February 27, 2009

A conversation with readers

Sambit Bal

This blog has been a long time in the making. It's a lame excuse, but I can offer the explanation that I was looking for the right tone for this blog because I also write in the other areas of the site. I don't claim to have found it, but I have been shamed into action by John Brewin and Graham Jenkins, my colleagues at Soccernet and Scrum, Cricinfo's sister sites, who have started their editor's blogs.

So first things first: this will not be a column, nor a journal or a diary. Rather, I am hoping that it will develop into a conversation. Cricinfo's primary duty has always been to its readers, and one of the great gifts of the internet, is the connection it allows between the reader and the writer.

This page will be a modest attempt to further that connection.

It will also feature random reflections and observations forgive me, and feel free to chastise me, if it occasionally veers towards self-indulgence but mainly it will aim to draw you into the world of Cricinfo. I am always curious about what goes into the making of things I like: movies, books, gadgets, magazines, or even cocktails and pasta, and I hope it will be of some interest to you to get a peek behind the scenes at Cricinfo. Alas, that will not include what Andrew McGlashan is up to in the evenings at the St Lawrence Gap in Barbados.

Sambit Bal is the editor of ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by Sambit Bal on (March 8, 2009, 11:10 GMT)

Venkat, Aakash Chopra does a blog for us. But the contracted Indian players are not allowed to write.

Posted by VENKAT on (March 7, 2009, 3:27 GMT)

Hi Sambit ( i always thought u were Samit till now :) . I was wondering if u can invite some of our Indian players to blog , like Gayle & Sarwan.. Keep up the good work , cricinfo is like timesofindia for me now -)..

Posted by Anurag Pandey on (March 5, 2009, 12:38 GMT)

Sambit its great to see you wanting to interact with the readers. I think other than Ananth not many readers get responses from the writer and there is actually not much interaction between the readers as well. I think the moderation guidelines are very strict on cricinfo and you have to wait sometimes a couple of days before your post appears on the site. Sometimes it doesn't even appear even though you've not written anything offensive but I guess it just gets lost in the system. Could you look at relaxing the moderation and have posts appear immediately and moderate them later if it contains anything offensive or violates your posting guidelines. Also if you comment on articles you need to be a user on cricinfo and on the blog you need not be a user, shouldn't you follow the same strategy everywhere on the site? Ideally everyone should have a user id and that way you can moderate them better by knowing repeat offenders who can be banned.

Posted by Sambit Bal on (March 2, 2009, 16:28 GMT)

Yes Kunal, I did edit Gentleman. Glad you still remember it. Readers like you make my job feel worthwhile.

Posted by saurabh on (February 27, 2009, 15:57 GMT)

In Addition to the Doosra Blog by Dileep, your blog gives us readers another oppurtunity to converse with another good cricket writer.

:)

Posted by Kunal Talgeri on (February 27, 2009, 13:11 GMT)

Hi Sambit! If I am not wrong, you were the editor of 'Gentleman' too, right? The last few lines of your blog post, (" I am always curious about what goes into the making of things I like: movies, books...") reminded me of a couple of cover stories of that magazine. One was on "Deconstructing Marketing"... the other was on "100 Underrated Films". I could be wrong but if you were indeed editor of that mindspace for men, I just wanted to tell you it was a fab magazine. And the same spirit runs thru Cricinfo, Cheers!

Posted by Satish on (February 27, 2009, 13:08 GMT)

I think this blog is a wonderful idea. For too long I have felt that while we read and provide feedback on the articles written, we don't seem to be able to get our views across or even have the chance of holding a discussion with wonderful cricket writers like yourselves, Dileep Premchandran, etc.

Thanks for this.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sambit Bal
Editor-in-chief Sambit Bal took to journalism at the age of 19 after realising that he wasn't fit for anything else, and to cricket journalism 14 years later when it dawned on him that it provided the perfect excuse to watch cricket in the office. Among other things he has bowled legspin, occasionally landing the ball in front of the batsman; laid out the comics page of a newspaper; covered crime, urban development and politics; and edited Gentleman, a monthly features magazine. He joined Wisden in 2001 and edited Wisden Asia Cricket and Cricinfo Magazine. He still spends his spare time watching cricket.

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