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Sounder at Heart isn't just a website, it's a community

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Thinking back to when this site first started -- with just a single writer and two readers who didn't know me in real life -- and comparing it to now -- with thousands of members and many more readers who never comment -- is humbling.

Sounder at Heart does not exist because I know a lot about soccer, or the Sounders. It exists because I needed it in my life and a few dozen people smarter than me started writing. SaH is not a personal endeavor any more. It needs every writer, every commenter and every reader to continue to make it better.

Know, think, choose, do - Ender's Shadow, Card

Sounder at Heart is a blog about the Seattle Sounders FC, with occasional forays into Democracy in Sports, Roster Management, Soccer Analytics and Life in Puget Sound. We are not the official Sounders blog. We also cover the Seattle Reign (via Ride of the Valkyries), USMNT, USWNT, and the Academy. We'll even delve into the Tacoma Stars or other goings on in the soccer world around the Puget Sound. We like to both get smarter about the game of soccer and have fun with stupid memes and inside jokes. For us, soccer is a game that is best enjoyed with both the head and the heart.

Matchday coverage will usually include:

  • Three Questions
  • Injury Reports
  • Scouting Report
  • Keys to Game
  • Infographic
  • Lineups
  • Real Time Highlights
  • Quick Recap
  • Quick Reaction
  • Photo Gallery
  • Data Recap
  • Community Ratings From
  • Realio's Ratings
  • Aftermatch Aftermath
  • Tactical Analysis
  • Analytics
That's a lot of stuff, plus we do various breaking news, features, goofy things and more.

"One mind can think only of its own questions; it rarely surprises itself." - Ender's Shadow, Card

We don't just allow people to create their own content, we need it. The more voices that participate, the more likely we are to increase our understanding of each other and of soccer. We do not close comments, so that's the easy way to participate. But you can also head over to the sidebar and create your own FanPost or FanShot. Most of our large staff started out writing FanPosts. Some of those have gone onto real, paid writing positions around the world. We will often promote the best or most timely FanPosts to the front page.

"I'm right here. This is who I really am. I'm not pretending." - Ender's Shadow, Card

Online personas may/may not be what they are in real world, but that's OK. Let's accept that the people here are who they say they are. It doesn't matter if they have a UEFA 'A' license or never played the game. Judge their statements on their merits. It's easy to proclaim expertise online, but there is little way to fact check personal history. What can be judged is what you say and how you behave online.

"Please stop reassuring me of how respectful you are whenever you're about to tell me that I'm an idiot." - Ender's Shadow, Card

Our community guidelines are: By joining the blog you are part of a community. You will likely be judged by your words, so I suggest you choose them carefully. Try to keep the conversation PG-13. It is sports, so of course we understand that tempers flare, especially in game threads.

Some things are clearly out-of-bounds:

  • racism/sexism
  • religious statements
  • attacks on members of the community
  • political statements (a rash of anti-Trump jokes are hidden daily, stop that)
  • attacks on members of groups for being members of said group

To borrow from the guidelines I enforce at work - address issues and arguments, rather than make personal attacks. You can do so aggressively, just don't do it personally.