DNN’s Tournament Season Coverage

DNN’s Tournament Season Coverage 2010 WFTDA Championship Tournament. Photo: Joe Rollerfan

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Roller Derby Tournament Season starts in earnest in just a few days, so we want to take a moment to fill you in on our coverage plans. We’d like to thank our 2011 Key Sponsors for sustaining us through the year to get us to this point: Atom Wheels, Fast Girl Skates, and the GRNMNSTR family of roller derby products.

As regular DNN users know, our efforts are viewer supported; while our sponsors and advertisers cover the overhead to keep us going from day to day, we count on voluntary contributions from you to get us out into the field to cover the big events. As we fill you in on our tournament plans, please consider making a financial contribution to keep us moving!

The WFTDA Big 5 Tournaments

Each year since 2007, DNN (and its forerunner, Leadjammer.com) has provided the only source of live coverage from the WFTDA Regional and Championship tournaments. This year will be a little different.

While past years’ coverage was arranged informally, we’ve come to see the need to formalize these relationships in order to maintain clear communications and expectations. This year, at our urging, the WFTDA issued a formal broadcast RFP for coverage of the Region Playoffs and Championship Tournament.

We submitted what we believe was a very impressive proposal to deliver a live viewer experience at a quality unprecedented in modern derby. Moreover, our bid outlined our ability to keep this experience paywall-free, in keeping with the accessibility elements of our mission.

Despite our strong proposal and track record of delivering a lot with little resources, this year WFTDA has selected a competitor’s bid. While we are disappointed that we won’t be bringing you the Big 5 video broadcast this year, we hope for a good broadcast and viewer experience as WFTDA explores this new direction.

Of course, broadcast is only one element of DNN’s journalistic efforts. Throughout The Big 5, you can still count on us to bring you headlines, action recaps, video features, final scores straight to your phone, and more. Continuing a new experiment this year, we’re also gathering volunteers to provide more multiple-language textcasting, which we hope to provide in several languages for at least the final bouts of each event.

MRDA Championship Tournament

One of the big stories of modern roller derby in 2011 has been the flourishing growth of men’s derby. As men’s leagues have popped up in dozens of cities around the globe, the Men’s Derby Coalition has evolved into the Men’s Roller Derby Association, with membership growing at a rapid clip and competitive levels keeping pace.

This year’s Spring Roll Tournament, carried live on DNN, featured an unprecedented gathering of competitive men’s derby teams — and drew a surprising number of eyeballs, far outstripping our audience projections. While men’s derby has been perking in a few places for several years now, it’s clear that this year it has fully arrived.

On October 22, MRDA will hold its first ever Championship Tournament, and DNN is proud to announce that we’ll be there to bring you full live coverage from both tracks of the event.

World Cup

If you’ve read the internet this year, you’ve noticed an historic event in modern flat-track roller derby is on the horizon in December: the 2011 Blood & Thunder Roller Derby World Cup. The first event of its kind, this 4 day tournament will bring 13 leagues from around the globe together under the flags of their home countries to compete for a shot at greatness on a global stage.

As with MRDA Champs, DNN is proud to announce we’ll bring you full live coverage, from both tracks, all four days of this unprecedented, historic event. Also like our MRDA experience, our World Cup coverage to date has drawn far more attention than we’d expected. We’re bracing for a website-shuddering level of traffic for these broadcasts!

It’s Your Turn

Between bringing the full DNN treatment to MRDA and World Cup, as well as our continued journalistic efforts from WFTDA’s Big 5, we’re staring down the barrel of some substantial travel and broadcast costs. We’ve recalibrated our fund drive target based on our current coverage goals. Our 2011 Fund Drive is off to a good start, but we’ve got some distance to close in order to bring you the coverage you’ve come to depend on.

We have a great lineup of contributor premiums to reward larger gifts this year, including full team outfitting from DerbySkinz, DNN limited edition Antik skates, limited edition signed photos of notable skaters, and this year’s screen print DNN garments from Flat Track Revolution. Learn more here.

If you plan to enjoy this fall’s coverage on DNN, and you have the means, please do your part!