The official LFC site decided to close the Kop page and to replace it with the #theKop page collating LFC fans’ experience from everywhere around the Internet (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram as well as a handful of LFC supporters’ sites). The game plan is to add the #thekop hashtag to the posting and – bingo! – it is found and presented among the best of the Kop on the club’s respective page.
Part of me can understand why this is being done – there are millions of supporters on those Internet resources, and it is commercially viable for the club to tap into those resources. Moreover, it is clearly a cost-cutting exercise – instead of maintaining one’s own servers shift the costs on the Internet resource and cream the profits from new paying members in the LFC community. The more the better, and never mind that a large majority of those posting are along the lines of the “We love… ” and a smiling face, a thumbs up or a heart…
However, marginalizing the small group who are more interested in lengthy debates and analysis in favour of a large crowd of … well, those who like to jump from link to link, without giving any of them much thought… does not bode well for the club. And many of us, myself included, fear that as of November 30 we will lose the opportunity to post blogs and have debates with each other about the contents of the blog. I fear that all we will have left is the opportunity to comment briefly on the official news…
(Note: even the comment on the official news on LFC site seems to be not always possible… Anything negative is immediately censored – which I find unhealthy for the club. Weren’t Red Men always famous for their – sometimes caustic, true – sense of humour and wit and a way with words?)
And this is taking me to my next point – something that I cannot attribute to a source, but something that I kept seeing for all these months I was on the Kop site. Many Kopites would say they started supporting LFC because another supporter told them about the club’s history, invited them to watch the match, spoke about their favourite LFC player… All of these activities presuppose a conversation – not a quick exchange of sms messages or tweets or FB comments.
The Kop was the place where we are having conversations – about the players, the history, the club values. We could disagree, and argue, and be critical – of the players, the manager, the owners… obviously some were OTT, but the majority enjoyed the opportunity to clear the air through an outburst of criticism, and at times it was curious to see someone at the club clearly took notice (maybe not in reality, but who knows, after all?)…
We have survived through all the problems on the Kop – when we could not access it, or could not comment, or could not post… We are one of the club’s values, the 12th man.
You cannot evaluate us in monetary terms.
We are priceless.
We are not to kowtow, to flatter or to post saccharine comments 24/7.
We call the spade a spade.
We are the supporters.
We are the ‘Y’ in the YNWA.