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Entry #222

Censorship

2013-11-19 11:17:37 by Cyberdevil

Here's a quick piece that no parties should be able to find any offense in, from which everyone may fuel their inspiration with interpretations of their choice, of course with these chosen interpretations limited only to interpretations of non-insulting matters.

Maybe you'll see the metaphor within this darkness. Maybe you'll see, that for a creative community where content is moderated by whim and sympathy rather than policy and law, where freedom of expression and artistic creativity is un-allowed to roam free, the path may be dark and dreary.

I don't believe in a future where the media dictates the right of each individual citizen, not in countries nor on communities. I believe that every functioning society or group is a forum where each voice should be heard equally, where everyone has a right to express their innermost desires and doubts, and everyone has a right to express their discontent with said individual, as long as their offense is not a criminal one. The right to express yourself is a fundamental freedom of any democracy, and I like to believe this is a democratic community, one of the last free bastions of the net, a place where everyone can feel at ease, be themselves and view the rest of the world from a distance, objectively, fairly; as tastelessly as they feel a need to.

Censorship is like an aspirin, it doesn't take away the underlying problem, only the symptom. In the case of NG, this symptom being taken away is a big problem. That's my opinion.

I'm speaking of this debate, of which I've spent way too much time browsing through the pages and reading peoples opinions, getting annoyed at some, getting offended by others, entertaining the thought of posting some fierce response but not letting my intentions get the best of me. I already posted my opinion there, but maybe it's time to delve into this matter even further. Let's go back to my early days at NG...

I've never been much for shock-content. When I first visited this site I was both intrigued and disturbed by some of the content that was available, some of it posted for a reason, some of it posted for the sole-purpose of being offensive, but I quickly accepted that it had a place here. Unlike other portals (like Zellomesh, who suddenly decided to delete a bunch of my audio just because I was submitting a lot of it) this place has always been fair, and lived by policy. The staff has admittedly turned from being edgy and rebellious to focusing more on brighter types of creative content, but even so the dark side has been allowed to flourish, users have still been allowed to freely express themselves.

Over the years companies have asked for certain submissions to be taken down for copyright-infringing reasons. Certain submissions (like the Xombie series) have been licensed and thus taken down. Other submissions with clearly copyright-infringing content were even taken down before anyone sent a request for them (like a series of Music Players I'd made back in the day, much to my dismay). In filtering out illegal content, NG has always been sufficiently efficient, even more-so than YT. Whether this has to do with dedication on part of the staff or simply less content to filter I don't know, but even if I haven't liked certain submissions disappearing over the years it's always been in accordance with the law. When I signed up, the use of such content was still a gray zone, but that's all been cleared up over the years. Maybe it's one of the reasons activity eventually dwindled... maybe not. That a hundred or more animations with 'illegal' Nintendo sprites had to be removed really sucked, but there wasn't much that could be done about that, that's how society works after all, in the real world there doesn't seem to be any free haven when it comes to copyright.

Online, however, Newgrounds has always been more of a free haven than any other place, a real oasis for free speech and artistic individuality. But now it seems that individuality may be dying down, all because of one submission, a submission I still haven't even played. I have read so much about it however, that it feels like I've played it myself, and as far as I know there was nothing illegal about this game. It was simply tasteless and outrageous. Tom mentions that removing this game may be the site evolving, that it can be seen as a form of chrysalis... but it seems to me like this is more of a mid-life crisis. Newgrounds is lost. Youtube is taking over (even though their Google+ integration is a great time to turn a few visitors), and NG has lost its niche. It's no longer about the problems of the future, and not really about everything by everyone either but rather a sort of spotlight for creative content. What is NG? Where does its strength lie? Is it impossible to run a site that pleases all audiences? So far this is all my opinion, but what the debate comes down to are two problems that haven't been solved. I'd like to present potential answers to these two problems, that might prevent anything similar from occurring in the future:

1.) The media identifies content submitted to NG as content that Tom has allowed to be submitted.

I suppose this problem originates in the rather small size of the site (compared to other social communities), and the structure of the staff. The online presentation of what NG is and how it works probably plays a big role. In the submission policy it is already apparent that each user is responsible for their own work, but maybe this needs to be clarified. Potential solutions:

- An angled presentation of NewGrounds as a first and foremost user-driven community.
- Separate page for DCMA take-down requests and other inquiries that aren't directly linked to any specific person.
- Automated messages and/or secretary to further distance the site from it's image as a home-based organization.

2. ) A media rage over an offensive submission may cut off financing of the site.

Again, how advertising companies interpret NG should have a big impact on their forgiveness for certain submissions and willingness to partner with the site. The angled presentation and distancing from the personal aspect of running the site might help. It may also require some more unorthodox methods of financing. Potential solutions:

- Re-implementation of the Bastards! collection (as Alter-native mentions), acknowledging that certain submissions are deemed tasteless even by the staff, but as the flagship of freedom of speech and user-based content that the site is, these submissions are still allowed to hold their ground. I'd think this would inspire new artists rather than scare them off, while at the same time showing the media that the administration is not to blame for user-submitted material
- Opening of a fund, funded by optional user-based donations, from which finances could be taken should a crisis really loom and NG can no longer rely at all on advertising to finance the operation.
- Seek sponsorships with other controversial enterprises or companies, or with those that have interest in marketing their services/products under a slogan that solidifies the importance of freedom of speech and expression. More focus needs to be placed on the aspect of freedom!
- Major bitcoin investments at the end of the year, when they will according to Elitistinen be ripe to buy.
- Letting users sell finished products in conjunction to trailers/games/etc, with a chunk of the profit used as provision to finance the service and site.

Additionally, to prevent offending content from offending:

- Higher age-restrictions for material with mature ratings, allowing only logged-in users above a certain age (set in their profile) to view these submissions (this was also suggested in the topic).

I'd hope this issue can be solved to please all parties, without the site becoming subject to media rage and as an affect loosing all financing. My proposition is: make the system able to handle offensive submissions in a satisfactory way and distance the staff from the corporate image, and maybe when the interest in this game has died down, let it be re-submitted. I'm sure there are better ideas than those I have provided, where there is a will there's a way; I hope there's a will.


Comments

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1999Elias1999Elias

2013-11-19 11:30:48

One problem though, people can change their age, and also can make another profiles what give us an idea of what people can do here to view mature content, but, like me, there's other people that is down to 18 but is very mature and that there is no problem to they see mature content.
Applauses to your huge post, and more applauses to what you said, not just about people's opinion, but trying to help NG too. You really act like a staff, and in my opinion you're already a staff, keep doing this great job man!

Cyberdevil responds:

Well that's true, but that'd be the the responsibility of users rather than the staff, so for users it wouldn't make much a difference, but it'd be a security measure for the staff as much for age as for liability if a minor stumbles upon said content. The restriction would also serve the purpose that non-registered users wouldn't be able to view the content without an account, meaning the victims or other easily-offended people shouldn't be able to be offended in the first place. If they intentionally sign-up just to view a submission they know will offend them, I don't see that their will to have the submission removed will have the same impact.

Thanks man, and I hope other people too find my opinions either inspiring or useful! I don't like the way it seems the community is headed right now, better voice my opinions when they're relevant. :/


chris-the-stick2chris-the-stick2

2013-11-19 13:03:20

VERY nice post, and let it be known that we were enemies in the past.

i like the suggestions that you do to help newgrounds to become the better of both worlds:
-not sued by everyone, but also not
-cencored by EVERYONE.

i really do like that you have nice suggestions and solid arguments for this, and i think that you should really be inside the NG stuff like elias here already said.

also, i've read the debate in the thread Tom did, a few hours ago, and i must say, that like you, i ALSO was ''entertaining the thought of posting some fierce response'' , but thankfully, i did not let my intentions to get the best of me.
i posted a civilised and kind responce, and i offered my point of view into the subject.

i also like that you post with your heart, and not with simple words, like the insensitive 6-year olds that posted in Toms thread, saying ''this is wrong, noone cares about those people and their tragedy!'' i seriously hated those people.
but i digress. the point is, no matter if Toms action was right or wrong (in my opinion it was right, and if you see the game, you will understand why), the bottom line is one:

WE-MUST-FIND-A-SOLUTION FOR FUTURE PROBLEMS LIKE THIS.

thankfully, you've posted a few suggestions, and i might review them, if you like.

first, the
''1.) The media identifies content submitted to NG as content that Tom has allowed to be submitted.'

haha, funny, when i first came in this site, i thought that too. i thought that Tom did all the games, and all the flash movies, even if it seemed impossible.
then, i grew up, and i got it, that this was a user-based community, and that not everything was made by tom.

so, i dont know, shouldnt the media get it too? or they are too retarded?

in case that they are too retarded to get this, THIS is a good solution:
- An angled presentation of NewGrounds as a first and foremost user-driven community.
- Separate page for DCMA take-down requests and other inquiries that aren't directly linked to any specific person.

while this is a horrible solution that will distance the people from NG even further, if anything:
- Automated messages and/or secretary to further distance the site from it's image as a home-based organization.

CONTINUES ON POST 2

Cyberdevil responds:

Thanks man. Must've been a distant past. :)

That's definitely how I hope the community can stay, or rather how it can become once again. There shouldn't be reason for anyone to sue NG over this though... no illegal material as far as I know.

Yeah, it's easy to get carried away in the heat of the moment! I'm actually typing in a few topic responses now, though hopefully not too fierce ones... that's the way to go about it, kind and civilized!

I was honestly getting more annoyed at some of the "You made the right choice" comments that don't seem to serve a purpose, by people who don't care to delve into the topic and form an opinion of their own. Well I guess all opinions do count and do serve a purpose, but I feel like a lot of users are not getting the big picture at all...

I doubt playing the game would change my mind, I stand strong in my opinion that no matter how offending a submission is, it shouldn't be removed unless it's directly illegal or malicious. I may not like it (I probably wouldn't, which is why I haven't played it ), but I respect the author's freedom to express themselves. It doesn't even have to have a point (therer are plenty of random comedies that follow such fashion), it just needs to be accepted by the community as a majority (I believe that's what the judgment process is for) and those who don't like it don't need to view it. It's a free world. The media is really the villain in this case, but they shouldn't be able to dictate how we live our lives. Anyway, onto the solutions, definitely the most important part...

Well at a glance I guess that's the way it seems to anyone who just stumbles upon the site. I spent so much time on the site it feels like it's obvious it's not. :) I guess a few things that could be changed would be: get rid of the TomFulp name/avatar on the frontpage, change the staff page to include official unpersonal contact info first.... a better introduction to users without accounts...


KatMaestroKatMaestro

2013-11-19 13:09:59

I was shocked when Tom and staff made decisions like this. I'm even more shocked when PsychoGoldfish openly insulted Asandir over the small disagreement. God I miss the past NG. Tom (and goons) said there are not much censorship, this is untrue. The adult section was hidden and no longer in the banner. Games get removed because of failed attempts of humor. I don't vote to save submission often, but I do check out them a lot, and I witness the changes.

If a small game like Pigpen made got banned over political correctness, then what would the fucking future gonna be like? Games getting banned for offending some big guys?

Cyberdevil responds:

Same here. Turns out PG was just using the insult as bait to make a point about censorship (or was he? O_o), but that was s rather deceitful tactic. Just because some users submit tasteless games doesn't mean others need to employ the same tactics to make other users understand that those games are tasteless... it's a free world, already mentioned my views on freedom of expression so I won't delve into that again... his two cents were well sent though: http://www.newgrounds.com/bbs/topic/1354761/20#bbspost24878302_post_text

Yeah, that's what I fear too. Like ZJ says this could open up the floodgates, or even worse, it could open up ideas in the minds of admins to stop caring about policy and just get rid of content based on personal reasons....


KatMaestroKatMaestro

2013-11-19 13:16:09

Shits like ACTA & PIPA gonna affect this site more in the future, where Tom got cash from big guys to remove the popular contents on NG. So where are we heading to? I don't blame Tom for the troubles, as I can see the pressure on his financing problem for NG. As recently we saw the closedown of the store.

Cyberdevil responds:

It's crazy how corporations are being allowed to steer the way for the Internet... maybe you've heard about the recent EU proposal to make file-sharing for private use legal? I'm not much for the EU usually, but I'm hoping this will open for change in the way the net is governed. Yeah, it's a shame, but then again that's how it was in NG's heyday too, just stickers. :) Hopefully they stay on track until the tide turns!


chris-the-stick2chris-the-stick2

2013-11-19 13:18:25

CONTINUING FROM POST 1

so, this solution would further distance not only the media from tom, but also from the casual users, and that would be bad, because people like that tom has a home-based operation, and a small(?), but tightly bonded community in it.

so, no. we MUST keep the nice familiar vibe this site has, and to not add:
- Automated messages and/or secretary to further distance the site from it's image as a home-based organization
never. ever.

it will alienate the people, and it will drive more people away than anything.
it will do more harm than good.

anyway, as for the other point you're making,
on the problem of people cutting off our site's funding, i must say:
we could add a ''forbidden'' section in the site for stuff (much like teh ''BASTARDS'' section, that i really remember! much nostalgia on this one)
and put the blame on the users, like: ''the staff and Tom really find those movies/games horrible and tasteless, but as a site with freedom of speech and with lots of user-based content in it, these submissions are still allowed to hold their ground.''
(like you said)

an other suggestion would be for Tom to make a game like farmville, and to play it for free, but you must have to pay if you want more game-coins/upgrades in your character/equipment.
W-O-W, farmville, and mafiawars are just a few games that made their owners rich became of the pay-to-win type of thing. and they are popular. maybe Tom and the gang should try their hand at making such a game, maybe a browser-game, or a MMORPG.
dunno.

also donations from individuals could work, like the one with the ''supporter'' badge.

uhhh, as for the ''forbidden'' movies/games, again... i mighjt have an idea.
after the hype/anger/interest about this game has died out, maybe the staff could add it in ''the secrets'' section in the account.
(i think tom removed all the old, ''forbidden'' movies from this one too. sad)

i really dont know what the solution might be, but be certain of this cyberdevil:
tom would NEVER sell out his ideals/honor for anything.
he will back up this site, and he will stand and fight for its freedom. mark my words.

the only thing we have to do, is to fight back as well, and to support him in his difficult path through real-life problems.

ps. check out my nice review on your ''pollitically correct art'' drawing.
its OK.

Cyberdevil responds:

Yeah, that's true. It'd be good if there was a way to do both, to keep the site personal whilst making the media aware that it is in fact not.

As for secretary/automated messages, the main purpose that would serve would be to give potential media contacts/advertisers/etc a professional impression, not the end-user. Contacting staff through the PM system would still be a possibility for those with an account IOW the regular user. I'm assuming the representatives who seek to portray NG in a bitter light won't be signed up and active.

A Forbidden section hmm.. That's definitely a viable idea! At the same time as it'd keep the blame away from admins, it'd surely lure in those users who seek specifically this controversial content. Whether the admins like it or not, it'd be a great marketing tactic, a section users are intentionally told to keep away from will just lure in more.

Castle Crashes online maybe? Using an already existing brand should make it even easier. If they're up for it, it'd definately be plausible. Might be tough to match the competition initially, but then again plenty of online games have managed to find their niche even without a community like NG to back it up/advertise it, so it should definitely be possible. Wonder if they'd bite though...

Yeah, donations would be a bigger resort to wealth than they seem to admit, there are plenty of much smaller groups making a living entirely off of donations. I guess it'd be against principle, but as a backup solution: great.

I thought about the secrets too, but I guess the previous content was removed for a reason. Maybe press found out and were inquiring about them... who knows. If that's not the case, I hope they return, and much more with them.

In this case, it seems like his ideals are clashing with the freedom of this site. Maybe he's taking this thing too personal, maybe he's taking it too much as a parent, maybe he's concerned about financing, maybe unsure of where NGs strength lies, maybe a combination of all these factors or something I'm not aware of... but I don't doubt that he cares greatly about this place. That's been clear since the beginning! I only hope he doesn't sacrifice freedom of expression in favor of something less beneficial.


KillerSkullKillerSkull

2013-11-19 13:41:27

Waffles! :3

Cyberdevil responds:

Cake pans! :O


KatMaestroKatMaestro

2013-11-19 14:10:15

Though, the game itself was quite realistic, and I may understand where some people going against it. Kids and teachers ran aways when being shot at. Kids playing dead! People shaking on the floor. Realistic deaths when shot or stab at. People scream! People begging for their lives!

I only played once for the game. My stomach was churning. But this game has very strong messages. Such as, I got least kills when Gun Control was applied, and surprisingly more kill where teachers have access to firearm. And I think the game deserve to not being taken down.

Cyberdevil responds:

It does sound like there's a bigger message in the game than most people give it credit for. And even if there had been no message, it seems there was a lot of effort put into making it. If there was no effort put into it... the judgment process should have taken care of it. That's how this place should be working.


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-19 17:34:32

You can easily find the game on Pigpen's page, is not really that horrible, but that may be just me.
I don't wan't to repeat my self but i actually went and defended the game on the very page of those scum "journalist".

http://www.wtnh.com/news/fairfield-cty/video-game-reenacts-tragedy-at-sandy-hook#

The sad thing is that there are also quite ignorant opinions here on NG which i had to correct

http://www.newgrounds.com/dump/item/e4c7cffbf5ae8cb591828f1324d347b5

------------------------
1)
Now to your proposals, again they are not fool proof, even with those countermeasures Tom still will had to intervene, sure his ego and involvement will be reduced, but it lies ultimately with him, as the attacks will be addressed to him for allowing the game to be hosted here. Is indeed really, really unfair, but that is how those schemes work, other wise they wouldn't have the power to force Tom into action.
2)
As for the advertisement, most is from horrendous glitched virus plagued games with little or no values at all, if they see any excuse they will withdraw to ask for understatement out of them is nor quite realistic sorry but it just happens that way.

- Re-implementation of the Bastards! still puts the blame on the administration because they allow the content to remain trough inaction, and most companies wouldn't want to trade with such a policy.
- We already have the found and the page is still on need of advertisement precisely because most of them have withdraw away from NG over the years.
- Mostly porn, but do we really want that Adversticement here, hell not even Shadman had luck with that, and that was before his pages decided to explode into a sea of dick-women, you can ask him, it seems is not that easy at all to find the support.
- I have no say in this one, as i lack the knowledge to impart an opinion, it may even work!
- Now this can be great, it also integrates the store and promotes the artist content, promotes people to create, to use the page, and keeps NG alive, it seems like the best option of them all great idea good sir!

3) preventing offending content to offend: impossible people will be offended regardless.
And let me tell you the video on that piece of shit of a news channel which link i already posted, has the game as A for adult, rated, so age-restriction did nothing.

Cyberdevil responds:

Yeah, I found a few links in the topic too. Rustygames is hosting it as well, along with SWFCabin/Chan. Brave souls. :) I'd host it too, just to set an example... but unfortunately I'm on a shared host that explicitly forbids disturbing things. Webhosting on a personal level is a limited venture...

I saw your post too btw; I've pretty much skimmed through everything written so far, the first 22 pages. :) Expecting a bit of catching up to do tomorrow morning...

Good going correcting the news! The masses never do get the correct picture of events like this, even though News 8 were surprisingly willing to not post a link to this site, or the game... well onto suggestion corrections:

-----------

1)

Yeah, not foolproof, but it'd be a start! There are probably better ways but I can't really think of anything right now...

2)

Huh? Withdraw to ask for understatement? Maybe some typo there...?

I remember back in the day NG had plenty of hentai ads, back when popularity was peaking, maybe bringing some of those back would be an option... I visit plenty of controversial sites on my ventures online, and most of them are backed (at least partially) by advertising (and not just porn ads). It shouldn't be so hard. I understand the major players like Google quickly abandon anything that could potentially damage their reputation, but not everyone cares as much about their reputation, and not everyone has a reputation to protext. There are hundreds of ad-networks out there; I find it hard to believe they'd all fall victim to the media. Some sites turn media attention to their benefit, it's all about how material is presented and what statements a site makes.

- Hmm, maybe I'm seeing things a bit too optimistically...
- I meant funds derived from user-based donations. Picture this: a donation drive in which 10,000 NG users pitch in $10 each, that'd be $100,000, a sum that should last the site for quite a will in a crisis!
- With this statement, I'm thinking mostly of optimistic start-up companies that want to reach out with an innovative idea that the world might find controversial, like Flattr, Bitcoin, GOG, etc... porn is of course an option. That seems like a last resort though, and considering the intended audience (everyone) of this site that may be taking it a bit too far...
- Considering a five dollar investment turned into a few million for one fortunate student... it may indeed. :) Maybe not such huge profit, but with an investment at the right time it seems like a more viable option than gambling with shares and such.
- :)

Well at least one of the options may hold some potential! :) Even if all these potential solutions don't completely take care of the problem, they'd all help, though. Hopefully someone will think of a miracle instant solve-it-all fix for this dilemma. As for #3, an absolute fix is impossible, but the harder it is to access the content for people who shouldn't be accessing it... the better. Such a restriction should do more good than harm, maybe keep less important content off the radar, and it'd at least give the impression that the staff are doing their best to keep affected parties out of harms way.


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-19 18:31:18

Part 2 (late part 2... oh well)

I would love it if PsychoGoldfish was right, but sadly Tom itself, probably on a moment of weakness slipped and allowed us to see, that money is playing quite a relevant role here, if it was just a parent helping another this would be easier to manage, if the media was more mature, this would be easier to handle, if Newgrounds had the same user base and creators as it once had this would be easier to hold, but none of those was the case, not to say that Tom was not really sympathizing with the families, but the bitching of the media had a really big role here, and that is what is distorting all this.

Then we got that discourse on the 2 Newgrounds and... i really felt sad, i don't want to believe that there is no way to keep the 2 faces, but we have to understand, the 1st one already abandoned Newgrounds and went to a life on YouTube, they may not even make content anymore, and even if they come back their production may be sub-par, are we really going to risk it for a thing as unstable as that? the there is the 2nd face which is even more unstable and unpredictable, it makes it all seem like a path without exit.

Cyberdevil responds:

Agreed, as I mentioned in the topic I believe the content creators who left for YT will stick to YT even if this site is made more family-friendly, but if this place becomes more family-friendly, it will loose a big part of it's appeal (which is the same as its personality) . YT provides the larger audience, and has the financing to keep users with them (for user-based ad-revenue, for example)... and the one thing that NG boasts that none of these other large communities do is: freedom of expression!

It's the one big sales pitch of this site! I wish it'd be used more passionately, and I'm sure users would stream in, because after all, to be a part of a community online where you have such artistic freedom is incredibly rare; I believe it's something serious artists want. It's just a matter of letting users filter out the content they don't want to see I guess, which again puts the Portal in the sideline... which again is a form of censorship. :/ I don't know...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-19 18:48:42

(New comment regarding your answer to my part 1)

No is not a typo, ok is missing a period... and the nor is really a not

"Again, how advertising companies interpret NG should have a big impact on their forgiveness for certain submissions and willingness to partner with the site"
With the context, it actually reads:

If they see any excuse they will withdraw. To ask for understatement out of them is not quite realistic sorry but it just happens that way.

Well the Fund can be seem as a save for emergencies, but we will need to get the whole community, or most of it, and well not everyone has a digital wallet, or credit card, for example S3C, well that is not really an excuse he can ask someone to make the transaction for him, and then he pays that person, like what i once had to do with my parents, well at least i had, don't know how it was for others, my money their card... kinda unfair i mean they already skip my birthday lumping it with Christmas now they do that, well at least i didn't have to pay memberships or monthly fees... man maybe it was for the best, damn do i hate banks, i should go back to that system. Where was i? a right the fund, well it seems like i just answered my own counterpoint but what about people who don't have some one else to ask such a thing? well you may argue those are really a minority that shouldn't affect the fund, and now we may see quite a solid plan, which biggest wall is the willingness of the users to participate in the creation of the fund.

Well yeah sex sells, but it also moves, and it may push NG into quite a different direction... is a lot of risk actually, and even those ads had their standards, i gave you an example, another one is Rule 34 who also had an slump on advertisements back in the day, when my hormones were in their most active, so i was able to notice that along the post of their problems *uhum clears throat* (mom please don't read this)

Indeed every single one of them implemented in mass may give some assurance, but some are too vulnerable, i liked the last one more, because not only promoted the creation, use and brought some money inside, but it also reactivated the flow of visitors to the page, and i guess that is what may in the end really help the most, once we have the numbers the Advertisers will sell themselves like whores on a plate, the problem is to make the new users to fit into NG.

Cyberdevil responds:

Hmm, to ask for 'the presentation of something as being smaller or less good or important than it really is' out of them? Not trying to be a grammar nazi or anything but I didn't get that at all when I read it before, probably tired. I guess you mean you can't count on advertisers? Yeah, that's true, but there are so many of them there are bound to be some visionaries amongst the main stream. And look at Tumblr, they have so much controversial content, but the press isn't hounding them. It's all about how the statement is made...

There are almost five million registered accounts here. I don't know how many of those are actually active; how many aren't ALTs; how many would be dedicated to the cause, but imagine sending out a cry for help via email, to five million emails. Even if less than 1% adhere to the call, and donate just $10 each, that'd be $500,000! I wasn't thinking of using email, but in a worst case scenario that'd be the easiest way to reach a much larger chunk of inactive users. I have no doubt plenty of people would be willing to contribute more though, or do so on a regular basis. Just think of sites like Wikipedia, with huge server farms and lots of staff, running entirely based off donations. No ads at all.

They lump your birthday with Christmas? How close is it? That sounds rather unfair... though my mothers sister actually has her birthday the 24th so for her there's no escaping it... must suck a bit... but yeah, as for payment alternatives, if there is a will there is a way. Most of the userbase probably has a way to contribute (through other people like you mention), and this place is all about collaboration so nearby users could help each other out too. I remember back when I started with webhosting I didn't have a card either so I paid via my parents.

What's wrong with banks though? PayPal actually has higher transaction fees than most banks... and they're the provider everyone uses for online payments. Unfair world!

Yeah, and if the site stands for its users, I believe the users will stand for the site. This whole place is like a big family, I'm proud to be a Supporter, and that costs $25/person so just imagine what that x just a thousand loyal users would amount to... I'm glad NG isn't turning to donations as long as they don't need it though, but if they do stand their ground and ask users to back them when the ground crumbles beneath their feet... I believe the users will keep this place grounded; locked in; away from mainstream greed and corruption! A reef that rises above the waves as a visionary, refusing to drown!

Well then, now that the site is finally back up again.. time to check out that censorship topic...


VicariousEVicariousE

2013-11-19 23:59:59

Did you play the game before it was taken down? I played it UJ, and gave it a 3 or 4... just can't remember if there were medals. Hope I didn't lose any >:(

Cyberdevil responds:

The name didn't ring a bell when I heard it so I must've missed it. When I first read the Censorship post I didn't get what it was about at all, had to read through some posts to understand that it was about a signle game. My first impression was that censorship was going to be part ot the site policy from now on, and all offensive material taken down... nightmare scenario! :C


tailsbuddytailsbuddy

2013-11-20 20:47:00

(WOW, such a looong entry)
Just hope my medals don't get deleted :(

(Updated ) Cyberdevil responds:

The medals for this game are already deleted AFAIK. :/

Or maybe not? Someone correct me if I'm wrong...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-20 21:21:36

Well i for one would appreciate if i could filter some things, too much penises on this page.
But i do think it could be possible to do, instead of just missing all the A rated uploads.

I can't find your quote, but my point is that they wouldn't bother into taking the time to understand that this virtual place respects the rights of its users, and that they can express themselves freely here, if they see that whatever is going on can be linked to them, and create any type of bad image, they will just bail out of the deal, and stop doing their business with NG. Which is unbelievable, for real, how much face can they lose if their product is a shame on itself? on the contrary doing business with such a noble page should give them more prestige, even if the page is filled with distasteful, offensive, vulgar, controversial and plain ugly content.

Oh wait, now i think i see why they would pull out, regardless it's freedom, even if is ugly. So yeah ad companies are quite a bunch of hoes, they just want numbers, and go with whatever can give them the numbers, and that plays directly with what the majority find socially acceptable.

So there you go that is, you grammar Nazi! hahaha.

Ok now to Tumblr, there is censorship there, but what happens, necrophilia, bestiality, and smut, and all which is controversial, gets deleted without making any fuss, is all underhanded, and is all passed quietly, so it is there but no one is public about it, and the admins aren't really that good at keeping track of it all, so a lot pass them by, so if it comes to them they will delete it, and that was before yahoo acquired Tumblr, now with all the more reason.

On the other hand we here are proud of our "darkness", and are open about it, and if it gets our we deal with it openly, that is great but inconvenient. To explain it better, Tumblr is like YT, but they don't actively seek to delete things, they wait until the notice happens, they are less preventive, while still making it clear that they don't allow it.

Ah wikipedia, i have no idea how they do it, is a wonder really, maybe humans are not as bad as i think they are. Indeed it all comes to a will to do it, there are plenty of ways out side of the ones i mentioned.

(Updated ) Cyberdevil responds:

There's not a single one on this page though. :P Yeah, there should be a way, maybe with the use of tags and categories, maybe with a more advanced search algorithm and 'like' system that when combined, can filter out results that users find disturbing based on previously disliked pieces (if they want to use such a system, that is... should of course be optional). At the same time I'm against having personalized results so....

My quote? I copied in the definition for understatement... maybe you mean that? Yeah, that's true. If NG personally contacts them and informs them of what this site stands for and how it works, I wonder if they would reconsider though. Just watched the movie The Greatest Movie Ever Sold (a documentary movie about brand placement, which is completely funded by brand placement, in a very transparent way) and though many brands/advertisers refused to even consider having their business models exposed, some did jump aboard and managed to find a movie worth 1,5 million dollars. So when it comes to NG, maybe some would weigh the pros against the cons and give the site a chance. There are so many different brands; so many potential advertisers. True, if they really believe in their brand, there should be no reason to bail out. Bravery might even be rewarded by a more loyal base of customers.

Hehe, yeah I get your point, thanks. :)

I'd think such content on Tumblr only gets deleted if it's illegal (even if it doesn't seem illegal, it could be the content authors are not content owners), because they've explicitly stated that they even allow porn on their service, such adult content is simply filtered out of search results and harder to find (after the Yahoo! buy). If an author fails to label his Tumblr as adult (and thus have it filtered from search) he'll be breaking a rule and may thus have it deleted. Or is there more that I don't know about going on behind the scenes? I've never had any personal experiences with Tumblr deleting content, nor of anyone I know... yeah, probably a lot of undiscovered stuff too...

True, but Tumblr differs a bit from both YT and NG in how each piece of content is rather passive, there isn't a page for it, there's not a rating/comment system with user credentials and other info. All content is just part of a much bigger stream of content, which makes it easy to have it re-posted, modified, re-posted again, it's like a cycle of ideas rather than a finished publication. So even if something is deleted it doesn't have the same permanent effect.

A wonderful mystery! :) I actually donated $2 once, as they say every river small...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-20 21:41:26

(Continuation because i had to made an explanation on the 1st part, have you considered joining the Grammar Commanism?)

Well mine is on 10 dec, but they stretch it all the way to the 24...
I actually don't like PayPal, at all, and they only way to get a good deal with a bank is if they invite you first, and even then you have to check for a catch. Unfair world indeed, capitalism is the source of all these problems ultimately, including this censorship.

You know, i also think that if NG asked for donations that i would survive just fine, but in the end is Tom's page, would he be fine with it? i mean there is his ego after all to see that his page ended with such a device for survival may hurt him, because business that is, this is a really ugly and disgusting way of looking at things, and is not true is not like it is begging for money (i can already see the comments haha), is not like is wrong, and i actually like it, but would he like it? would it be biable, to make this really something by everyone supported by everyone, beyond just Tom's page? because it makes sense this is not just Tom's page, granted in the end it is his page, but in essence is not, so when the media assault him for things regarding NG, they are both right and wrong.

So with such a thing like an all out fund, can NG graduate itself from its dad? and if it does, how would that work for the artist which make their work here, they still have to profit? and the advertisement problem reminds, is not like we can make funds just for them, and even less realistic is the problem of then making them search for their own individual sponsor, that would be way harsher than how things actually stand, it can be done, but in the end both, we, the creators and the users, the community of NG will end suffering, if such a thing happens.

So NG can survive with the fund, but i think we forgot that the artist also use ads to create an income, if we look it like this the problem grows exponentially, and i can see, even if it was ethically wrong to censor, it was still right because the danger was there, it was a sacrifice. I indeed can't judge him. Capitalism is horrible man, it makes all these things to surface, on the other hand we really don't have access to another system outside theory to see how things would have played out, but enough of this i am not studying politics or sociology.

Cyberdevil responds:

The what? Is that an NG club/crew?

Oh, so it's like two weeks full of celebration? :P That would be pretty cool, an entire holiday dedicated to yourself... I'm glad my birthday is in the middle of summer though (July 10), it's not just my favorite season (maybe you like the season you were born in automatically... how does that theory hold with you?) it's also as far away from Christmas as it can get. :)

Sounds like signing up for a bank account is a rather difficult process in your part of the world? Here most main banks have an automated setup on their website, you can submit an application in a couple of minutes and have it validated in a day or two. For some services, you may need to actually walk into an office or send in some signed document, but for normal functionality (sending/receiving/withdrawing money) it's a piece of cake. Some offer free credit cards, others free e-legitimation services, others free coaches, etc... the competition has made all rents go incredibly low, but otherwise they're all about providing a better service than the next bank!

True, society needs a major reform, but nobody has the guts or power to make it happen.

I get what you're getting at, this place means so much for so many people, it goes way further than a personal site... but maybe by letting others fund it, he'd feel like he's handing over his creation to the masses... I don't know, maybe he has other plans for this place; doesn't want to put anything on the line right now... maybe he just sympathizes with the parents (as a parent) so much that all of this is irrelevant... maybe he just doesn't want change (but that'd be kind of a paradox). I know he's being incredibly open about all of this but at the end we really don't know anything...

Yeah, ad-revenue for users, that's working well the way it is... would be great with more revenue, but using funds for such a purpose probably wouldn't sit well with everyone. I know I wouldn't like my money being funneled through to artists I may not like rather than necessary operational costs.. wonder if the staff have already pondered these ideas.

Considering NG hasn't received any new advertisers since the last riot, it seems like it's time to start looking around again... I wonder, if they did have the resources to keep this place running with bad media coverage, would Tom still have removed the game for other reasons... I do respect the decision, but I can't agree with it. In my mind it's still just wrong, if you live by a code you should go all the way, even if it doesn't go well. I'm probably unnecessarily stubborn, but hmm, yeah, I don't know what else to say...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-20 21:42:51

You should make an update on the post and inform us how is that the censorship topic is going, because i really can't catch up now.

Cyberdevil responds:

When I caught up yesterday (upto page 27 I think) there was really no news... liljim linked to a report showing that Google is actually not profiting at all from YT, which gives some hope as to the potentials of NG... but as for the current dilemma, not a single admin post; no solutions... though there's always the inspiring read amidst the mix of aimless bashing, and plenty of old users with extremely high levels popping up out of nowhere to share their two cents on that matter, which are always extra interesting to read considering they've been here so long.

Also noticed that at least two posts have been deleted (since one of my posts had moved two posts back). Censorship? O_o


VicariousEVicariousE

2013-11-21 00:45:25

I added some good and pertinent links... I usually just leave it at that, since usually the discussion is misinformed from the beginning, or at least degenerates into misinformation.

Had Tom waited a few more hours before deleting it, it would have been just enough to have our name in the news articles about it... I guess they ran with what they had, which was mainly from the parents and author of the game, not who hosted it.

Cyberdevil responds:

Yeah, so much ranting, so little looking for a real viable solution... but it's good to see people care!

So it wasn't just out of consideration? Are you timing the time of deletion with the time of posting the news article, or was that actually mentioned in the topic somewhere btw?


BuujackBuujack

2013-11-21 05:53:56

whoa there boii, thats a lot of text.

Cyberdevil responds:

In case you didn't know, I like writing. :P Plus this is a topic I'm mad passionate about!!


KatMaestroKatMaestro

2013-11-21 13:03:18

Wow the game just broke Fox News, and NG mentioned in other news. Look like the Fulps couldn't avoid much of the shitstorm either ways. PiGPEN seems to love the flames. Somebody even made a petition against his game... Petition against a GAME!!! Hahaha!

Freedom of speech is a double edges' sword. People can use FoS to oppress your view. If the other site of of PiGPEN got banned, I would personally host the game on my private site.

http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/ban-the-newly-released
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/471/606/862/
https://www.change.org/petitions/the-slaying-of-sandy-hook-elementary-online-game

http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2013/11/20/video-game-based-on-sandy-hook-massacre-draws-cries-outrage/

Cyberdevil responds:

Looks like NG didn't get mentioned in the Fox article at least, guess that's a good thing... though some publicity on NG removing the game mightv'e been a traffic boost without repercussions...

Crazy anyway how they're making such a big deal out of this. Thanks for the update! Gotta get back to checking that topic...


VicariousEVicariousE

2013-11-21 15:14:25

Nah, that was just me guessing what would've been a better PR move... but in the end, Tom did the right thing at the right time. The press are vultures to those who don't control them, which in our case, is the corporations and Washington.

Cyberdevil responds:

Ah, K. Yeah, for the PR it definitely seems like the right choice, for everything else however...


ZacharyZachary

2013-11-21 15:17:41

Someone stated below that Newgrounds was mentioned in the news because of this... but I haven't seen any examples of Newgrounds named in any of the news articles that I have seen.

Got any links?

Cyberdevil responds:

@Elitistinen ?


ZacharyZachary

2013-11-21 15:19:56

Also, claiming that there is censorship because posts were moved is asinine. If you want to know what happened, someone posted a picture of a closeup of an asshole. If you want that in the thread, then I probably should have left it.

I honestly thought you were above that, but I guess I was mistaken.

(Updated ) Cyberdevil responds:

That part of the comment was meant as a pun, no need to get so wound up about it. Definitely don't want to see assholes in the topic... good knowing (and as for that other removed post... any idea?).

Been looking through the topic btw, and sure Derelex was getting a bit out of control but you've got to admit you're throwing around a lot of harsh words without reason, just fueling the fire, his first post was actually pretty inspiring but after that it's a whole lot of bashing...


ZacharyZachary

2013-11-21 15:36:29

The thing is, it is meant to be a pun, but you spreading misinformation. People on here will take it literally, and they will use it in their argument.

Also, the other removed post was the same guy asking why he got banned on an alt. If I insulted you, those weren't my intentions, but this whole situation and seeing some of the things that users are falsely accusing Tom of is frustrating.

Cyberdevil responds:

Didn't know my newspost was such a source of reliable information. :) Everything I write is angled in some way; most of it's my personal opinion after all, which is why I'm keeping most of it on my userpage rather than engaging in public debate... point taken though, gotta be careful of what you say on the interwebs. o_O

Good knowing! No problem, and that's understandable. Letting emotion take control really takes the power out of an argument though, so many points are lost in the flame wars. Considering the Dun Dun Dun comment maybe Tom's not taking all this hate to heart though... hope so, keeping the game would've been a hit to his ego, but it seems like this is really no different...


WhirlguyWhirlguy

2013-11-21 15:59:27

I share your passion for this website. Tom's latest news posts have been pretty depressing. Saying NG isn't what it used to be seems overly dramatic, but I'm pretty sure those announcements were bad news to all of us. I never read the whole censorship thread like you did, but I did read every comment on this page right here and I must say it really inspires me to deal with the problems of tomorrow. Everyone's ideas are great and I hope Tom will get to see them. Also, I think someone should make a documentary about newgrounds so as to provide insight to the rest of the world. It's got a rich history, so I'm sure it's worth watching. Not to mention it would attract new users.

(Updated ) Cyberdevil responds:

Well it's true NG will never be what it used to be, it's constantly evolving (and occasionally de-evolving... like with these damn drop-down menus), but I wish the approach on freedom of expression was something they took a firmer stance for. It's one of the fundamental values of this place, what makes it stand out, and though this surely won't be the end of the site (might even be what saves it) it's giving all kinds of wrong impressions... of weakness, of instability, of irrationality, of unreliability, of discrimination... maybe keeping the game up wasn't the right choice, but what happens the next time a game like this is submitted? The problems of the future today... hope they prepare for it!

That's still a lot of reading! :O You're probably getting a bit of a one-sided view on the discussion from just these comments but then again catching up on the latest 900 posts in the official topic would be an immense task. :) Pretty incredibly how engaged everyone is in the matter, looks like it'll outgrow the redesign topic before morning...

Definitely, an NG documentary would be awesome! I remember something like that was up on Kickstarter a while (maybe a few years) ago but I'm not sure it ever received funding... right now it'd be more relevant than ever though. If anything it could open the eyes of the world to the truths of this place. Also as you say great marketing effect.


ZacharyZachary

2013-11-21 16:00:16

While I agree emotion can take control, it does not automatically make an argument false. Trust me, I am still rational in my approach, no matter my emotional state :)

Cyberdevil responds:

True; I'll take your word for it. :)


WhirlguyWhirlguy

2013-11-21 17:37:23

This censorship post has noticeably gotten more reactions than a regular newspost would get. From the looks of that I would say the userbase thinks there's a lot at stake here. It's interesting to see how much it stirred up the community. I should probably go and read all of it regardless. As for that documentary, the guys who made "Indie Game: The Movie" come to mind. I'm pretty sure a documentary could happen if Edmund McMillen were to contact them.

(Updated ) Cyberdevil responds:

Definitely, even though it didn't mention the game title.... I wonder how many hits it'd have received if it did! Yeah, if nothing else, NG's reputation is on the line, for good or bad... that is a rather big thing. Bluebaby? That'd be awesome!


S3CS3C

2013-11-21 20:40:41

I think derelix brought up some great points in that thread too, but someone called him a troll, and behold the floodgate opens, and like 90% of controversial threads the discussion devolves. Regardless of who initiated the flaming, you would hope the mod(s) would be the better man here, and pragmatically discuss the issue or ignore him if they so vehemently disagree....Insults and accusations NEVER help resolve an issue.

I'm always pleased at how honest and level-headed Tom is in all his responses. And he made it clear that the reason he took it down was not for financial reasons; the whole bit about "being dropped from every advertising agency in existence" was just stated as an aside. Considering how that was in 2007 he was referring to (I think), if was such a big deal the censorship would have become much tighter long ago.

Cyberdevil responds:

Twas sickdeathfriend... throwing away a few years of built-up admiration in a few seemingly very thoughtless comments. Later Derelex confuses sickdeathfriend with Zachary and accuses him of accusing him of being a troll, what a mess...

Yeah, it's cool he keeps his cool! I'm wondering how many of the unresponded comments he's read through though, so many important arguments about the downsides of censorship that might potentially pass under the radar... you'd think so, but maybe they've been (as I often do with things I don't want to take care of) just ignoring the problem; not actively looking for future solutions. If it's all a personal choice I'm all the more against it, I empathize with the parents but I care more for this site and what it stands for. :/


ZacharyZachary

2013-11-21 20:47:47

That doesn't really go with what you said @Elitistinen.

" Look like the Fulps couldn't avoid much of the shitstorm either ways"

I would say they avoided practically all of it.

Cyberdevil responds:

They avoided the big one; then created their own...


S3CS3C

2013-11-21 20:54:35

not from parts of their userbase zachary.

Cyberdevil responds:

Obligatory response.


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-21 21:23:57

Deleted post!!? Oh no! haha joking i read Zachary's response.

Man why do you want people to see a bunch of dicks on the Adult session? haha.

Well this is part of the reality of Tumblr http://your-average-serial-killer.tumblr.com/post/67610713481/take-action-post-to-your-facebook-twitter
Well that a thing is disturbing doesn't makes it illegal, but it gets banned just the same, and i am not necessarily talking about porn, which works just as you said, but sure there is no such a thing as a perma-ban on Tumblr, since it can enter the stream by other users, etc.

No they skip it and lump it with Christmas so i only get one of those... Well i actually hate December with passion, and not necessarily for me being victimized by the festivities, but the whole holy day ambiance is not my thing.

Getting a bank account is quite easy, but all the services suck and are quite abusive, there’s nothing like the wonderful free stuff you just described, using and just possessing a card actually cost you money, the only way to get a decent service in the lines of what you just said is by invitation, and that arrives at random or once you already enter a bank and another one wants you for themselves, so to enter a bank is easy, to be with them is a pain, and to leave leads to your previous point, banks are scum over here, they even charge you if you call for info, i even wonder if they charge you if you log in into your web account to check your credit, they probably do.

Well we can attract a public using bad media coverage, but i can see that backfiring rapidly, from a purely business stand point, that would be just suicidal, of course that view point doesn't respects any code or ethic, it only search monetary profit. So in this regard Tom did the best thing.

I agree, i wouldn't be all that comfortable to know that an artist i don't really know is using resources that could go to sustaining the page, even if the page is in a way sustained by the users which that artist is attracting, so in the end is fine... kinda selfish if i put it like that, because I still don’t like the idea XD.

Well i guess that Tom is searching, and that is why he was talking about the 2 NG, so he could get some new ad companies for the page, by making the place friendlier to a new public.

Wow look at all those links, the media really is exaggerating this, yellow journalist at its finest.

Cyberdevil responds:

:)

I never said that! :O But the choice is of course free... maybe some male/female filter hmm...

Wonder if they have the legal right to log personal data of international users... but I guess that comes with using an international service.. interesting post. K, if you say so, I really don't know more than I've read, and there's no guarantee all the offensive content I've stumbled across is there any longer.

Well that's a shame.

There's ambiance on Christmas? It's one of the most hectic holidays ever! :P So much stress... I could use less of that, but I like the lights, the snow... most of all: the presents! :D Both giving and taking, equal fun. Sure it's all about commercialism now, but if you don't think about the profit everyone's making off it it feels like a very accomplishing and benevolent occasion.

It really is the country of commercialism... makes me think maybe I should sign up for some extra bank accounts while they still have free services here. :P

Feels like the sucidality of the event is highly exaggerated... but I wouldn't know. If it isn't, good call indeed!

That donation topic brings up another idea btw, what if users could fund the site; have their money channeled first and foremost to operational costs, and in second hand also portioned between their favorite users? This could be completely separate too, even with an ad-financed site, users could have the option to support all their favorite artists through a single donation or subscription, like Flattr but integrated within the site. It could be added to the ad-revenue each artist receives, maybe with a small list of users who have contributed to them visible (only to them) at the bottom/month.

Yeah, maybe, I guess I shouldn't underestimate staff efforts so much.


KatMaestroKatMaestro

2013-11-21 21:38:20

@Zachary

Not the comment sections. They were calling boycott those sites who hosted the game. I saw that on some Youbube's news channel the people were also calling for boycotting NG.

Tom avoided the storm, but he still stuck with some landspouts.

Cyberdevil responds:

Any site with a boycott called for might get some extra attention, seems like it only did good things for Maddox when 'angry moms' started boycotting him...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-21 22:22:01

Wait i just actually watched and 3 of those links are for petitions, what nonsense like if that would actually do something, but that also means that the game is getting people more touched than they should, could it be, maybe, that we Newgrounders are just a bunch of desensitized bastards and the game is really a horrible spawn of the devil? the answer is no, people are just being played by the media like always,and as always is working wonders, and actually none of those mentioned the 3rd mode of the game, some even dare to say that the game has no music, is incredible.

Plus Newgrounds is being mentioned in some of those, some comments even plainly blame us the users for rating the game fairly.

So YTubers want to come here and boycot? hahahaha.

Cyberdevil responds:

Sounds like potential traffic increase.


ZacharyZachary

2013-11-22 14:24:05

Do you honestly believe that the backlash would have been lesser if he left the game up? To even COMPARE it to removing it is silly. The reason it was left out of most news sites is because Tom decided to remove it. Otherwise they would be on it like a fat kid on cake.

They didn't "create their own" because there is nothing to debate. Someone uploaded it to the site, and the site owners removed it. Even if it is told to the public that way, there is no way Newgrounds can be held at fault.

You are just creating something out of nothing honestly.

Cyberdevil responds:

On NG, yes. On the rest of the net it'd of course have been mayhem, but as to how much I guess we'll never know. It might have been rough, but if NG had pulled through it would have been an NG that stood by it's principles and persevered, a community united by the integrity of each individual artist. It'd have been an impressive feat; made me much prouder to be a member here.

If Tom hadn't voiced his decision (and opened to debate - he does ask for user opinions), I believe there wouldn't have been a shitstorm here on NG, at least not such a big one. Most people who crawled out of the woodwork to post would probably not have been aware of the situation (I wasn't). But now that they were made aware, of course there is something to debate. Sure he owns this site, but it's like a country - the people who live here want to have a voice in how their society is governed. Google steers their continent without involving the people, but here is different; it's a true democracy, with laws and officials to regulate them like anywhere else; a free country like this would obviously form a bunch of passionate patriots along the way, intent on preserving their rights to enjoy a luxury of freedom that they've become used to.

Posting that Censorship topic was probably a great maneuver in getting positive media attention though, and reviving a fraction of inactive users at the same time. He's making it clear not to just the users what's going on, but it's also like a call to sympathy for the media, to let them know what he's done and prevent them from attacking the site; let them understand what's going on without making an official statement. I really wonder how much of what he posts is posted with an intended effect in mind and how much is without motive... either way though I'm glad the posts posted, glad the opportunity to influence was given, even if it had little or no effect...

Thin line between something and nothing, it's all opinion.


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-22 20:50:11

Male/Female filter? you want the LGBT community complaining for sexism? i can already see the post...

Yeah they get your data as long as you use the service.

Ah well that is mostly because i am kinda an hermit, so yeah a bunch of people out of nowhere, skipping over my B-day, year after year, talking about some religious event as an excuse to do dem parties and gifts... gifts that means i have missed 50% of my gifts, and once you hit 16 gifts are the most boring stuff ever, you know what? screw December.

Go on man, enjoy those banks for me.

You mean like Patreon.com http://lazymuffin.newgrounds.com/news/post/874578#comments
It could work, but... isn't that a little de-powering to the artist? let me explain, before we were just fans, we followed, watched, liked, spread the word, if the guy made some merchandise we bitched about it, then we found out "damn this is some really cool ass shirt" so we buy the stuff, that's how it is for now.

On this new system, we are more integrated, and like with stocks on a company, we have a say, a greater influence beyond an opinion regarding the content, is like a kickstarter, but now the artist has to be more aware of pleasing the public, it doesn't has that much freedom, and that is quite ironic since we are talking about censorship.

But granted, it sounds promising, sure, i will say it now though, if such a system ever works, we should put restrictions, so new artist could get a chance to be featured or spotlighted, that way the big names wouldn't be there forever front-paged, pleasing their own audiences, and thus clogging the stream of new and different content, leading us to stagnation, like what happens on Deviant Art, the place is death, because everyone is an ass-licker, and they are doing the same thing, following trends, it can NOT grow (artistically and ethically), the users can't complain (psychologically), if someone ever does, a wave of delusion and escapism activates to avoid reality, but hell isn't the place popular? and aren't those "artist" good at getting donations? yes they are, and that is my point, if we made such a system we need to avoid falling into such a disgusting state.

Newgrounds as a country, with a democracy? no, we are more of a republic, with a really nice monarch. I like the comparison, i wonder how much of that is really true and relevant, i will wait for Zachary's answer.

Cyberdevil responds:

Haha, someone always gonna hate :D

Yeah.

Once you hit 16? I still haven't hit the point when I'm not interested in gifts. I thought it was around 60, considering my parents aren't too hyped up about their birthdays or Christmas any longer... still the house is getting a bit crammed though, that's kinda making me feel like I should cut down on collecting...

I shall honor your request! :)

Patreon, yeah, didn't read through everything on their site but that's pretty much it... though you should know flattr.com/ is the original, all the new ones are just copying the idea. Well I don't mean it'd be an obligatory system, you could still be just a fan, and support artists you like in other ways if you like/don't have the finances/don't want to get involved (and I guess most users wouldn't), but for those that do I don't see how this'd be a bad option. It's not like it'd replace all other momentary income forms or change the artistic freedom, they can still do whatever they like. Already many think about pleasing their audience more than doing what they really want so they get more followers; get more recognition; get more hits on their videos and thus more ad-revenue.

It'd be great with a such system integrated with the site since there would be no extra fees involved in payment processing too. Huh? Eternally frontpaged? Maybe you're misinterpreting my idea here, I don't mean artists who receive contributions would get more showcasing space than anyone else. Many already accept donations through external services, this way everyone on the site could take part of such features, and an automatic split between all favorites would let popular users get something for their effort regardless of what they do, whether it be posting at the forums, writing a ton of reviews or making great stuff. It's not like users with the most fans would get a much much bigger amount of contributions, since there's a large amount of users that drop out from the active user base overtime, that's more of a counter than an actual profit denominator.

Don't really get how this would have to do with censorship? :/

I was thinking of a very unobtrusive option in the control panel saying something like 'Contribute to your favorites', you're taken to a page explaining any transfered sum will be equally split amongst your favorites; you can choose amount to use/month from your transfered cash. If the amount is less than specified, it'll still be split equally, and that's it, no notifications or reminders... nothing happens if you don't want to add more money (and if you never do, there's no shame).

Well yeah, DA is a great example of a site grown so large only a set few users get any real recognition, same thing with YT. I don't mean the system would work any differently here than it's always done, this'd just be an additional feature for optional donation.

True, considering there's no election a republic is more like it!


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 11:30:11

After 16 you stop getting nice things and they either give you clothes, or money... well money is cool, but yeah is not the same.

Haha, oh man i see a misunderstanding here, i know that it doesn't has to be obligatory, of course not, but what i say is that those who support are gaining an certain level of authority, and power to sway the content into their tastes, this only affects the other fans after the artist finds itself in that position of appealing to its public, as you just said most of them already do that, now increase this attitude by 4, and we get that none of them will dare to risk and do something new, they will play it safe, and since it becomes a competence for supporters which has a different resource than ad-revenue less people will try and adventure, you may say innovation will give them an advantage in this competence, but that is not the case, i already put the DA example, and the masses go for what they already know and like, and fear plus plainly reject any change or new presentation.

I will said that you are right but, this phenomenon already happens here, indeed we even have this thing called king of the portal, so a system that patronize their artist will only increase this, and is great, but what i am saying is that we need a counter so the ones who are not as popular or are just starting will also get a chance, hell that is already rightnow a problem, but is not as big because we don't get 5 popular creators uploading the very same day, but do you remember those comercials for chips that were getting 2 daily frontpages in an entire month? well i do and that is a perfect example of being eternally frontpaged.

I will explain once the hive mentally establishes itself the content that is unable to adapt will be overshadowed and end censored, not deleted but hidden from public view, and that already happen in places like DA.

that's different you distribute your support from a pool/walllet to all your favorites? it seems to avoid the problem of an user getting overly active into dependence, working it out for the money, but is way less effective as a real solution, since in a year an average user will have lots of favorites it will be too small a contribution. Is not that i don't like the idea, is just that i know where it leads because i have seen it already, so what i want in such a system is a countermeasure to avoid such thing.

Cyberdevil responds:

Sounds like your missing out on a sibling sister who loves to give interesting stuff. :P Last Christmas I remember getting a Panda in some form of nano-Lego (popular in Japan right now), this sort of maze in metal with two sides you had to complete at the same time, a stressball with some kind of aromatherapy essence... well to sum it up: we each gave about 30-40 presents a piece, equally, to all five family members (nothing valuable though, just interesting things; edibles), though my parents aren't so optimistic...

Ah, I get your point now. Potential solution: not let authors know who is supporting them. I don't think artists would just play it safe though and keep submitting the same thing over and over. Maybe things work differently here at NG, but there are artists here who have gained their fanbase by being random; not caring what people thing (like Catoblepas and yurgenburgen). They know this, and I don't think they'd start doing things differently if they were supported. Quite the opposite, they enjoy their freedom, and they'd get the needed budget or time to make even more great stuff! Or use the money elsewhere and not let it affect them. Though as I said this wouldn't necessarily have to apply to only content creators. You can follow anyone on here. Some users barely go outside the forums, but the system could work the same there as well.

Chips commercials?? I must've missed those completely. Any links? Well you could say it's a problem that popular artists just get even more popular, while unknown ones have a hard time attaining any status, but I don't think this would make a difference for this, and especially not make it worse. Am I missing something? Does DA have a contribution system like this? Sounds like the problem would be the same if NG just receives a surge of popularity, authors get more ad-revenue and more people start submitting. That's one of the dangers with big sites: less personality. But since the frontpage would still be based on manual selection (apart from P-Bot posts)... how could this go wrong?

Well yeah, that's it... did I just type in all the above for no reason? :L Well I'm not saying it'd give everyone unlimited funds, but it'd be a way to contribute, no matter how little (everyone after the size of their own wallet). And artists get an equal share too. That's how Flattr works so maybe Patreon is a bit different after all... as for how it wouldn't be much, that's true, but ad-revenue isn't much either. So far I've earned less than $0,02 this month... and in all my time here I still don't have enough to request a payout. Granted there was no ad-revenue given to users when I was most active and had tons of submissions, but the point is ad-revue probably doesn't amount to livable amounts even for the more popular users.


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 11:50:55

(Part 2 because i feel like i need to elaborate more)
So we have this system when you can support your favorite(s) artist(s), and that is great, i am fine with it, i like it, it works, and it does all the good things you said.

But! it also has some ugly consequences, and is as you just said that only some users will get recognized while others will find it harder to rise, even more if they decide to do something which is outside the normal parameters of the majority when it comes to tastes.

My proposal to avoid this, is to make the artists which are getting already a reasonably big amount of donations to be unable to participate along the other guys, like leagues, in which they could be ranked, so at one point the page itself wouldn't need to promote them, i am thinking of something similar to when we choose the top submissions of the month, and we can read a disclaimer that says something like: "Don't nominate porn, that content can defend itself without our endorsement" so with this it would be something similar. Artists that are already quite famous shouldn't be competing against the rest, since they can attract public by themselves, what we could have for them is a weekly top 5 or top 10 when the "pros" get to show their submissions.

sure that doesn't changes the fact that they would want to go "commercial", and you will say, no that will never happen here, we have better taste and we are critic, we will avoid such content that is clearly made just for the money. Well i am not that sure about that, for one, and in second place, this system is such a nice idea, that i can see it allowing NG to grow, and that means more users, new users, that are not acclimated to the old NG, and will be voicing their wants, and their don't wants, and while is an optional thing for the fans to donate or not, since in the end the artist is living out of this they will have to search ways to encourage donations toward themselves, and i hope you can see where i am going with this, but the majority of people will ban things like that game by Pigpen, and will be glad with Tom doing censorship, not because it was a good PR move, but for entirely stupid reasons, in short, my fear is NG turning into a YT or DA for flash and animations, if we don't take some countermeasures from point 1.

Is everything by everyone, but if the userbase changes, we will be saving a different of NG

Cyberdevil responds:

So far so good. :)

Not that I can see how this particular system has any ugly consequences, but onto the proposition...

So you mean there would be a max amount of revenue for each alloted favorite user, taking all fan-based contributions into consideration? That sounds like a reasonable idea, but then again some users are making a living off of their animating, while others are just here for the fun. Those who spend all week pumping out animations would be, even if they are earning unreasonable sums compared to others, also spending much more effort to make up for these contributions. In what case would it be fair to set a roof on contributions just to split the revenue equally, without taking into consideration how the contributions would be used by said authors? It sounds a bit complex to control... and not necessarily good, unless the system is obviously being abused with shovelware and such content... but the mods already do a good job keeping that at bay.

Well I don't have anything against content made specifically for the money, as long as the content is good. I wouldn't mind paying for good content, at least not just contributing a small share of a fixed sum of money. A bigger budget should allow amateur artists to grow; professional artists to keep going. In other words, it'd be great for the community.

Ah, yeah, artists would definitely ask for donations... just like they've now started to ask people to follow them (I don't remember that happening back when there were only 'favorites'... seems like a consequence of the new generation), and some artists often ask for donations already. In a way, it could encourage more abuse, but on the other side it'd promote an equal system, where everyone can get a piece of the pie even if they don't ask for it. This monthly voting thing sounds like you're thinking artists should be showcased based on their contributions after all, though? :/


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 12:16:46

(Part 3 damn straight this can go for long)

We face with a variety of problems, so in this part 3 having talked i think enough about how new users will affect the artist approaches and how, these new direct influx of money can change the direction of their production, i will in this 3rd installment concentrate on the problem of public flow.

We have 2 kind of public flow, the one that is attracted to the page, a public searching for an artist or things, which stays here, new users that arrive, and the things that make them come here, this category lets call it "A".

To the "A" category belong those artist that are already quite famous, and can attract public by themselves.

Then we have "B" which is redistribution (Holy shit yes, this is a socialist model, i know damn Max Weber, but bear with me a little i swear i just realized about now), this category is all the process that the page (and all other pages really) have to fulfill and is to show these users, some new content, show them new artist and promote them.

To this "B" we have small growing artist, and the odd ones that add the variety to the page.

So here, so far so normal, we have to attract new users, and then we once they are here we show them new things, this is also at the same time, tied to the promise that an artist not only can show his work here but that the page has the means to help him/her to grow a fan base, with even promise that in a future they will make a living out of it (ad-revenue, donations, the shop).

You may say, "so what? NG already does all this, in fact every single page that showcases artist does this, that is the standard model, but compared to YT or the art portal with DA, NG moves a smaller scale" yes, but while everyone does this, they do it wrongly with the one ecception being? that's right NG, and even NG has times when it fails and repeats the mistakes of YT and DA, sure this is a rare event, but happens, and it can increase the more a page grows, but what exactly is this mistake i am talking about here?

(Hold it there is part 4)

Cyberdevil responds:

Damn right you have the right to write!

True, category A would be a spotlight for popular artists, since they're known; even if the users don't know about them, since they appear first on search results (submission order based on popularity and all that), but it'd also be a way of finding obscure submissions within a certain niche, the key being the keywords (tags) and titles. The site could use a better search engine to lure in new users, but that's a different topic...

Max Weber huh. So category B is the 'Related Submissions' box? Social media sharing? the NG FB page? Wait... maybe you're saying category A are the famous artists and category B the unknown? I'm confused here. Maybe part four will clear this up...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 12:30:37

(Part 4, what exactly is this mistake i am talking about here? i am late for classes yes is Saturday)

I am talking about artistic stagnation, as we all know in order to get attention, and secure a fan base (for which bad media coverage doesn't really help), the artist will need to create an appealing product, and this of course will end in what we jokingly call "tastes like egoraptor" or following a model that we already know people like, thus keeping it safe, without any risk, this allows the artist to feed itself from already big fan bases.

But why is this bad? i am sure i already said this before but here i will make it more explicit and detailed, we are in category "B" redistribution, is the page duty to show new artist to new public, so the page does just that, but, that the artist is new doesn't means that content is new, we have a wonderful system and is the under-judgement, when we can see all the uploads regardless of who it is, there is now even a monetary incentive to participate, and the next day the top submission will get frontpaged, this is endemic to Newgrounds and is what is saving it from failing like other pages, but is not enough, since artist from category "A" also use this system, thus blocking the influx to category "B", that is a current problem, and is a different problem to artistic stagnation, although it is directly related.

But in this explanation we are in the future, with a system of donations integrated on NG, and we already solved the previous problem so artist from "A" don't use the tools of exposure of the category "B", "well perfect!" you may say, but here is when the actual problem arises, and is what happens with DA and YT, the artist from "B" will imitate the ones from "A" so they could achieve success, thus while the page is getting new users, who are getting introduced to new artist, the content is not changing, and there is no encouragement for it to change, so we get ourselves a page which can host your production, but if this creation of yours is not accommodating itself to a general trend, this creation of yours will remain hidden, unknown practically censored, shunned by the same public who doesn't knows you, and the page that cant help you to become unknown.

Cyberdevil responds:

Late for classes with class!

Applicable to certain artists, yes. Some refuse to stick with the same style for this exact purpose, but moving on...

True, and in a way the new system brought this stagnation, since the under judgment sections are now filtered out from the main, more popular, content. When the portal was the main view each submission had an equal chance. It wasn't just a call for favorites, every user could get instant recognition with a good title; good thumbnail; most of all: good work. The new system makes it easy for people to see the content they want to see and filter out the rest, but at the same time they're missing a lot of potentially great content; as a result new users have trouble getting acclaimed. The Follow Friday is a good way of getting new users showcased though, and the manually selected Frontpage items... monthly choices and p_bot posts however seem to lean more in the favor of the popular artist. But then again they're usually popular artists for a reason: they make good stuff...

This is the part where I wonder what tools of exposure you speak of? True, only famous users can start trends.

The monetary reason to participate in the judging process has always been there btw, it just wasn't known to most users earlier on. Every month a voter has been selected at random to get the cash prize for quite a few years now.


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 12:51:01

(Part 5, same theme, continuation)

But why is this happening, because in the end is popularity which allows a submission to be frontpaged, and not everyone sees the entirety of the content who falls outside of this feature, for clear time limitations, and while for the hobbits this may not be a big deal, for the artist by profession this becomes an issue, because it can see that unless he changes its vision it will starve (on a variety of way, in this case my connection is less fans, less support, less support...).

And now we have a system which encourages a theme to be produced, so it ends showing the same thing to everyone but from a different source, currently NG has a wonderful amount of variety, so the idea is to achieve this without sacrificing this variety.

To mange a way when different visions are shown to the new users, and they don't have to like it, but at least the page is doing the job of showing this variety.

You may say, that even if it fails to do that, the page will survive, indeed it will grow, and expand, i agree it will in a purely economical way, flourish, but its integrity, will die, it will become another generic page to showcase material, with no variation, with an homogenized and alienated user base, of both creators and consumers, it will be a different NG, in that way the NG of today will be effectively death, and this page could respect your freedom of speech, but it wouldn't matter since no one will see what you said, it will be ignored.

Ignored because is competing against a system that is already ruling the taste and values of the ones which vote, and there is nothing to even the ground, you may say then we could promote those extremely unknown heroes that dare to do something different, but we will have to make a tool that is as effective at showing these heroes as the tools that the category "A" and the mainstream of "B" is already using, if not better.

This is a must because is these guys who do different things the ones who bring the change, if not we face the danger of artistic stagnation, which also atrophies thought.

Indeed this whole time i am talking about the commercialization of art, and how this leads to degeneration, and this is not limited only to art.

(Part 6 solution to this problem)

Cyberdevil responds:

Well not only popularity, but also user recommendation and chance. Remember the treasure hunts for hidden gems? Follow Fridays where users suggest artists without the fanbase they deserve? Users can even send Tom a PM with submission tips, and they might be added. So it's partly about popularity, but also about chance and about the views of the users. That's a lot of work for one individual though... don't know if everyone at NG HQ work together on filtering out stuff to the FrontPage or if it really is a one-man job but either way, the way it works, there's room for everybody. I guess the problem with a big NG would be that there are so many artists that all of them don't have space to be showcased... but are we actually speaking of potential problems if NG grows huge? Wouldn't that be a good thing? There are cons with everything but I'd think the pros outweigh them...

I think we agree that variation; acknowledging less known users; letting everyone have an equal chance are great aspects of this site... as for commercialization: users are able to use Patreon or Flattr if they like, independability, right now. So far it hasn't led to any artistic stagnation, though commercialism is definitely leading some artists to other communities with promises of greater riches... plenty of popular users here post to other communities as well. I'm still not getting how an optional contribution system would be able to impact how all of this works if its abuse is prevented buuut, onwards to the solution...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 13:12:26

(Part 6 conclusion)

So what do i propose to encourage people into doing something different instead of shovelwares?
For me it is clear, that just helping the page to avoid stagnation should be enough. But i am trying to be realistic here, so we i need to come with a way when the artist gets secured a public, or at least that the public is being exposed to its work, and that even if they don't like it the artist wouldn't suffer a great loss, compared to lets say if he did a remix of something already well liked.

So first we need a system to show the artist work, and now a prize awarding the fact that it did something different, this could be called an innovation showcase, when these kind of things get promoted, or just so things like taste don't get so much in the way, lets call it alternative showcase, that way we don't risk making a preconcept related to the quality but we make it clear that it is different, but in the end is still a competition, indeed it has always been, everywhere, so the artist will have to put all their effort, like it should be, that way they can't get away with it with the excuse of it being different, and i know new things are plagued with errors, that is expected.

But is this really enough? is this securing us from stagnation? is just this sufficient to fight against the lure of getting away by following a preexisting formula? no, is not enough.

While we could stop there and get away with it, saying that we fulfilled our duty as a page by showing your work to the masses this is still not enough.

If the mind, of the masses has stagnated all this will end in vain, so we also need to protect the integrity of the consumers of NG, these weirdos full of cynicism, that likes odd things, that defends games about mass shootings, poop jokes, and that which is bizarre, that knows that something should be said without it being censored, regardless of the quality and context, that is willing to see the weirdest of things, to see everything, by everyone (shit i feel like a politician).

And how we do that? well for one standing by our principles (in that case Tom made a mistake), but also educating the new users to know the past of the page, so when the inevitable happens they will know, that NG is more than than a place wen you can go and watch pony porn, and video game parodies, but that this has its own culture, different from all else.

Cyberdevil responds:

Independent of the contribution system previously spoken of? I thought this was all leading up to some twist on that feature... but an innovation showcase definitely seems like an idea!

So far I'm not seeing the stagnation problem though, everyday the Top 5 submissions contain something new, in both games and animations, there's plenty of plot innovation. I try to check out all five everyday and I am surprised by how different each submission is; how many new ideas pop up that I'd have thought someone would have used a long time ago. I'm all for the competition though, it wouldn't just keep the place alive, but also maybe make the weird (and at times disturbing) socially acceptable in a new way; indeed, make everyone aware of what freedom of expression truly means. While they're at it though they should add some rules as to limit the levels of (personal) obscenity that can be included. There are already rules prohibiting certain content forms so that's nothing new, but when something that is technically accepted is taken out of the system it's clear the rules supposed to regulate content aren't adequate any longer.

Anyway, I agree completely; introducing new users to page history is something the current site isn't very good at. The entire History section is really hidden deep deep down, new users commonly post questions already answered in the Wiki, which I assume is because they don't find it. It's an obscure page with very fragmented bits of information... that could definitely improve.

As for other ways to promote user content, an embed feature would be the most useful thing. Without that people are embedding YouTube versions of NG content just so that it can be spread around the net. Unless it'd be too resource-intense a feature for the servers... that'd be the promotional feature of the decade, way better than the Fan Net from way back (though I wish they'd bring that back too).


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 13:49:41

Man i just finished part 6 and you already replied to the first 2 parts, mmmmh i have this dilemma, when i can start answering your counterpoints, and questions, or i could leave it rest, but fuck it already missed my class (i am such an irresponsible bastard, mom please don't read this...)

Yeah we have wonderful artist that do wonderful random things, but those artist can be easily overthrown, in this new system with a resurrected economy who is not suffering by searching an accompany that would want to do business with them, we are in a big NG, is fictional sure, but this whole activity is of us envisioning, so we are there, at the same levels of the other pages, back in the center, google is afraid of us, we are that big.

And since we are that big, we can talk about mainstream, and users like Catoblepas, yurgenburgen, Master Aardvark, are still not as popular as they should be, even more to put things on perspective, if we combine Sexual-Lobster, Doki (Fat-pie), and the weebl, which are huge here they at best get 150.000 fans which is less than half they have on their YT channels, but even if we unite their YT channels we at best get to the million, you see, that is way too underrated, and it can get worse, so is not like i am being pessimistic, but every single one of those artist we both mentioned deserves a million fans just by themselves, and they are not getting them, and those are the big ones here, now lets think about the middle guys, the small ones, and the beginners, don't get me wrong, i am not saying that these big guys will start doing bad work just to sell (even if Sexual-Lobster's work for machinima wasn't his best), but my point is that the small ones may be pushed to do it, because they really don't have options, and their option is here NG, and if NG changes then they are doomed, and we are doomed because we don't get new people making new things which is my main point, remember we are dealing with the future here.

So we need to grow and embrace all these persons, even the commercials one, but without killing our spirit, and that which feeds our spirit, an while i know that the old one won't betray this (well Egofaptor no longer does any animation...) the new ones may be unable to join this NG, and in time NG will just transition into something, that i already explained and disapprove of.

Cyberdevil responds:

Well since it's six parts long I had to take each part at a time... but maybe responses would've been more consistent if I read through everything at once... anyway, will go through the last two after I finish typing this... had to take a break from reading haha, so much! Text blocks has me thinking about Legos now btw..

Maybe you should add the spoiler note before you mention something she shouldn't read? :P Hope the class wasn't anything important...

So.. your point is that if NG grows too big the smaller artists won't have a reason to be here? There is one flaw to that theory though, which is the manual front page selection and the community. There is no community on DA or YT, there are comments on a per-submission basis, but there is really no way for users to get together and interact, to recommend new animations to watch, to collaborate or make people aware of new artists. That's probably what's keeping those communities from developing a bond to the user, that and the lack of staff that aren't just emplayed for a paycheck. I'm not saying this system would be sustainable if it grows too big, but even in the peak years around 2007 it was doing fine; the place wasn't just flooded by the popular artists. Of course back then the portal was the main page... things might turn out different now...

Already explained? You know, on second thought I think I'll read the other two responses before I post this response... hmm, you mean: keep an open mind?


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 14:09:42

"you're saying category A are the famous artists and category B the unknown?" is more under this lines because in this version NG doesn't really needs of external sites to promote itself, so Facebook is not a way to attract people the category "A" already is doing this work.

Well, i am not again of famous users, but of everyone copying what they already did, hoping to become famous too, i know man, they are famous mostly, because they are also good.

The tools of exposure i talk about are already in this page, don't confuse them with external advertisement, you don't see ads for YT or DA here on NG, do you? what i am talking is about easy ways of making the audience to watch the content, which in this case is the current ground gold system, which encourages the users to see 5 submission so they would gain XP, lvl up, and have more voting power.

Mmh indeed is a competitive system, but in an idealism people should go and brows all the submissions of that day and they will watch what they like, i discarded this ideal because in the current model which is so big, even more content would be lost in the sea of the portals, but i agree there must be a better way to just browse and navigate the uploads, with a minimum of loses.

Indeed the FrontPage is just that, the front page, and is one of the tools of exposure, like i already told you NG already has these things, P-Bot is another tool, the interviewer, is another tool, etc.

Again this system is one of a hyper big NG, and is already widely known in the same ranks as YT or FB, haha we can even say YT and FB will be making user pages here on NG.
Why? because the economy of the page is alive, people come and stay, spend money, consume and upload content, and there are the incentives for them to do it here instead of other places, because we offer them opportunities of being exposed, and to work in this.

Yeah i know that they choose the monthly voter randomly, what is new here for me is that i didn't really know that the monetary incentive aquas always there, goes figures, so it seems not even that is enough... (why because otherwise people will rate more actively the under-judgement submissions, and Tom wouldn't have changed he numbers for a submission to get blammed or saved)

Cyberdevil responds:

Ah, got it. A first step to promote lesser known artists could be to stop ranking submissions in search results based solely on popularity, and add titles/sizes/formats to a users list of choices. Or maybe they could add a 'Surprise Me' checkbox (like Google's Get Lucky) that takes you to one of the least viewed submissions within the more relevant range.

True, promotion via FB is promoting FB alongside NG, NG promotion would promote only NG. Which is why those embeds could really be a big thing...

It's common? Man I'm probably watching submissions most people don't watch then, seems I rarely stumble upon anything that's just out to copy or users just out to attain fame. The games8 submissions were the closest I ever got to that, but they seem to have stopped streaming in...

Actually I do see plenty of ads for YT and DA. On the social media buttons on the frontpage. On user profiles. After user submissions. In submission comments. In embedded videos on newsposts... the promotions everywhere, and for the embeds specifically it's subliminal promotion. It's like we take it for granted, YT is so big now it's an element we don't even think about, but you'll never see NG embeds on YT, they're not opening up for competition the same way... I get what you're saying though. On that note, the importance of Grounds Gold was also drastically reduced with the redesign, but who knows if it's for either good or bad, users who have been here since ancient times and attained incredibly high status might scare away users more than they inspire them... though it didn't work that way for me when I found this place.

Indeed.

Indeed again!

That'd be an awesome future. :) Yeah, it's all about incentives.. right now it seems the biggest incentive for most people is audience... but NG can't compete with that. I believe the main incentives are: the community, the personality, the creativity, the freedom; that element which might not have the same effect on all users - stats. Back in the day it feels that was one of the biggest lures, maybe the EXP game hasn't been built upon as much as it could have...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 15:16:22

You are wrong DA has a community, but is a piece of manure, which forum shows the poor state in which it deals the it divides itself on "groups" which are niches of themes, it could be like the oversize version of the various crews that we have here on NG, and the community collaborates mostly inside their own clubs, for seasonal events, random features, and the constant Daily Deviations that are user suggested submissions of the works of other users, but this has to be approved first by the admins that is why they are called suggestions.

I feel like either you really don't see my problem, or i haven't been able to explain myself, so i will be the most simpler possible.

1- we added the donation system, which busted the traffic of users which make content for NG, this as a consequence increased the traffic of users that visit the page, and as they start to visit more often they create their own accounts, and integrate themselves to NG, so NG grows, and the advertisement grows with it, to the point that it rivals other pages, and we also have a store, so lets say that the shop also started to go big on businesses.

So far so good.

2- My issues with a sudden growth of the page, being mostly that original content will be overshadowed by a more commercial one like what happened with http://versustvigle.newgrounds.com/movies/ which even got to be fortunate enough and enjoy of a bug who gave him 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th places, in the same day, while it constantly occupied 2 positions each day for practically an entire month. But now i see why you don't see this as a problem, you were ok with this.

And well that was not only an example of overexposure, but also of the low participation on the UJ page(s).

So you see we already don't get people actively seeing all the things that get uploaded to the page (hell i myself am guilty of this, since i only thoroughly see the art portal), then the things that do get front paged are indeed thanks to the votes of the users, and organised by P-Bot, we have very real issue here and is that the unknown users remain unknown, if that is all we have, in this hyper system, but lets go back to our current system, in our current system we also have The interviewer... somewhere around his post appear..., we have Toms post like the one from today "More Amazing People to Follow", we have the forums, but is still insufficient.

Cyberdevil responds:

Oh, Groups. I stand corrected then. Can't remember that being there last time I checked, must've been a while... actually, since YouTube is now integrated with Google+ I guess they have a community too, though badly synchronized with the content. The NG community stands out amongst the competition! I do see DA have a Site Tour though, this place could really use something similar. Ideas of a contest to create a creative infomercial for new users of the site pops into mind...

You mean boosted the traffic? Yupp, so far so good...

Oh yeah, I remember that! Getting four spots in the daily top 5 sparked quite a debate. :D With the new voting requirements that shouldn't happen again... but as for all those submissions, I really don't mind them. They may have flooded the portal for a while but they were all fun. At the start they didn't win any awards either, it took a while for them to gain recognition, and considering over 80 submissions won less than 30 awards it seems you're exaggerating a bit. :) As long as these things are not constant, and the content is good, I'm OK with it. Shovelware is a different thing.

Overexposure... yeah, maybe, but it never lasts that long. It would be worse if works like these were never submitted to NG in the first place, and unless there's better content any good entertainment should be good for traffic. I sympathize with users getting pushed out of the Top 5 by more popular artists, even if their work is good, but that's always been a problem. Even with a small community, new users never seem to get recognition until they've submitted a few pieces at least, unless their first submission is something amazing, like with Snow Hare or The Reward (in which case you can see the system is working as it should right now, they both got daily first and were submitted by brand new users with no previous activity on the site). So even with an increase in traffic, would things be that different? If it gets to a point where there's just too much, NG could always close their doors for new members (or maybe just for uploaders), maybe move over to invites. That'd probably just make it more popular. :)

Low participation on the UJ pages... that shouldn't be a problem if this place brings in more visitors. Sure having the Portal as the main page, not allowing the majority of users to simply skip to the good stuff, would force more participation, but with a bigger userbase I believe there'd still be a fair share of dedicated users. Personally I think the new UJ sections are harder to navigate and way too visual, I prefer the Portal, but not everyone is a power user I guess. :)

Yeah, I get what you're saying, but we already have these problems. Would it really be different if the site was bigger? I guess too big = impersonal, but at least right now the userbase could use a boost. I really don't mind either way though, the way it is there's plenty of great content, plenty of great users, plenty of interactivity and creative enterprises. But if a visitor increase would bring in more money that'd benefit everyone. And paradoxically, more money might bring a visitor increase...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 15:33:53

I remind you again, we are not talking about the current NG, but they hyper big one, if you still tell me that we can keep the things as beautifully varied as they are now in such a system, then i really have nothing to say, anyway, i will continue, because at least for me a collapse of the system at such a size is evident, and yeah DA has a community, however is way more divided than NG, the challenge is to keep this family like feel even if the NG population explodes which i think is your point.

But back to were i am, so our current mediums are insufficient, and if we don't create countermeasures, we will be flooded, this tsunami will need a regulation, so the different content, and the unknown content can get a chance to still surface (and no is not my paranoia remember the discussion with the speed-paints and people were fearing a flood of those overshadowing the legit animations?), well in this hyper system this increase so all the more reason for small artist to find it hard to grow (because is harder for them to get noticed), but is these guys, with nothing to lose that can go and make new things, as fact, and i don't think you can argue against this, in the end is those new artist the ones that will keep NG alive, and if we don't protect them and encourage them to come with something different then we will stagnate with a bunch of Egraptors look alike (not like he is bad, but too much of the same leads nowhere), YT already has a ton of those, and yes YT doesn't has a thing like a community.

That in one hand, to encourage and promote difference even if the population underwent an growth explosion.
On the other hand, to acclimate this new population to the traditions of NG, that way the principles of the page wouldn't charge for the worse, in short keeping an historic context.

By now i feel like going on circles, but i think that this is it, i guess even if we are like 3 comments away, maybe that is the problem.

Cyberdevil responds:

Well OK, let's put it like this: a much bigger community would benefit everyone, a too big community would be impossible to sustain or enjoy on a personal level. Right? I don't believe it'd be that easy for NG to take over the game though, YT is great competition when it comes to media, and FB is great competition when it comes to community. Both of those communities are already basically setting standards for the Internet and for how people behave and expect content to appear. The 'like' behavior that is causing people to either just zero or fiven everything could be considered a consequence of FB, the priority transition from Flash to MP4 could be considered a consequence of YT. NG has a niche, but other fractions are steering the way. In a way I hate how NG is taking after acclaimed features such as activity feeds from other sites, after those same other sites started by taking features from NG... but some features are great to have, regardless of who made them first, and I guess that's the cycle of creation, re-using ideas.

I'd like to say 'grows', I don't want the family like feel to disappear either, but lack of users = lack of funds = lack of users. It's a vicious cycle. It seems it'd be easier to deal with too many users than with too few. Yeah, a flood of speedpaints would suck... and I don't like the fact that speedpaints are allowed right now, but then again videos like the Numa Numa made their debut here way before YT so it'd be hypocritical to try and shut them out. As long as they have a category of their own I guess it's fine.

So your proposition is... strive to maintain the current active userbase ratio we have now from now on? New users have to come from somewhere though, that's the problem, and if the community is too small or inactive those new users won't come. So... well I don't know, I guess I'm getting influenced by everyone speaking of how we have to 'make this place grow!'. It's great as it is, but a litle more activity wouldn't hurt... IMHO...


VicariousEVicariousE

2013-11-23 15:45:37

Hey, do you own a PS3? A member here has a friend who wants (has?) to sell one, with 2 dozen games for 400$... like you, I'm a PC kinda guy, but I haven't built one yet... still on this 10 y/o laptop, struggling for the wifi next door. Can I even play most of these games without the internet? Or GTA V for that matter?!

Cyberdevil responds:

Nope, sold my two PS2s last year (that I bought on impulse just to play Alien Hominid again), and have no plans on getting any new consoles other than computers. $400 sounds like... probably a great price all games considered. :) Lot of money though!

I don't know, I guess you'd be missing some features without Internet but unlike the PS4 I haven't heard Internet is obligatory for the console itself. No actual experience though. So is GTA V in the package? I can't wait for the PC release...


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-23 19:20:06

Finally we are at the same pleace, ok.

No, i too am in favor of the page growing, and indeed, i would love it if it becomes the Behemoth (pun intended) of a page that we described on our discussion, i am fine with it, and i am fine with artist that are already popular to continue getting even more popular, remember my comment about Sexual-Lobster? my problem is with these artist becoming an impediment to the newer or more obscure artist. That has always be the main problem, which is why i made the 2 categories A and B.

For NG to grow and still feel like NG it needs to conserve its own identity, and that is something hard to conserve in a big scale, so my point is that while these things can attract a lot of people over a long period of time, we also need to think about how to correctly integrate the new users, and how to correctly distribute the content of the site so everyone can be seen.

For example i will quote you here: "If it gets to a point where there's just too much, NG could always close their doors for new members (or maybe just for uploaders), maybe move over to invites. That'd probably just make it more popular. :)"

I strongly disagree with this vision, if the page is unable to handle a sudden burst of content, the problem should be addressed as a matter of presentation, organisation, and distribution, but never as a filtering problem, or by invites, that actually made it worse for both categories being them A or B to be noticed. It may have its appeal, for the user that managed to be selected to feed its ego, gain prestige, but it leaves the rest of the other participants out of the equation, precisely because is filtering them out, it can work as an especial even't every now and then, but it doesn't solves my proposed problem, but sure sounds like a nice thing to have, but it has a different function, is related? yes, but is still unrelated.

Well actually The Reward, already was quite popular before hitting NG, it was making noise for some months already on Tumblr and Vimeo, so it was a matter of time for it to arrive to NG, on the other hand i find Snow Hare as a better example for your counter argument.

But in our hyper version, will this still be the case?

I'm defending the speed paints, while a lot of people fear them, even more it would be great if NG could implement live-streams, something that i talked with @VicariousE time ago.

Cyberdevil responds:

Just took a few thousand characters! :D

Ah, didn't know The Reward was spread elsewhere. I don't do much elsewhere. As for the invite system, that's just a sample idea of how you could shut out an additional overflow of content whilst still keeping the community attractive to new users. When I wrote that I was thinking of how YT is actually running without profit, Google is loosing millions off of it each year. I don't know exactly what factors play into their loss, but they have the biggest potential for ad-revenue out of all the big social communities (integrated in video, content sponsors, copyright holders) so it's got to have to do with their size. After a certain point the balance between revenue/submissions isn't maintainable any longer I guess. That'd be the biggest problem in such a situation, if that is the case. I've always been a bit against MP4 for this reason, they're not space efficient at all. You can fit a hundred normal flashes on one high quality MP4.

Livestreams huh, that'd be pretty cool. And old livestreams stored in an archive, making the speedpaint category redundant? Yeah, speedpaints are creative work so they hold a place, though personally I find the content form a bit pointless. I find myself viewing one occasionally and it's always an impressive watch, but still, I'm just watching someone else do something, I'd rather do something myself, or for the sake of efficiency just see the final piece. Efficient reasoning. :P

Yupp, integration is a problem. This place needs better bait for the users, not just content. A quick tour, a commercial... something fun that shows what this place is all about.


NewShapeNewShape

2013-11-23 22:26:56

Pigpen made it personal when he started to tweet back to the parent of the murdered girl telling her to play it.
I think that's the attitude Tom and co are trying to censor, not so much the flash game. This is consistent with other deletions I believe. He doesn't believe the effort in protecting it, is worth it if he feels it's just for the sake of trolling.

Cyberdevil responds:

That is a sick attitude... I thought I'd skimmed through everything important in the topic though, was this mentioned elsewhere? Puts the whole thing in a rather different perspective.


NewShapeNewShape

2013-11-24 10:31:23

This is the conversation log. This is pretty soon after it was blocked so I think Tom didn't want to start arguing with the mother and any others that appear defending it.
He did (well Ross did) defend Vtech Rampage, but there weren't social media accounts which is the added wrinkle to it.
This time around, he would probably try (to defend it) to a certain extent but you have the old Vtech game on the Pigpen account where you kill a holocaust survivor and say 'Put that Jew back in the oven'. Dailymail is the only paper which had the wits to pick up on his previous work, but others would have had the game stayed online. So if the site is arguing with the parents and those on the games defense are really just 4chan users
who by their own definition are apathetic anyway, should he bother continuing? You can see by his last posts being about
the hare cartoon, he prefers NG harbour that sort of stuff rather than causing controversy for the sake of it.

Team Vicki Soto ‏@TeamVickiSoto 19 Nov
@googumproduce can we ask you a few questions about your "game"?

5:52 AM - 19 Nov 13 · Details
PiGPEN ‏@googumproduce 19 Nov

sure, but you'd learn more by "playing it" @TeamVickiSoto

Team Vicki Soto ‏@TeamVickiSoto 19 Nov

@googumproduce we are asking why you would even make such a "game"?

6:19 AM - 19 Nov 13 · Details
PiGPEN ‏@googumproduce 19 Nov

@TeamVickiSoto since you have no interest in playing it i'll crib note it for you: its about importance of gun control.

Team Vicki Soto ‏@TeamVickiSoto 19 Nov

@googumproduce oh really? The "slaying of sandy hook" is the title. Wow that sure sounds like an educational game to us

Cyberdevil responds:

So Team Vicki Soto is the parent? I wouldn't have known if you didn't mention it... sure PiGPEN knew? The way you wrote earlier it sounded like he contacted them and explicitly asked them to play... bit of a way to angle the statement. :/ Thanks for the log though...

Actually just noticed I knew about Pigpen before, heard his verse in the recent ClabTrap tournament but didn't pay attention to the name... really a shame about this game because he seemed like a talented artist too. Who's last post's about the hare cartoon?


NewShapeNewShape

2013-11-24 12:21:17

I wasn't trying to be intellectually dishonest, I used the word 'retweet' meaning they contacted him first and he continued the conversation which changes the defense of the game to something personal. I'm not trying to say pigpen is sick or make any attacks on any person's character only that the conversation is personalised unlike the other offensive games/movies.
The handle was reported in the news as being a 'family account' but since the mother is the only one making statements, and other tweets mention personal family matters it doesn't leave much room to who could be operating the account or at least the messages coming through are reported back.
If you look at the pms Ryan tweeted, Tom says it was a charity account that contacted him first mentioning another parent had discovered it and was shocked by it.

Another log:

@googumproduce
When you decided to make this game did you think about how much more pain it might cause the families?

PiGPEN ‏@googumproduce 20 Nov

@newsjunkie365 i decided it couldnt possibly compare to what they already went through and i didnt go out of my way to push it on them

10:55 PM - 20 Nov 13 · Details
newsjunkie365 ‏@newsjunkie365 20 Nov

@googumproduce So as long as the pain isn't as extreme as what they felt initially it's okay? Are you really that insensitive?

PiGPEN ‏@googumproduce 20 Nov

@newsjunkie365 its a cost-benefit analysis. i judged the potential benefit was greater than the potential damage.

This is what Tom posted on the BBS:
"Now PiGPEN felt compelled to do it a second time, this time with even younger victims and even more realism and darkness. This time it has a political message but I don't personally buy those motives."

My personal thoughts are that I would have kept the game, America has school shooting every couple of months or so and I don't think any one of them is worse than another, they usually have the same ending with the perpetrator shot through the head at his own hand .
But I think it's important to have the entirety of the argument present so we can make a better assessment.

Cyberdevil responds:

Well actually you wrote 'tweet back', but that's a misinterpretation on my part. The conversation below didn't sound as offensive as I thought it would, but that's true, this really is the first personal school shooting game out there as far as I know... I guess naming schools is uncool but OK, but naming people is where the line is drawn. Aha, good knowing.

Same here, though it feels the argument's done its deed now. It seems like the community may be on the brink of involuntary change, but Tom's last post in the ^ topic provides what seems to be a pretty viable solution for keeping offensive content of the past; keeping all parts of the site afloat yet structured to avoid clashes; gearing the community towards a brighter future... may be a turning of the tide. Both a bit melancholy and inspiring IMO, I hope it'll be for the better!


DoomroarDoomroar

2013-11-24 13:19:12

But think of the colors! the quality, the laziness of the author for not working in another format! haha.

Well sure, but are you going to tell me that you didn't enjoy the The Joy of Painting with Bob!?
That was more of my idea, imagine that show but here on NG, and live! we aggregated some tens of other features, that would make this post too large, but here go on the adventure, if you dare!
http://sabtastic.newgrounds.com/news/post/852800#comments
The development of the idea is currently on hold, because we reasoned that the NG team doesn't has the time nor the resources to work on such a thing, plus the server will cost them some extra $ even if is just the beta server, we presented the idea to some people who said the were interested, but it never really got any wind.

Thinking back now, this one right here must be my longest post on a continual thought string, and it costed me my Saturday class, man that is why i stay away from internet forums i end always spending too much time.

I completely agree.

Wait @NewShape, so that is all we amount to? desensitized 4chan users? i am offended!

Back to you Mr Cyberdevil, i think that by now we have to agree that NG has changed, and some things will have to be put somewhere else. And if that is so, remember that problem about distribution between categories A and B, that is no longer an issue, because we slowly enter into a time of homogenization, i feel so damn stupid right now, i even missed class for nothing, also remember that part of ad companies taking time to understand what NG stands for? no longer a problem either! also haha oh god, this is hilarious, a whole site apart for adult content, that is way better than your idea of using filters, that has its implications, but meh fuck it, is just porn and furries, sure a pity about the tits.
His plan of allowing older users to access different content is good, but... it also goes against what we talked, oh well, this is a good moment to stop caring.

Yeah PigPen has participated on the ClapTrap's tournament, and loses with regularity, hahaha, and he also was working on a game based on a work by an author i appreciate, look here http://fkmtkrazy.blogspot.com/2013/03/restricted-rock-paper-scissors-online.html to collaborate with the FKMT community is great, people are making him look worse than he really is, and he is still talented, a shame about his game.

Cyberdevil responds:

Haha, I'll agree with the laziness part. :) Flash is really so much more efficient at saving space. For example, if you draw an eyeball once, you can use that same eyeball for all eyeball instances for the entire movie, it'll only be stored as an instance in the library once. With an MP4 each frame is a separate image, so even repeated elements will be generating a new stamp multiple times every second... with regular movies you can't do much about it but for non-FBF animation it's such a waste! Eyeball probably wasn't the best example btw, imagine a background instead. Just a static background in thousands of frames for a few minutes of MP4 animation. It could've been a single image file... well at least the compression's better than AVI...

The Joy of Painting with Bob!? As a matter of fact... I've never watched that, so I could say I've never enjoyed that show. :P I'm sure it's great though. Must be a local thing?

Man that's not just a TON of new ART but a ton of comments... I think I've scooped up the most important parts. So it's actually a plan in progress then... would be fun if it became something, but personally I'd probably be a not very active participator. So much other stuff that'd earn me more satisfaction of actual accomplishment (be it statual, influential or other). Hope it gets off the ground though... and yeah that probably requires some server power. Did you read Bren's post about the new NG architecture btw? I know I saved the link but I can't seem to find it now... think the site was using around 4TB and the new upgrade would give it a total allotment of at least... 20? Man I haven't memorized them numbers at all... the point was: there'll be a whole lot of room for expansion! Bandwidth is of course a different matter though...

I should probably just stay away from the Internet. I spend way too much time here. :P

Yes, times are changing, and some things may have to move. At least I am glad they may not have to removed, and in the end it'll still all be available through the same platform (at least if it all goes according to the outlined plan). Yeah, no problem with advertisers, and not the same problem with categories (though showcasing the unknown is still the same situation), but as for the entire site dedicated to adult content (wonder if that'd be newgrounds.xxx btw, the domain already pointing to the adult section)... I'm wondering how the filtering system would work. Sure some submissions really are just hentai, but for some there's a rather thin line, would stuff like The Modifuckers or Rebecca go to the other site? And what about all adult art, realistic nude portraits and hentai alike? Feels like it might be a real challenge to rightly separate the content, but maybe I'm just overthinking it... will be interesting to see how they work it out. As long as it's still all accessible via NG then it sounds good, tit tidbits would still be here, just not viewable alongside everything else.

Older users? I read that as users who had been here for a specific amount of time, nothing to do with age... gotta re-read the comment later... yeah, all of this goes against the freedom of expression thing, but I've voiced my opinion so... well what more to do. Wouldn't want Tom to stop caring about the place and sell out, hopefully it'll maintain its core values to the biggest possible extent.

You don't fail until you stop trying. :) Yeah, he doesn't seem so bad. On that note, he doesn't seem so mad either, judging by recent Twitters... looks like this will all blow over soon.