Shipping Times today launched a new logo and a new direction for the popular maritime news source to coincide with an online appeal, and a direct appeal to all in the maritime industries, to help grow and develop the news source into a more inclusive, responsive and easily updated maritime news portal that works for you.
The editor of Shipping Times, Bruce Biddulph, who has been a keen promoter of maritime interests all his life, says now is the time for the industry and individuals who care about keeping Scotland and Britain ahead of the game and relevant in the online maritime world stakes to help too.
"I've worked tirelessly to promote Scottish and British shipbuilding and shipping interests all my life. And I want to do more." he said. "Shipping Times is now at a crucial point of its development. It started as a hobbyists site many years ago, and then it became much more serious, seeking and publishing articles on shipping and shipbuilding all around the world. It is now time, considering that its rebuild has almost been perfected, to ramp up the usefulness of Shipping Times to the industry and to the visitor alike.
The editor's vision is this, of a maritime news site that permits everyone to take part, easily, effectively and with a spirit of true co-operation, with one goal: to promote and enthuse.
"Shipping and shipbuilding is part of our blood on these islands. My own family have connections with the shipyards and shipping as do most, yet now we see those links fade. I want to renew them. " he said, "And at Shipping Times there is a unique opportunity to do that."
Lately the site has undergone a spectacular transformation into a vibrant and dynamic news site. Long gone are the simple tools used to create single articles, replaced with a suite of editing, search and publishing tools that have been created to give a site that is at once responsive and more far reaching yet even more accessible.
"I'm very proud of the work done so far, in terms of making it more dynamic and viewable on all platforms and devices, but this is only the start. We are developing a unique system to allow other writers, companies and services to publish direct to the site, with editorial controls before final publishing. I do not think this has been done before. It's bold, imaginative and I hope will make a better experience for the people who really matter,- our visitors."
Above all else, it has to be free, he said.
"I do not want to go down the subscription route. I want shipping and shipbuilding to come out of the world of mystery and closed doors just a little bit more. The more people are interested in shipping and shipbuilding and get involved, then perhaps we can help stem the decline in the industry. Somewhere out there are future shipowners, shipbuilders, engineers, agents and so on. Most of that potential is missed as the doors never open to this world for them. I want to do my bit to change that. Get the British Isles people enthused again. You don't do that if you shut shop!"
Of course all of this requires work, intensive work and time. And all of that requires money.
"Everyone can benefit from the next stage. And even if people only want to help pay for what they read then that's great too, but I do think those in the industry can help here. It helps them as well."
Donors who have maritime related businesses are being offered pages, sections and indeed whole site sponsorship. Shipping Times is already a well established news source on Google news and its pages are indexed immediately.
"Everything we need to launch into the second phase of this development is there." said Shipping Times founder, "All we need now is encouragement and support to make it happen faster."
Anyone who wants to contribute or simply say 'Thanks' with donations / sponsorship large and small can do so by going to the link at the bottom of the page.