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Xaotik
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:06:49 Reply

After picking through each page of this topic to see what the buzz said, I'm going to speak my piece.

I might not be overly well known on NG, but I try to stay active in the community, and I may not have been here the longest, but I've loved every minute of my time on NG. This site gave me the inspiration and the kick in the ass I needed to start learning everything I now know about programming, because it was always a personal dream of mine to work on developing games.

As someone who would like to consider himself "in the know" of today's indie generation, I have to say that Newgrounds is a place like no other. Originators reign supreme, and that's what Newgrounds is, an originator. There's no other place on the internet with such an immense summation of pure creativity and talent, such a plethora of personalities, and such a fiery attitude to push the limits of indie creations. This site has made such a name for itself that even those who may have only heard of it a few times remember pieces of NG history. Newgrounds doesn't need any investments to become "amazing" because this is a relative term, "amazing" compared to what? We're the best, always have been, and always will be.

Taking the money of big investors just to make a name for a place that is already incredible is so counterintuitive due to the whims of said investors. Newgrounds may not be immortal now, but its what we have and love, and a move to venture capitalism will most definitely kill that which we all love about Newgrounds, and in doing so, kill Newgrounds itself.

I rest my case.

Ryan
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:07:57 Reply

Don't fall into peer pressure Tom. Just follow your heart~

Follow it or I will physically hurt you.

MiniDroidKreator
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:09:41 Reply

I'm going to have to say don't take the money. Newgrounds is just fine the way it is, and there is ALWAYS a catch to accepting money from financial capitals like VC. Sure, there's plenty to gain, but there's also plenty to lose. I may not know that much on successfully running a business, but I do something as valuable as Newgrounds can't afford the negative effects of huge risks such as this. Ultimately, the choice is yours, Tom.


Thanks, Chdonga, for the awesome sig.

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Spiderwebbie
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:10:36 Reply

At 4/13/12 04:07 PM, TomFulp wrote:
At 4/13/12 04:05 PM, Bahamut wrote: Shut up and take the money! If there's a lot of great possibilities from this, don't hold back.
Money: 7

I just gotta be clear, once NG takes money it is on a near-guaranteed path to being sold to a larger company at which point it could be scuttled or transformed into something no one wants. Without money NG could exist forever, it's just that no one may care that it exists.

Don't sellout if it means losing more then 70 % of Newgrounds to a different company. If you dont see yourself wanting to keep newgrounds, be very careful who it gets passed off to. A new owner, could seriously tear down this place in the second it took to take the site offline.

They could pick and choose what gets featured, maybe no voting system anymore. It could easily become a money only type operation.

Newgrounds, is everything by everyone, and has provived artist and animaters, programers , etc. a place to be seen, reviewed, and so much more.

Money changes everything. And will to this site, I highly doubt the freedom of content that is allowed to be expressed now as it always has been would continue as a now money operation.

This site, as it is, WOULD NOT! Fit into the open public. And dont say it'S NOT TRUE.

A new company.. could censor it, long time users could lose there content... and worst a double failure. Say you take money, the worst of the worst happens, no more newgrounds, no more money based site, and someone rights the loss of of taxes.

With new laws trying to be inforced on "internet" makes me wonder if this isit the reason you kinda making this type of move? A bigger money backing with the laws come down? A way out? Or a extra hand in the online fight thats gonna go down.

I dunno, I dont think this is something to rush into thats for sure.... and I'm sure there's more details that have not been released just at the hints of your posts.

I'm gonna say .. NO. untill more is known about this money venture.


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SamIam
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:12:46 Reply

Take the money, I trust you guys enough to know you won't screw the community over. :D

AztecGodQuetzalcoatl
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:14:01 Reply

Wow, this is such a surreal discussion, in any case, here's my two cents.
It's hard to look to the future while maintaining the present and remembering the past.
My account may be only a year or so old, but I've seen Newgrounds since it was a lot younger and I just have to say, I've always admired it's underdog status. It's a website created from the heart and soul of an enterprising young man, and as such, has always maintained a strong sense of purity in a world where everyone yearns for the fastest way to make a buck. Sure, VC may grow the website into a giant, but it would lose it's charm and it's soul. The power money has over people can be controlled, but eventually, that control will wither while the influence of money remains strong. I think it best for NewGrounds to avoid VC and grow on it's own power. The site has lasted this long, and I theorize that at the end of road NewGrounds will be a giant by it's own right while other sites collapse from the path of VC.

With all that said, I officially cast my "vote" for option 1: keep NewGrounds as it is.
In the end, the decision is still yours to make, Tom, and if you decide to take VC, know that you will still have a loyal fan in me.

FuNaNdMoRe
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:14:57 Reply

I'm thinking... Maybe we should all just start to spread the NG logo everywhere and raise awareness of the website. Stickers on street poles, Facebook statuses, twitter messages, etc. That would raise NG's popularity. The End.

:Don't do it. It's a bad idea.

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:16:30 Reply

Although it is money that makes the world go round, i am going to vote against it.
I'd rather see NG keep being awesome with you (Tom) being in control. Taking the money would, i guess, mean that you give up a part of that control and do things you maybe don't agree with. I don't want that. Newgrounds is yours Tom, how could you ever sell your baby?


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SweetLew
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:17:06 Reply

The way I see it, there are two main concerns I have for both options:

1) For flying solo: Without the extra money the pace Newgrounds grows/declines is as a snail's pace.
Summary: Don't take the money, but retain everything that Newgrounds is without much risk.

2) For the VC: If you decide to take the money, it COULD make the sight even more awesome, but if it does backfire, everything, including the unique vision and/or worse the site itself, could be lost thanks to corporate shenanigans.
Summary: Take the money and keep the Newgrounds face, but become an android on the inside.

Conclusion: Either way there will always be risks. If the site is consistent on its success, or if it fails, at least you maintain what you stand for as a site.

Vote: Do not take the money!

Eltro2kneo
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:18:38 Reply

At 4/13/12 07:12 PM, SamIam wrote: Take the money, I trust you guys enough to know you won't screw the community over. :D

It will screw the community over. It stops caring about its community, it will only care about the money it's making.


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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:23:15 Reply

t the end of the day I think it comes down to vision.

What is the vision for Newgrounds in one year, two years, five years? What's the long-term goal? Flash games/movies site obv. won't do. Audio and art? I don't think those are enough either, at least not without major investments.

We've come to a time where larger websites are sucking up areas that people want. Facebook for "internet home/socializing", youtube for casual amusement, there are quite a few larger games-sites out there as well... not to mention the larger games-companies have their own "communities" going on like Steam, Origin etc.

What is Newgrounds place on the internet, and what place does it have in peoples hearts?

I personally think "soul" is a keyword here, but how to use it, I don't know. It's a lot about "staying true" and being conservative the way a "true" metal-head is conservative. Metal has a very specifically shaped "soul", Newgrounds soul is a little all over the place, but still mainly underground.

At the end of the day I think Newgrounds need to find new grounds, or at least heavily iterate on what's present on the site now. This will change it's soul too, but if done with VC I fear the soul might leave NG forever, even if it becomes even more successful in the future.

Newgrounds is a web site. Does it have to be that? Can Newgrounds be a Real Life concept of something? I think the NG-meetups have been something in the right direction, but I tihink that we would've had seen more patting back on NG's back if they would have actually had had some kind of creating purpose to them, apart from socializing and beer and stuff.

I'm just rambling really, but as I'm typing this I just realized that the below add was staring me in the face the whole time...

"Play on KONGREGATE"

eh... there's just something about it that makes it feel like Newgrounds, being underground, may not have been good enough at promoting itself on the web. But whoring out is something NG hasn't done. Yet. :)

I still remain uncertain... when it comes down to it, if VC can help NG become something that's envisioned, then maybe that's a good idea. Maybe a few years of being able to help sponsor people out will be worth it, and really giving the opposition a rough time, instead of slowly fading out...

Meeeh, I dunno... :)

MONEY


Join the Newgrounds Battlefield 3 Platoon (for PC)! DON'T ASK WHAT YOUR GAME CAN DO FOR YOU, ASK WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR, UH, NEWGROUNDS! ON BATTLEFIELD 3. eh...

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:25:24 Reply

Tom, listen, I'm not gonna lie: going VC would be good for NG, but that stuff is usually for 2 kinds of people:
1. desperate morons who want to do anything, and I mean ANYTHING to get their names out there, and
2.people who were great at first, but because their web traffic decreased A LITTLE, they think that their popularity is fading.
I say that if NG got this far with no help, we can go all the way with not a lot more. If anyone disagrees with me, PLEASE correct me!

Ryallen
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:26:40 Reply

At 4/13/12 03:56 PM, TomFulp wrote: An increasing number of people tell me that Newgrounds should consider venture capital.

Venture capital means that investors give you a lot of money, and in return you do something that makes them rich. Because most websites don't actually figure out how to do that, the solution is generally to sell to a much larger company with disposable income and a fear of losing their own relevancy. Like how Facebook just spent $1 billion on Instagram because people weren't using Facebook for photo sharing as much as they used to.

Venture capital is fun because it lets you be really self righteous and everyone wants to hang out in your aura of money. Tumblr is cool because they let you post stuff and they don't have ads. Did you know they have raised over $125 million in venture capital? Is your page full of pictures gonna make their investors back that $125 million + profit?

Anyway there are two paths for NG, let me know which we should try because both have their ups and downs.

1) Keep being NG no matter what the cost. Yeah you are a big disappointment but we believe in you.

2) Take VC money. Spend the next five years being AMAZING, sponsor every game developer and every artist and rule the entire internet. IT MIGHT WORK, NG might become so successful the investors will get rich and back off, and it will be such a success it can just keep being a success forever.

Thoughts

Well, I would have an opinion, but only if I knew what Newgrounds would have to do. I would like Newgrounds to be more awesome, because there's always room for improvement, but I don't want to have to have to do something drastic, like lose the rights to make certain flashes. For me, personally, it would all depend on the Terms and Conditions, and who Newgrounds would be accepting money from.

Rew-dude
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:31:39 Reply

Depends on what your goals for your website are ... Newgrounds is basically the YouTube of flash ... even though NG was around long before youtube ... It's at an all-time high, and still has some potential.. absolutely up to you, Tom ... don't let the community decide the fate of your masterpiece.

Gustavos
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:39:17 Reply

VC!

And we can hold Luis personally responsible if this goes awry, right?


I usually frequent the VG and collaboration Forums. If you find me anywhere else, I'm lost and can't find my way back.

DJMannekin
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:41:35 Reply

Honestly I would not take the money. Nobody knows how to run this website but you and your crew, the moment its turned over so many changes will be made. Such changes are usually unfavorable by the users. You turning it over alone I think will cause a plummet in users.

If you do take the money, why not just make another newgrounds? create another with a pseudo name, you built this with hardly any money back then, think of what you could create with the money you get!

Fim
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:41:42 Reply

A very interesting idea, I think so long as the essence of newgrounds stays the same but you manage to take the website somewhere new and exciting than taking the money is fine. However, if we're just gona see that in conjunction with irritating adverts or whatnot like what happened when google bought youtube then I'd rather it stay independent.

I'm no expert on this sort of thing, but I'm guessing it's a more complex decision that just 1 thing or another, I'm presuming it will depend on what sort of investor you find and what they will want for their investment. Selling out isn't always strictly a bad thing so long as it's done right and the outcome is positive. Obviously newgrounds being a success forever is what we're all looking for ;)


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Eltro2kneo
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:42:16 Reply

At 4/13/12 07:25 PM, Gameboy12 wrote: Tom, listen, I'm not gonna lie: going VC would be good for NG, but that stuff is usually for 2 kinds of people:
1. desperate morons who want to do anything, and I mean ANYTHING to get their names out there, and
2.people who were great at first, but because their web traffic decreased A LITTLE, they think that their popularity is fading.
I say that if NG got this far with no help, we can go all the way with not a lot more. If anyone disagrees with me, PLEASE correct me!

Not much to correct, you made a nice point.
... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...


Words do not kill people, people kill words.
You have no enemies, you are your enemy.
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:43:29 Reply

This is a site changing decision. Keep going solo. The risk is to big...I'm not ready to take it yet.


How does one sig?

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:49:28 Reply

At 4/13/12 07:23 PM, Rucklo wrote: What is Newgrounds place on the internet,

I was thinking about that too.. what's going to be the reason for people to keep coming to the website, and this website specifically. Historically it has been the flash portal, but games and videos have evolved a lot since then: Youtube gets all the video views and games can be placed anywhere as long as they're being promoted on popular blogs and Facebook.

What I think is the real charm of Newgrounds is the way artists in completely different arts can collaborate and form friendships with a firm root here on this site. To understand what I mean, just look at the credits section of this from the current front page for example. The contributors are all known for what they do, and I can't imagine a project like it spawning from any other website. You even express this point yourselves in the little statement at the bottom (newgrounds.com - Your #1 online entertainment & artist community! All your base are belong to us.). So if you (NG staff) agree with what I'm saying, I think you - rather than making such a radical change as getting into VC - might want to market this aspect of Newgrounds more proudly and explicitly; then you will have that one big strength that sets Newgrounds apart from the rest of the internet and keeps it relevant far into the future.

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:49:43 Reply

Unless you could guarantee that you would have the last word on important decisions, I wouldn't do it.

Newgrounds is respected for being a rebel, a place where talented and new artists create content for loyal and intelligent users.

I don't want Newgrounds to become youtube, but you guys do really good work and you deserve money. Continue to support your community like you do, lots of sites could learn from you.

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:51:28 Reply

If I were in your shoes Tom, I would most definitely go the VC route. Why? Because, like you said, that would be living the dream. If I put all the blood, sweat, and tears into something for this long and have made it as great a place as this without help. I would want to take that next step.

In summary, my vote is for VC.

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:54:27 Reply

There will always be another site to go on Tom. But, there wont necessarily be another chance for your dream. I say go for the money. Who knows what you can accomplish with that.


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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:55:10 Reply

I believe now's not the best time for venture capital; the quality of games (which seems, to me, the biggest approach there is for such) has been slowly going down for some time. If you disagree, okay, if you agree, okay, but just consider that.

So yeah, not money right now.

Sexual-Lobster
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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:55:36 Reply

At 4/13/12 04:12 PM, TomFulp wrote:
With money I think I could turn NG into a billion dollar company. I just don't have good evidence for what would happen to it after that.

I don't quite know what NGS would turn into with VC but if it was going to lose the crazy, crude edge I would be sad to see it go.

Hell, I vote VC, cause I like change. If you're vision of what you can do with VC is totally awesome then do that. But..uh...i don't know how these things work, don't accept so much that you can't call the shots anymore.

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 19:56:39 Reply

Tom, you phrase it as taking money when in fact you would be acquiring a tool to possibly succeed or fail. It really absolutely depends upon what YOU would do with the money. I'm not in your head. None of us are. Hence none of us know what random amazing ideas are floating around in there.

My question is this: are you sitting on some incredible innovation that would make Newgrounds move ever closer to what your perfect version of Newgrounds is? Would moving in the direction of venture capital help fulfill YOUR dreams for Newgrounds? If it would, why not "take the money"?

A few things you need to be aware of, as I'm sure you already are:

1. You can't please everyone. Whether you accept venture capital or not, some will be pleased and displeased either way. And considering the fanbase you and Newgrounds has amassed, that's a lot of neighs and yays in reaction to your choices.

2. Is having complete control absolutely necessary? I understand this is your creation and you would want it to be the way you want it to be. But it's already far more than you at this point. Referring back to point number one, is having control allowing you to make real your dreams for Newgrounds? Or is having control in this sense a stumbling block for what could be?

3. You're fricken Tom Fulp. You already have a loyal following, a fan base, and slew of supporters. Many of us know you mean well for the community no matter what you decide. The sheer fact that you bring this to our attention shows you respect and care about our opinions. But it's a give and take. You respect our opinions, we respect your decision.

If you truly believe the pros outweigh the cons, who can fault you for having good intentions? If you truly believe the cons outweigh the pros, who can fault you for having good intentions?

Anyone can for any reason. I personally want to see Newgrounds become the best it can be. So I presume I am at least in that sense, on the same page as you.

Proceed as you wish, and thanks for allowing us our input.

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 20:01:47 Reply

If VC is an option, I see two paths towards a decision.

1) Tom Fulp makes a revolutionary decision regarding Newgrounds that follows his vision of the site and the community, not paying much mind to concerns of the individual users and instead forming the future of Newgrounds himself.

2) Tom Fulp reaches out to the community he worked so hard to build up and rigorously makes the fairest decision possible. He polls everyone, takes baby steps, and lets the majority rule.

Honestly I think he's already done option 2, but it's not too late for a controversial taking-matters-into-his-own-hands decision. I kinda hope he does make the decision himself. I don't think that we, as users of his creation, should take his creation and bring it down a path against his gut feeling.

Tom, go with your gut. Don't let anything distract you from what you want Newgrounds to be. You've done an amazing job of running the community so far - I for one trust your judgement more than anyone's.

Everyone else, think about what this means before you say "Oh, why the hell not! Take money from people who want to take what you made!" Yes - It could be the best thing to ever happen to Newgrounds. It could also be the worst.

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 20:02:55 Reply

These options sound biased. But I'll love Newgrounds no matter what it does or doesn't do!


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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 20:04:22 Reply

With money I think I could turn NG into a billion dollar company. I just don't have good evidence for what would happen to it after that.

Tough call. I don't feel informed enough to contribute to the discusion, but I like NG being its sort of secret club.

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Response to MONEY 2012-04-13 20:06:29 Reply

And Tom if you ever get tired of reading through this explosion of opinions about the very essence of your brainchild, and want to talk about cool bikes or cake or something, you should NOT hesitate to make another news post about that.