It seems that new forms of media are appearing every time we turn on our laptop, PC, or iPhone. With the advent of blogs and facebook, there’s been as much of a cultural revolution as there has been a technological one. With blogs and social networking sites like Twitter documenting our every move–as we so choose, of course–we’re granted up close and personal access to the lives of our favorite celebrities and athletes. And surfing is no exception. The following four surfers and their respective blogs represent four unique avenues. The next time you want to see Dane Reynolds’ girlfriend play the drums with Matt Hoy, you’re only a click away. Want to watch Dion Agius get a tat? Go to his personal site. Or for that matter, if you want to see Joel Parkinson’s concession speech to the world after his loss to Fanning, look no further than his blog.
The Site: MarineLayerProductions.com
The Lowdown: Dane used to have a blog bearing his name that he scarcely updated. It wasn’t the best thing to look at, but his new blog, MarineLayerProductions, lives up to Dane’s independent personality. Nowhere on the site does it mention his name and the majority of the updates are in video form. All of the videos that Dane posts are his A-grade work as well, definitely widespread release quality. The blog truly feels like it’s run by Dane and gives you an interesting look into his life.
The Site: JoelParko.com
The Lowdown: Simple lines and layout, solid video and commentary, Parko’s blog is a safe way to market Joel’s life. If you’re a die-hard Parko fan, then you might want to check this regularly, but at times the site functions more like a press release than an in-depth blog. That was until recently when Parko posted one of the most respectable and classy admissions that I can recall. After that tear-jerker of a loss at Pipe, Parko wrote the following about Mick on his blog:
“Have just switched my computer on for the first time in 48 hours and looked at the site and was totally overwhelmed. I read every word of every comment, and some of them had me in tears, fully brought me to tears. There were crew from Brazil, crew from South Africa, crew from Israel, as well as my friends from home, people from all around the world. They were telling me they were so proud of what I’d done, and that I’d been courageous and been a good sport. To be honest, it’s freaking me out a little bit. It was such an emotional day that I just kind of rode it wherever it took me. Losing the title was tough. I came up to the house after losing and shed a few tears and just wanted to hide. But I knew carrying Mick up the beach was not only the right thing to do, it’s exactly what Mick would be doing for me. For all the messages you guys have sent I can’t thank you enough. As much as I lost the world title I gained the respect of so many good people all around the world and I reckon that means even more.”
After reading that, how can you not look at this blog and become a fan of Joel?
The Site: Mickfanning.com.au
The Lowdown: Mick’s site looks to be fueled by Red Bull in more ways than one. That being said, whomever designed the interface did a bang-up job. With a news section, updated photo and video galleries, and a live Twitter RSS streamed onto the homepage, Mick’s site feels like a sleek, 24-hour news channel. Although the site doesn’t have the gritty, personal feel that make’s most blogs worthwhile, he is your new world champ and it’s not a bad way to brush up on all things Mick.
The Site: Glove.tv/dion
The Lowdown: Everything on this blog, from the type they use to the raw, first-person tone Dion uses to communicate, makes this the best professional blog in surfing. Hands down, Dion’s set the pace and the standard. It could also be argued that the foundation for Dion’s career was built around this very site. The meat of the page is the video section, updated with footage shot and edited by Beren Hall, and it is always worth a look. Yes, Dion rips, but it’s like having a new surf video every week. Couple that with an opportunity to learn about new music and you can’t deny that Dion has the most informative site around.