A screenshot of the Osprey Observer website back in November 2002, a month after it first launched.
A photo of the story on page five of our October 2002 FishHawk edition announcing the launch of the Osprey Observer website.

Twenty years ago, the Osprey Observer began printing papers featuring stories about and for our local community. Shortly after in that same year, keeping up with the ever-rising importance of computers and the internet, we announced the launch of our website, www.ospreyobserver.com, on page five of our October 2002 FishHawk edition.

Since then, the website has been constantly evolving, now being more interactive, mobile-compliant, having an updated layout as well as being hosted and maintained via WordPress, which is currently used by 34 percent of all websites. And our website is featuring more than just news articles, such as plenty of Osprey Observer TV episodes and podcasts.

The Osprey Observer has also grown to include Facebook (@OspreyObserverFans), Twitter (@ospreyobserver) and Instagram (@ospreyobserver) pages, as well as a YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/user/myospreytv. Also, news articles are posted online as the editions they’re first published in are delivered to their respective areas, so readers can look forward to consistent news stories from the Osprey Observer in print and on the internet.

“The www.ospreyobserver.com is a great source of information for our community. There are archived stories and full editions online and we use it as a reference tool for research purposes,” said Marie Gilmore, managing editor of the Osprey Observer.

But other than additional features, the website has also shown huge growth in page views since beginning. For instance, its monthly and yearly page views have steadily increased since 2017, totaling around 160,000 in 2017 to just over 1 million in 2021. It’s on track to surpass that number this year as well with about 850,000 views so far by the end of September, whereas 2021’s total views up to that point was 777,000.

Plus, the average daily page views are consistently up; most months in 2022 show more views than last year, and despite 2022 not being finished, we have an average of almost 3,400 views each day, while 2017 had about 600 and 2021 had nearly 2,900.

This growth could only be possible thanks to our community, and so the Osprey Observer thanks everyone for their support.

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Taylor Wells
Taylor Wells is a relatively recently hired news reporter for the Osprey Observer, having been with the paper only since October 8, 2018. Aside from writing articles, he helps edit and upload them to the Osprey Observer site, and is always available to help other staff members in his spare time. He graduated from Saint Leo University with a bachelor’s degree in professional writing and lives in Valrico.