We were who you thought we were. And we weren’t.

Randy Turner might have promised you names. Or hoped for them. But we aren’t giving up any of our people.

But we are going to give you something.

During the course of every incarnation of Southernwatch, there have been about half a dozen people whose ideas, words and reporting fed this site. They were faculty, staff and students. They were older people and young ones, too.

And they rotated in and out over the years. They got in and took an oath to not give the other up to Speck’s crew. We posted from restaurants and bars, apartments, houses  and on out-of-town trips. Sometimes one person would write a post, another would edit it and a third person would post it.

We had a faculty adviser who told us mostly that we shouldn’t say “fuck” so much. We told them to fuck off. And it isn’t who you think. They are still with us. Dumb fucker.

This probably should have been up front, but we know we are not the New York Times. We are not The Joplin Globe. We aren’t even The Chart. But some of us have journalism training, if not experience. Here is the fun part. We know we aren’t “serious” and we never intended to be. It is funny that early on that a Watcher said we “need to be more Daily Show and less daily news.” The other guys are going to — or should — give it to you straight. We wanted to be fun. The guilty pleasure that said what everyone was thinking but wouldn’t say.

The beauty of Southernwatch was the goddamn democratic — sorry — shared governance of the motherfucker. Sometimes we would go quiet and you would ask us to come back. So we did. People contributed who didn’t know they were contributing. We were kinda like an NSA with a cause. We were everywhere.

We never claimed to be journalists, but we believe we did practice journalism. We were over the top and we had a point of view and an agenda. No argument here. But, like Fox News and the folks on the other side, we had a place. We started conversations and arguments and advanced debate. And, occasionally, we broke a story ourselves.

So who is Southernwatch and what will happen now?

Southernwatch was and is all of you. It is a product of the new social media phenomenon. All of you have provided leads and posts and things that led to posts. The major players would not surprise you, but likely aren’t your first suspects. And, because we aren’t going dark but just slowing down, we aren’t giving Mr. Turner his names.

During the American Revolution, the colonial army was able to successfully engage the British by employing guerilla tactics and using the land to its advantage. During this revolution, we have done the same. And patriots met in secret, oftentimes.

We aren’t going dark. At least not yet. Let’s see what the Bored does and who is taking the wheel. And keep guessing about us. You are probably wrong.

An old teacher would tell us we are burying the lead, but think about this. We have a member of President’s Council among us.



7 Responses to We were who you thought we were. And we weren’t.

  1. CaffeineKatie says:

    Thank you for your work over the past few years– your irreverence, your risk-taking, your memory-jostling, your snarkiness. You were the anti-institutional memory, the billboard that refused to be papered over. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  2. Beetlejuice says:

    You all might do an “OK” thing here and there, but you’re still nothing more than faceless cowards. You can pat yourselves on your pretentious little backs all you want, but the fact remains – You are cowards.

  3. NoMoreSpeck says:

    Oh, for fuck’s sake … as if we didn’t know Hanrahan, Stebbins and Steve Smith were behind this site.

    Nut up and stand behind it, pussies.

    That said, you did the lord’s work. Congrats.

  4. Andrea says:

    Yeah, it was pretty obvious you aren’t the Globe. I mean, they’ve been unwilling to uncover things right in front of their faces. If anyone on staff there had done their jobs even halfway, there wouldn’t have been a need for this site at all. But there was, and likely still is, so I’m glad you’re here, whoever you are. Thanks for your important work here.

  5. Beetlejuice says:

    You all might do an “OK” thing here and there, but you’re still nothing more than faceless cowards. You can pat yourselves on your pretentious little backs all you want, but the fact remains – You are cowards.

  6. Countdown Clock (expired) says:

    I just hope you keep this blog going. I really do enjoy this. I could care less who you are, what you do or why, it’s good to have someone being the Eye in the Sky or the Watchdog keeping an eye on the taxpayers money. Either way, don’t disappear, keep up the efforts. We enjoy it too much.

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