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State of 5 Oz. Address: Welcome to the new site

As you can tell by now, we have launched 5 Oz. of Pain 3.0.

This new design signals the end of our blog format and the beginning of a new format and philosophy that is more in line with a standard web magazine format.

Why the change? Well, when I started this site I had almost no ambition for the site. As I’ve said before, the decision to blog about MMA was nothing more than a hobby for me at first. I had no intention of running this as a business. If I had intended to run this site like a business, I would have done a lot of things differently.

So while this started as nothing more than a labor of love, something happened: people actually started reading what I wrote. From there things grew and I brought in Matt Cava and Adam Morgan as co-owners to help run the site.

Our staff grew last month with the addition of David Andrest, who got us back online after our former hosting company kicked us off their servers with no warning. I had been friends with Dave but after he came through in the clutch for us and knowing the challenges that still faced the site, we knew we had to bring him on board.

Dave knew of my long-term vision to start running 5 Oz. like a real business as opposed to a side hobby and to eventually abandon the blog format. When he had heard how long I felt it would take to make the transition, I think he was surprised. And much to my own surprise, he felt the site was ready to abandon the blog format and move forward. Not only that, he said we could do it in a matter of weeks. That’s how we ended up launching 5 Oz. 3.0 so quickly after we had just launched 2.0.

I really don’t know if our new format will be a big deal or not. Maybe nobody in the MMA blogging community will care. Or maybe we’ll be branded “sellouts.” I’m not really sure. But our format change isn’t a case of us passing judgment on blogs and bloggers. Blogs serve a great purpose and are very important when it comes to a form of media. However, it’s just not for us anymore and I hope people can respect that.

When I first started writing MMA, I had no sources. For me, this site was all about venting after big fight cards. Coming from a background of sports columns on the web and local sports talk radio, my main focus was just to be an opinion-based columnist. While I really never intended to be a reporter, I began to make a few contacts by reaching out to fighters over MySpace or via their official web sites.

People started talking to us because they recognized our name after having read something on the site. Over time, people in the industry actually began to seek us out and our network grew with our visibility. The more viral we were, the more people wanted to talk to us to get their site of the story out there. I suddenly found myself in a position where we were coming into a fair amount of exclusive news. Rather than only write op/ed pieces, I felt it made a lot of sense to also do some reporting. And thanks to these people in the industry who are kind enough to answer our calls, text messages, and e-mails, we’re able to bring a lot of unique and first-run content to the table.

Our goal is to expand our network of sources further and bring even more information that you read first at 5 Oz. Because we have fostered these relationships and developed these resources, I feel like it’s up to us to focus on exclusive content as opposed to just taking from others. We’re not copying and pasting anymore and while we still cite reports from other sites at times, we use a limited amount of quotes and do our best to try to advance the existing story.

I know a lot of our loyal readers will greet this change with mixed emotions. A lot of you have supported us through everything; whether it was a re-design, our site having technical issues, the hurdles my wife has encountered in her fighting career, etc. The Internet can be a cesspool of negativity at times that I dwell too much on but a lot of you have been there to reminded me through comment threads and e-mails that we’re writing for a lot of very cool people. Every time you write to tell us how much easier we make getting through your day at work, that means a lot to us. That’s the kind of feedback that gives me the drive to  make phone calls late at night to sources on the West Coast after I’ve just gotten back from getting my ass kicked at the gym while training. Your support means a lot and I hope you will continue to support us.

I realize a blog format is much more convenient because everything is on one page and you don’t have to click on anything, but I don’t think we’re the only site that’s a part of your daily routine that is using a standard magazine format. Some people will complain and tell us they prefer the old way better. We respect your opinion of the site but I want everyone to know up front, this is the new format and we’re not going to be looking back. In fact, we’re only looking forward.

We made this move because we feel it’s a better platform to present our content and we feel in the long run it will help us business-wise. Even though I write MMA full-time, 5 Oz. is not my only job. As I’ve said before, I put full-time hours into this site but my attention has to be divided quite often as I work jobs that afford me the ability to pay my bills. We believe this format change will help us eventually monetize the site better so that one day 5 Oz. is my only responsibility. And when that happens, the amount of exclusive content you see from us will skyrocket.

And at the end of the day, we’ll probably still be referred to as a “blog” and I’ll probably always be known as a “blogger.” And that’s fine by me. It’s not like we’re a doctor who freaks out if someone refers to us as a “mister.” If you want to call us a blog, go for it. This format change wasn’t about titles, it was about pushing the envelope and trying to continue to evolve as a website.

In closing, I just wanted to thank Dave for all the hard work he put into this re-design and I want to thank everyone on staff for their support of this change. We’ve asked a lot of our writers and going from a blog format to a web magazine format hasn’t been easy for them. I also want to thank my family for their support as well. It’s not easy having a husband and a father who works over 70 hours a week and still trains at least once a day, but my wife and son understand how much this means to me and they have supported me throughout. I’m just fortunate that they are as passionate about martial arts as I am.

57 COMMENTS
  • White Scott says:

    Me no likey the site changey.

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  • Sergio Hernandez says:

    It’s a pretty drastic change but I think the site flows pretty well.

    Kudos to you, Sam and the rest the 5 Oz. crew!

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  • chris shultz says:

    i think it’s great, it flows nice and is easy to read. Best of luck with the site

    Cheers guys!

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  • dohfil says:

    Good luck Sam!

    The new format is a little too busy for me and you’re closer to Sherdog’s format.

    Sherdog and yourself have been successful based on the CONTENT, so (bottom line) make your GOOD content easy to read and FIND and you’ll do great.

    Gimmicky Website facades don’t last without the continued excellent opinions, your knowledge of the sport coupled with your insights, your articles, interviews, cross-site information, and media re-directs back to 5Ozs.

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  • BG says:

    I agree with the “Busy” comment above. My desire to read this site as opposed to the others was because the stories were presented simply and cleanly. The stories were great and the comments were respectful and on topic. I can understand the business with ads, because you need to support yourself. Anyways, I’ll get used to the new format, just like everyone else. Thanks for the work you continually put into the site.

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  • Mike Olson says:

    Terrible, terrible, terrible… If the info/writers weren’t so damn good I’d probably sitch to Junkie or Mania. Keep up the good work, but please no more changes!

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  • Davey D says:

    Sam, this site by and far the most easily accessable one that I check daily with my cell phone. I can’t check the site at work anymore so this is the way for me right mostly. I think you ought to celebrate 3.0 by listening to some good ol’ tunes from Snot today dude. Keep up the good work guy’s. Cheers!!!

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  • Mike says:

    The best thing about 5oz is the amount of personality you have – everyone else seems to just be trying to get the news out first, and rewriting the same articles – i am sort of worried about “abandoning” the blog format, because i am afraid your personality won’t be able to come through. I know you need money to make this thing work, just please remember how you attracted an audience in the first place!

    love the site and all its facets.

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  • OCD says:

    Honestly, I think the blog format was much better. It is the reason I came here, I liked the feel, and I think it set you apart from the “online” magazines, whatever that means.

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  • matt c. says:

    We think its important to bring our best content forward and that’s what this new layout helps do. With Sam, Adam and team cranking out 10-20 pieces of content per day, its easy for the good stuff to get buried. While it may seem ‘busy’ at first, our readers should soon see that there is method to our madness. I think a lot of readers will appreciate how easy we made it for you to click to read relevant and/or ‘hot’ stories. It’s not necessarily a bad thing to be showcasing this much content – that fact is we are bringing a TON of MMA content to the web every day. It’s gotta go somewhere!

    We hope you all continue to enjoy FiveOuncesofPain.com.

    Big thanks to Sam, Adam and Dave for making this happen.

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  • David Andrest says:

    Davey D,

    Thanks for the kind words about our mobile version, I put that in place when the server change was made a few weeks ago. I’m glad to know it is doing what I hoped it would do.

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  • Skeet says:

    Still one of the top 5 places for MMA news. I look forward to more from 5oz.

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  • Rich B says:

    For those of us who use an RSS feed, there’s almost no change whatsoever. And that’s a good thing, since the site is so good.

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  • BJJDenver says:

    Looks good.

    One suggestion. How about putting the date and time of the article next to the headline. We can easily see where today’s start and go directly to them.

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  • Danny says:

    well…. honestly.. i’m not liking it at this very moment… but like every new car model that comes out these days, i’ll grow to love it.

    but it’s definitely a step up :) I’ll still come here for my MMA fix :)

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  • Jesse says:

    You guys continue to do a great job of making this site a legitimate contender. As a designer/writer/web/marketing guy I have to say I’m impressed. Great work guys, great content, and great things for you guys moving forward.

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  • Davey D says:

    David, it is really awesome dude. Technology never ceases to amaze me. I hope other MMA sites will follow suit, well, they have but 5oz Mobile is just so clean and easy to access. Cheers!!!

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  • GoofyMonkey says:

    I’m really enjoying the new layout. You guys did a real good job making everything really clear and easily navigated. I think it just takes a little getting used to and I’m sure given a little time everyone will come around and love the new look. Keep up the good work!

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  • raul says:

    wow, a new-look of the site. nice one…

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  • nick says:

    i know this will still be an awesome site but i liked the old format better….it kept things simple

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  • Evan says:

    Hate to be negative but its too busy.

    There is a reason why blogs work..simplicity and all the info is easy to read without having to click around.

    Good luck guys.

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  • Connor says:

    I like the new format a lot.

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  • Joel says:

    congrats! It must have been a lot of hard work. It looks great. Best MMA site by far

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  • dbess5 says:

    Awsome Job Dave!

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  • Tanner says:

    The new design will take some time to get used to. I disliked it when the junkie put a summary on the first page and you had to click to get the rest of the story. I understand you did that from time to time with long posts but not a line or two where I can’t really get the jist of the article. I undestand its more page clicks, more page views, and impressions and what not and thats what you have to do. Just as i didn’t like it on Junkie i don’t really like it here but I’ll get used to it. The way you have it broken down in to 3 different areas is the most confusing part i could see. but like i said i’ll get used to it.

    This may not be a big deal to some but i do appreciate the mobile format that you get from this site when i’m browsing with my smart phone. Thanks for that.

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  • Barry says:

    I like it Sam. Cudos to all the people that must have spent a lot of time putting the new site layout together.

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  • Jason Guidas Hairy Chest says:

    This new layout sucks. You guys can see me over at mmajunkie.com or cagepotato.com

    Peace 5oz, you were my first love but this new magazine format is HORRIBLE. You putting mainstream over your reader base, and for that, I will be supporting the other blog style sites. Goodbye.

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  • ronnie liddle says:

    BJJDenver is correct.
    would be nice to see some dates on the articles on the frt page. otherwise looks great and i hope the standard of articles remian high.
    keep going guys.

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  • HexRei says:

    Love the new look!

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  • Ken says:

    keep up the good work!

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  • fenrsz says:

    I think i said this last time you changed the layout, but this is god awful Sam.

    Will definitely keep checking the site but i think bloody elbow will be my first stop from now on..

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  • dohfil says:

    Where’s the MOBILE version of this site?

    This site no longer works on my iPhone, Treo, or Blackberry.

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  • Byron says:

    Now that the site is redesigned, how about fixing the RSS feed so that it displays the entire article instead of merely the first sentence?

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  • Evadmils says:

    +1 on BJJDenver.

    I noticed that when MMAPayout changed the site from Blog to Webzine style, I went there about half as much. Date and time on each post would be great. Put your newest stuff up top and scroll down for the other catagories.

    Other than that, great site!

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  • Narcisistic says:

    Good Shit Sam the site looks great

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  • Batman says:

    I like the site change i hope someone listens to my comments lol.

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  • efknutrition says:

    This just makes it harder to read while you are at work

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  • Jackyl says:

    I really don’t care for it. I liked the orginization of the old site. This just seems to be all over the place. I liked to look at the site at work where I can keep it in a nice rectangular window in the bottom left corner of my screen. Nevertheless I enjoy the site’s content and will continue visiting. I like the work you do Sam, just a little cluttered for my taste.

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  • Mike A says:

    I’m not the biggest fan, I liked the easy layout of the other site as well… I hope I get used to it, thanks for all your work though.

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  • ChrisC says:

    I think you’ve paid your due unlike other MMA bloggers how half-heartedly started theirs and jumped on the MMA bandwagon
    And I don’t mind the new format at all but, it’s hard to see “which news you broke first.” Articles and clips are all over the place.

    As casual readers, we like to read things in a a chronological order.
    Please do date all posts and create an ‘archive section’ where you store all the major news&stories by dates. So we can click on a link with any given date and see every post you made on that day.

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  • Ft. Dub says:

    Any possibility you guys could have an archive section that listed everything in a chronological order (basically like the 2.0 version)? Continue to use the new front page with a link to the archive page, so the people who prefer the blog style can use it instead.

    Just a thought. I really like this site and visit it on a daily basis. I don’t mind e-zines, but only time will tell how accessible the information is. The best part about the old style was that I could check it a couple times a day and read down until I hit an article I had already seen. It was a no-brainer to get all the new info and get off.

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  • Ross says:

    Wow-I was like a 12 yr old school girl today. My favorite site had gone away-Blue host suspended?? I thought by boss cut me off since I live on this site. I still checked it everyday hoping I would get access again. Thank God it finally came, Im not kidding, this is the best site out there and I was beyond pissed when I couldnt get in. Good luck Mr. Caplan its been fun watching this site get so big and for you to get some recognition. Looking forward to your insight. Best to you and your family. Once again It is so nice to see the site back up, it made my day.
    I hope you and your team stay as accessable as you have in the past.
    WAR FIVE OUNCES.

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  • Ross says:

    Ive said it once and I’ll say it again. Sam Caplan is the hardest working guy in the biz. Keep up the good work. I thought I had lost the site forever. the last month I couldnt get to the site (blue host suspended) everyday I checked it at work and finally today I could access it. Honestly this is the best site, not only because of content but bc of its writers. I have seen this site grow and expand but one thing was for sure, it always had a small town feel to it that I loved. I hope it stays that way. Good luck you and your family Mr. Caplan, you guys are appreciated.
    WAR 5 OZ!

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  • MIke says:

    What was wrong with the old format. Articles listed in chronological order and all located together. Now I have to figure out if I want breaking news, exclusive news, or featured news. Not to mention that Frank Mir’s mug seems to take over the webpage. Go ahead and do away with that.

    Sorry for the rant, just displeased. There is a reason readership has continually increased: CONTENT, not 2.0 or 3.0…. You guys do awesome interviews and keep up to date quite well. Keep it up. You should so a fantasy league on this site. I am in another and the site sucks.

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  • MIke says:

    Ft. Bub said it best,

    “he best part about the old style was that I could check it a couple times a day and read down until I hit an article I had already seen. It was a no-brainer to get all the new info and get off.”

    My feelings exactly. Archive page would be a great solution!

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  • Michael says:

    at least when junkie sold out they kept the basic format. your new homepage looks like one giant advertisement. what gives? there must be a better way to step up the aesthetics of the site without sacrificing its user-friendliness. this, im sorry to say, kind of sucks. i know the phrase sell out is awfully cliche, but sam you have now indeed officially sold out. i can only hope it brings you and the staff at fiveoz the money you hoped for. most of us out there visited sites like these to get away from the likes of sherdog and madness, and unfortunately we will now have to visit others to get away from this one- which seems to be more concerned with exclusives and advertising than readership and loyalty. i hope this doesn’t sound like hating. best of luck to sam and staff, but this site is no longer for me. though i will miss jiujitsuguy’s psychotic rants. peace.

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  • egad81 says:

    I found 5oz by way of the Cage Fury Forums… I think Matt was on there a lot.

    This sites cool. my only suggestion would be to have a public forum or maybe a link on the site to the chat room.

    Sam, Matt, Adam, New Guy (Dave)
    Keep Up The Good Work

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  • Sergio Hernandez says:

    Where all this talk about selling out is coming from, I have NO idea.

    If clicking four or five banners a day means Sam and his crew can make a little scratch and devote more time to 5 Oz., then I’ll do it.

    Speaking from an objective design perspective, the new site looks great. A few tweaks here and there, sure, but overall, it’s a home run.

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  • JollyDV says:

    Sam!
    Not bad. I have been fiddling around on here in the wee hours and I like the site.
    It is always hard to deal with change in any aspect. So I hope that those that don’t like it very much will come around after a few days of using the new site. I hate change, but when forced to accept it, you most often find a pleasant surprise!

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  • Evan says:

    I can’t tell what the latest news and whats been sitting around for a bit….ugh…

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  • Philb says:

    Really? you guys can’t tell the items on top of the sections are new? Seems pretty stright forward to me, Newest items on top, 3 areas, and the Read more of the areas goes to a nice archive in chronological order……………LOL I guess I’m strange for not complaining about having to actually read and click a link for my free content.

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  • CrazyMike says:

    The site may have changed it’s design, but what hasn’t changed is the quality of the writers and the writing. That’s what keeps me coming back, and will keep me coming back in the future.

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  • Ft. Dub says:

    New thought on day three of the new site….Sam I appreciate your candor with the readers of your site and the fact that you want to be make money doing what you love – after all that is the American dream. You are not a sell-out.

    My only question is why not keep sharing info from other sites until you get more time from you and your staff dedicated to the site? I come here specifically because I don’t have to go to other sites as well because I know that even if you don’t scoop the news, you’ll pass it along.

    “We believe this format change will help us eventually monetize the site better so that one day 5 Oz. is my only responsibility. And when that happens, the amount of exclusive content you see from us will skyrocket.”

    That’s great, but how about when I want to know what the latest news is tomorrow and you’re still working four jobs and training? Why do exclusive-only content and a new web design have to be mutually exclusive concepts?

    Please consider passing along until you have more time. I understand that in the battle of media companies breaking news is key. It just seems like you’re saying you won’t win that war until you are full time and in the meantime you won’t pass along either. I don’t get it.

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  • SAfan says:

    off to MMA junkie i go. dont like new format

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  • Buddha says:

    I am not digging it, Bloddy Elbow, MMA Junkie, HERE I COME!

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  • Sam,

    Your my boy, although I do tend to yell at you whenever you make the GSP is better than Silva argument. And really and truly man I liked the old layout better, and I understand that it’s not coming back so its time to move on (Up next a trip down memory lane ending with a point to be made):

    I discovered your site, not off of some search engine or even through word of mouth, but instead from your CBS Sports articles. I said wow a writer who knows his shit and someone who I can disagree with. Then, while other sites were just pushing out news updates which I’m bound to of found out through the usual press releases, you were dishing out opinions that made me a loyal reader. (Side note: isn’t the point of UFC, Affliction, etc. to promote fights, so in the end why would they withhold general information) The point is, keep it up. For all the insider information to be coming to your site, never replace your voice.

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  • eeeek says:

    i hateeeeee this site now

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