Chelsea, AL - October 21, 2009 - ROCKCRAWLER.com has been sold to IH8MUD Inc., effective immediately.
Since 1997, ROCKCRAWLER.com, founded and operated by Michael Cohn, has been a leader in the online off-road specialty arena. IH8MUD, led by Brian "Woody" Swearingen, plans to take over the site, as well as related domain names, content and Service Marks and move forward with new ideas, a new layout and plenty of new information and content.
A FINAL WORD FROM TX
In 1997 I was running a little personal website called “Jeepin” from my home office in Austin, Texas. It was hosted at a local ISP and had the long address that even included a ~ in the name. Ah, the early days of the interweb. That October, I took the plunge and registered my first real domain name – ROCKCRAWLER.com. There wasn't much to it at the time but I had a lot of ambition (and a lot of free time).
From day one I wanted RC to be great. I wanted it to have professional writing and grammar, excellent photos and do what the print magazines hadn't even thought of yet – publish on the web. As the term “e-zine” came about, RC was right there. I would take my 35mm camera to an event, rush the film to the 1 hour photo lab, come home, scan the photos, then put the stories together and post them online. It was time-consuming and expensive, but I could scoop the print magazines by a full three months! Besides, I didn't have a girlfriend so what else would I do with my time?
Shortly after, I purchased my first digital camera – a 1 megapixel Casio. Once again the trend-setter, I now cut down my production time in a big way. Not only could I now get stories online faster, I no longer had the financial burden of paying for film developing. The flood gates were wide open!
It was full steam ahead from there. The cameras got better, I got some other writers onboard, we covered more events, more installs and our relationships with the parts manufacturers and auto makers grew, as well. More content!
Along the way, over the last twelve years, a lot has happened – in the industry, in publishing, and in my personal life. The sport has gone from regular folks trail riding in whatever 4x4 they happen to own to full-on sponsored competition buggies built from the ground up that cost more than most peoples' houses. And rock crawilng even spawned a pyscho cousin, rock racing!
Personally, since 2003 I have spent more and more time building another part of my business – 4x4ROCKSHOP.com. What was once an online-only accessory site is now a full-blown store and installation shop, as well. As you can imagine, owning and operating this takes a lot of my time. So does being a dad.
So this year I decided that it was time to move on – to pass the RC torch to someone with fresh blood and fire in his breeches. I wanted that person to be someone who had the motivation and resources to take RC to the next level. I put the word out and after discussing a sale with several prospects, I found the right one.
Brian 'woody' Swearingen is the founder and owner of IH8MUD.com. As it turns out, we graduated high school and college the same years and have a lot in common, both in business and personally. I feel very strongly that Woody can continue ROCKCRAWLER.com's legacy and once again make it the leading off-road site on the web.
So, I'm pleased to announce that almost twelve years to the day since its beginning, ROCKCRAWLER.com has been sold to IH8MUD, Inc.. I wish Woody all the luck in the world and couldn't be happier for RC's future. I also hope to still stick around in a freelance capacity – all the glory of journalism without the burden of ownership.
Good luck, Woody!
With that, I'll leave you with a phrase I coined way back when...
See you on the rocks!
Michael “TXJEEPER” Cohn