Issue 5: Kites…Life

The Schoolyard Bully, The Village Idiot, and Kiting on the Internet

Provocative title, eh? After reading the first draft of my intended article, I decided that you would be better served if I canned it. Those who frequent the main Internet gathering places for kitefliers will know WHAT and WHOM I was referring to with that title. Buy me a beer the next time we meet, I’ll let you read it.

Instead of me ranting and raving about those who rant and rave, I’ll use this space to write about KiteLife’s first half-year of existence.

We started KiteLife with modest goals. We wanted to provide a useful resource to kiters world-wide, combining the structure and schedule of a print magazine with the immediacy and technical (and cost) advantages of the Internet. I anticipated a staff of 10 or so devoted kite folks, with an audience of about 1,000 per issue.

Well, it seems I set my sights a little low, and underestimated the demand for a publication like KiteLife. We started off with a staff of 13, and had impressive readership from the first day, April 1.

This issue marks several milestones. Firstly, it is our largest, and, I feel, best one yet. The breadth of coverage surpasses any of our previous efforts. We have 31 contributors to this issue, again, a high water mark.

Our earlier issues have been successful, much greater than we expected. We have just passed 700,000 hits (since April 1), with over 5 billion bytes of information downloaded. Thanks to our great staff, and your support, the best is yet to come.

We have a few tricks up our sleeves in coming issues. We are close to signing a professional art director, to enhance the layout and “feel” of KiteLife. As we grow, our network of contributors has, as well. The next issue will prove this, with exhaustive coverage of the Dieppe festival, and the AKA Convention.

I started this project thinking it would be a fun diversion. I didn’t expect it to become such a success in so short a time. Thanks, first, to the great staff. Secondly, kudos to Cutting Edge Kites, Avia Sport, Berry Blue Line, and the Kite Studio, who have made it possible for KiteLife to come to you. And, thanks to you for reading.

Anything I can do for you, let me know!

Mike Gillard

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Author:Mike Gillard (RIP)

A lover of all things kiting, Mike Gillard saw extensive time in team sport kite competition, judging, organization, publishing and more... Utilizing his collective experiences from the kiting community, he created Kitelife Magazine in April of 1998 and eventually went on to become the Editor of the AKA's Kiting magazine before his passing in February of 2006.

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