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I know I'm late. I've been a user on this website for a very long time. I eventually registered under the user name TheAdventMaster, which had its account locked because I forgot my password. While I'd like my account back, that's not what I'm posting about.
Before you consider taking VC money, tell me how many online communities - real communities of people who love and care for one another - continue to exist today. Not only that, but communities which encourage and support the growth of its members.
I've had trouble finding any. I used to visit Gaia Online back when after it changed from being Go-Gaia. Eventually, they took venture capital and decided to expand their interests and cater to the influx of new users. A lot of websites do this. The staff start debating the site's direction, and their responsibility to cater to and spread their ideas to the broader internet.
But it never works. The broader internet isn't Newgrounds. Newgrounds is a site for determined, kind, caring, funny artists, musicians, video producers, game developers - content creators.
If you took venture capital, you'd probably end up with some CEO who sighs and has to think carefully any time he responds to your suggestions for the site, because profit means appealing in some way to a broader audience, while we know very well that the broader audience won't and isn't interested in creating content for this site. And if they do create content for the site, it will be to make money and turn Newgrounds into a business, not to contribute to the community portals and grow as a person.
My answer can be summarized as "Please don't do it." But I felt like I had to say more. Newgrounds is one of the last fortresses of internet freedom, creativity, prosperity and loving-kindness that remains standing. I'd hate to see it go. I'd hate it even more if it lived on as something it was never meant to be.
At 4/19/12 08:22 PM, SoapNukeZ wrote: SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!
Also, this. If you really want funding, take it from us. Let us know what you're up to. Let us know your plans. Let us know how we're going to grow because of it, and let us, the users who currently care about the site, fund it.
Don't know what would happen to the site once it was valued as a billion-dollar company?
You'd be managing a billion-dollar company. Does that sound like fun to you?
More employees aren't necessarily a pro. Money does sound okay, but does more money matter that much? We think that it does, and people who are devoted to their cause make really good use of the money they have, but when you have so much money on the line, people begin to sweat. Money is no longer given to people liberally, or with simplicity, it's given greedily and under strict terms and conditions.
I can't tell you what your company would become if you had money to throw around. But I don't think people need to get all of their projects funded. I honestly don't think that helps. I've been working on how to become an artist and have more creative freedom for years. And I'll tell you this - if someone funded me with a large sum of money right now, I'd eventually come out with something people liked. Maybe - maybe - it would return a profit and I'd be able to keep doing it until the day I died.
I'll tell you what, though - I need to grow as a person. I need to be a man. I need to be someone who supports themselves and takes responsibility as an individual. If I really want to be an artist, I need to work for it. Not because someone gave me money and told me how to spend it, but that I earned my own money, really thought about it, and decided to spend it how I want.
I'm going to stop. Admittedly, these posts haven't been full of any kind of well-thought-out, sage-like wisdom. They're full of passion. The passion I have for this site, the only major stronghold of creative freedom that remains today.
At 4/13/12 04:15 PM, TomFulp wrote:At 4/13/12 04:10 PM, SpiffyMasta wrote: So it's really up to you Tom. Do you want to get greedy and forget everything that got you where you are today, or do you want to stick to your roots and remain true to your identity.See at first I was disappointed that everyone told me to take money, but now when I read this I suddenly realize it was kinda fun when everyone was telling me to take money... Because taking money meant living the dream. I don't even think it's about greed so much as just wanting to build something big. I want to build something big. I just want to do it without someone else being able to destroy it. But I feel like I'm failing either way.
Have patience. You're a great guy who's been doing the right thing up to this point. The recent move to put hard-line focus on doing things for the site, for the artists, or whoever, and sticking with it, has been spot-on. People are impatient. That's one of our flaws. Your righteousness will be to manage what you can rather than trying to do everything at once.
Having a bunch of money won't solve the problem that large projects are hard to manage and that a billion and one things have to be done before the users can be satisfied with your work. Can you imagine running a bunch of different projects at once only to find that NONE of them glued together how you wanted when they were complete? Or that the users had a ton of complaints? Or that there were things you missed?
Think of this from a management standpoint. Funding projects is not the same as making them run smoothly.
At 4/13/12 04:29 PM, TomFulp wrote:At 4/13/12 04:27 PM, TehSlapHappy wrote: Didn't Tom from MySpace have this same decision to make?MySpace was created by Intermix (formerlly EUniverse) and Tom was an employee-turned figurehead. And yes I'll say it, EUniverse wanted to buy Newgrounds, was bitter when I turned it down and Tom as a site figurehead was inspired by me. True story.
Yeah, that's why myself and plenty of website founders think to themselves that they want to be more like Tom Fulp. I mean it. I don't have a lot of money. I don't have much of a formal education. I landed a full-time job as a software engineer only to find that sitting in front of a computer doing business applications wasn't what I wanted for the rest of my life. Not every day is the best day ever.
But you know what? It's inspiring to know each and every day that Tom Fulp hasn't sold out. That if I find myself inspired by some great concept - for a website, game, drawing, song, painting or whatever - Tom Fulp and Newgrounds will be there to support me. Not on some stuck-up business level, where the company's interests are put before the users' content, but on a down-to-earth, collaborative level. With love.
Have you considered making some of the popular games on here available to play on Facebook, MySpace and other social sites that play games? I mean if people can pay to play Farmville, Sims social and so on, I am sure you can be just as successful as Zynga *which sucks ass by the way* and actually be worth the money. People are paying out the nose for the turn based, special items and etc. Why not take advantage of that. I'm sure you guys are busy with current projects for this site alone but IâEUTMm positive you would make some good money off that.
I'm sure you have seen some of the games on Facebook and wonder people are really paying hundreds of dollars a month to have access to a useless picture in a game or gain experience to raise their level on a game that literally has NO end.
I would rather invest my time into something like that than sell my baby to some money grubbing prick who wouldn't put in 1/3 of the love you and everyone else puts into it.
Thread killer and proud of it :)
At 4/16/12 02:37 PM, tonypar16 wrote: Money.
:But be careful not to fuck up this site.
Signatures are for scrubs.
Stick to your guns Tom. You've gotten this far without selling out. And its not the website's fault, it's us users. Newgrounds is filled with infinite possibilities, whether or not they are being utilized is another thing entirely. Just hang in there and dont let anyone tell you how much your website is worth, because Newgrounds is fucking priceless.