Hey derby fans!
So I’m in the middle of a move. Currently packing my life up and making my way to Missouri. Moves are so dang hard, and I swear they never get easier. The stress of trying to neatly pack your life into boxes, topped with the chore of canceling the various utility accounts, oh and let us not forget about pausing the mail (paused writing to check that off the list, yay!), cleaning your now empty home, and last but not least, saying goodbye. Goodbyes amplify the awfulness of moving. I’m unbelievably terrible at saying goodbye. I’ve been known skip out on even saying it, opting to pretend I’ll see everyone tomorrow.
There was really only one move that caused me to break down in tears. As a kid it was my normal to pick up my life and relocate. I didn’t like it, but I accepted it. I always try to keep it positive when I move. I research things to look forward to at my new location. Honestly, at this point in my life, the change of scenery every few years is kind of nice. One thing I’ve grown to love is finding a new derby team. It almost feels like I have a family waiting for me in every state. I figured this move was a perfect opportunity to put the DerbyListing website to good use.
I did a google search for teams and compared my results to that which was already on DerbyListing. The List did pretty darn well; however, there were a few newer teams that didn’t appear on the website. One team in particular, is so new that I only heard of it by word of mouth (don’t worry I added them to the list). It also happened to be the team located in the town I’m moving to. So here’s the deal derby fans. This website has the potential to be a great asset to the derby community. However, Richard and I can’t do it by ourselves. Here is our two-part call to action:
If you see a team that is missing, add it. If a team has a new Facebook page or they no longer exist, correct it. This is a team effort!
Share derbylisting.com with your friends, league mates, and derby mates around the world. The more people who know about this asset means more eyes and ears out in the derby world that can help contribute to the site.
The website is made so that visitors can make corrections and additions. However, to ensure erroneous data isn’t added (wiki style) all corrections/additions are vetted by the one and only, Richard Hurton, before it is made visible to the public. Once a change is made visible to the public, it is announced via a Facebook post. Every contribution makes The List more accurate. Please help our derby community.
Please note, that my opinions, within this blog post and all future blog posts, are just that, my opinions. If you disagree with anything I say, please feel free to engage in respectful dialogue in the comment section below. I can also be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for joining me on my blog-venture!!
Hello everyone, It’s Jukes and Richard again. As promised, at the end of Jukes’ About Me post, we’re back to give you all the low down on what some of our goals are at DerbyListing. First off, it is important for you all to know what the purpose is at DerbyListing.com.
DerbyListing is dedicated to providing skaters with an up to date list of all of the roller derby teams in the world. We strive to be a resource that skaters can use for their own analytical curiosities and research purposes. By doing so, we hope to foster a more connected roller derby community.
A few goals that fall in line with this purpose are:
Maintain our list of derby teams (adding/retiring teams as needed)
Provide an easy to use interface
Promote our resource to the derby community
So we have listed our purpose and our goals, but now you probably want to know how we intend to live up to these standards. We’ve worked on getting ourselves organized and back on track over the last few weeks. We finally found time to power through a list of 129 possible new teams to add to the website, and will begin to add them to The List. As far as retiring teams, it’s a little overwhelming to think about scrubbing a list of 1,900+ teams every month. As a result, we are breaking The List down into bite size chunks and will conduct monthly scrubs on a smaller scale. As we scrub sections of the list we will announce updates/changes.
We are currently looking into ways to enhance the website’s visual appeal, and are always looking for ways to improve the general users experience. We ran a few tests for some of our ideas, but have not found what will work best for our site just yet. We will continue to research and will certainly share it, with you all, once we find the right fit for us.
Like with any good product, it’s of no use to anyone, if no one knows it exists. For this reason, we are trying to increase our social media presence. To help, we are going to announce all website updates on our Facebook page. To diversify, we started an Instagram page, where roller derby teams have a strong presence. We are also going to add a blog to our website. These steps will allow us to connect with the derby community on a greater scale and hopefully increase visitor feedback on The List. Visitor feedback on the status of teams is massively helpful and appreciated!
We hope this post was informative, and gave you all a better idea of what we are working towards here, at DerbyListing.com.
With Derby Love,
The main feature here at DerbyListing.com is the list of roller derby leagues. It’s been quite a bit of work and a lot of fun to put this together. I hope you find it useful and enjoyable.
Using the List
A few tips on how to use the list. If you have any questions on usage, feel free to post them in the comments.
- Filtering: There is a filter box at the top of each column. The text you enter into a box will filter the list by that column.
- Example 1: if you want to see all of the “A“dult “W“omen’s leagues. Enter “A” in the AGES column, then Enter “W” in the GENDERS column.
- Example 2: Let’s say you want to see a list of all the roller derby teams in the Bío Bío region of Argentina. Enter “Argentina” in the COUNTRY column, then enter “Bío Bío” in the REGION column. Or you could skip filtering the country and just enter the region.
- Adding Leagues: If you know of a new league that isn’t on the list, you can click on the Add New League button. Enter the appropriate information in the boxes, then click the Submit button. The information will be verified and approved prior to appearance on the list.
- Updating Leagues: If you see something incorrect about a league, you can click on the league you want to edit, then click on the Edit Selected League button. Enter the appropriate information in the boxes, then click the Submit button. The information will be verified and approved prior to appearance on the list.
- To Report a league as inactive, click on the league you want to report as inactive, then click on the Edit Selected League button. Enter a date in the LEAGUE END DATE box, then click the Submit button.
- Exporting the List: Click on the Export List to Excel button and you will be prompted to save a file to your computer. This functionality does not work with Internet Explorer. If you want the file, I recommend using Chrome, Firefox, or Safari. If you filter the list prior to exporting, it will only export the filtered list.
Gathering the Data
I first started compiling this data because I was looking for an accurate count of roller derby leagues. The main resource at the time was a wonderful website that you may be familiar with… Derby Roster. I can’t count the number of times I referred to Derby Roster prior to putting together my own list.
I started to notice that some of the leagues listed were, in fact, disbanded. As I encountered more of the disbanded leagues, I decided to compile my own list.
I meticulously checked each league’s website or Facebook page to determine if they were still active. Once I had winnowed the list down to just the active ones, I set out to search for any other active leagues that might have been missed. I used data from several sites to help find missing leagues. Unfortunately, I kept encountering the same problem. Leagues that had disbanded, but that were listed as active.
Ultimately, I settled on using Google, Facebook, and country-specific lists to find new leagues. Even the country-specific lists had disbanded leagues listed.
Unfortunately, many lists are buried in Facebook groups or obscure blogs. (And if anyone knows of an accurate and up to date list for Mexico… I’m all ears.) As I gathered more of these resources, I felt confident that my list was the most up to date and accurate survey of roller derby leagues in the world.
The final tricky bit is maintaining the list to weed out any leagues that have disbanded. Unfortunately, I can’t simply rely on leagues to inform everyone that they are no longer active. My current method relies heavily on Facebook.
Using the Facebook API, I check each leagues Facebook Page for the most recent post. If the post is within the last three months, the league is kept active. If the post is older than three months, I contact the league to see if they are still active. If there is no response, I assume the league is inactive. If there is a response, I use the information provided to determine whether the league is active.
There are some downsides to using Facebook for this. The main one is that not all leagues use Facebook. Additionally, there is a subset of leagues that are on Facebook but don’t have Facebook Pages. However, for the handful of leagues that don’t use Facebook Pages, it’s usually not too difficult to contact them directly for information.
I hope now that the list is up and running I will be able to crowdsource the data, but I’ll always fall back to the old tried true methods just to make sure.
Cover Photo: That super awesome photo comes to us from Chris Bojanower who is based in Utah.
Logo: That sweet, sweet logo comes to us from Taela Yaletchko who is a skater with Jet City.
A note on the codes used in the list.
There are several rulesets used in modern roller derby. While the WFTDA ruleset is the most popular, the other options have a solid core of fans. Many skaters are rules-agnostic and are happy play under any rules. Therefore, I try to cover all the rulesets here at DerbyListing.com.
- WFTDA: Covers both WFTDA and MRDA rules
- USARS: Covers USARS rules for both adults and juniors
- MADE: Covers MADE rules for both flat track and banked track
- Renegade: Covers all flavors of Renegade rules
- RDCL: Covers RDCL banked track rules
- TXRD: Covers TXRD banked track rules
- LOCO: Covers WFTDA-based LOw COntact rules
- JRDA: Covers JRDA rules for juniors
Affiliation is based on membership with an association or organization. These organizations tend to act as governing bodies for a given ruleset. In order for this affiliation to be used in the list, the the affiliation must be published by the organization. For example, WFTDA publishes a list of member and apprentice leagues. Currently only WFTDA, MRDA, and JRDA publish membership information.
There is currently one exception to the member organization type of affiliation. School-based leagues. There is no common member organization as with the others, but it was pointed out by a user of the list that it would be useful to be able to find such leagues more easily.
- WFTDA-M: WFTDA Member Leagues
- WFTDA-A: WFTDA Apprentice Leagues
- MRDA-M: MRDA Member Leagues
- JRDA-M: JRDA Member Leagues
- School: Collegiate, Primary, or Secondary School-based Leagues
I fully understand that gender isn’t binary, Male vs Female or Men vs Women. That said, in order to keep things simple some concessions must be made. I’ve chosen to use three codes for Gender (W, M, C). I’m also making a distinction that Gender is Team-based not League-based. For example, a League can have a Women’s team, a Men’s team, and a Co-Ed team. In such a case, all three gender codes would appear in that League’s entry. For those that are not familiar with the term Co-Ed. It comes from Co-Educational and, at least in American English, it has come to refer to any group that has both Men and Women.
- W: Women. This is for teams that primarily identify as being for women. It includes Juniors teams for young women.
- M: Men. This is for teams that primarily identify as being for men. It includes Juniors teams for young men.
- C: Co-Ed. This is for teams that actively call out that they are Co-Ed. It includes Co-Ed Junior teams.
Ages are simple. There is Adult and Junior. That said, there is some variation on the definition of “Adult” in the rulesets noted above. For example, USARS considers 16 years of age to be Adult while WFTDA considers 18 years of age to be Adult.
- A: Adult. Generally speaking adult teams have players that are 18 years of age and older.
- J: Junior. Generally speaking junior teams have players that are under 18 years of age.
For our purposes all Leagues listed should be ACTIVE. Here the term STATUS refers to the stage of development the league is at.
- RECRUITING: New Leagues that are recruiting, but have not yet started regular training.
- PRACTICING: Leagues that have started regular training, but have not yet started regular scrimmaging.
- SCRIMMAGING: Leagues that have started regular scrimmaging, but have not yet started bouting/competing.
- BOUTING: Leagues that are playing games regularly. Yes, I realize that WFTDA no longer uses the term Bout to describe a game of roller derby. Please understand that this list covers all rulesets, and that Bout is the commonly used term for a game of roller derby, even among WFTDA leagues.
One of the slightly confusing things about roller derby is the use of of the term League instead of Team. In most sports a League is an organization that stands above individual Teams, and is often thought of as being in control of rules making and game scheduling. However, in roller derby the term League has been appropriated to mean something slightly different.
It all goes back to the revival of modern roller derby. The first group that kicked everything off created a structure that would be copied by many. They created four Teams to play against each other. All four Teams were owned by the group so they, in essence, formed a League. Since they were the only roller derby group in existence, they were also the only League in existence.
As roller derby grew, and new groups formed, many of them mimicked the four team structure. The result was a bunch of tiny four team Leagues. This wasn’t an issue at first because Leagues didn’t really compete against each other.
However, as we all know, Leagues started to play against each other. And even though many Leagues might still have the old four Team structure, they also have what is now known as an All-Star, “A”, or Travel Team. This is usually the team that plays against other Leagues.
As roller derby has spread, we now see some Leagues have abandoned the original four Team structure. Instead, they only have one Team. Are these groups supposed to be referred to as Team or League?
For the purposes of this list, each group, no matter how small, is considered to be a League. Even if the group has only one Team.
At this point we’re stuck with the oddball usage of League. It’s roller derby… just keep on rolling with it.