Time sure flies when you’re having fun. It’s incredibly rare that a site like this, which began as a personal blog to talk about a niche hobby, lasts even half this long. Heck, most don’t last more than a few months.

Since the Fall of 2012, over 80 different contributors have published 5,020 pieces of content on the site. 23k tweets have been used to build a following of just over 9.5k followers.

Hipsters of the Coast has been a lot of things to a lot of people in the community. For me, personally, it has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I took over the day-to-day operations of the site, with the help of five other contributors, in the Fall of 2015, just after the site turned three years old.

At the time, our most-read article was a satirical piece comparing pictures of known Magic cheaters to pictures of random cats on the internet. (Some things about what entertains this community haven’t changed.) That piece surpassed an impressive mark of 20k unique views after catching fire on reddit—at a time when our daily audience was measured in the hundreds. Fast forward five years and our current most-read piece has almost 10 times as many unique views, while many other articles during that period have surpassed that 20k benchmark, and our daily audience is now measured in the thousands.

Would you believe that so far this year, over 12,000 readers have come here from the Netherlands? The global reach of our content constantly surprises us and is incredibly humbling. Our readers come from a wide range of nationalities representing Magic’s hot spots, including Germany, Brazil, Italy, and Japan.

But to be honest, we’re not in it for the numbers, though we’re incredibly proud of how much we’ve grown. Believe me, if our audience numbers were really the be-all and end-all, it would be trivially easy to go down the route of churning out tons of low-effort articles and (non-satirical) click-bait garbage. Thankfully, we’re not a click-bait factory. If we were you’d be inundated with headlines like, “Which District of Ravnica has the Best Bakeries?” and “Are Dragons or Sphinxes the Better Iconic Tribe?”

Maybe we’d be able to increase our overall numbers that way, but we’d certainly lose some of the integrity and trust we’ve built in the past eight years. And, when it comes down to it, we just wouldn’t find much joy in running that kind of site. (Though the best bakeries are clearly going to be in the Golgari districts—do not ask what they use for butter—and Dragons are way better than Sphinxes. You know you would have clicked on that headline just to make sure no one thought otherwise.)

Dragons > Sphinxes

We’re also not in it for the money—believe me, anyone who’s in it for the money is not investing their time and energy exclusively in Magic content creation. Besides, if we were here for the money you’d be subject to headlines like, “The Top 10 Modern Cards that Should be Unbanned Next Week” or “23 Best Standard Cards for After Rotation,” and those articles would be about 99% referral links to a site like TCGPlayer.

Anyway, if we’re not in it for the numbers and we’re not in it for the money, what are we in it for? That’s a question we have asked ourselves every day for the past eight years. What are we trying to accomplish and what motivates us to keep going for the next eight years?

When we began, so many years ago, we recognized a void that needed to be filled in the community. Content that wasn’t just about the best decks, and content that wasn’t just written by the most successful players. We wanted to produce content that average Magic fans would want to read, not just tournament grinders, and provide a platform for writers who wanted to create quality content (and improve their writing skills along the way) who tended to be ignored by larger content sites.

That’s what we’re in it for. That’s why we’re here. That’s why we have sourced, developed, edited, published, and paid for so much unique content, day in and day out, for the last eight years and will continue doing so for at least the next eight.

Along the way we’ve accomplished some great things and learned an incredible amount about content creation, journalism, and the Magic community. We’re a very different place than we were eight years ago—and we’re all very different people, as well.

Thanks All Around

At this point I’d like to thank all of you for sticking it out with us through all of the ups and downs that come with learning as you go. We wouldn’t be here without you, our dedicated and loyal readers.

I also want to especially thank every single person who’s ever contributed content to Hipsters of the Coast. You can’t be a content site without content, and while I’m sure everyone loves my personal content, it’s better to diversify. Our writers are the heart and soul of this organization and we’re incredibly proud to have worked with so many amazing people, many of which have gone on to become integral parts of the Magic community.

Hipsters also wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the other amazing colleagues who’ve helped shepherd the site from its birth to where we are today, starting with Zac Clark, our founder; Matt Jones and Hunter Slaton, who helped turn a blog into a community; former site managers Jess Stirba and Kristen Gregory; and my current partners-in-crime, Brendan McNamara (our Editor-in-Chief) and David McCoy (our CTO).

So whether you come here for the free to play guides, the breaking news stories, the incredible Commander content, or something else, we’re glad you’ve been with us for the past eight years and hope you’ll stick around to see what we’ve got in store next.

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