Surfline buy Coastalwatch

Stu Nettle
Swellnet Dispatch

Overnight, another one of the surfing world's open secrets was made official: Surfline has bought Australian surfcam website Coastalwatch.

American industry website Shop Eat Surf announced Surfline had acquired Coastalwatch from Three Crowns Media. The purchase comes almost two years after US-based Surfline acquired European forecasting site Magic Seaweed from SurfStitch.

The sale ends a tumultuous few years for Coastalwatch. In September 2017, Coastalwatch's surf reporters were retrenched, with most of the remaining staff following in June 2018. 

Coastalwatch were also heavily involved in the SurfStitch affair.

In December 2015, Three Crowns Media signed a contract for Coastalwatch to perpetually license content from SurfStitch-owned companies Garage Entertainment, Magic Seaweed and Stab Magazine, for $20.3 million. The deal turned sour after SurfStitch CEO Justin Cameron quit, its share price tumbled and new management cancelled the contract.

In November 2016 Coastalwatch owner, Sydney-based investment banker Kim Sundell, told the Australian Financial Review he'd been expecting to sell his businesses - including Coastalwatch and Surfing World - in December 2015 for $10m.

In the same story, the Australian Financial Review reported that Sundell had made a bid to buy SurfStitch for $55 million. That preceeded an increasingly hostile exchange between Sundell and SurfStitch that ended with the threat of legal action and the revelation that Justin Cameron's initial contract with Three Crowns Media was under investigation by ASIC.

Kim Sundell

Founded in 1998 by Chris Lane, Coastalwatch was bought in 2001 by Sundell who, despite being a non-surfer, built a small action sports media empire, including Surfing World and Mountainwatch plus Transmoto, Chill Factor and Transfer magazines.

As the dust from the SurfStitch stoush settled, Sundell shopped around for a buyer of Coastalwatch, approaching Swellnet and many other smaller surf companies, before it ended up in Surfline's hands.

In the Shop Eat Surf article, Surfline CEO Jeff Berg said the unification of Surfline, Magic Seaweed, and now Coastalwatch will "enable more aggressive investment in product development".

Comments

the-u-turn's picture
the-u-turn's picture
the-u-turn commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 11:33am

...interesting. There's a bit more going on here.

The U Turn
...a little Aloha goes a long way.

yocal's picture
yocal's picture
yocal commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 11:35am

Noticing some echoes of the Big 3 story here. Which is why I subscribe only to Swellnet.

Go deeper Taylor, go deeper!

hamishbro's picture
hamishbro's picture
hamishbro commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 11:50am

All I can add is that Swellnet is so much better. An authentic voice is everything.

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 12:00pm

C what happens when greedy profit mongers that don't surf are lured into the surf world by what appears to be an idyllic lifestyle/culture and the chance to gain from it. It was always going to happen with a good example being Dirk Ziff, but you know that's life, as soon as something good happens people want in. What about this road to be built on Nias reef, would it have happened or to happen if not for the wave that people come to surf and the money it brings in. A new airport in the northern Bali village of Kubutambahan, up to three hours drive from the existing Denpasar airport, adding at least 3 hours to the drive down to the Bukit, this is for the budget airlines...go figure that one, surfers pretty well put the Bukit on the radar now everyone wants a bit and the goose that laid the golden egg is being shoved further out. A new paved road with power poles into the national park at G Land, that could spell the end of what we know G Land as it may well turn into a town, but that's ok because people who don't surf and frequent the place want in on this gem.
I digressed heavily there but to me it's all the same and fuck things are changing quickly. Personally I don't care about SurfStich, Stab, CoastalWatch or Magic Seaweed they're commercial ventures that are made to be bought and sold, money ventures that may make money or turn into a hole in the ground, if only the rich and powerful could just leave it at that.

A Cripple's picture
A Cripple's picture
A Cripple commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 9:00am

Summed it all up perfectly Ash!!!
You didnt digress, you succinctly covered the whole shit show that “surfing” has become!!!!
The only thing that surfing has left is that talk is still cheap in big powerful waves!!

If 6 was 9,
I would be fine.

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 10:55am

Cheers AC

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 12:03pm

Ben did they offer $10 million to buy you out? Some of those figures are crazy I don't see how you would make that sort of money on a surf web site and old mag. Geez everybody was whinging when you asked for around $14 bucks a month or whatever for subscriptions.

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 2:52pm

Re-read the article. They were wanting to sell CW for $10m. They also approached SN to see if SN was interested in purchasing CW.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 11:26pm

Ahh....I was being factious Don. I just couldn't process the numbers for a surf web site being in any way real.

Tim Bonython's picture
Tim Bonython's picture
Tim Bonython commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 12:28pm

The only word i can fathom up is INEVITABLE..

ryder's picture
ryder's picture
ryder commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 2:42pm

Haha TB
They lured you in and you went for the ride on their gravy train.
The grass was always greener on this side wasn’t it mate.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 12:38pm

wonder what they paid for it?

Stu2d2's picture
Stu2d2's picture
Stu2d2 commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 1:52pm

2/3rds the value of a beachgrit article?

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 1:54pm

bargain!

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 11:27pm

We are moving into the negatives.

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 2:53pm

Something less than $10m is my guess.

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 11:55am

Time for some compliments for Swellnet and contrasts with CW.

I much prefer swellnet particularly as hamishbro noted - the authenticity - of the editorial style, topics and writing. Stu and themalben get it right time after time even down to the quirky little captions under WOTD.

At CW's Sean D and Nick C for all their skill, long careers and history, too often overwork the stories to the point their attempts at literacy genius and laboured metaphors intrude, and detract from the story. Both can write but they seem to try too hard. I sometimes cringe reading their stuff especially if there is a WSL connection.

Anyone read NC's story of Steph Gilmore's wave of the millennium at Karamus? Nice wave and well ridden, but his attempt to turn it into something of cosmic significance made my skin crawl.

Nick put on a leather jacket over his boardies, donned a black wig, combed back the quaff, grabbed the WSL tow rope, got up some speed and jumped the shark with that story.

Stu picks a wide range of topics and often leads with angles the others miss and recognises we are sort of interested in the WSL circus but sort of not.

Frogg

abc-od's picture
abc-od's picture
abc-od commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 2:43pm

Glad someone else picked up on the overreach about Steph's wave. It made me wonder what acts he's committed in the past to turn a good (not great) wave into some symbol of feminine arrival.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 11:33pm

Interesting guy NC. Very confident and aggressive but also a bit weird, on a different wave length hard to get to get a handle on. Was a good surfer in his youth but obviously overshadowed by his younger sibling. I think his old man was a journo as well. Definitely different.

Trollntroffpig's picture
Trollntroffpig's picture
Trollntroffpig commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 11:31am

Totally agree frogg. As for Nick Carroll, his writing is an over the top embarrassment. Doesn't help he is also an aggressive, blatant drop in merchant in the water. Burned me at Bells Rincon with 5 of us in the water years ago, never forgot that one.

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog commented Sunday, 4 Aug 2019 at 4:35pm

Famous surfers need to remember that if they drop in we never ever forget and tell lots of people

As for writing, a bullshit detector is a valuable skill in surf journalism. I suspect too much time around WSL marketers trying to monetise us stingy surfers into profitable consumers can distort perspectives.

Frogg

loungelizard's picture
loungelizard's picture
loungelizard commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 12:43pm

yep, take the money and run is my tip (and dont take shares in escrow!)

sandspit's picture
sandspit's picture
sandspit commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 12:44pm

isnt it odd that coastalwatch haven't made an announcemtn yet? nothing on their website or facebook page, surely its big news?

Ape Anonymous's picture
Ape Anonymous's picture
Ape Anonymous commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 1:20pm

Congratulations Swellnet.com for staying independent! We love you

amb's picture
amb's picture
amb commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 5:50pm

Bit like Coopers Beer, the public begged they stayed independant and they did.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 11:35pm

Yeah and then I heard they were God botherers and best mates with Abbot. Bit upsetting.

wallpaper's picture
wallpaper's picture
wallpaper commented Monday, 5 Aug 2019 at 10:01pm

and it's shit beer too. always has been

amb's picture
amb's picture
amb commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 9:03am

whats your favorite beer wall paper, dont tell me West End!

carpetman's picture
carpetman's picture
carpetman commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 1:48pm

Yup, happy to throw some schmeckles at a great resource and independent website.

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 1:56pm

Coastalwatch has had more than a whiff of lameness for quite a while now - apart from articles by NC and Sean Doherty (which tended to promote the WSL), it's been a barrage of undisguised advertorials.
For me, the only worthwhile aspect was throwing the forecasts in the mix when trying to find some consensus.
Meanwhile, Swellnet maintains credibility.

sneakerset's picture
sneakerset's picture
sneakerset commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 8:09am

I agree with AndyM. I enjoyed the articles from Nick Carroll and Sean Doherty but their articles were infrequent. I recently cancelled my subscription to Coastalwatch after 1 year due to the lack of content, and continuously failed webcams. The Sunshine Beach webcam for example has been offline for over 4 months now and their other cams had frequent outages. I'm a happy subscriber to Swellnet now and apart from the better quality of the webcams and detailed forecasts, the subscribers forum is the biggest drawcard for me and a major point of difference with CW.

kaybeegee's picture
kaybeegee's picture
kaybeegee commented Monday, 5 Aug 2019 at 7:15am

Where's the subscribers forum? I missed this perk.

Heavyjuice's picture
Heavyjuice's picture
Heavyjuice commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 2:20pm

Without hyperbole, Swellnet is the greatest thing to happen to humanity since the first Hominid stood up on its hind legs because it wanted its ancestors 2 million years down the track to get pitted.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 2:44pm

"Surfline said having Coastalwatch along with existing brands and teams under one roof will enable more aggressive investment in product development for the benefit of surfers globally."

Wonder what that means?

More cameras?

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 2:56pm

It means they now have more global reach and power around the globe to attract surfers to their market/brand.

They pretty much have a captive audience in most major countries/continents around the world now.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:05pm

I get that....but what is the product they are going to "aggressively develop"?

Gra Murdoch's picture
Gra Murdoch's picture
Gra Murdoch commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 4:43pm

Rarely, if ever, is Aggressive Development a good thing hey.

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 9:57am

Not to sure if you are allowed to comment on development issues....re indo.

Gra Murdoch's picture
Gra Murdoch's picture
Gra Murdoch commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 10:05am

Great point!

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 5:28pm

I think you're missing the point Steve. There is no product as such. Just sheer masses of captive audience now that they can "sell" too around the globe. Marketers dream!! ;)

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 2:58pm

Well , I’m pretty sure that when you translate the tortured Seppo Surf- Corpo speak phrase “ for the benefit of surfers globally “ you’re left with a situation whereby local surfers around the world are forced against their will into hosting a lineup party in their mouth ......and everyone’s coming.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 2:16pm

Brutal.

I can only surmise the answer to FR's question is more cams in more places and more crowds?

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 9:59am

I'd say your bang on the money vj.

Feralkook's picture
Feralkook's picture
Feralkook commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:46pm

I think it might mean they will carry out more regular maintenance and cleaning so the subscribers have a working cam network and don't get error messages and a still photo all the time.

saltman's picture
saltman's picture
saltman commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 12:17pm

Product development = selling shit to surfers

wallpaper's picture
wallpaper's picture
wallpaper commented Monday, 5 Aug 2019 at 10:02pm

so there's a market then

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 11:47pm

The whole idea of 'aggressive investment' is a major worry. Sounds like the suits are well and truly involved. FFS (acronym for I think you can guess...a few more to come in this rant), once they start using this kind of bullshit corporate speech you know it is headed for the shitter. Next they will start using speak like we need to Value Manage (VM) the aggressive investment with a Project Control Group (PCG) and they say it with a straight face believing the complete bullshit that comes out of their mouths. Sorry very jaded.

campbell's picture
campbell's picture
campbell commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:08pm

No surprise that CW would have to sell, b grade product, stagnating articles and nothing but the Nick carrol echo chamber of opinions. I subscribed to both swellnet and cw for a number of years but gave cw the flick after getting sick of Nick and really only using the cw web cam which feature adds despite being spiked as add free . I hope they didn't pay too much for it, now it will even more sterilized as surfline has the tendency to be. Keep up the good work SN

...

savanova's picture
savanova's picture
savanova commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:21pm

Always wondered how they are able give a surf report when I'm sitting on the shitter in the dark before the sun's up?

Elliedog's picture
Elliedog's picture
Elliedog commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:24pm

i might be ignorant so pardon me Stu...but who owns Swellnet?. Yourself?. You guys do a great job and deserve my monthly tip in. Stay genuine and independent. Agree with some of the comments here regarding CW. Seems to be contrived and pretty over the top with Sean and Nick writing some of the rubbish on there. I haven't read an article by SD or NC for years worth reading.

Luba

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:32pm

Nah, I'm a salaryman, Elliedog. Lot of people think it's mine, perhaps because of the 'Nettle - Stunet - Swellnet' thing, but Ben owns it 100%.

Around ten years back Swellnet had a silent business partner but he sold his share back to Ben about five years ago.

Independent all the way.

And FWIW, I like Sean's writing wherever it appears.

Hastoes's picture
Hastoes's picture
Hastoes commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 8:27pm

Me too, Seans writing is awesome .

aj

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 11:52pm

Yep me three.

wallpaper's picture
wallpaper's picture
wallpaper commented Monday, 5 Aug 2019 at 10:05pm

a talented writer

Elliedog's picture
Elliedog's picture
Elliedog commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:43pm

Cool...Love ya work.

Luba

groundswell85's picture
groundswell85's picture
groundswell85 commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:57pm

Sorry haven’t read the thread of comments, so not sure if touched on. The WSL own Surfline right?
So the WSL has bought Coastalwatch to add to the acquisitions of Surfline & Magic Seaweed. Is this a strategic move by the WSL to try and buy all the surf media websites to have complete control over the narrative and agenda of surfing?

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 4:00pm

Nah mate, WSL and Surfline are just media partners.

freerider.'s picture
freerider.'s picture
freerider. commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 6:04pm

What are media partners?? Two people sleeping in the same bed? I find it hard to belive, that the Wsl won't use every means at their disposal to spread their agenda to a surf world that has limited sources of information.

Don't underestimate Dirk, Sophie and Elo, three non-surfers who have an agenda to sell surfing to the world and cash in on it....

belly's picture
belly's picture
belly commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 7:34pm

'partners' gets overused (no offence Stu love your work) and has accounting / legal meaning. I'm thinking surfline has a contract to supply forecasting services and WSL and surfline have separate ownership structures with no linkages. Just a theory I don't know the facts ;-)

bill-poster's picture
bill-poster's picture
bill-poster commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 3:57pm

So who owns Surfing World then? I'd feel better if it was owned by a surfer.

Gra Murdoch's picture
Gra Murdoch's picture
Gra Murdoch commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 4:45pm

Swellnet's the only site that gets my sub dollar and that's unlikely to change.

belly's picture
belly's picture
belly commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 7:35pm

Me too!

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 5:32pm

Interesting no discussion in here by Ben. He obviously knows the most about the behind the scenes sale of CW given the article above states SN was approached to purchase CW.

amb's picture
amb's picture
amb commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 5:44pm

Also interesting this article got me to see if Real Surf is still going, and it is!..good work Don ( i assume its the same Don?)

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 6:40pm

Aggressive investment ? Cameras everywhere. Perhaps facial recognition techniques applied to assessing surf conditions so an automated report is generated so a hint of quality improvement is broadcast to the masses in live time via text message
Can't wait.

Frogg

benjis babe's picture
benjis babe's picture
benjis babe commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 10:57am

haha, the young crew already do that, don't know how to keep a good bank with no one on it a secret

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 10:30am

Aussies spend $600,000 year to deny entry to each boat person.
Aussies spend $6m to secure a beachfront property that crumbles into the sea.
Australian coastline sinks unimaginable bounty & it's only getting worse.

Now imagine one company possessing a glut of worldwide Coastline resource.

Coastalwatch have the most comprehensive reference archive. ( Equinix < > IBM)
Live monitoring for Govt,Councils,Scientists,Academics,SLSA,Marine,Boat,Surf...
Meteorology,Atmospherics,Oceanography,Rescue Organisations to Surf Magz.
Live cams recording news & monitoring erosion,Surf & risk!...(As does swellnet)

20yr coastal Archive records the life & times of Australia's wealthiest properties.

So why sell out our Coastline Science to foreigners & what do they require it for?
Sure, the first rate Science would save $billions of real estate worldwide...

tbb is referring to Real Estate... Coastalwatch as Oz #1 property Archive.
Surfline / Coastalwatch (Worldwide Beachfront Cams exhibiting #1 real estate)
All Aussies know that beach cams show off the Beach Mansion's best side.

#1 Cloudbank Data secures 20 years of Worlds most exclusive Property Portfolio
#1 Live Timeshare inspections of 100-1000 Top beach destinations or Secret spots!
#1 Seachange Estate Agents + Evaluation + Property Assessment Management
#1 Erosion validity for multi million dollar TDR (Transferable Development Rights)
#1 Superyacht security Cams or Live Surf Contests & Concerts

Note! Swellnet may also choose to venture down the real estate oceanway.
tbb is gobsmacked that this standout lucrative venture is the last exploited.
Real Estate Agents -20 year Property erosion history data & vid =(1% or $50,000)
100% insurance (no spin) on either Buy / Sell / Transfer...(Solid Gold Guarantee)

Swellnetonians place premium on Ben's Surf expertise so why not beach estate!
I'm backing Ben can pick a sound Beach Property better than estate agent! (True!)
So why the hell give some twit in dress shoes the key to Spot X.

Govt order Drones to fly Pizza & coffee over homes in ACT & SEQ. (It's happening!)
Google are perving on neighbour's knickerz while spilling the beans on Judy Jetson.
What's of interest is Google perv-cam "Wing" pay next to no Australian tax.
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-07-26/wing-profit-shifting-canberra-dro...

Any U.S Beach-cam paying less/no Oz tax has unfair advantage on Oz swellnet?

Surf Cam Real Estate beach wrap would be more valued than surf report! (Joking!)

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 8:16pm
Ape Anonymous's picture
Ape Anonymous's picture
Ape Anonymous commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 10:17am

Wow. Looks at that head and shoulder formation at the top... crash time or spyware too valuable these days??

Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 8:18pm

For me, there's 3 things I need subcribe to, Netflix, Spotify, and Swellnet. In the words of my 9 year old daughter when she finally received her own handmedownphonefrommum, "My life is complete"

Diligite opus!

Barrel Daithwaite's picture
Barrel Daithwaite's picture
Barrel Daithwaite commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 11:03am

Exactly the same and only 3 subs I need. Very happy with all 3.

Solitude's picture
Solitude's picture
Solitude commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 8:19pm

Yawn...........probably go the same way of Stab and produce 90% seppo and/or advertisement content.

Wasn’t CW just reruns and of Gold Coast pointbreak swell?

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 12:00am

Yeah Stab is a weird one as it is totally USA but I remember it being and OZ site but I wasn't following its development. Sort of strange site as it seems a bit try hard but has some reasonable articles.

JosephStalin's picture
JosephStalin's picture
JosephStalin commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 8:27pm

Yebut swellnets surfcams only go for 15seconds

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 9:05pm

tbb does realize that Surf Cams do branch out into real estate & travel.
Ben's swellnet Traveller & Apartment Accommodation explores new opportunities.
tbb apologizes for not accrediting swellnet's lead into said areas... #1 swellnet

savanova's picture
savanova's picture
savanova commented Thursday, 1 Aug 2019 at 10:01pm

I hear someone is trying to put a surf cam at Warilla is it SN? or CW?

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 5:40am

Cam wars?

sneakerset's picture
sneakerset's picture
sneakerset commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 8:52am

It makes a little more sense now. The current owner (a non-surfer as well) was obviously not bothered to invest any further time or $ into maintaining the business. I cancelled my subscription Coastalwatch out of frustration for lack of regular content, and continuously failed webcams. The Sunshine Beach webcam for example has been offline for over 4 months now and their other cams had frequent outages. There was also no real surfers forum to exchange banter on a range of articles like with Swellnet. I'm a happy subscriber to Swellnet now and apart from functioning webcams and detail in the surf forecasts. the biggest drawcard for me is the great editorial content and the banter that goes on in these forum's - its was always a major point of difference with CW.

epictard's picture
epictard's picture
epictard commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 10:23am

Obviously you don't need to look at the Illawarra cams on this site very often. They have been down a very long time, much longer than a few months.
I understand that this it is not SWs fault, so I pay my subscription and wait impatiently for them to return.

surfstarved's picture
surfstarved's picture
surfstarved commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 3:31pm

That's no accident when you think that the Managing Editor (or whatever your job title is Stu) lives on the Coal Coast.

Don't let the bastards grind you down

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 4:03pm

May be hard to believe but it's coincidental and not by design. Anyway, as of next week it'll be a moot point.

Not entirely sure what my job title is.

wingnut2443's picture
wingnut2443's picture
wingnut2443 commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 5:12pm

Moot point and coincidental as to your job title? You got a new gig Stu?

Poached, head hunted, offer to good to refuse...

By the new world powerhouse of surf journalism?

Surfboard Design and Construction Kook. Evidence is here: www.ffwsurfboards.com.au
*FFW - Few Fun Waves ... that's what it's all about for me.

dinnerdish's picture
dinnerdish's picture
dinnerdish commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 8:58am

I really appreciate SD's writing but after being with CW for a year I found the reports at Coffs so wrong and there cams also hopeless....now happily sub to SW

arohabro

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 1:13pm

There is no Coffs report on CWits the same report for all up the coast to goldie, would be good if SN would make the Park Beach cam pan to Park Beach and not stuck on Macauleys.

jayet-010's picture
jayet-010's picture
jayet-010 commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 9:44am

Been meaning to cough up and show my support for Swellnet for some time now. Time to subscribe and (hopefully) keep it independent!

chris carter's picture
chris carter's picture
chris carter commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 9:58am

Maybe between the three of them they might be able to do a accurate surf report for Indo and for Australia
Just a maybe

tango's picture
tango's picture
tango commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 3:04pm

Careful what you wish for, CC. The only thing keeping many people going in this neck of the woods are the fleeting, wonderful windows when the models/forecasters don't get it quite right and a committed few get decent waves without the mob descending.

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 9:49pm

Hopefully they can find out what scully and Mulder have been up to via their web cams.

groundswell85's picture
groundswell85's picture
groundswell85 commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 12:18pm

Maybe jumped the gun on the WSL conspiracy. The media partnership still sounds a little fishy. Surfline's WSL content seem pretty kind and forgiving ever since the partnership, definitely doesn’t come across as an independent source anymore. Plus the fakkas (Surfline) took away the free log in I used for years thanks to a buddy who was a big wave Dave VIP. They cut him off. So f... SL
Swellnet all the way

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 2:29pm

Great thanks to Swellnet for being what it is, where else has the mix of editorial content, cams & forecasting, forums and so many diverse views tolerated? It has been nice to meet you as well.

Next tip, I launch a forums post on Freo sand, and it soon becomes an article, that felt really good to see the coastal erosion regarded as important on the site. (I'm not a contributor) If there is any question ever posed "what is the condition of sand/environment/weather at this beach?" - there's no shortage of people willing to provide info. In this way, one of the SN forums can usually get to the essence of any matter over a day or two (cheers to tbb). A Swellnet hivemind.

Last bit is, SN is reporting on a time of tremendous change in surfing: increasing numbers, increasing coastal development, changing weather, changing shorelines, development and spoiling of tropical travel destinations, design changes, the economics of "surfing" and attempts at commercialisation; and us people as well, our personalities and life's work. Scriptwriters would give for such rich content. It's a great time and you guys run a good ship.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 12:15am

VJ saw the 7.30 report about the sand issue and it seems to me the sand is not being replenished, Is it a series of groynes or one massive one as something is really out of whack? A similar thing happened in a little backwater called Somers in Westernport Bay and it was all because they built a groyne. It basically trashed the place and now they have to use rock to stop the rot. Really sad to see the process from the 1960's until today.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 1:31pm

Memla, my rough understanding is if they build a groyne, they interrupt sand flow and it accumulates on the downflow side, and starves the upflow side. Eg: Geraldton marina built in 90's now starving Bluff Point and Glennies, works on Bunbury port did same. Pity about Westernport then too.

Freo harbour is a bit different, most of our discussion was in the comments here

https://www.swellnet.com/news/swellnet-dispatch/2019/06/17/north-fremant...

The understanding being here that when North Mole was built, good sandbanks remained to the north (great links in that discussion to overhead pics of A frames there, maybe they dredged and left a lot north of the harbour mouth) but when Rous Head was developed there would be no further supply added. Extensions continued this?

Any natural sand flow up the coast goes into the big pit of the dredged Freo Harbour, which infrequently needs dredging. The sand initially dredged by North Mole has acted as a supply, which is now running out. No new sand will accumulate to continue the supply.

My solution would be to run a line the next time the offshore channels (a few km out to sea, connecting the Cockburn sound industry) need dredging, and send the sand to just north of Freo harbour. These channels are dredged more readily. This will create an ongoing sand supply to save the beaches Port-Leighton, and maybe just maybe create a couple of epic left points in the metro area.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 1:55pm

here's bnmac's excellent pic:

https://cdn.thinglink.me/api/image/1155025766371557378/1024/10/scaletowidth

post North Mole, pre Rous Head

barrel_pig's picture
barrel_pig's picture
barrel_pig commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 2:41pm

I only go to Coastalwatch for their Bondi cam. *cough-cough*

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 3:02pm

Also, a big shout out to Eastsurf who do the reports down there for Swellnet as well. Has it been 20 years? Looking back, I really love the layout of the 'Web1.0' surf report sites, and found the site excellent when I was working that way and exploring that coast in what can be tricky to forecast conditions for the traveling surfer. It's great to see this site retain some of the similarity of the past.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 3:47pm

I only read it for the articles.

big wave dave's picture
big wave dave's picture
big wave dave commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 5:01pm

keep your authenticity Ben and you'll keep me as a happy customer

Hazrus's picture
Hazrus's picture
Hazrus commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 7:03pm

Swellnet >>>>>>> Coastalwatch. Never been tempted to subscribe over there. It doesn’t reek of corporate influence nearly as much here.

dpc's picture
dpc's picture
dpc commented Friday, 2 Aug 2019 at 10:02pm

He looks like saddam hussien

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 10:03am

LOL.....BAHAHAHA.

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 3:05pm

LOL.....BAHAHAHA.

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 3:12pm

??

wingnut2443's picture
wingnut2443's picture
wingnut2443 commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 10:44am

Stu / Ben ... anyone who might know ... what's the link between 'coastalwatch' and 'coastalcoms'? https://www.coastalcoms.com/

IIRC, coastalwatch use (used?) the surfcam network operated (owned?) by coastal coms?

And, do I also recall correctly, that there was government funding (grant(s)?) for the set up of the web cam network?

I could have the information / knowledge mixed up, happy to be corrected / informed.

Surfboard Design and Construction Kook. Evidence is here: www.ffwsurfboards.com.au
*FFW - Few Fun Waves ... that's what it's all about for me.

Old Gregg's picture
Old Gregg's picture
Old Gregg commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 12:18pm

Freeride, I've heard from a source sw has plans for quite a few cameras at various locations along a popular stretch of coast which I shall not name.

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 12:50pm

Rightio chaps, there's nothing for it then - to the barricades and bring the pitchforks.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 1:39pm

Drones armed with spraycans

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 1:47pm

That's one of the things I like about you VJ, you're an ideas man.
What about a fleet of well trained and incontinent pelicans?

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 1:59pm

hahaha! Excellent, you don't want to mess with those, or park your car underneath them.
Kamikaze courier pidgeons?

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 2:06pm

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 5:28pm

omg that would make Alfred Hitchcock proud!

(mental note, never buy used silver Commodore)

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 6:10pm

Do you mean here in the Illawarra, Gregg? We've got two going in, both next to existing ones from a rival company (ha!), plus an upgrade of an existing one of ours at South Wollongong Beach that hasn't worked for a while, all of them behind the paywall.

They're the only ones on the drawing board.

EDIT: Also, there's been nothing secretive about it, Ben has detailed them at length in the forums and also answered questions from people upset at how long they're taking to go in.

Old Gregg's picture
Old Gregg's picture
Old Gregg commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 7:57pm

Nah. Let's just say well south of there. Info I got was up to 6 new cameras. As in new 6 new locations along a particular stretch.

Old Gregg's picture
Old Gregg's picture
Old Gregg commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 8:05pm

Yeah I wasn't suggesting sw was being secretive. But just heard it from a credible source. For what it's worth I think you blokes do a fantastic job but not everyone is happy about cameras potentially popping up at their local. The rate of 'progress' pressure in some areas is horrifying

wax-on-danielson's picture
wax-on-danielson's picture
wax-on-danielson commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 12:43pm

So what your saying is soon there will be no more free reports or cameras?

Stupot's picture
Stupot's picture
Stupot commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 1:00pm

I subscribe to both CW & this site. Good to have second opinions for the long range forecasts. If I had to choose only 1 then Swellnet would be it but a few more camera locations in SEQ would be nice...

Unemployment isn't working...

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 1:25pm

Should definitely have one at DI Point, and maybe one at Waddy Point sometime down the track.
Would have to talk with National Parks though.

sbsb's picture
sbsb's picture
sbsb commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 10:44pm

Not sure why Swellnet would post this as news except perhaps in fear? If you really were in the discussions I think that any angle is in danger of being sour grapes.

I have followed Swellnet for a decade or so and thought of it as the go to site for forecasts, reports and surf content in Australia, though the pricing for subscriptions or the new traveller content has made me question the product alongside all the others.

I prefer to support independents, but as a more casual surfer these days my requirements are fairly generic: forecasts, maybe cams, a bit of content when I have time. There is nothing particularly Australian about my needs except that I happen to live here, I expect that my fellow middle aged surfing men and women in Chile, the US or Africa have the same.

What I would like from Swellnet is some kind of a larger plan, if not to be purchased by Surfline then to build some kind of alternative network of similar platforms internationally that we can connect to that is less horrible. There is no need for an Australian Facebook, Twitter or Instagram as the whole point is to connect outside of where we are. And surfers travel more than most!

Give it to me Swellnet, my subscription dollars are waiting for something to believe in, not for content (which I don’t have time to read/watch much of anyway, even though you are the best) but in helping me get to waves whether at home, Indo or anywhere else.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Sunday, 4 Aug 2019 at 7:20am

You want us to build a new, alternative, independent social platform, something akin to Facebook yet forges into untapped territory, places the existing social media companies like Facebook (worth $138 billion), Twitter ($4.4 billion), and Instagram ($100 billion) haven't thought of?

All that, plus our exisiting cameras, reports, forecasts, and editorial for 22 cents a day?

Sorry mate, no can do. Be sure to give my sympathy to your local shaper - I can only imagine the expectations heaped on the poor fella.

wingnut2443's picture
wingnut2443's picture
wingnut2443 commented Sunday, 4 Aug 2019 at 7:32am

Sure, $0.22 a day from him, but what about the other 5, 8 or 10 thousand subscribers?

5000 X $0.22 gives you $1,100 a day to 'invest' in this new tech.

8000 X $0.22 a mere $1,760 a day.

Are you up guys up to 10,000 subscribers yet? ... $2,200 a day.

Small change soon adds up, hey?

Yeah yeah I know, you're not going to tell us the real numbers. And yes, I know there are costs to run the SwellNet juggernaut. Heck you need more boards n coffee, Craig needs more surf n snow trips and Ben, well, beanies cost a lot!

PS: you see my post above re link of coastal watch and coastal coms? Any info to share?

Surfboard Design and Construction Kook. Evidence is here: www.ffwsurfboards.com.au
*FFW - Few Fun Waves ... that's what it's all about for me.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Saturday, 3 Aug 2019 at 11:35pm

I think Swellnet should get into the internet dating gig, sort of like Tinder. They could call it 'Swindler', helping surfers find true love instead of this mindless obsession with catching waves.

Seriously, surfing is the epitome of an unrequited love.

1173

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash commented Sunday, 4 Aug 2019 at 5:24pm

"Bender" comes to mind straight away, but maybe I'm really wrong on that
Just kidding Ben

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 1:20pm

Hey SN, if you can make the Park Beach cam actually pan to Park Beach like it used to and not stuck on Macauleys i will subscribe, surely you could pay a sparky or tech guy to do it?

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 1:44pm

Done and done.

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 1:53pm

Haha, brilliant, subscribed. thanks

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 1:55pm

Unreal! Thanks mate.

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 1:56pm

Can you also make the banks better ;)

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 2:00pm

That's only available with our Premium 'Gold Plate' subscription service.

I'll have our Coffs Coast drone deliver the sign up documents to your nominated address in a few minutes. 

Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 3:10pm

That's awesome. Can the Newy one do the pan?

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 3:19pm

Done and done.

​​​​​​​

Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 4:00pm

Ha awesome. If I knew it was that easy I would have asked ages ago! Thanks

Ensea's picture
Ensea's picture
Ensea commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 12:05am

Can you make The Spit cam pan from the south wall to the jetty only? Nobody wants to look in the seaway & we don’t need any more focus on South America I mean South Straddie. Cheers legend.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 5:41am

We don't have a surfcam at the Spit/Seaway.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 5:38pm

Ben responds and reorients the cams in 24 and 9 minutes respectively
wow

Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake commented Tuesday, 6 Aug 2019 at 7:20pm

And what a huge difference a pan makes!

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 11:08am

While your at it Ben :) Can you make Gallows cam pan more to the point/corner/left?
Thanks

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 11:57am

It actually looks at the northern most (surfable) part of the beach. 

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 12:13pm

Only pans to the start of the tarred car park, then goes to southern end of the beach, doesn't show the northern corner near the rocks/headland where most surf.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 12:18pm

There are four views. South zoom, centre zoom, centre wide, and north zoom.

Here is north zoom. I've never seen anyone surf north from here (too much weird backwash etc).

And, I just panned it out and took a shot, to show the perspective (gotta get rid of that bug on the housing!).

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 12:29pm

The last shot zoomed in is what you want, the left in the corner is where gallows is best mostly. The first shot is heading to middle of the beach.
I've only been surfing there for 28 years :)

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 12:45pm

The 'last shot zoomed in' is exactly what the other image (above) is - see image below - 'existing frame' is what's currently on the site as our north zoom.

I literally zoomed it out to show the perspective. And there are three blokes in the middle of the frame right now, and no-one to the left. 

Are you saying people regularly surf in the corner where the small box is?

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 12:52pm

haha, ok you got me, no not that far in (maybe boogers on a big day lol) but definitely from where the boxes join. Maybe because of the angle and you cant see the rocks looks further over southwards.
All good.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 3:44pm

How's this mate?
​​​​​​​

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Wednesday, 7 Aug 2019 at 3:59pm

Excellent, thanks.