From the Driver’s Seat: Cam Slater is no longer with Whaleoil

by Pete, Editor


I used to write columns “from the passenger seat”, providing insight into Whaleoil as a close observer.? From today that changes for a while. No doubt this will come as a shock to many, but Cam’s no longer here after the weekend.

The good news is that it is only for a little while. I’m not allowed to share with you what he’s up to, but the choice had to be made: Was he going to do two things poorly, or one thing well?

So Cam will be back in a month, perhaps two – depending.

The immediate question is: What will become of Whaleoil?

It will be exactly the same and completely new. And yes, I realise that both can’t be true. But let me explain.

I will still continue my role as a “managing editor” of Whaleoil; the same role I’ve performed for a number of years. So the day-to-day features, and fluff that bracket the important content, will continue.

To fill the gap that Cam’s absence leaves, I have arranged for a number of people to step up. Where these people have previously been sources for Cam, they are now going to have a try at writing.

Like you, I have no idea where that will end up, but I suspect it will be a lot of fun. And, like anything new, it will probably take them a few days or weeks to find their feet. I’ll help them along, but you can assist by not expecting these people to be as good on Day One as Cam is after 11 years.

I’m also talking to a person from the left of politics with the aim to challenge your world view a little more.

I hope that I can also encourage some of our irregular contributors to step up their contributions. If I can get seven of you to write one column a week, that would be excellent. These reader-provided columns have been very successful in the past.

Whaleoil hasn’t asked for volunteers for a number of years now, but as I move into Cam’s seat, the opportunity for people to take over some of the regular features to lighten my load will appear. More about that later.



I did sit down with Cam over a very long lunch (the kind that ends after dinner) and got him to understand that if I am going to be running the blog then, for better or for worse, I am going to try some different things. I told him that I may kick some sacred cows. If someone writes a pro-gun control column, then I don’t see why we can’t publish that.

I also plan to cover some things that Cam has not had an interest in. And I’m going to give some other topics a rest.

I believe we’ve all become a little too comfortable with the well laid out views and, with Cam busy elsewhere, we get a chance to take some other ideas for a spin. The ones that work, we’ll keep. The ones that don’t, we’ll chalk up to experience.

One thing I can assure you of: even though we won’t have Cam’s usual menu of topics and catch phrases every day, Whaleoil will continue to deliver stories with information that comes from the same network of people who have been the ‘invisible hand’ behind the blog for some time.

I will miss Cam more than you because, clearly, my job just got a lot more involved. But, as I told him, “It isn’t all about you,” and, just because he’s been the one writing the stories, the content frequently arrived … somehow. This information will now come through with a different voice. At least for a while.

It is my hope that, when Cam comes back, one or two of our new voices will have found a home.

And no, this isn’t a WhExit – Whaleoil is here to stay, and Cam will be back.