August 20, 2002
DCGreeks.com Year One Retrospective
Part V: The End
After the Auction we just wanted to take it easy for a while. We were glad that the remainder of February was a slow month for Greek events. On the other hand we actually looked forward to Greek events more after the auction than ever before. Without the auction to promote and with the website doing well in terms of members, we could go to some Greek events and actually relax. Outside of taking the occasional picture, we really didn't have to do much else at these things, in terms of "working a room" like the old days.
The first major Greek event after the auction was the Greek Independence Day Greek Night. Actually, there were two Greek Nights on one night, the Friday night before March 25th. We saw this as an opportunity to provide visitors to DCGreeks.com information on both events so that they could actually make an informed decision about which Greek Night they would rather attend. Our "Battle of the Greek Nights" feature was one of the most read features on the site all year. We gave each of the promotion companies a chance to tell us in their own words what their Greek Nights had to offer. It was surprising how honest both groups were and how different each of these Greek Nights promised to be. You could tell that Sigma Entertainment's "Envy" Greek Night at Ooh La La was going to cater to a slightly older, more relaxed crowd. The promise of big screens to watch the University of Maryland NCAA basketball tournament game spoke volumes to the crowd they were targeting. Asteria Productions, on the other hand, was pushing for more of a younger, high-energy crowd, with the emphasis on dancing and good music. We ended up going to both and it was interesting to see all the guys watching the game at Ooh La La, Kafeneio style, with all the chairs facing the TV and the attention being focused on the TV and not much else. We showed up to Asteria's Greek Night at Shelley's West End and it was a completely different story with the party already in full swing there, just minutes after we left a sparsely attended Ooh La La. We heard that more people showed up to Ooh La La later, but we didn't get a chance to go back and see. It would have been nice if these events had been on different nights, but we felt that at least the community had enough information to make a choice as to which one to attend.
After so many months of having DCGreeks.com up and running, we were surprised at the beginning of April when we heard that one of our articles could still get a charge out of the community. It was April Fool's Day and we decided to run an April Fool's Edition. You'd be surprised at how many people actually came up to us and believed nonsense like the fact that we could be Pappas or any of the other notorious profiles on our site, or that we could be selling Greek Night photos to catalogs. We were surprised that people were still reading our articles.
The spring saw us make one of the hardest decisions we had ever had to make regarding DCGreeks.com, the permanent closing of the Kafeneio. Our Kafeneio message board was supposed to be an opportunity for our members to chat about things serious and not so serious, but it became a seedy establishment devoid of all social value. It was personal attack after personal attack on there every week. We didn't even care what was being said about us, because we've had worse said to us in the past, but what was being said about other people, especially the girls of our community, was atrocious. We took it down for Holy Week, not merely for the fact that it was Holy Week, but really because we just wanted it to cool down and bring it back at a time, when people hopefully forgot what they were so bitter about in the first place. It didn't work, as more offensive material kept surfacing. Acknowledging that the Kafeneio was an experiment in free speech turned sour, we closed the Kafeneio.
In the weeks approaching our one year anniversary, things started slowing down with the site. With a lack of events happening in June and July there really weren't that many opportunities to draw people back to the site without pictures to post every week. Admittedly, we took the "Greek" in us decided that DCGreeks.com was for the most part going to go on vacation as well. We look forward to the events of the fall to reenergize the site.
All in all it was a good first year for us. We're flattered that anyone would take DCGreeks.com seriously and that a website that started with a silly article back on July 23, 2001, would gain almost one new member every day and have countless others hearing about the site in the DC area, Baltimore, Tidewater, and beyond.