Well here we are again. The 2017 series of Strictly has barely begun, I’ve not even posted a results spoiler yet just the pairings one and already I’m getting attention from the media this time not for being a festive grinch and posting the Christmas Special results in November but this time for socking it to the BBC and defying them by continuing to post spoilers to this site ruining the show for millions.
I honestly thought I’d covered why I do what I do and why this site exists in the about section and in my last note to editors but here we are again. The newspapers clearly spotted the about page this time as the Daily Star quoted from it and then The Sun incorrectly assumed that I’d spoken to The Daily Star. I haven’t. The only newspaper I have ever spoken to about this site has been The Daily Mail and there’s a very good reason for that. They asked me for comment last December and were the only media organisation to approach me for comment – well besides TalkRadio. More on that in a moment.
So here are some more frequently asked questions which will hopefully address some of the questions people or journalists have.
Why does this site exist?
Well that’s an easy question. Because there is a user demand for it. Initially I posted the spoiler to my own personal blog as a means of providing the results to a few hundred followers on twitter without the need to send multiple direct messages to avoid spoiling the results publicly. And for 2 years during the 2012 series and the 2013 series thats all the traffic I received.
Then in 2014 something quite unexpected happened. Those few hundred page views over a Strictly weekend turned in to a few thousand and then a few tens of thousands. This new traffic was coming from google searches for a number of keywords which my blog had suddenly become top on the search rankings for. This took me by surprise and at times completely melted the cheap web hosting solution I was using at the time as the site struggled to keep up with demand.
As 99.9% of my blog traffic was coming just to view the Strictly Spoiler results I was posting and also partly due to some competition sites cropping up I made the decision to migrate the content to its own domain name where it has been since late 2014. The site has also continued to grow its user base and over the course of the last series nearly half a million people viewed the site at one time or another.
Put quite simply if there wasn’t a demand for what I do, this site either would not exist or would not exist in its present form.
Why are you spoiling the results for all Strictly viewers?
I’m not! I firmly believe that both groups of viewers, those who like to wait for the results show and those who don’t want to wait for the results can live together in harmony. This site is clearly identified as a spoiler website: the clue is in the name for one. Whenever I post the spoiler to Facebook or Twitter or anywhere else I do so as a link to this site people are free to click on or not. I encourage all discussion of the spoiler on Twitter to be limited to the #StrictlySpoiler hashtag and I provide a Facebook page and a comments system on this site where people can discuss the spoiler without risking spoiling the result for others. I also encourage and incentivise discussion to take place in these places only by providing competition prizes for commenters each week.
There are other people who will plaster the results publicly for all to see. It is these people who are spoiling the results for all strictly viewers and not me.
Why are you anti BBC?
Actually I’m not. I love the BBC and a lot of what they do. I think the license fee provides excellent value for money for the many shows and services the BBC provides.
But the BBC can make stupid decisions from time to time. They commissioned Don’t Scare The Hare for one thing! Strictly Come Dancing is the BBC’s flagship reality show (especially now Bake Off is on Channel 4) and is the main part of their Autumn/Winter schedules and has been for years. I honestly cannot believe the BBC think it is a good idea to pre record the results of Strictly and broadcast them a full day after the event and then wonder why the results leak out on sites like this. We live in a day and age where information can be transmitted globally in a fraction of a second. Indeed when the spoiler comes in it only takes me a few seconds to post it to this site and alert my Facebook and Twitter followers.
I appreciate it may seem like I’m on a one man crusade against the BBC but I’m not. Actually the BBC have had more of a crusade against me than I have them such as when they had Facebook remove my Facebook Page for extremely spurious reasons. Yes I would love for the BBC to do a live results show and that is one of the goals of this site but they will never do that as for some reason they care about ratings even though they’d make no extra money whether 10 people tune in or 10 million. Which leads me on to….
Why are you taking viewers away from the results show?
Again I’m not. Many of this site’s users still watch the results show, myself included. We just prefer watching it knowing the results in advance. It doesn’t take away our enjoyment of the show and as we don’t share the spoiler with people who don’t want to know the results we don’t take away their enjoyment either.
I’ve actually had a number of comments from people who say reading the spoiler enhances their enjoyment of the results show. I’ve also had comments saying that the way the BBC dramatises and drags the results out causes them anxiety and that’s why they view the spoiler as then they aren’t dragged out over 45 minutes. As a sufferer of anxiety too that makes a lot of sense to me and may be why I choose to view, and then disseminate, the spoiler.
As long as we are considerate towards those who like to wait there is no reason why we can’t enjoy the show in any way we see fit.
Don’t you have anything better to do?
Truthfully yes I do. I could actually sit down and watch a show I love and actually get to enjoy it without having to work. But I choose to work because as a single father of two children who I have to provide for and a student frankly I need the additional income that this job provides even though it isn’t much at all especially when you consider it is highly seasonal income and a lot of the revenue I receive gets put back in to the site to pay for ever increasing hosting costs or competition prizes. As of yet I have not recorded a profit on my end of year accounts
And you’ll notice I refer to this as a job and work because it is becoming like that. Throughout the live shows rather than being able to sit down and enjoy the show I’m sat with my laptop posting content to Facebook and Twitter for my followers and getting things on the site ready for various points in the show. And the work isn’t just during the show. During the week I post news such as the Songs/Dances or any other news I can. Before the show I’m pre-typing the content ready to go out during the live show, after the show I’m moderating the many hundreds of comments on here, twitter and facebook and also monitoring my site traffic and making sure the site stays up when traffic spikes around spoiler time. And I’m monitoring various sources for the spoiler so I can get it posted quickly to this site as soon as it comes in.
Put frankly I put a lot of work into doing what I do and operating and maintaining this site and yes there are a ton of better things I could be doing with my time but we all have to work to make a living.
Finally I just want to post a few of the comments that have been posted to the article on The Sun’s facebook page in response to their article. Not that anyone should take too much notice of anything The Sun has to say but still its lovely when people are talking about you like this.
Obviously it’s not worth addressing the comments too much even though I have addressed a lot of what they’ve said in my comments above but I don’t need this kind of stress, abuse and grief for providing a service that is clearly wanted otherwise no one would visit this site. Frankly 2017 has already been a difficult year me what with completing a bachelors degree, dealing with the break up of my relationship and tomorrow I am about to start a masters degree. Add into that I suffer from Anxiety and Depression (and I’ve had to turn down an interview with Paul Ross on TalkRadio tomorrow morning which would have been good exposure for the site because I wouldn’t have been able to cope due to my anxiety) and quite frankly I don’t need this crap making me ill when all I am doing is trying to earn a wage to support my family and provide a service to hundreds of thousands of people who want me to provide this service and actively seek it out.
Complaints to anyone as long as its not me!