounts of money equal to the illustriousness of the title.

4:41 pm on June 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I've been lucky enough to stumble across something that I really love doing, and which also can bring in money. I didn't start with the intentions of making a career out of it, but now I am starting to think differently. I am fifteen and have been doing HTML for more than four years already, and I know it like the back of my hand. Since then I've learned JavaScript, PHP, CSS, and a bit of Java. I spend a lot of my time working on my Web sites, and I love doing it. I don't know what it is, but to me it's addictive to try and figure out the best way to write a program like, say, a tagboard, and to run into problems along the way. The best feeling is figuring them out at the end. I run and design Web sites because it's what I love to do. But if I can do what I love and make a living from it, then I think I am the luckiest person I know.

p.s: the bathrobe thing wouldn't be too bad either....

5:15 pm on June 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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habitat675,

15 years old? Knows HTML, JavaScript, PHP, CSS, and a bit of Java?

When you put out a public share offering, let me know. :)

5:18 pm on June 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I can't say I do this for the money since I'm not making any yet. Hopefully I will.

The one thing I can say is that it's the coolest job one can have.

POWER. We all know that those who have the power to control the masses are the successful ones. The Internet gives us all a chance to do just that.

FREEDOM. You can wake up at 10 in the morning if you want to. You can be wherever you want to be and still be able to do your job. It's not work that people hate, it's the lack of freedom, the 9to6 schedule that drives you nuts and sometimes makes you feel so miserable.

Dan

1:35 pm on June 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

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seth...having done both...trust me on this...rock groupies are more fun than geek groupies :)

still and all, us old gits can't be too fussy

seriously

I'm in it because it's a chance to make good money doing something I care about...when either factor ceases to be there I'll be off to do something else

1:47 pm on June 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Straight after I left school, I proceeded to work in a textile factory - at 16, to see what working life was like.

Basically it consisted of walking round a machine all day, watching wool move through a machine - and making sure the wool moves. Oh, and keep the place clean too. 8 hours a day.

I make more money doing this, now, semi-part-time! I spend most of it learning new things. I don't have to look at any wool either ;)

Seriously, its a great job to have, so I'm hoping that webmastering won't go as out of date and boring as textile manufacturing once was in the Scottish Borders :)

DXL

6:32 am on June 25, 2002 (gmt 0)

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If I can do something for fun and still pay my bills, then its all good. For the most part, though, I was totally sick of having to dress up for the jobs I had. I want to wake up at noon everyday, lift weights, play golf, and start doing design work just as soon as King of the Hill goes off. Shirt and Tie again? I'd rather shovel horse manure.
7:52 am on June 25, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Well if I was doing all the same database work just for me then I'd be just another eccentric. But since the info appears on a web site with a few thousands visitors a month, I am doing a community service :-)
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