At 8/12/01 05:38 PM, TomFulp wrote:
Basically, I'm looking for anything interesting about the NG community - how people interact, the different ways they choose to do so, how they achieve status, etc. Try to think of stuff that I might not think of, or weird observations that most people don't notice. How do you compare the NG community to other online communities? Do you feel it is the most user-involved site you visit, or are there better examples? Give me lots of feedback! If the paper is any good, I'll post it on the site. :)
First off, my congrats to your brother Wade, he has my best wishes with his marriage. Is it his first marriage? I'm just curious. And could we see what she looks like?
And I'm glad that you're still alive too... I was getting a bit worried when the webcam hadn't updated in a week/two, and you looked like an unshaved, despondent lost soul. On that subject... Update the damn cam, man!! ^_^
What about NG as a web community? I think there are five major things that make NG great as a web community. Be careful, I’m on a LONG RANT.
1) NG is ever-evolving, ever-growing. It's what keeps me coming back. I remember the days of '96 when I satiated myself on pure celebrity killing. Look how much Newgrounds has grown since then. Now we have a thriving Bulletin Board system, chat room, association with other websites, a user profile system, and the ever-growing Portal. People come back here every day, simply because there's always something new.
2) Newgrounds is totally free. If you wanted this much fun anywhere else, you'd have to pay a pretty sum to get it. All Newgrounds takes is a computer and an e-mail address. I don't know how you do it, but you probably provided the best free entertainment on the internet, (mostly) free of blatant advertising, sign-up fees, or complicated procedures.
3) There's so much user-communication. Every member gets a profile, complete with basic info, e-mail, IM, short message and complimentary picture. The BBS allows you to speak your mind freely on any topic and hear the thoughts of others. The chat room, though underrated, allows for instant communication. Even the portal has its review system so you can get (hopefully constructive) criticism from other users. NG deftly connects its users to each other.
4) NG allows you so many ways to distinguish yourself. Even with some 100,000 signed users, you can definitely make a name for yourself. Your portal entries, BBS posts, and profile can distinguish yourself from everyone else. Everyone on the BBS knows EvilGeishaWoman, because she's always posting. Everyone in the portal knows Will Stamper because he makes (lamentably deleted) great Flash movies. Even the assholes like Sideshow_Mel, Strawberry_Clock, Nikachu, RT_Flash, and all the rest, have made names for themselves by being assholes. ^_^ If you beg hard enough, or are drop-dead gorgeous, you could be on the Webcam pages. If you make a great movie, you could reach the top-50 list of all time, or the top-20 of the week, or the top 5 of the day. You at least reach the top-20 most-recently submitted. If you review the most movies of all, or submit the most, you get on the stats page. If you have the highest experience, you get on the top users page. Get the highest score in certain games, you get on the high score list. You could also be the BBS UOTD, the random selected member in the Users section, or a member of the NG-Fan Net. Strut your own style, and you _will_ be noticed.
5) The Portal. It's the heart of Newgrounds. It's what keeps me coming back. For most, it's a place to see great flash movies, and keep yourself entertained. But what makes the portal SO GREAT is that _anyone_ can make a flash movie, submit it, and instantly be seen by potentially thousands of viewers. There's no qualifications, no pre-requisites. Provided it meets basic codes of conduct, you can get your own little piece of Newgrounds fame. Granted, not every flash can be top-50, but it's nice to know that it _will_ be seen. And if you put some real effort into it, you can watch your creation rise to fame.
Newgrounds quirks? I like the odd spontaneity of the BBS, like the *still going* Cream of Wheat contest, or the HUGE “1000 bottles of shit” or “Still Gay” posts that went on FOREVER. I also find the variety of the BBS quirky… you have 30-long posts that say nothing but “screw you, n00b”, then you find the same people discussing the finer aspects of Time Travel and Gun Control. I also like People like sidshowMel and Strawberry Clock, who continually submit HORRIBLE movies, which makes them people you love to hate.
My only major problem with the NG community is that so many users are hyperactive, sex-craving 14-year-old boys who only play the dress-up games, make horribly bad movies, and post pure stupidity on the BBS about how they think Newgrounds sucks ballz, just to get attention. While NG _is_ a place for everyone, a little more maturity, mentally and physically, would be nice.
Basically, the only major thing Newgrounds lacks that some communities have is an e-mail system. But that’s hardly a problem, since there’s tons of other free sites like Hotmail.
Okay, I think I’m done. Holy crap, I went on forever, didn’t I? Sorry about that. Hope that helps you. GL with the paper. ^_^