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Audio Portal Needs To Shine Again! Let's Brainstorm!

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You might remember me as RealFaction. Well, I used to be. Over the 14 years I've had my musician account when I started my music career on newgrounds, I've been passionate about seeing the Audio Portal musicians shine with views/listens, which is why I created contests like the Art-Inspired Music Contest (as well as giving the people something fun and a workshop to help them improve their craft), and a remix contest in the soon future. I constantly try to think of ideas to pitch to Newgrounds that might improve it, especially with the Audio community.


Unfortunately, the Audio Portal hasn't been hitting major traffic like it used to, for many, many years, and I feel it could be featured more. Newgrounds is starting to ramp up more in traffic, but the Audio Portal isn't standing out like it used to, but fading in the distance. So, let's brainstorm ideas to bring the Audio Portal back to it's former glory, when the weekly top 5 audio (old format) had 50,000 listens and more.


Frontpaging the audio has definitely helped during these darker times in the past decade, as does the integrated music player on the webpage when you click the discs, but I feel one improvement would be is if at half volume, or 70%, we have the frontpaged music autoplay at random pick per page load, so people will hear what's playing when they visit the site, and maybe be more compelled to scroll down to the frontpaged audio section.


So, what do you guys think? What do you think could improve highlight the importance and recognition of the Audio Portal, to make visitors more compelled to hear your awesome music like the old days?


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I really hold no grudges aganist EDM of any kind, but i think that the genre is beginning to overwhelm other styles of music that are also very important. Example Rock, Jazz, and other forms of contemporary music.


And trust me when i say this, i know musicians who are exceptionally talented in these genres but they almost never get FP-s or any serious credit in general.


I actually had an idea to bring some folks who have time, and make an NG Orchestra, with potentially 100 members involved, just like in a real opera. This could become a yearly thing if we take it seriously. Everybody would have a respective instrument, and there would be also individual composers, lyric writers, and sound engineers, assigning a role, and only one role to each person. I think it would be cool.


Ο ήχος του δημιουργού μας, το πεπρωμένο μας του πνεύματος, η αγκαλιά του σύμπαντος

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I want to mention that @Anisloth has made an offer to many musicians in the AP, offering to animate shorts to their work -- all we need to do is DM him, hit him up, actually properly take the time to get to know him, network with him, you know. His support of the AP is nothing short of admirable.


That said, I wish others stepped up to the plate in the same way that he is doing. One can say that it's a matter of prerogative, but it's pretty fucking pathetic when


  1. game jams are hardly ever held, and Ludum Dare is pretty much the only thing halfway-held on Newgrounds,
  2. when people make games, the first place they go to is a royalty free audio source outside of NG e.g. Kevin MacLeod, instead of the over a million songs on the AP,
  3. Tom has mentioned this and brought it to people's attention in his previous NG News posts, but this seems to be falling on deaf ears, and
  4. the work of the AP is massively undervalued in people's estimation and remarks compared to, say, animation, art, or game development.


So, I think I want to suggest:


  1. the return of in-house NG Game Jams. Many of them are now being done externally, through itch.io, and I know that these are very dependent on resources and prize pools and may be the single biggest obstacle to having them. But the last one was held in 2012! Nine years ago. Back then you were incentivised for joining up with artists and musicians and voice actors and sound designers on Newgrounds proper. Having Ruffle support Flash is an added reason to bring them back.
  2. "animation to music" contests. I know that the Art-Inspired Music and Music-Inspired Art contests are your brainchild and they are going strong indeed. But imagine what it would be like if we actually held contests where people had to actively look for the songs they wanted to use, that influenced them the most, and then do shorts (because a fully-fledged animation is too labour-intensive, and for a contest, we don't want them to basically be doing what would otherwise be standard for them to earn things).


I also want to bring up an idea we both talked about, that is that the NG Flash audio player can potentially return if we all have Ruffle installed and are planning to use it for the games on this site, etc. Failing which, even an HTML autoplay would work. Because the overwhelming complaint I have received from a number of people is that the Audio page of NG is unintuitive to them, and they feel overwhelmed when trying to search something -- while the page design is really for a redesign and something we can't change in the near future, having a player in the FP might be a decent stopgap.


At 5/19/21 08:27 AM, Troisnyx wrote: S

At 5/19/21 08:27 AM, Troisnyx wrote: "animation to music" contests. I know that the Art-Inspired Music and Music-Inspired Art contests are your brainchild and they are going strong indeed. But imagine what it would be like if we actually held contests where people had to actively look for the songs they wanted to use, that influenced them the most, and then do shorts (because a fully-fledged animation is too labour-intensive, and for a contest, we don't want them to basically be doing what would otherwise be standard for them to earn things).


To be fair, I didn't come up with the Music-Inspired Art contest, but it is a derivation of my AIM Contest idea, yes. But, I really like this idea about contests that emphasize on animating to original music, even though the NG rules emphasize on doing this, still a lot of people who don't really do this. Deaf ears, as you say.

At 5/19/21 08:27 AM, BBank wrote: I really hold no grudges aganist EDM of any kind, but i think that the genre is beginning to overwhelm other styles of music that are also very important. Example Rock, Jazz, and other forms of contemporary music.

And trust me when i say this, i know musicians who are exceptionally talented in these genres but they almost never get FP-s or any serious credit in general.


I've actually gotten my rock and metal music frontpaged plenty of times, but if it's an issue with others, then yikes. But yeah I admittedly haven't seen any Jazz frontpaged. We need more people to help out with frontpaging music, too.


New Piercing Lazer singles "Trickster's Ambition" and "Homeless" now on BandCamp, Itunes, and other online stores!

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At 5/19/21 08:27 AM, Troisnyx wrote: I want to mention that @Anisloth has made an offer to many musicians in the AP, offering to animate shorts to their work -- all we need to do is DM him, hit him up, actually properly take the time to get to know him, network with him, you know. His support of the AP is nothing short of admirable.

That said, I wish others stepped up to the plate in the same way that he is doing. One can say that it's a matter of prerogative, but it's pretty fucking pathetic when

So, I think I want to suggest:

I also want to bring up an idea we both talked about, that is that the NG Flash audio player can potentially return if we all have Ruffle installed and are planning to use it for the games on this site, etc. Failing which, even an HTML autoplay would work. Because the overwhelming complaint I have received from a number of people is that the Audio page of NG is unintuitive to them, and they feel overwhelmed when trying to search something -- while the page design is really for a redesign and something we can't change in the near future, having a player in the FP might be a decent stopgap.


I appreciate the shoutout, my ongoing project starts around June 20th. The idea I have is to make parallax animations or looped animations based on music from the AP. The main focus is listening to the music but I think the added visuals will be fun and it puts you all not just in the AP but the MP too so yeah that's my idea. If you're interested please don't hesitate to just send your stuff my way.


Im also considering a monthly NG music review show but that's a really rough loose idea rn. Either way thanks for the shoutout and Im looking forward to getting this going!


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Browsers don't allow auto-play audio nowadays and it's generally frowned upon by users, so auto-playing music on places like the front page isn't likely to happen.


It's helpful when people recommend songs in the Front Page Suggestion Thread, as long as you focus on your very favorite works and not spam it with a ton of stuff.


As far as Game Jams, we haven't hosted a general NG game jam in a while but we did host the HaxeFilxel game jam this past year and events like Pixel Day, the Flash Forward Jam and Pico Day were all opportunities for musicians to team up with game devs, as a number of them did. We're due for a general game jam though.


I would love to see all of the animators and game devs on NG partner with musicians on NG, we gotta just keep hitting them over the head with it. If you're a musician and have a particular game dev or animator you like, it wouldn't hurt to message them directly and tell them you'd love to offer your music for one of their upcoming projects. Collaboration always comes down to that first person who reaches out to make a connection, so it can go both ways.


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At 5/19/21 08:43 AM, TomFulp wrote: Browsers don't allow auto-play audio nowadays and it's generally frowned upon by users, so auto-playing music on places like the front page isn't likely to happen.

It's helpful when people recommend songs in the Front Page Suggestion Thread, as long as you focus on your very favorite works and not spam it with a ton of stuff.

As far as Game Jams, we haven't hosted a general NG game jam in a while but we did host the HaxeFilxel game jam this past year and events like Pixel Day, the Flash Forward Jam and Pico Day were all opportunities for musicians to team up with game devs, as a number of them did. We're due for a general game jam though.

I would love to see all of the animators and game devs on NG partner with musicians on NG, we gotta just keep hitting them over the head with it. If you're a musician and have a particular game dev or animator you like, it wouldn't hurt to message them directly and tell them you'd love to offer your music for one of their upcoming projects. Collaboration always comes down to that first person who reaches out to make a connection, so it can go both ways.


This is all also true. I'm curious to see what other ideas people come up with to improve the audio portal traffic. Pixel Day is definitely a plus, as all contests and holidays for newgrounds are. It would be cool if you managed to pull more well-known faces to Newgrounds for contests and promotional stuff, to help promote NG more and like for the music contests to promote the audio section.


I wonder if there's a new cool feature that could be added to the Audio Portal too, or in the music player. It would be cool/hilarious if you could take your phone's touchscreen on the music player and scrub it back and forth live to sound like a 90's scratch DJ. I'm sure that would be a nightmare to do but i'm half-joking haha. It sucks that browsers have disabled auto-play now. I miss hearing the Endless Handbag loop when I visit the home page. :(


New Piercing Lazer singles "Trickster's Ambition" and "Homeless" now on BandCamp, Itunes, and other online stores!

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All i have is getting some recognition for other genres or something of that sort, such as jazz


Heya.

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To be honest the current audio portal design is so garbage and it hurts my eyes to navigate around.


it’s just a never ending list. No one wants to go through that.


ive been uploading weekly again and I only get 1500 listens if front paged. That’s it.


if you don’t have a fan base like water flame to get thousands of listens every time

you upload, the portal will never be where it was.


lel

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At 5/19/21 09:43 AM, Sequenced wrote: To be honest the current audio portal design is so garbage and it hurts my eyes to navigate around.

it’s just a never ending list. No one wants to go through that.

ive been uploading weekly again and I only get 1500 listens if front paged. That’s it.

if you don’t have a fan base like water flame to get thousands of listens every time
you upload, the portal will never be where it was.


please for the love of god @TomFulp, if you read this, I ask to change it back.

there is 0 incentive to look for new material.


lel

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At 5/19/21 09:43 AM, Sequenced wrote: To be honest the current audio people design is so garbage and it hurts my eyes to navigate around.

it’s just a never ending list. No one wants to go through that.

ive been uploading weekly again and I only get 1500 listens if front paged. That’s it.

if you don’t have a fan base like water flame to get thousands of listens every time
you upload, the portal will never be where it was.


I do wonder about improving the layout. If you were to change something about it, what would it be? What do you think could improve the layout?


EDIT: I just saw your other post, oops. What about the old layout in the audio portal did you like?


New Piercing Lazer singles "Trickster's Ambition" and "Homeless" now on BandCamp, Itunes, and other online stores!

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At 5/19/21 09:45 AM, ThatJohnnyGuy wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:43 AM, Sequenced wrote: To be honest the current audio people design is so garbage and it hurts my eyes to navigate around.

it’s just a never ending list. No one wants to go through that.

ive been uploading weekly again and I only get 1500 listens if front paged. That’s it.

if you don’t have a fan base like water flame to get thousands of listens every time
you upload, the portal will never be where it was.
I do wonder about improving the layout. If you were to change something about it, what would it be? What do you think could improve the layout?

EDIT: I just saw your other post, oops. What about the old layout in the audio portal did you like?


the pre 2013 layout INCENTIVIZED COMPETITION without contests.


it was always exciting to wait till midnight for the page to refresh with the top 5 of the week


lel

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At 5/19/21 09:49 AM, Sequenced wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:45 AM, ThatJohnnyGuy wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:43 AM, Sequenced wrote: To be honest the current audio people design is so garbage and it hurts my eyes to navigate around.

it’s just a never ending list. No one wants to go through that.

ive been uploading weekly again and I only get 1500 listens if front paged. That’s it.

if you don’t have a fan base like water flame to get thousands of listens every time
you upload, the portal will never be where it was.
I do wonder about improving the layout. If you were to change something about it, what would it be? What do you think could improve the layout?

EDIT: I just saw your other post, oops. What about the old layout in the audio portal did you like?
the pre 2013 layout INCENTIVIZED COMPETITION without contests.

it was always exciting to wait till midnight for the page to refresh with the top 5 of the week


you can also have a weekly “artist pick” feature, like how paragonx9’s music was always playing.


lel

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At 5/19/21 09:49 AM, Sequenced wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:45 AM, ThatJohnnyGuy wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:43 AM, Sequenced wrote: To be honest the current audio people design is so garbage and it hurts my eyes to navigate around.

it’s just a never ending list. No one wants to go through that.

ive been uploading weekly again and I only get 1500 listens if front paged. That’s it.

if you don’t have a fan base like water flame to get thousands of listens every time
you upload, the portal will never be where it was.
I do wonder about improving the layout. If you were to change something about it, what would it be? What do you think could improve the layout?

EDIT: I just saw your other post, oops. What about the old layout in the audio portal did you like?
the pre 2013 layout INCENTIVIZED COMPETITION without contests.

it was always exciting to wait till midnight for the page to refresh with the top 5 of the week


Referring back to my original post yeah i did bring that up as a selling point because i miss it too. One thing that also bothers me is sometimes frontpaged music isn't even there for an entire day. Songs used to be featured for a whole week on the weekly top 5, but on the front page it changes every day, and I think that's also too fast of a change. I think songs should stay up longer, a whole week again. @TomFulp


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At 5/19/21 09:51 AM, Sequenced wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:49 AM, Sequenced wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:45 AM, ThatJohnnyGuy wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:43 AM, Sequenced wrote:
EDIT: I just saw your other post, oops. What about the old layout in the audio portal did you like?
the pre 2013 layout INCENTIVIZED COMPETITION without contests.

it was always exciting to wait till midnight for the page to refresh with the top 5 of the week
you can also have a weekly “artist pick” feature, like how paragonx9’s music was always playing.


100% this. I love this idea. @TomFulp


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At 5/19/21 09:43 AM, Sequenced wrote: if you don’t have a fan base like water flame to get thousands of listens every time
you upload, the portal will never be where it was.


Before the change, songs would generally be featured on the front page for an entire week and still not hit 1k listens.


Working on Nightmare Cops!

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At 5/19/21 09:54 AM, TomFulp wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:43 AM, Sequenced wrote: if you don’t have a fan base like water flame to get thousands of listens every time
you upload, the portal will never be where it was.
Before the change, songs would generally be featured on the front page for an entire week and still not hit 1k listens.


That's true. I feel like we should go back to keeping the songs up for a week, because now they're changing every day. I feel like that could help.


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At 5/19/21 09:49 AM, Sequenced wrote: it was always exciting to wait till midnight for the page to refresh with the top 5 of the week


If we did this currently, it would most likely only be popular Geometry Dash songs and FNF remixes that get promoted.


Working on Nightmare Cops!

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At 5/19/21 09:57 AM, TomFulp wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:49 AM, Sequenced wrote: it was always exciting to wait till midnight for the page to refresh with the top 5 of the week
If we did this currently, it would most likely only be popular Geometry Dash songs and FNF remixes that get promoted.


Ouch. That's true. I forgot about the specifics of how the system worked back then but now I remember. I think it was about the top rated songs with the most votes or something?


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At 5/19/21 09:57 AM, TomFulp wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:49 AM, Sequenced wrote: it was always exciting to wait till midnight for the page to refresh with the top 5 of the week
If we did this currently, it would most likely only be popular Geometry Dash songs and FNF remixes that get promoted.


yes. I mean... you could make a separate top 5 for those. And (“shadowban”) them

to keep the other top 5s original music.


the current form we have is just one nauseating list. At least break it up?


lel

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At 5/19/21 09:55 AM, ThatJohnnyGuy wrote: That's true. I feel like we should go back to keeping the songs up for a week, because now they're changing every day. I feel like that could help.


Keeping six songs up for a week means ignoring 40-50 other songs that would have been featured, though. Since the update, every song that gets featured has at least 2k listens by the end of the week. So that's 40-50 songs getting 2k listens where before the update, six songs sometimes didn't even get 1k listens.


Working on Nightmare Cops!

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At 5/19/21 10:01 AM, Sequenced wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:57 AM, TomFulp wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:49 AM, Sequenced wrote: it was always exciting to wait till midnight for the page to refresh with the top 5 of the week
If we did this currently, it would most likely only be popular Geometry Dash songs and FNF remixes that get promoted.
yes. I mean... you could make a separate top 5 for those. And (“shadowban”) them
to keep the other top 5s original music.

the current form we have is just one nauseating list. At least break it up?


I don't think shadowbanning would be fair to anyone, as annoying and unfair as it would also be to have consistant geometry dash songs and FNF remixes fill the plate every time. But to put them in their own section would probably be a good idea. I don't see it happening though, as organized as it would be. My biggest gripe is the multiple song changes every day on the front page instead of leaving them up for a week like the good ol days.


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At 5/19/21 10:02 AM, TomFulp wrote:
At 5/19/21 09:55 AM, ThatJohnnyGuy wrote: That's true. I feel like we should go back to keeping the songs up for a week, because now they're changing every day. I feel like that could help.
Keeping six songs up for a week means ignoring 40-50 other songs that would have been featured, though. Since the update, every song that gets featured has at least 2k listens by the end of the week. So that's 40-50 songs getting 2k listens where before the update, six songs sometimes didn't even get 1k listens.


Hmm, true. What about every 2 or 3 days? That could be better. Could still have at least slightly longer front page exposure.


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@TomFulp what about Sequenced's idea of a Musician of the Day, or of the week? I feel that could aid some musicians.



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At 5/19/21 10:08 AM, ThatJohnnyGuy wrote: @TomFulp what about Sequenced's idea of a Musician of the Day, or of the week? I feel that could aid some musicians.


It would be fun to have a featured artist in each hub, similar to UOTD in the Community section but with a featured song / art / movie / game as well... Will be keeping that in mind.


Working on Nightmare Cops!

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At 5/19/21 10:11 AM, TomFulp wrote:
At 5/19/21 10:08 AM, ThatJohnnyGuy wrote: @TomFulp what about Sequenced's idea of a Musician of the Day, or of the week? I feel that could aid some musicians.
It would be fun to have a featured artist in each hub, similar to UOTD in the Community section but with a featured song / art / movie / game as well... Will be keeping that in mind


you can have all of them on front page but then on their own portals keep that specific artist for artist pick too.


daily change might be too fast to keep up honestly.


perhaps a 3 day cycle?


lel

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I agree on two points. Having a music inspired art contest would promote some more cross platform traffic as you guys have pointed out. What's going to be the most beneficial is having in house game jams which has also already been mentioned. Making sure that all creators are from all corners of NG. I know the NG traffic is getting ramped up and hyped up from games so if we can integrate more corners onto that part of NG it would benefit everyone. Friday Night Funkin shows that it's a potential to be a very successful launching program for audio artists especially. Now I'm not saying we copy FNF format and slap it with different songs, I believe that just copying a trend while cheap to profit on, you're not going to progress it until we can find other ways to innovate it. Games seem to be the successful program though so I think we should exploit opportunities that pop up there


I would personally love to see something that focuses more on bringing in outside traffic to NG audio artists, let's say like a successful Spotify station, or YouTube channel. We've talked about it on an NGP episode briefly, but I wouldn't have the motivation and time to get something like that off the ground. I know there's been attempts to have an NG audio YouTube channel and SoundCloud in the past, but I don't recall long lasting success from those. It would be great from an artist stand point if there's a gateway or avenue to get a lot of traction and attention from big playlists or radios or something, but that may require some out-of-the-box thinking and luck.


I know I personally see the EDM side of things because that's what I have a lot of interest in, but for audio contests we do see quite a good handful of orchestral stuff submitted. Maybe things are already swaying back away from EDM to something else but only time will tell.


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At 5/19/21 10:27 AM, Spadezer wrote: I agree on two points. Having a music inspired art contest would promote some more cross platform traffic as you guys have pointed out. What's going to be the most beneficial is having in house game jams which has also already been mentioned. Making sure that all creators are from all corners of NG. I know the NG traffic is getting ramped up and hyped up from games so if we can integrate more corners onto that part of NG it would benefit everyone. Friday Night Funkin shows that it's a potential to be a very successful launching program for audio artists especially. Now I'm not saying we copy FNF format and slap it with different songs, I believe that just copying a trend while cheap to profit on, you're not going to progress it until we can find other ways to innovate it. Games seem to be the successful program though so I think we should exploit opportunities that pop up there


I agree with this, but the music inspired art contest has already been a thing 3 or 4 times lol. It's slowly growing with each contest. Also, Saturday Night Scattin'.


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I'm responding to this with barely any "awoken" bones in my body, meaning I did not have a very restful sleep, but I do have to kind of agree that the "list-style" Audio Portal is kind of... bleeeeh. I do miss the old style, where there was a bunch of music that was featured, and a search option alongside it for those who wanted to dig deeper. I know there were quite a few artists I enjoyed more than those who were featured. However, thanks to the constant rise of Geometric Rehash -- I mean Geometry Dash -- featuring artists these days would mean "GD?" "geometry dash" "YATAGARASU???????" and all such nonsense. (Sorry, that last one is a personal metaphorical scar of mine...)


As for general improvements, I don't have any ideas in the way of appearances or intuitiveness, but I do feel like the security needs a bit of a bolstering. So many people are being ripped off in the way that their work is being stolen and reuploaded by jackasses looking to profit off of someone else's blood, sweat, and tears. The reporting feature works, sure, but I'm beginning to wonder if maybe there should be some sort of audio detection thing in place. The only real issue I can see with this is that it could backfire on artists who actually upload their stuff to YouTube as well, like I do from time to time. We need to find some way to kick harder against music thieves.


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Music and stuff. Yep!


It's a shame that Newgrounds doesn't have an audio player on the main page of the website. Even though I browse through audio every once in a while, it would be nice to have a shuffle of recent releases or this week's finest at the front to kind of give users a listen to what creators are putting out.


It'd be a better option than auto playing music. Nothing annoys a person more than loud ass music with no volume control.


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