|Founded||July 6, 1995|
|Headquarters||Glenside, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|Key people||Tom Fulp: Founder & CEO
Wade Fulp: Administrator & Public Relations
Josh Tuttle & James Holloway: Programmers
Brendon Colby: Sysadmin
Jeff Bandelin: Artist and Animator
|Slogan(s)||"Everything, By Everyone."|
|Alexa rank||3,403 (February 2015)|
|Type of site||Indie Games, Animation, Art and Music hosting service|
|Registration||Optional (however, many features are disabled without registration)|
Newgrounds is an American entertainment and social media website and company. Founded on July 6, 1995 by Tom Fulp, the site presently hosts games, movies, audio and artwork in four respective hubs, or Portals. Tom Fulp remains the site's owner and still regularly produces in-house content. Its offices are headquartered in the Glenside neighborhood of Cheltenham Township on the northern border of Philadelphia.
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The home page of Newgrounds displays a showcase of the weekly and monthly top-scoring submissions on the site for the Movie, Game and Art Portals, as well as a newsfeed of posts from founder Tom Fulp. Menus to access a wider array of submissions for every portal are shown across the top banner of the site, allowing to browse based on popularity and date of submission.
Movie and Game Portals
Originally named the "Flash Portal" until Newgrounds began accepting non-Flash animations, the Movie Portal is a hub for Newgrounds users to submit watchable content. Registered users can submit new movies, either in the format of a .SWF Flash file, or as a video file (.MOV, .MP4, etc; several types are acceptable). The Game Portal is a similar section of the site intended for users to submit games to Newgrounds. In recent years, as with the renamed and repurposed Movie Portal, the Game Portal has expanded its range of accepted content to games built in HTML5, Unity3D and Twine as well as Flash games.
Beginning in 2011, the Newgrounds Annual Tournament of Animation (NATA) began as a 4-6 month long animation competition on Newgrounds sponsored by both Adobe and Tom Fulp. NATA 2012 concluded in early October and the prizes totaled at $2,500 in cash rewards, as well as Adobe Design software for the Champion. The competition pits animators against each other through scored Rounds where the animators have a certain amount of time to complete their entry. Entries are scored by a panel of judges in five categories: Artwork (4 Points), Animation (4 Points), Originality (4 Points), Structure (4 Points), and Entertainment (4 Points). Points from each judge tally up to a total of 20 possible points. With five judges, the total points possible for an entry is 100 Points.
The Art Portal is the section of the site reserved for posting works of visual art and graphic design. Aside from collages and photos taken for the purpose of showing sculpture or paintings that cannot be digitally scanned, works of photography are not permitted.
The Audio Portal is a specific section of Newgrounds where artists can submit music. The Audio Portal adopts the same scouting process that the Art Portal does; every prospective audio submitter must submit at least four works to the Portal and wait to be scouted by another, more tenured user before their submissions will be accessible on the Audio Portal main page. All the music is free to use (under a BY-NC-SA 3.0 Creative Commons license).
Uploaded files must conform to certain requirements:
- The file must have the extension .mp3.
- The file may not exceed the given capacity of 15 MB.
- The file must be sampled at 44.1 kHz.
The main purpose of the Audio Portal was to prevent users from breaking copyright laws; users were using copyrighted songs in their submissions, thus breaking the law and running the risk of being sued. Therefore, the Audio Portal was introduced so that users could submit their own original work. However, over the years the Audio Portal grew from simply being an audio resource for the Flash Portal to a full-blown portal with a life on its own - with notable users using it as a nursing grounds to increase their talents before presenting themselves to major record labels. The Audio Portal was shut down three separate times early in its lifetime, but has nonetheless become a permanent feature of the site.
Rating and review system
For all types of submitted content on Newgrounds, authors rate their submissions based on the presence and intensity of profanity, sexual themes, and violence. The ratings are as follows:
- E (Everyone) = Content suitable for viewers of all ages (aged 10+).
- T (Teens) = Content suitable for viewers aged 13+. Mild content, violence, etc.
- M (Mature) = Content suitable for viewers aged 17+. Explicit content, intense violence, drug use, mild nudity/sex, etc.
- A (Adult) = Content suitable for viewers aged 18+. Explicit content, excessive violence, excessive drug use, graphic nudity/sex, etc.
The ratings are only intended as a guide; there is no system in place to prevent the viewing of submissions of any specific rating aside from a brief disclaimer.
Users can vote or write reviews on existing submissions in any Portal. This is based on an experience level-based system that gives users who have voted more frequently more weight to their votes, and specifically in the Movie and Game Portals, awards points to users who choose the winning vote on whether to approve ("Protect") or disapprove ("Blam") of new submissions in the initial judgment phase. Points are also awarded to users who "[blow the] whistle" or report content that violates core submission quality guidelines such as outright copyright violation or illegal content.
When content is submitted to its respective portal, it has the potential to win a number of awards based on its viewer ratings and review scores on a daily, weekly and monthly basis against other entries for their respective timeframe. The higher-level awards, such as being chosen as one of the best submissions of the month or of the year, can earn the submitter cash prizes and other benefits.
Newgrounds Forum (BBS)
The Newgrounds Forum community discusses various topics in forum categories ranging from site-related submissions to personal and off-topic discussion. The most popular section on the forum is "General" discussion which, as of September 4, 2013, houses more than 704,000 topics. The forums are often used to run competitions and community projects.
In 2007, Newgrounds started a basic store that was hosted completely on-site, selling shirts and stickers of different Newgrounds characters, such as Pico and the Tankmen. On August 19, 2008, Newgrounds launched its official store, selling more products including those made by other Newgrounds artists. Items for sale included many T-shirts with popular and successful artists or their work, as well as keychains, stickers, discs, toys, comics, posters, patches and DVDs depicting popular Flash series. The Newgrounds community would collaborate to create works like a yearly calendar and writing anthologies. The Newgrounds store exited the physical goods market on March 5, 2014, after members of the staff resigned to work on other projects.
Since the Newgrounds API was released and users were allowed to split their earnings between authors, users have been donating a portion of their earnings to charities by creating and sharing accounts which resemble the names of the charities for donating. This began in 2009, when a user, ForNoReason, took it upon himself to organize flash artists.
- The Yellow Ribbon Fund supports injured service men and women and their families.
- Breast Cancer Awareness supports awareness and research for the cure of breast cancer.
- CARE was introduced in the wake of the 2010 Haiti earthquake.
In the media
- Teletubbies: In 1998, Tom Fulp of Newgrounds created a spoof of Teletubbies called Teletubby Fun Land which resulted in a lawsuit from the BBC. This resulted in a boost of notoriety and media exposure, and the game was renamed Telebubby Fun Land.
- Kaboom: The Suicide Bombing Game: In mid-2002, Newgrounds received notoriety for hosting Kaboom!, a game in which the player controls an apparent Palestinian suicide bomber who kills men, women and children in Israel. Despite receiving criticism and calls for its removal from the internet by congresswoman Nita Lowey, the Jewish Anti-Defamation League, and other groups, Newgrounds continued to host the game.
- Jeff Weise: Jeff Weise, infamous for the Red Lake High School massacre, posted a violent animation on Newgrounds.com. Its existence was discovered and reported after the massacre.
- Numa Numa Dance: Gary Brolsma first published his "Numa Numa Dance" on Newgrounds on December 6, 2004, where it has since been viewed more than 15 million times, and copied onto hundreds of other websites and blogs. He has also received mainstream media coverage on Good Morning America, The Tonight Show and Best Week Ever, and, according to The New York Times, was an "unwilling and embarrassed Web celebrity." On September 8, 2006, he reappeared with a professionally produced video titled New Numa. On November 14, 2007, he posted another Numa video on YouTube, entitled Numa Three: Crazy Loop!
- Attack of the Show! From July 5–8, 2005, Tom Fulp was a co-host on Attack of the Show!; he would showcase and describe popular Newgrounds Flash submissions.
- The Torture Game 2: Newgrounds currently hosts a game in which a player tortures a lifeless rag doll-like human. The game sparked controversy, receiving short airtime on Fox News.
- Sirtom93 Arrest: Sirtom93, an active user on the Newgrounds BBS posted a thread on Newgrounds, on March 17, 2009, describing how he would burn down his school with gasoline and was caught and arrested after Administrators and users collected his personal information and forwarded it to the local police. The newspaper in Sirtom's area did not mention Newgrounds by name.
- Video games: Video games released by development company The Behemoth have credited Newgrounds. Newgrounds is also credited in Team Meat's Super Meat Boy which, like Alien Hominid, was originally a flash game on Newgrounds.
Newgrounds hosts and participates in many events throughout the year to give users a chance to meet each other or to interact in general. Some events are organized by regulars but usually by forum moderators and site administrators.
- "newgrounds.com traffic ranking". Alexa Internet. Retrieved August 1, 2013.
- "Cheltenham Township Business Directory". January 2007. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- "Newgrounds Wiki - Games and Movies". Newgrounds.com/wiki. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
- NATA 2012 on Newgrounds
- About - NATA Official Site
- "Newgrounds Wiki - Audio". Newgrounds.com/wiki. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
- Fulp, Tom (2003-02-13). "NG Audio! Go! Go!". Newgrounds. Retrieved 2010-07-27.
- "Newgrounds Charity Project". Newgrounds. 2009-08-17. Retrieved 2010-01-19.
- "Yellow Ribbon Fund". Newgrounds. 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2010-01-19.
- "Breast Cancer Awareness". Newgrounds. 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2010-01-19.
- "CareCharity". Newgrounds. 2010-01-15. Retrieved 2010-01-19.
- Fulp, Tom (1998). "Teletubby Fun Land". Newgrounds. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- Fulp, Tom (1999-08-03). "First NG Battle - NG vs. BBC". Newgrounds. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- Park, Michael Y. (2002-05-08). "Videogame Enrages Israeli Supporters". Fox News Channel. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- Davey, Monica; Jodi Wilgoren (2005-03-24). "Signs of Danger Were Missed in a Troubled Teenager's Life". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- Brolsma, Gary (2004-12-06). "Numa Numa Dance". Newgrounds. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- Feuer, Alan; Jason George (2005-02-26). "Internet Fame Is Cruel Mistress for a Dancer of the Numa Numa". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- Brolsma, Gary (2006-09-08). "New Numa". Newgrounds. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- Fulp, Tom (2005-06-20). "G4 Co-Hosting!". Newgrounds. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- "Torture Game 2". Fox News. 3 May 2011. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
- "Pupil arrested for planning school attack ... after internet user in Canada tips off police in Norfolk". Mail Online. 2009-03-18. Retrieved 2009-12-13.
- Wardrop, Murray (2009-03-18). "Pupil arrested over school attack after threat posted on internet". London: Telegraph. Retrieved 2009-12-13.