25. Dianogah (Last year’s place: 1) – KDS
After the glory of 1st place last year it would appear that fame and fortune all got too much for Dianogah and over the past 12 months he’s been harder to spot than an accurately completed tax return form at Ibrox. He’s basically done nothing of note this year at all and can consider himself lucky to still have a place on this list. The only reason he makes it at all this year is because he snuck into one of the Celtic Graves pictures the other week, otherwise we would have forgotten he existed.
24. Night of the Living Rednecks (NE) – KDS
It’s been a classic year for the photoshoppers. NotLR (as nobody calls him) has appeared from nowhere and taken the scene by storm. Maybe it’s just the quality of the material that Rangers have provided over the past twelve months but it strikes us that there seems to be more and more top notch photoshoppers out there and this guy is proving himself (herself?) to be one of the best. With a great eye of detail and an excellent sense of humour his stuff is well worth looking out for. If he keeps going the way he’s started he’ll provide some stiff competition for the big two in the lalala thread on KDS in the coming year.
23. Alanmac (NE) – Teh Huddleboard
Since Kublacan decided to switch-off-his-television-set-and-go-out-and-do-something-less-boring-instead there has been a gap in the world of video capping for a hungry tim audience. Fortunately Alanmac stepped into the breach and has made all sorts of great content available to tims worldwide. Be it 3 minutes snippets from Reporting Scotland or 10 minute excerpts from the recent sectarian legislation committee meeting Alanmac makes sure that Celtic fans are informed of what is being said about their club on the TV in Scotland. It’s another example of Celtic fans putting in a shift for no reward other than the satisfaction of knowing that it benefits the community.
22. The Homebhoys (NE) – The Homebhoys
Audio content for Celtic fans has grown exponentially over the past twelve months and we are now approaching the point where the mainstream media are being drowned out by strong fan voices. There have been a few phone-in shows that have caught our ear this past year but Joe and Harper (why does Joe get to use his first name but Harper doesn’t btw?) have set the highest standard. Cracking banter between the two hosts, interesting (if sometimes frankly bonkers) opinions about players and the club, smashing guests talking about why they love the club, thought provoking calls (although they could do with a few more of them) and a fun wee game (even if it is a shameless rip off.) The Homebhoys are continuing the growing trend of fans creating great content for fans. As their slogan says – Bin clyde and support your side.
21. Joratim (NE) – The Celtic Hub
With so many fan websites now in existence it can be difficult to differentiate between them all. If a site is to succeed it is vital that it speaks with a distinct voice – after all who needs another site taking about the same old same old? In Joratim, the Celtic Hub has found a guy who says things that strike a chord with the fans. Of course, he doesn’t always say stuff that we agree with but you cannot deny the passion and the conviction in what he writes. It’s from the heart and it’s always got the club’s best interests right at the centre. Some sites seem to be more about creating a platform for “personalities” to talk about themselves rather than Celtic. Joratim strikes us as a guy who just wants to talk about the issues surrounding the bhoys and his stuff is well worth a read because of that.
20. Mince (8) – Celticminded
Last year we started by saying that it hadn’t been a good year and 2010-2011 wasn’t any better for the man some call the “Stalin of the Celtic internet.” With yet another new forum being created following a split on celticminded.com it’s looking like Mince’s influence is draining away. To suffer one forum split is unfortunate. Two looks like carelessness. The fact that the sporting wing and twistsnturns forums are now in existence (and are shaping up to be very decent online spaces btw) would suggest that something has gone very wrong on celticminded. With Mince posting statements about how crap the board is and the dearth of quality posts it looks like he’s fallen out of love with what was a very good forum and if the head man doesn’t believe in his product then why should anyone else? Celticminded’s problem continues to be very clear – a closed forum leads to stagnation. No new blood means the forum eventually turns on itself. Surely if the server can host additional sites alongside the forum it could cope with some new faces? A two tier system like the huddleboard would breathe new life into celticminded. Sadly Mince does not seem to want to keep the forum alive. Rumours persist that celticminded will shut its doors as a forum completely and rise from the ashes as a news portal. Interesting times ahead.
19. Housey (25) – Over and Over
This time last year we were singing the praises of Housey and his attempts at creating unique video content for the fans. This past season saw the man from Dundee shift his focus from video to audio and it’s been a resounding success. For many fans the weekend now starts at 7pm on a Friday night as they enjoy Housey’s blend of football talk and rebel tunes. With various guests keeping the chat fresh and interaction with listeners via twitter it makes for a very satisfying listening experience and one that’s unique online. However, it’s Housey’s live shows in Jury’s prior to the big games that really stand out. Recorded before a live, and often steaming, studio audience the host manages brilliantly the tricky task of making listeners feel part of the party. Us sad sacks who don’t get out much find it a godsend.
18. Cartuja (9) – KDS
Cartuja is now a well established name in the world of the online tim. His photoshopping ability is legendary and it’s recognition of his talent that when a new image does the rounds via email or on twitter most online fans assume it’s a Cartuja original. Maybe it’s just us but this year his style seems to have changed slightly and he’s produced more subtle and understated images than before. Don’t get us wrong – he still eviscerates Rangers every time he creates a new piece but he seems to be going for thoughtful chuckles rather than big belly laughs. And more power to him.
17. Arsene Parcelie (RE) – KDS
Another one who found inspiration in the shambles at Ibrox, Arsene has produced some of the best gifs to be found on the t’imternet over the past twelve months. While Cartuja does the more subtle stuff Arsene has produced big belly laughs time after time. His use of animation has made Craig Whyte and the rest look like fools and his work has been retweeted over and over again. To be fair it’s hard to split Arsene and Cartuja (mainly because there’s still no proof they are actually two different people) but the most recent image involving Whyte as Del Boy means he just edges it. Simple but brilliant.
16 Joe O’Rourke (23) – Celtic Supporters Association
This time last year Joe was a relatively new voice online. Despite being well known to many involved in the CSA his profile wasn’t all that high amongst the online community. Today that’s all changed – Joe is well established and influential figure whose opinions are quoted and commented on frequently. It’s heartening to see the CSA take to the web in this fashion and communicate directly with the fans. The next step in this process will hopefully be a presence on twitter to allow fans to be kept up to date with the latest issues surrounding the CSA.
15. Hector Bandido (13) – Etims
With the Voice of Gaudd being carted off to the home for grumpy east coast polemicists Etims has lost one of its star names. However, there’s still enough quality to be had from guys like Desi Mond to make Etims an important Celtic site. It’s made a fascinatingly retro step recently with the publication of “The Celtic Eye” – a downloadable pdf which is very much in the style of football fanzines from the eighties. It’s a bold move and it will be interesting to see how the readers take to it. Of course, the rumour mill continues to be the big draw for Etims fans and, although not as frequent as it once was, Hector works hard to maintain the style that made it essential reading. As the writer of the most popular piece on the site Hector continues to make Etims what it is today.
14. Tony Hamilton (NE) – Twitter
After years of asking for more fan engagement from the club it would be extremely churlish not to include Tony Hamilton on this list. In eight short months he’s become a must follow on twitter. Since his debut on the social network at the start of the year he’s responded to the fans, posted up the teamlines, shared information where he could and generally put a human face to the club. Some fans complain that he doesn’t reveal more when it comes to rumours but that seems to be missing the point – he can’t be anything other than an official spokesperson as the media would exploit any indiscrete tweet. Is it the level of fan engagement we have been asking for? Possibly not but it’s an excellent start and here’s hoping we see more like it from the club in future.
Moderators on the huddleboard probably deserve a medal rather than just a mention on this list. Given Chuck’s myopia and his serious mental health issues (kleptomania) it’s remarkable that he can be involved in one website let alone two. And it’s his work with the Belfast Celtic that gets him onto the list this year. The work of the society is a team affair but it’s fair to say that Chuck has worked hard to bring the story of the Belfast Celtic to a modern audience. And given the events of last season it’s a story we should listen carefully to.
12. Jim Blyth (NE) – Celtic Graves Society
Like Chuck before him Jim is simply a representative of a collective effort. The work of the Celtic Graves over the past season has been nothing short of tremendous. When we have a song that says, “If you know your history…” it seems appropriate that we now have a group of fans dedicated to keeping said history alive. Anyone who has attended any of the events this season can’t fail to have been impressed by the work that has been put in. The stories of men like Dan Doyle, John Glass and James McLaughlin are now more widely known than at any time in the past 50 odd years and that’s down to guys like Jim and the rest. The recent joint effort between the CGS and the John Thomson Memorial Committee shows just what can be achieved when Celtic fans put their minds to it.
11. RTC (NE) – Rangers Tax Case Blog
Ever since we tweeted about EBTs back in April 2010 there has been a steady stream of stories about Rangers’ tax woes. These stories have been quickly followed by an equally steady stream of comments all saying, “Can anyone put this in layman’s terms?” RTC blog is probably the website that has got closest to explaining just what the heck is going on down Ibrox way in terms that non accountants can understand. With some clearly well sourced inside information RTC has ensured that we are as fully informed as we can be about the fun and games currently taking place. And we’re certainly better informed than the Scottish press would like us to be. It takes a particular type of blogger to get everyone in the Celtic t’imternet talking. RTC is such a blogger.
10. Anon (15) – Celtic Twitter
With almost 22,000 followers this fan account on twitter is essential following. The owner of the account has added a number of new feeds and for many tims it’s replaced Newsnow as the main way to access Celtic news. How many of us now wake up in the morning and check our twitter accounts rather than turn on the radio or switch on the TV? The rise of twitter has been phenomenal and this account is one of the first that Celtic fans sign up for when they join. If you have a Celtic fan site and you aren’t getting linked through the @celtic account you’re missing out on a lot of potential traffic.
9. Joe McHugh (4) – VideoCelts
Videocelts continues to be a must visit site and that’s mainly due to the fact that Joe works hard to generate original content. Anyone can grab a few quotes from the red tops, stick an eye catching title on them and watch the hits role in from newsnow. Joe tends to go a different route. Whether it’s seeking out stories from foreign media or from Lennoxtown you can be sure that Videocelts will produce something that’s unlikely to have been reported already. Indeed, his reporting from Celtic youth games is vastly superior to anything the official site produces. Just one question – where’s the videos?
8. Struan Barlett (3) – Newsnow
As the CEO of Newsnow Barlett has been an ever present on this list since it began. There was a time when any site worth its salt had to be on newsnow if it wished to reach the online Celtic fans. This meant that when it blocked sites which used the word “hun” it forced a significant shift in the way many Celtic sites reported on Rangers. However, as Celtic fans move onto new platforms such as twitter and facebook, the need for Newsnow is lessening. Sure it’s still the easiest way for a new site to get established – post any old rubbish and stick “Celtic in striker swoop?” will guarantee a surge in hits but there are now many more ways to connect with the fans and as such Newsnow isn’t as important as it once was.
7. Christy Ring (7) – Lostbhoys
The past twelve months have seen the Lostbhoys firmly embedded as a vital part of the Celtic internet landscape. Indeed with the rise of so many new audio content providers they are starting to look like elder statesmen of the scene. Not bad going after only 24 months. Christy Ring has overseen blogs, publication of books and the birth of a dedicated Celtic audio channel in the form of Hail Hail media. With Chris now based in England it will be interesting to see whether the dynamic between him, Gerry and Jamie can be maintained over skype. We can only hope.
6. Joe Bloggs City (NE) – The Celtic Wiki
The problem with truly brilliant ideas is that over the course of time we start to take them for granted and we forget just how outstanding they really are. The Celtic wiki is without doubt the best fan resource available for any club in Scotland and possibly any club in the UK. Have a look around the net – there isn’t another set of fans anywhere creating a database like this for future generations to enjoy. Maintained by JBC with the assistance of a few individuals whose names will be familiar to regular podcast listeners, the wiki is a site where you can lose yourself for hours. So much of the history of our club can be found there it’s astounding to think that the club haven’t brought it in house to ensure it can be preserved for future generations. No matter what you want to know about Celtic you’ll find it there. And if it’s not there today you can bet that JBC will have it up on the wiki tomorrow.
5. Phil MacGiollabhain (19) – http://www.philmacgiollabhain.com/
Phil’s work on the Hugh Dallas pope email last autumn was a fascinating read. After rumours of the email appeared on KDS and twitter, Phil put the meat on the bones of the story and once the mainstream media picked up on the tale Dallas’ days were numbered. His continued efforts to report the ongoing issues surrounding Rangers and HMRC have rightly brought him many plaudits and we all eagerly await the next instalment of the story. Indeed there is a case for saying that Phil should be higher up this list than 5th. However, some fans have been turned off by what looks like his obsessive desire for publicity, relentless retweets on Twitter and by the ludicrous decision to produce his own line of t-shirts. Here’s hoping Phil can tone down the self promotion and focus on what he does best – report the stories that nobody in the mainstream is willing to.
4. The KDS mods – KDS
The hive mind of the thinking fans Celtic forum continues to run a tight ship. Threads are merged and closed with ruthless efficiency and what’s left is a very sleek and easy to navigate forum. It can require a bit of digging in order to find the latest news being discussed, mainly due to the way threads are merged, but once you know what you are looking for the fact that all the debate is contained within the one thread makes for a much more coherent read. This sense of order can lead to some fans accusing KDS of being a forum for snobs but it’s interesting to see the large number of football forums who have copied the KDS style with regard to single match threads, single rumour threads and dedicated threads to each player in the squad. It’s obviously a format that is popular among the fans. And of course, because of its openness KDS continues to be the go to forum for the sports media when they wish to take the temperature of the Celtic fans. Just don’t make them angry. You wouldn’t like them when they are angry.
3. Admin (14) – Green Brigade
When the story of last season comes to be written the words “Green Brigade” surely appear on almost every page. While there have been, and continue to be, issues surrounding the group in section 111 nobody can deny the influence they have had on the wider support. “Just Can’t Get Enough” is now being sung home and away and not just at Celtic games – clubs throughout the UK have followed the GB’s lead and are singing the Depeche Mode classic. The key thing about the GB is that kids absolutely love them. Their rebellious nature, non conformist approach and general exuberance have made them a group that all young celts want to be part of. The jungle will never return but the guys in section 111 are providing a new generation with the next best thing.
2. Sellic (2) – Teh Huddleboard
Sellic continues to oversee the biggest and most anarchic Celtic forum out there. It would be understandable if the admin of a forum of this size became a wee bit big headed, or lost sight of who the really important folk on the site are (clue – it’s not the admin) so it’s to his credit that Sellic continues to seem to be completely underwhelmed by the whole thing. It obviously takes a heck of a lot of work to run a forum of the size of the huddleboard – the legal threats, the negative news reports, the specky moderators to deal with and the regular challenges from rivals wielding baseball bats. And somehow Sellic manages it. Admittedly he is ably assisted by the mysterious man known only as “Wokkie” and if talk is to be believed only a fool would challenge Wokkie with a baseball bat. Suffice to say it would need to take something special to stop Sellic hitting top spot this year and he’s unfortunate to have come up against someone who appears to be operating at the top of his game…
1. Paul67 (5) – CQN
It’s hard to know where to start with CQN this year. It’s easy to forget that Paul was the man who published the damning Referee Supervisor Report which played such an important role in the ref strike last autumn. This was a report which a national media organisation was too scared to make available because of the “implications.” Sure Paul received some stick over the claims of a dodgy dossier but given his surefootedness elsewhere one would have to assume that he had either been given a dossier and then told he couldn’t use it, or had been promised something which never materialised. It’s extremely unlikely that he would talk of a dossier without being very clear as to its existence beforehand. However, it’s not just his work in the autumn of 2010 which landed him the top spot. In the past month or so CQN has produced not one but two innovations which have got the t’imternet talking. First up we were introduced to CQ, the new downloadable magazine from the users of Paul’s blog. The production values were outstanding and even if some of the content didn’t quite match the style of the mag it was an exciting development. Issue two is due any day now and as the mag starts to find its feet it will be interesting to see if Paul can get the balance between style and substance. The next big move by Paul was CQN TV. Last year we said that fan generated video content was the next logical step for the t’imternet to take and Paul has taken that step. The vox pop idea is simple yet effective and will no doubt be tweaked as the season progresses. Our only concern is whether Paul has enough good looking nieces to keep changing the hostess. Overall a triumphant year for CQN and a very challenging benchmark has been set for the rest of us.
So that’s that. What do you think? Have we missed anyone? Is the order wrong? Log in and let us know what you think in the comment section below. You can also log into the site using your facebook account.
To read the 2010 list click here.