Newgrounds

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Newgrounds.com, Inc.
Newgrounds2018logo.png
Screenshot
Screenshot of the Newgrounds website.png
Homepage & Layout (2018).
Type of businessPrivate
Type of site
social media
Available inEnglish
FoundedJuly 6, 1995; 23 years ago (1995-07-06)
Headquarters
333 W Glenside Ave, Glenside, Pennsylvania
,
Key peopleFounder/CEO
Tom Fulp

Site Programmers
Josh Tuttle & James Holloway

Artist/Animator
Jeff Bandelin
ServicesIndie games, animation, art, music and user-generated content hosting service
Websitewww.newgrounds.com
Alexa rankDecrease 3,222 (December 2018)[1]
RegistrationOptional, only required to vote, review, comment and submit content

Newgrounds (collectively Newgrounds.com, Inc.) is an American online entertainment and social media website and company. It hosts user-generated content such as gaming, filming, audio and artwork composition in four respective website categories. Newgrounds provides visitor-driven voting and ranking of user-generated submissions.[2]

The site's founder and owner, Thomas "Tom" Fulp, founded the site and company in 1995 and produces in-house content over at the headquarters and offices, based in the Glenside neighborhood of Cheltenham Township, Pennsylvania.[3]

Layout and overview[edit]

Content and general[edit]

User-generated content can be uploaded and categorized into either one of the site’s four web portals: Games, Movies, Audio, and Art. A submission entered undergoes the process termed the Blam-And-Protect system, where it can be critiqued and rated from other users (up to 5 stars) or reviewed by users. Total scores succeeding judgement determine if whether the content will "saved" (added onto the database) or "blammed" (deleted but still saved as per Obituaries section).

Art and audio composition is categorized in a relatively different method called "Scouting". Alike the Blam-And-Protect system, it filters out stolen content, spam, or prohibited material online via users and site moderators (referred to as "Mods"). When an individual is scouted, its submitted property becomes virtually visible to everyone else, and then given the privilege to also scout authors.

Submissions are organized in the general "Portal", where it accompanies the genres into a single place to view authored material. It also stores throwback content in earlier years, statuses of judged submissions, and current and past daily winners on display.

Content and context are liable to be reported for review to the Mods and staff members by flagging it for plausible violations to the site's guidelines, if regarded by multiple users. The homepage of Newgrounds includes featured submissions from each category, as well online awards and honors to users whose submission that fall under the site's requirements to earn it.[4] Adult-oriented content is general in nature of the site, but restricted only to users ages 18 and up though no safeguard is subject to assure this.

Online competitions and contests are open at some times, where an individual can win and receive prizes presented by either a recognized user or staff member upon following a given theme.

User communication and behavior[edit]

The site includes a Community portal, where users are able to communicate with others through various Internet forums. Such forums can be locked if it is in violation. Another communication system developed on the site, termed "Private Messaging" and abbreviated as PM, is also granted, similar to the service of email where users can send messages via other users. A live chat room is also available.

History[edit]

1990s: organization[edit]

In 1991, at the age 13, Tom Fulp launched a Neo Geo fanzine under the name "New Ground" sending issues to approximately 100 members of a club originating on the internet in Prodigy.[5] Fulp launched a website as New Ground Remix using a hosting service, increasing popularity in the summer of 1996 after BBS games Club a Seal[6] and Assassin were created by Fulp while a student at Drexel University, Pennsylvania. Fulp created the sequels to his creations, as games Club a Seal II and Assassin II," along with the decision to develop a separate hosting site, titled as New Ground Atomix.[7]

Fulp began experimenting with Macromedia Flash, along with programming a Flash-compatible homepage that was later introduced to his secondary site, "Telebubby Fun Land", and was later released. Fulp later merged his two websites to form another website with the name Newgrounds, leading to him to change hosts to accommodate the increasing traffic, and started selling merchandise to pay for the website's hosting bills. Introducing banner ads to pay for growing payments in 1999, Fulp partnered with Troma, who hosted the site in exchange for a share of ad revenue. A chat room and message board was added onto the website, which allowed people visiting the website to interact with each other. Many users had begun submitting their own Flash creations to Fulp, in which he decided in a portion of the site called "The Portal." A friend of Fulp named Ross developed the “Grounds Gold System”, which allowed users to gain points for visiting the site and voting submissions online. Ad revenue had increased, so Ross was hired, starting development of an current automated Portal, which would allow users to submit their own generated content to the website.

2000s: developments[edit]

After the dot-com bubble collapsed, Newgrounds struggled in paying its hosting costs. The affiliation with Troma ended in 2003 and Newgrounds switched to another bandwidth provider, which significantly reduced hosting costs. 2004 saw Newgrounds recovering from the online market crash, and the Numa Numa Dance viral phenomenon made its debut on Newgrounds near the end of the year, and became one of the first viral videos on the internet. Medals, the equivalent of in-game achievements, were introduced for the first time through the API software in 2009, soon followed by a "Sharing" component that would allow content to be distributed within games, such as custom level designs. The Art Portal in its complete form was launched in June of the same year, along with the renovation of the company's headquarters.

2010s: improvements[edit]

In 2011, the Newgrounds Annual Tournament of Animation (NATA) began as a 4–6 month long animation competition on Newgrounds sponsored by Adobe. In 2012, Newgrounds published their first mobile game, titled GroundCats, on iOS. That same year, major changes to the website included the launch of the video player, allowing users to publish movies that were not in .SWF format for the first time, and support for HTML5-coded games, which meant users were no longer limited to submitting movies and games made in Flash. In 2013, the site suffered heavily through financial issues and closed down its online market following the year after. Platform mobile game Geometry Dash developed by RobTop Games allowed songs from Newgrounds to be used in levels made with the level editor with the release of its 1.9 update in 2014. The Audio Portal consisted of submitted copyrighted songs for use in the game, leading to nightcore, along with mashups, banned as a result.

An similar issue of copyrighted concurred in 2016, when the site began receiving complaints that old content and files contained unlicensed commercial music and images, resulting in several submissions being removed by moderators and staff. In 2018, new servers and video-encoding-software were unveiled, along with developments for the site to be ad-free, and improve page performance.

In November and December 2018, Newgrounds experienced surges of new members originally from Tumblr, when that site began restricting adult content after illegal child pornography was found on that service, resulting in its iOS app being removed from Apple's App Store.[8][9][10][11]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "newgrounds.com traffic ranking". Alexa Internet. Retrieved 3 December 2018.
  2. ^ Buckelew, Sean (2014-12-27). "Newgrounds: Everything by Everyone". Sean Buckelew. Retrieved 2018-04-21.
  3. ^ "Cheltenham Township Business Directory". January 2007. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
  4. ^ "The History Of Newgrounds | Retro Junk". www.retrojunk.com. Retrieved 2018-04-21.
  5. ^ "1991: The Zine". newgrounds.com. Retrieved 2018-04-20.
  6. ^ "#105 At World's End - Reply All by Gimlet Media". gimletmedia.com. Retrieved 2017-09-25.
  7. ^ "1997: The Tale of Two Newgrounds". newgrounds.com. Retrieved 2018-04-20.
  8. ^ "Aparajita_1989" (November 22, 2018). "Tumblr shutting down? No. But there's exodus and Newgrounds is gaining from it". Piunika Web. Retrieved December 5, 2018.
  9. ^ Asarch, Steven (December 4, 2018). "Why Is Tumblr Banning Adult Content? Censorship Causes Alternative Platforms to Rise". Newsweek. Retrieved December 5, 2018.
  10. ^ Fulp, Tom (November 20, 2018). "Welcome, New Artists!". Newgrounds. Retrieved December 5, 2018.
  11. ^ Fulp, Tom (November 20, 2018). "Welcome, 2nd Wave of New Artists!". Newgrounds. Retrieved December 5, 2018.