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Opinion & Analysis

A Letter from the Editor: Big changes are happening at GolfWRX

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For those of you who don’t know who I am, my name is Andrew Tursky. I recently went from the right-hand-man of former GolfWRX Editor-in-Chief Zak Kozuchowski, to running the show here at GolfWRX as the Editor-in-Chief myself. In my new role, I’m going to help GolfWRX fulfill its fullest potential as the best golf website in existence, and that means making a number of immediate changes, all of which I’ll highlight below.

First, a look back. Over a decade ago, GolfWRX started as a small community golf forum for golfers to discuss golf equipment, courses, instruction, rules, bargains, and everything else golf related. The forums continue to grow everyday, and they’re stronger than ever with over 250,000 members who are the most knowledgable and passionate golfers on the planet. They also helped us determine the Best Driver of 2018. Additionally, sometime around 2011, Kozuchowski took GolfWRX.com from simply a community golf forum to a golf media powerhouse by adding a front page section of the website, equipped with ultra-professional editorial. He built a team of Featured Writers — consisting of some of the biggest names in the golf industry — to help produce content that readers love and need. Since 2013, I’ve been helping Zak run the site by writing/producing original content myself, and working with the Featured Writer team. Currently averaging over 1.8 million unique readers per month, GolfWRX has been doing just fine. But I believe so strongly in the GolfWRX brand that I don’t want to settle for “just fine.” I believe we have more to offer, and I want every golfer in the world to garner entertainment or knowledge from our website.

As such, and building upon the foundation that is GolfWRX.com and the forums, I’ve been empowered by the “powers that be” at GolfWRX — you know, the guys who cut paychecks — to grow and shape the best golf website on the Internet.

So what does that mean going forward? Well, that’s what I wanted to discuss.

Here at GolfWRX, we’ve always been great at telling stories through the written word and images, and we will continue to do so with our Featured Writers team and legion of golf writers who love and know the game of golf. But after taking over the editorial direction of the website, I also wanted to help give GolfWRX a voice and a face. There are so many amazing people in the world of golf, and I wanted to provide platforms for us to help them tell their stories… to provide our readers the chance to see how golf clubs are made, how courses are designed, why professionals play certain equipment, and so much more. I wanted to bring readers where they’ve never been and hear from the people they’ve never heard from. Here at GolfWRX, we have the opportunity to speak with amazing people and play golf at amazing courses, and it’s about time the GolfWRX readers got to enjoy those experiences with us.

Therefore, we’re implementing our own original video and radio initiatives.

On the video-end of the spectrum, GolfWRX has recently hired Johnny Wunder full-time to the GolfWRX Staff. He’s a Hollywood producer (check out his new film Josie, starring Sophie Turner from Game of Thrones, that was recently in select theaters across the country!) and is also the new Director of Original Content at GolfWRX. If you’ve enjoyed the Bob Parsons interview, Paige interview, PXG Gen2 Editor’s Journal, or how PXG irons get built, you have Mr. Wunder to thank. Also coming soon are experiences with Mike Taylor at Artisan Golf, David Edel, Bert Lamar of Iliac Golf, the Criquet Golf team in Austin, a short game series with Gabe Hjertstedt, a new fashion series and much more. We’re extremely excited to bring our own original content to the world, and help highlight the people in golf who we think deserve a platform. See the things you’ve never seen, go places you’ve never gone, and meet people you’ve never met; that’s what we want to do with our new GolfWRX original video content. We truly hope you enjoy it, and learn a lot from the content we produce.

We’ve also started three great podcasts — the “19th Hole with host Michael Williams,” “Two Guys Talkin’ Golf,” and “Gear Dive” — with plans to expand in the very near future. Check all of them out here on SoundCloud, or here on iTunes.

The 19th Hole is hosted by Michael Williams, who was the PGA Mediaperson of the Year in 2014 and is a longtime titan in both golf media and radio in general; he has produced and hosted shows on CBS Radio, Fox Sports Radio and Voice of America. Michael is a true professional, knowledgeable golfer, and knows how to conduct one heck of an interview. So far on the show, his guests have included Greg Norman, Bob Vokey, Rees Jones, Robert Trent Jones Jr., Scott Van Pelt, Byron Scott, Michael Breed, Louis Oosthuizen, Jim Nantz, Roger Cleveland, Mike Taylor, and many more.

Two Guys Talkin’ Golf (TG2), is hosted by equipment expert Brian Knudson and myself, a former Division I golfer and GolfWRX Editor. Together, we discuss all things golf, but mostly focus on golf equipment… and the occasional hot take. TG2 welcomes guests on the show as well, ranging from GolfWRX forum members to club builders to Tour professionals to caddies. If you’re hungry for more equipment knowledge and high-level golf conversation, TG2 is your type of podcast.

The third, and all-new podcast, is called “Gear Dive,” hosted by Johnny Wunder. What you can expect is a weekly podcast where Wunder interviews anyone who’s anyone “in the know” of golf equipment… and he’s going deep. To give you an idea, his first guest was legendary clubmaker Larry Bobka who made Tiger Woods’ old Titleist irons.

Also, as I discussed before, GolfWRX is great with telling stories via the written word. To make sure we continue to do so, we’ve hired Ben Alberstadt who’s been writing for GolfWRX for over 5 years now. He was previously a freelance journalist who worked with a variety of media and news outlets, and he now wears the GolfWRX hat full time. I cannot be more excited to have him aboard the ship because he’s a true, hard-working journalist and he’s great at telling a story in his own unique style. If you’ve read any of his stuff, you know what I mean.

And as for me, I promise to continue providing GolfWRX readers with the content they want and need to read/hear/see on a daily basis. It’s my duty to help our readers be the most knowledgable golfers and golf buyers, and be entertained while learning more about the sport we all love. I simply love GolfWRX and our readers/listeners/viewers, and I want you to have the best website of all time to visit every day… a website to be part of and proud of.

What do I ask from you GolfWRX readers? Your feedback! If we write a bad story, tell us why you think it’s bad. If we publish a video you like, tell us why in the comments or on social media. If you love the new podcast, tell us that you loved it and support by subscribing. (If you want all of our podcasts transcribed, we’re working on it!) We want to have the best website in the world, and we want to provide information to golfers in the way they want to consume it. We care deeply about your opinion. GolfWRX began as a forum community, and we will always be a community. Personally, I was a GolfWRX reader myself before ever writing for the site. So was Alberstadt and Williams and Knudson and Wunder. We love golf and we love GolfWRX. We want to see it thrive, and you, the readers, are a huge part of that success.

Anyway, thanks for taking the time to read this letter, and I hope you continue to be a GolfWRX reader and participant. And if you do, make sure to tell your golfing buddies how much you love the site… in real life or on social media. The more we grow, the better stories and podcasts and videos we can create. I love and appreciate the opportunity to be your GolfWRX Editor, and I won’t let you down!

 

Hit em between the tree line,

Andrew Tursky

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Andrew Tursky is the Editor-in-Chief of GolfWRX. He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

38 Comments

38 Comments

  1. ogo

    Apr 29, 2018 at 1:31 am

    Also …. stop limiting the number of characters posted and referring some comments to the moderator so often.

  2. xpc

    Apr 28, 2018 at 9:53 am

    Your site times out about a third of the time and often resets the connection. Basics.

  3. dennis Clark

    Apr 28, 2018 at 5:10 am

    AS a former frequent (and now occasional contributor to this site, I wish you continued success. Your growth has been impressive for a lot of reasons, and if you continue to keep a finger on the pulse of the regular golfers, I know you will continue to flourish.

  4. Rob McHugh

    Apr 27, 2018 at 4:11 am

    Andrew,

    Nice work thus far and I look forward to the future vision.

    May I make a small suggestion? Cannot full members either have / or buy at a reasonable rate more photo space? I like to help people out with putter advice – where I can – and find myself mindful of posting pictures that would help greatly because of the restrictions. maybe something you could bear in mind.

    Good luck with it it all.

    Rob McHugh

  5. Georgez

    Apr 26, 2018 at 3:55 pm

    fulfill its fullest
    Stopped reading right there.
    That’s some fine journalism there Lou.

  6. Geoff

    Apr 26, 2018 at 10:33 am

    The only thing worth coming to GolfWRX for are the forums. Everything else is garbage.

    • ogo

      Apr 26, 2018 at 5:49 pm

      Most of the articles on the home page are simply golf gossip. Even the forums are dubious.
      The main forum is inhabited by gearheads listing their WITB weapons and posting inarticulate twitter brainlet sized comments about their love/hate for their/others clubs.
      This open forum at least invites more objective and cogent comments even though some of the short blurts are inane.

    • Mizzle Fizzle

      Apr 27, 2018 at 5:07 pm

      Pretty much.
      I mean, you could also look at it as a decent aggregator of OEM press releases.

  7. Scott

    Apr 26, 2018 at 10:26 am

    transcripts for the pod casts – please

  8. Lee

    Apr 26, 2018 at 8:56 am

    Fastest growth segment is junior golf. Become a destination for parents and juniors and you’ll be swimming in coin like Scrooge McDuck.

  9. Srksi

    Apr 26, 2018 at 7:25 am

    As you called us Golfwrx readers, please at least transcript the podcasts. It’s irritating to click on a teaser for an article to read and see it’s another podcast.

  10. ZQ

    Apr 26, 2018 at 7:01 am

    Definitely better writers out there than the bunch you have right now, especially the opinion pieces. Most of them are critiqued heavily with the shank like button. Strange articles like ditching old man par, amongst many other head scratchers. Forums are run quite well, mods are a buzz kill quite often and hand out temporary bans for literally nothing (was once banned for saying “lock this thread”) – explanation “it did not add to the discussion”. Podcasts are pretty lame, boring, could be a lot shorter, transcripts or timestamps would be useful for the few that do listen to them. Keep the focus on equipment and the tour, thats what yall do best. Or hire better talent to speak on courses, strategy, coaching etc. Current crop is very mediocre.

  11. 8thehardway

    Apr 25, 2018 at 10:44 pm

    PLEASE pay attention to the audio on TG2 – it ranges from sub-par to horrible; and maybe some mics that minimize wind noise on videos shot outside.

    Also, ads that capture the top 20% of the page are really not the best intro to the site… yeah, significant revenue and infrequent placement but it’s akin to seeing a mattress ad dominating the cover of your most valued newspaper or magazine – my opinion is even once is an unnecessary and regrettable occurrence.

    Love your energy, great ideas and looking forward to their implementation.

  12. Dcfas

    Apr 25, 2018 at 8:07 pm

    Andrew,
    Best of luck in this new direction. I am interested in the podcasts and will add them to my AM drive. Hope Zak is well and is pursuing new opportunities as well. The forums are key, and are a fixture in my browser tab. The folks posting are the real show, of course, and I mean that in the best possible way.

    dcfas

  13. millennial82

    Apr 25, 2018 at 7:04 pm

    Tursky,

    Articles at wrx are great and a must, never watched the video’s, but the podcasts are awesome and a must.
    From a 35 year old’s point of view from LA, traffic time during commutes are a daily part of life. We ALL listen to podcast’s here and 2guys talking is by far the best golf pod to me.

    So flipping through the site with the Iphone during down time/ listening to podcast during the drive would be the norm out here in the west because we work long hard focused hours and play golf instead of staying home on the computer… a lot.

  14. Hawkeye77

    Apr 25, 2018 at 2:53 pm

    Always great to see new ideas and always necessary to have people with the guts to give them a shot, so good for wrx.

    One comment, more than criticism, apparently when leaving replies to these pieces, certain things lead to comments “awaiting moderation”, which often means indefinitely and not actually moderated for innocuous comments that somehow triggered something in your “red flag system”. If there are guidelines so tripping those sensors (pun intended, lol) is less likely with non-controversial posts, that would be good to know (or responding to a message asking about that would be a nice gesture).

    Happy to read about the new initiatives and good luck.

  15. lefthandrightbrain

    Apr 25, 2018 at 2:17 pm

    Andrew,

    Thank you for the statement, but sadly I am not interested in video, podcasts, etc. The best iteration of this site was the time when the forums were the most important part of the site. Now it looks and feels like the forum section is just an inconvenience. I use the internet to read and study, not look at pictures and listen to people talk.

    If I want video there is always those two wasted sites golf.com and golfdigest.com where there’s always a photo spread of somebody and maybe some video of an important tournament shot, a three minute video lesson to mess up my game, and leaderboards of some pro events. Don’t turn Golfwrx into another waste of time optimized for a phone site.

  16. carl

    Apr 25, 2018 at 2:13 pm

    Half of the Alberstadt “articles” are just regurgitations of what happened on twitter.. You would think a long time free lance writer could come up with some decent original content

    • ZQ

      Apr 26, 2018 at 6:54 am

      100% agree. Very tmz. Never been impressed with his writing

  17. James S

    Apr 25, 2018 at 1:56 pm

    Do your changes include re-thinking your previous position regarding pay for and ownership of stories that are written under contract for you by free-lance writers?

    I have written professionally and hosted my own golf radio show for 20 years now. A couple years ago, I applied to a request posted looking for content and free-lance writers to work for GolfWRX. The reply I received was positive and a contract was sent my way for consideration.

    Sadly, the contract informed me that I would receive NO pay for my work, that my work would become the sole property of GolfWRX to do as it pleased with it, and that I couldn’t sell or publish the same story with anyone else. Basically, working for free and, on top of that, giving you something to sell and put money in your own pocket. I tossed the contract in the trash.

    I’m curious if your business model still involves making money on someone else’s talent and hard work and giving them nothing in return, or do these “Big Changes” address this issue?

    • Tim Schoch

      Apr 26, 2018 at 8:03 am

      I’ve had a number of articles (mostly reviews and commentary) published here and have benefited by linking back to these articles as part of my writers’ portfolio for potential marcom and sports clients. I also have linked back from my Twitter account and websites over the years. I think Zak and Andrew manage the content and quality control of its writers very well. A payment schedule would we welcome, of course, and contracts on an individual and rights basis might be best.

  18. patvball

    Apr 25, 2018 at 12:59 pm

    Glad to see the new editor-in-chief of my go-to golf website is also a fan of my New York Giants football!

    But more importantly, how do I get my hands on one of those sweet WRX putter head covers?

  19. Ig

    Apr 25, 2018 at 11:58 am

    That’s all you’re going to do? That’s it?
    If you wanted this website to be THE one for golf, your focus should have shifted immediately, effectively and inclusively to involve yourself with the USGA, the R&A, and international golf. Not just your connection with makers of trinkets and pieces of high-saluting equipment and fancy knick-knacks.
    That’s where you are going wrong, and will be lambasted for it.
    Wake up. This is an opportunity. Don’t miss it. Hiring Hollywood morons is not what you should be doing, to make things look even more shiny and fake, is not what golf needs.
    Your site should be the go-to site for ALL things golf, in The World> not just about items, it should be about the people in the World, the planet.
    It should be more about what makes golf what it is, starting with the Rules and Etiquette. Without that, there is no golf.

    • ZQ

      Apr 26, 2018 at 7:04 am

      Not a fan of the hollywood hire or the TMZ style of articles lately. But the rules of the game isn’t what makes golf lol. Its part of the game and the discipline, but very low on the scale of appeal to the game. None of us as kids was fascinated by golf cause the rules were so majestic, if anything the archaic, confusing and unnecessary rules are finally being overhauled and changed. The rules are what have turned of many from the game. Etiquette articles? Are you 150 years old?

  20. Tim Schoch

    Apr 25, 2018 at 11:55 am

    Sitting still is never a good plan. Glad you’re focused on progress. Congratulations, too. Real-time involvement of your audience is a major opportunity–live radio with call-ins, two-way Twitter involvement, urgent live streams from GWRX HQ during times of big news and high interest, etc.

    Since I am a writer, I would love to see GolfWRX spark a resurgence in golf literature, fiction, stories, humor, parodies…all of this connects in a personal and elemental level with an involved audience, and it helps build a bridge between kids and adults. This, of course, is separate from the nonfiction/educational platform of the business.

    People like Hank Haney and Brandel Chamblee toss controversial topics into the ring with regular abandon. Most of us would love to express ourselves on these topics, apart from the forums. Polls (ams and pros), editorials, realistic/unrealistic perspectives would help your audience take more education stances on issues they think are no-brainers. Create edge.

    I may write you will more 🙂 All the very best.

  21. TheCityGame

    Apr 25, 2018 at 11:50 am

    More Tiger Woods coverage, please.

  22. 2putttom

    Apr 25, 2018 at 11:04 am

    Johnny Wunder to the rescue. I like the potential and will follow with great interest. Looking forward to new and exciting things here on the wrx.

  23. STEVE HJORTNESS

    Apr 25, 2018 at 10:53 am

    Andrew, thanks for the update. I understand the younger generation likes/prefers videos and podcasts, but for some us they are just too tedious to wade through. As a suggestion, would it be possible to include a transcript of these presentations? I recognize that could be a huge amount of work, but isn’t there software that could automatically do that?

    Since, I am in the critique mode, a couple other suggestions:
    – Could you improve the search mechanism on the site, it is easier to go to google to find posts on Golfwrx
    – Can you do a better job of explaining the value of joining Golfwrx? $35 is not a huge amount of money, but what’s it worth? Considering the enormous increase in add money this site it generating, is this $35 exclusive really necessary?

    • Tyson Brodkorb

      Apr 25, 2018 at 11:34 am

      I couldn’t agree more one providing a transcript. I often browse GolfWRX from locations that I can’t have audio. This is one of my biggest complaints with the direction that major news networks are taking. Not only that, but providing a transcript will allow those articles to show up in searches.

      • Michael Constantine

        Apr 25, 2018 at 12:02 pm

        This times 1 million

        • Acemandrake

          Apr 25, 2018 at 2:24 pm

          Another vote for transcripts. I’m a reader.

          • Brett Weir

            Apr 25, 2018 at 9:32 pm

            I love the podcasts since I can’t read.

  24. Jeff

    Apr 25, 2018 at 10:40 am

    I think the Bobka piece is a great start from an historical perspective. But PLEASE…do not turn this into another Tiger Woods channel. Many serious golfers, myself included, are more interested in what going on right now than they are in what Tiger has done or might do in the future.

  25. ogo

    Apr 25, 2018 at 10:38 am

    Will you maintain this fine open forum or will you require a formal login like facebook? If you go for the latter you will lose the most eloquent of commenters and degenerate into a bunch of golf-loving gearheads and twitter-sized blurts about their ‘love’ for some OEM brand of clubs.

  26. SoCalSlicer

    Apr 25, 2018 at 10:26 am

    Love the site. 1 recommendation – have a heart-to-heart with whoever the forum moderator is with the superman Avi. That gentleman needs a serious attitude adjustment. Forums are places for spirited discussion, and he trolls around waving his ban hammer every chance he gets.

    • ZQ

      Apr 26, 2018 at 6:56 am

      Lol spot on. Hes gonna try to ban you for this too!

    • Maxine

      May 18, 2018 at 5:56 am

      Totally agreed.. I was banned for stating an opinion on a post asking for opinions. The guy is an idiot.

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Opinion & Analysis

Don’t be THAT guy at your corporate outing

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Today is the day. Your out-of-office email is up, and you’re fully prepared for an afternoon at the course. As a driving range pro, you think this day will be a gentle breeze. However, you are not prepared. You may not even realize it, but you are about to be that guy.

That guy… who is that guy? Well, I’m glad you asked.

He’s that guy at the range hours early instead of socializing at the breakfast. He’s that guy arranging the scramble lineup when he finally makes it to that breakfast. He’s the guy who finds himself reading a golf blog about a corporate scramble.

Hi, guy!

Now, let’s start this early in the morning. You’re in your closet carefully crafting your outfit for the day. Wait, wait, wait… let’s not start there. Therein lies the problem, guy. You aren’t composing an outfit, not today! An outfit is for Day 2 of your member-guest. An outfit is for that golf trip with your buddies. An outfit is for Bill Murray at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am (who, with those bell bottoms, is becoming dangerously close to that guy). 

I digress.

A corporate outing is for the muted colors sitting in the back of your closet. There’s no need to get flashy with your attire on this day. If your game is as good as your rangefinder magnet says you are, your game will be enough of the conversation; there’s no need to make your belt buckle one of them. White shorts are fine, but please, don’t be the guy wrapped in pants in 80-degree heat. I get it, you’re “more comfortable in pants” and “this new fabric is actually cooler than shorts.” Come on now, let’s save the pants for guys who aren’t playing for pro shop credit.

Obviously club-tossing, swear-wording and teammate-bashing are huge no-nos, but you already know that. Be encouraging on the course and give your teammates credit when they hit one down the middle, even if you drive it past them. It was still their shot that freed you up.

Most importantly, gauge the competitiveness of the team. Some people are there to win; some people are there for gin. If it’s clear that your team isn’t firing 14-under, kick back, relax and help your teammates improve. You’ll have your own chance. You can still get excited for the long drive, guy.

Speaking of the long drive, why is the prize for winning said competition so often a new driver? “You proved today how well you smash that driver, so here is a new one!” Sir, he likes his just fine. I think it’s safe to venture he’d rather stop the three-putt pars. Which also goes for the longest-putt prize. A brand new Odyssey White Hot! Just stop it. Pro shop credit… problem solved.

Speaking of problems, there’s a good chance someone in your group will have a massive one with their swing. As a guy, you’ll probably want to tell them they are “casting” and to try this “towel-under-the-arm drill.” Yes, it is completely fine to provide a tip, but only when warranted (or preferably, called upon). You can go from “guy who helped my short game” to “guy who destroyed my swing” with just a few too many hints.

One more thing. Don’t let any guy pull this move.

Let me paint a story. Your team approaches the green, you have two decent looks at birdie. Good for you! However, your team can’t decide. One is 15-feet straight up the hill. The other is an eight-foot slider. The team agrees the shorter putt is still the play.

“I’ll smack this 15-footer, just for fun,” your cheating teammate says. Followed shortly by, “unless it goes in, ha.”

Other than actually cheating, this is the most common and lame shenanigan I’ve seen in a corporate scramble. I’ve never forgotten the people that did it with me, and they won’t forget you.

Man, that got dark in a hurry.

Back to the fun stuff. You’ve mastered the clothing and seamlessly blended casual and competitive like Tom Brady in Uggs. All that is left now is to select your winning item in the pro shop. And this is where I leave my final tip. Go with something practical: gloves, golf balls. The last thing your wardrobe needs is another lime green shirt that you’ll want to wear in next month’s scramble.

Related: Pick three golfers to build your ultimate scramble team for $8 or less!

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The 19th Hole: Host Michael Williams plays Shinnecock Hills and reports back

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Host Michael Williams reports on his visit to Media Day at Shinnecock Hills, the site the 2018 U.S. Open, where he played the course. How are the current conditions? He weighs in on the Unlimited Mulligan Challenge made by Dave Portnoy of Barstool Sports that day, as well. Also, famed Architect David Kidd talks about how he created Bandon Dunes at the age of 25, and Steve Skinner of KemperLesnik gives his views on the health of the golf business.

Listen to the full podcast on SoundCloud below, or click here to listen on iTunes!

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TG2: What’s it like to caddie for Rory? GolfWRX Forum Member shares his experience

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Marine and GolfWRX forum member “djfalcone” explains the story of how he got to caddie for Rory McIlroy and Johnny Vegas through the Birdies for the Brave program, and how knowledgable Rory is about his equipment. Make sure to check out his full forum thread here.

Listen to our full podcast below, or click here to listen on iTunes!

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