Home' Collective Magazine : Heliweb Magazine April-May 2017 Contents COLUMN
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From the Desk Of...
Getting it Right
Publisher & Editor
Ryan has worked in the aviation media field for the last nine years. Providing
video, photographic and written content for U.S and international aviation
publications. Also a former police officer, Ryan has written for numerous
law enforcement publications, specializing in technology, tactics, police
equipment and airborne law enforcement. Ryan purchased heliweb with a
goal of providing real stories on real issues in the industry and giving back to
the industry through efforts to promote safety in helicopter operations.
Well, Heli-Expo 2017 is over for another year,
and boy what a show it was. From show open
to show close, our team was jumping one end
of the convention center to the other trying to
cover as much of the show as possible.
An impossible request when you consider
the amount of requests for attendance to
press events from exhibitors outnumber the
time you have in a day by about double the
amount of hours you have.
Watching our team out on the floor
bouncing from event to event makes me
grateful beyond words that our team of truly
dedicated rock stars that worked from show
open to show close, and many late nights
processing images, video, and story content
to make sure we succeeded.
For those who have never attended Heli-
Expo, for us, each day is like trying to herd
chickens and cats across a highway while
juggling chainsaws. But like everyone else,
we thrive off the excitement that the show
brings. Many people stopped me to tell
us what a great read the magazine is for
them, which was fantastic. Several people
commented on our layout being a fresh
approach and a breath of fresh air.
One particular visitor to the booth, an Army
aviator said that he loved our magazine
because we are not afraid to tackle hard
stories and don’t just publish press releases.
He went on to say how much he enjoyed our
feature on crash resistant fuel tanks and that
he had watched all of the TV news coverage
from our partner KUSA on the story as
That particular interaction stood out as
it made me realize that without actually
saying it, people have begun to realize
what our purpose is. As we have evolved, I think
we are starting to find our place in the industry.
Along with our focus on impacting global
helicopter safety, we want readers to see that
we are not a magazine that will provide a biased
view. I like to call it “retro-journalism.” Back to the
glory days of publishing, before the term “fake
news” was even a thing. We strive every day
to bring you the biggest stories in the industry
and highlight those who deserve it - be they
individual pilots, operators, manufacturers or new
products for the market.
We broke several stories in the lead up to the
show this year. Some that were not so well
received at the time by companies involved
in the stories. Although some of our stories
actually helped drive attendance to see certain
products at the show as mentioned in one press
conference when a company CEO referenced a
leaked image we were provided that somewhat
“let the cat out of the bag” for them as we
published our story.
But what was initially thought of as a bad thing,
became a drawcard, the CEO mentioning how
it had worked in the company’s favor, driving
many to look at their new product out of curiosity
thanks to the media coverage.
I tell everyone in our team that I want our
publication to be the one people rely on for
correct information. I often repeat “we are not
interested in being first, we are interested in
being correct.” to our team. For that reason, you
won’t see us sharing mainstream media stories
on industry situations as they unfold, as they have
a tendency to be very incorrect at times.
In the mainstream media’s rush to be first,
oftentimes, the truth takes a backseat to
speculation or best guesses, which we are not in
the habit of doing.
It may be my previous background in law
enforcement that drives the thought process
behind our approach to news coverage, but it is
also about doing the right thing. Someone has to
be the news source that doesn’t rush to be first,
but instead concentrates on facts and accuracy. I
prefer that be us, and if it takes us a little longer to
get a story completed, then so be it.
Helicopter crashes are a good example. We
certainly don’t report on every crash that
occurs, but sometimes there is a one that has
significance to the industry, like the loss of the
crew in the Bell 525 test aircraft or the Super
Puma crash in Norway that we have to report on.
As is all too evident in the world of social media,
things can spread fast, and having been the
person who knocked on the door to tell someone
their loved one is no longer with us, I never want
our publication to be the first place someone
learned of the passing of a family member first.
Thank you to everyone who stopped by the
booth to tell us how much they appreciated the
magazine, it means a great deal to us that you
took the time out of your day during the busiest
show of the year to tell us how we were doing.
Without you, the industry wouldn’t be what it is
today. Be safe!
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