BocaWatch Now Preserved On 4boca

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Old BocaWatch articles are now being served from this domain, 4boca.com. Read how and why here. 

BocaWatch began in 2012, published by Al Zucaro. Over its heyday more than 1100 articles were written by Boca residents, for Boca residents. 

Unfortunately, for Boca,  Al Zucaro hasn’t been contributing to it for quite some time. He’s working on other wider reaching projects now. 

I’m Jason Pelish, the Publisher of 4boca.com. I run a local marketing company that has its own web hosting servers. Massive Impressions Online Marketing, my company,  has been the web host preserving BocaWatch on its servers, the same web servers this site, 4boca, served from. I was also Editor of BocaWatch since 2018, during which time I curated the articles into categories and re-designed the site. I enjoyed that a lot, made a lot of strong community connections and learned about Boca politics. 

People have asked me “Why don’t you start BocaWatch up again?” 

That’s a good question. I’ve thought a lot about it, and wondered what it would be like without Al. I know I couldn’t do it without him. 

BocaWatch just isn’t the same without Al. It was Al’s creation. Without Al being active in BocaWatch, it wouldn’t be BocaWatch.  His knowledge of law, Boca Raton and politics is still unmatched. Al led the BocaWatch effort as its Publisher for years, inspiring many Boca residents, myself included, to get engaged with politics and local blogging.

Without Al Zucaro, BocaWatch would be less than BocaWatch. I can run 4boca, but I can’t make BocaWatch work without Al. In late 2018 I connected BocaWatch to a payment collection system, but nobody ever donated to BocaWatch. Al and I believed people would donate, but not a single person did. I can’t speak for Al, but it was somewhat discouraging for me. It seemed like people expected a free ride, but they didn’t care to chip in for the gas. Some people felt like they were even entitled to BocaWatch for having contributed. Ads help a tiny bit towards covering costs of hosting this content, but the revenue from them is laughably low. 

I kept BocaWatch running, but it wasn’t “active” because nothing new was being added to it. Keeping BocaWatch alive had admittedly small monetary costs, larger costs in attention towards security and maintenance,  but I couldn’t delete it or let it die. BocaWatch contained so much content that deserved to be preserved. For a while I didn’t know what to do.

One day I was drinking a milkshake from Carvel, talking with Bernie Korn. He asked what I was doing with BocaWatch. I explained the situations with BocaWatch and 4boca to him. Bernie suggested to me that I move the content from BocaWatch to 4boca. It wasn’t a bad idea. The more I thought about it, the better the idea sounded. 

I started doing it, and it wasn’t as easy as I imagined. Merging the two sites together, moving the content from one to the other wasn’t as trivial or as automatic as I thought it was going to be, in particular with the images. It took a lot of manual editing, one page at a time. But after a couple months of late nights it was done. 

So now all that original BocaWatch content is being housed here, on 4boca. Some of the video interviews weren’t recoverable, unfortunately.  

If you put your mouse over the menu option captioned “Blog” you’ll see the old categories created during the 2018 redesign of BocaWatch. Use the “Search” feature or use Google to find what you’re looking for. 

I hope 4boca is useful to you to keep yourself informed about local issues. I hope you can use what’s in it to inform others. We are at a time of great change. Information is key to how we get through it, for better or for worse. Preserving and sharing information is important to me. My hope is that you see its importance to YOU. The door is open for you to contribute content, articles and comments. Please take advantage of 4boca.com. 

 

1 COMMENT

  1. Thank you Jason for preserving the history captured during the BocaWatch lifespan. BocaWatch published from February 2012 to December 2019.
    Its initial objective was to curtail the unbridled growth experienced throughout the entire city but largely concentrated in the downtown.
    Its initial group of community activists brought forward facts and circumstances largely unrecognized by the voting public.
    BocaWatch created a platform to effectuate vital change in the City Council’s direction, philosophy and leadership.
    BocaWatch was received well and generated thousands of followers; followers intent on preserving the warm feel of ‘old Boca’.
    However, the dye was cast…change was inevitable.
    Even the original community activists succumbed. After, four election cycles, two new elected officials placed on the City Council, one elected official suspended from office and indicted for alleged corruption…little has changed.
    But for this awful pandemic, growth remains constant; City leadership remains unchanged; building expansion continues to push the limits; and the proverbial shovels remain poised to begin again the moment the market will bare it.
    I am glad to have led BocaWatch during that time of turmoil but realize now the futility of opposing growth. Growth is inevitable.
    Community leaders and community activists are not polar opposites. It takes effective leadership to bridge the gap and and bring about effective change. That leadership has yet to be accomplished.
    For that reason, I realized that BocaWatch, the idea, did not reach its potential….A new voice was and is required. To date, that new voice has not arrived.
    Thank you Jason for keeping the BocaWatch idea and concept alive and available for future residents and activists to see…
    Thank you for preserving the articles…and…a personal thank you for your very kind words about me…

    For now, Yvonne and I are off to new adventures and travels around the globe. Stay safe, stay diligent and, most import, stay informed!!!

    Al Zucaro

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