Nick.com

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Nick.com
Nick com logo.png
Type of site
Children's
Available inEnglish
ParentNickelodeon
URLwww.nick.com
CommercialYes
RegistrationClosed
LaunchedOctober 1995; 26 years ago (1995-10) (as America Online channel)
Current statusOpen

Nick.com is a website owned and developed by Nickelodeon. The website previously served as an online portal for Nickelodeon content, and offered online games, video streaming, radio streaming and individual websites for each show it broadcasts. It now promotes the Nick mobile app which replaced it (websites for its sister networks aren't affected). Nick.com has received positive critical reaction and various awards, including a Webby in 2003. Positive praise has also been received because of the steps taken by the website to protect user privacy. Visits to the domain outside the United States are redirected to YTV in Canada, Nick.de (the website’s german version) in Germany or to the domestic network site of the visiting IP's nation or region due to programming licensing issues between territories.

History[edit]

Nickelodeon launched their first online component as part of the America Online Kids Only channel in October 1995.[1] Within a few years, a regular World Wide Web site came online, and became a strong promotional tool for Nickelodeon.[2] The website's popularity grew and in March 1999, Nick.com became the highest rated website for children aged six to fourteen years old. Nickelodeon used the website in conjunction with television programmes which increased traffic.[3] Nick.com also maintained a high level of respect for user privacy during the growth of the website.[4]

Before 2000, Nick.com's design was mainly images and image maps allowing navigation through the website. Then, in June 2000, the website was expanded and redesigned with Flash-animated buttons and advertisements. Nick.com's design has changed repeatedly since then, with the website's current design making use of sidebars, web banners, and Adobe Flash.

In January 2000, developers started discussing expansion of Nick.com to make it an even more desirable website for children to visit. Mike Skagerlind, the website's general manager at the time said "But we felt strongly that it could be a lot more. We basically wanted it to be the main place that kids go to on the Web." On June 4, 2000, the website redesign began. The interface was revamped and to make it more appealing to children and the most significant development was the use of Flash for animated graphics and buttons.[2]

On September 28, 2009, Nick revamped the site with the institution of the new logo.

In July 2014, Nickelodeon completely redesigned the site to match up with the Nickelodeon app. It did not affect its sister channels' websites.[5][6]

In order to comply more with COPPA, Nickelodeon removed the ability to create an account on March 31, 2016. The message boards were closed the same day.

In December 2018, access via desktop computer to most sections of the site became limited, as links to watch episodes and play games on the site currently all redirect to a page asking viewers to download the network's mobile and tablet apps (both the network's app, along with separate game apps) for access to games and programming instead.[7] As of December 2018, Nick.com no longer makes online games. This is likely due to Google Chrome's changes that made access to Adobe Flash (which the site was built on for years) difficult to non-existent in line with Flash's phase-out during the end of 2020, requiring a large-scale rebuild of the desktop site that cannot be done behind the scenes. It is possible that access to programming and games for desktop visitors could be restored in some point in the near future, with all elements having full compatibility with HTML5 standards.

On December 17, 2020, the ability to watch full episodes on Nick.com was brought back, though one must sign in to their TV provider to watch.

Features[edit]

Games[edit]

In 2001, Nickelodeon partnered with Networks Inc. to provide broadband video games for rent from Nick.com. The move was a further step in the multimedia direction that the developers wanted to take the website. Skagerlind indicated that over 50% of Nick.com's audience are using a high speed connection which allows them to expand the gaming options on the website.[8]

On January 6, 2006, Nickelodeon launched New Game of the Week, which was a service that showcased an Adobe Flash game based on Nickelodeon content. The first New Game of the Week was Jimmy Timmy Power Hour 2: Co-Pilot Chaos, based on Jimmy Neutron from The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius and Timmy Turner from The Fairly OddParents.[9] When the service was launched, Nick.com had over 228 million game plays in the same fiscal quarter, which was partially attributed to New Game of the Week.[10] A new game was showcased every Friday.[9] The New Game of the week of the year has had many wins on their SpongeBob games, such as Bikini Bottom Bust Up, Dunces and Dragons, Invasion of the Lava King, and more. Access to the online games are no longer available on Nick.com in the US as they have been replaced by mobile apps.

Videos and episodes[edit]

Nick.com provided streaming videos of full or partial Nickelodeon episodes. The service was originally launched as TurboNick, a popup panel showcasing broadband content such as video clips and games.[8] It was then revamped and relaunched on July 1, 2005, as a sister website for Nick.com. The new website expanded on clips and content on Nick.com to provide full length Nickelodeon television shows.[11] The United States service was again revamped in 2009 and began focusing exclusively on content from Nick's current schedule. With the ubiquitousness of online streaming, TurboNick branding was also phased out at this time.

Along with the website's redesign in July 2014, Nickelodeon introduced its first web-exclusive series, Welcome to the Wayne.[12] Citing changes in viewer preferences, the series is the beginning of a push to create content that can exist on multiple platforms such as online, through mobile devices, as well as television.[12] At the same time, amid declining TV ratings in its third season, Nickelodeon stopped airing the series The Legend of Korra on the primary Nickelodeon network and shifted its distribution to online outlets, where the show had proven to be much more successful.[13][14] Moving the series to online distribution from outlets such as Nick.com and third-party outlets such as Amazon Video, Google Play, Xbox Video and Hulu reflected what series creator Michael DiMartino called a "sea change" in the industry: While Korra didn't fit in well with Nickelodeon's other programming, the series did extremely well online, with the season 2 finale having been Nickelodeon's biggest online event.[14][15] Following the remainder of its third season, season four of The Legend of Korra premiered in the United States on October 3, 2014, exclusively through online distribution.[16] Along with the Nick App, access to full episodes requires a TV Everywhere log in.[17]

Nick.com in the UK does not offer the same ability to watch entire episodes, but offers short clips from Nickelodeon TV shows instead.[18] Episodes and videos are available on Nick.com in the US and the videos and episodes are now available on the Nick app.

Radio[edit]

Logo for Nick Radio, combining iconography from both Nickelodeon and iHeartRadio.

Nick.com streams Nick Radio, a radio network launched on September 30, 2013, in partnership with iHeartMedia (then called Clear Channel Communications). The network is also distributed through the iHeartRadio web platform and mobile app as well as New York City radio station WHTZ as a secondary HD channel. Nick Radio focuses on Top 40 music (geared towards the network's target audience of children and adolescents, with radio edits of some songs incorporated due to inappropriate content), along with celebrity interview features. In addition to regular on-air DJs, Nick Radio also occasionally features guest DJ stints by stars from Nickelodeon's original series.[19][20][21]

Shows[edit]

Nick.com maintains informational pages on Nickelodeon's current programming lineup. Although the content for each program page included Games, Videos, and Episodes that could be accessed through other parts of the site, show pages can also included show photos and character breakdowns.[22]

Former features[edit]

Nicktropolis: The Club[edit]

The Club was a massively multiplayer online role-playing game provided by Nickelodeon on Nick.com. It was a virtual community that used isometric 3D graphics. It allowed users to play games, watch video clips and explore locations based on Nickelodeon television shows. Construction of "Nicktropolis" began in November 2004, by Nickelodeon's developers Mark Zadroga, Alex Westerman, Deborah Levine, Patrick Dorey, Sean McEvoy, and Jason Root. [23] The game used the TheoSDK and TheoAvatarSDK engines.[24] An alpha of the game was released in early 2006. The first beta was released in June 2006. From August 18, 2006, to January 6, 2007, the game was closed to the general public. Prior to this release, almost 3,000,000 children had tested the game.[25] The service was finally launched to the public on January 30, 2007, as Nicktropolis.[26][27]

Following the official launch of the service, additional improvements were made. In March 2007, the game was remodeled and given a new logo, and on May 11, 2007, the home page was remodeled to fit in with Nick.com's new look. On June 24, 2007, the game was featured in The New York Times, with a quote stating, "Pre-teenage viewers have a virtual playground to call their own."[28] In September 2007, the Nicktropolis Newsletter was launched, as an e-mail service to players, and in November 2007, the service became ad-supported.[29] By July 3, 2008, Nicktropolis had over 7,000,000 registered users.[30] That same year, the service introduced daily events on weekdays,[31] the "Nicktropolis Blog" on the Nick.com message boards,[32] and a new area to support The Big Green Help, the year-long Nickelodeon green campaign.[33]

The game received positive ratings in terms of appropriateness for children, with mixed critical reviews.[34] The service was redesigned as The Club on May 19, 2010.[35]

Nick Arcade[edit]

Nick Arcade (sharing a name with, but otherwise unrelated to, the TV series of the same name) was a series of games that could be downloaded from Nick.com. It allowed users to play any game before buying it. Nick Arcade games can still be found on Nickelodeon's sister website, Shockwave.

Message boards[edit]

Nick.com offered a moderated Internet forum called the Message Boards. On the boards, kids posted threads and replied on topics based on Nickelodeon content. Emoticons were represented with icon GIFs. Notable Moderators were called NICKFrog and NICKPhilly.

Along with the redesigned Nick.com, the Message Boards were completely redesigned to match up with it in 2014.

The message boards were closed on March 31, 2016, after Nick.com removed the option to sign up as a user on the site.

Reception[edit]

The critical reaction for Nick.com has been mostly positive, winning numerous awards.

The website has received two awards from the Broadcast Designers Association, getting a bronze award in 2001 and a silver in 2002.[36] In 2003, Nick.com received a Judge's Choice Webby in the Television section.[37] In 1999, Nick.com received the first Internet privacy seal from BBBOnline, a subsidiary of CBBB that assesses privacy issues online.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Nick History". Nickelodeon. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved November 28, 2008.
  2. ^ a b Owens, Jennifer (December 11, 2000). "Nick at Net". BrandWeek. Archived from the original on November 5, 2015. Retrieved November 28, 2008.
  3. ^ "Nickelodeon TV & Online Are Perfect Together as Nick.com Takes Top Ratings Spot in March". Entertainment Wire. 1999-05-19. Archived from the original on 2011-06-24. Retrieved November 28, 2008.
  4. ^ a b "BBBOnLine Awards Its First Internet Kid's Privacy Seal to Nickelodeon's Nick.com". Business Wire. May 3, 1999. Retrieved November 28, 2008.[dead link]
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-07-12. Retrieved 2014-07-07.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-07-14. Retrieved 2014-07-07.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ "Nick.com updates to bare-bones website: videos, games gone". Nickandmore!. December 17, 2018. Archived from the original on January 1, 2019. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
  8. ^ a b . MultiChannel News [http:/12 http:/12]. Retrieved 2008-11-28. {{cite web}}: Check |url= value (help); Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ a b "Get Your Game On With Nickelodeon Online's 'New Game of the Week' Feature on Nick.com". PR Newswire. 2006-01-17. Archived from the original on 2010-05-09. Retrieved 2008-11-28.
  10. ^ "Nickelodeon Heads into Eleventh Year as Number One Cable Network and Leader on Digital Media Platforms". PR Newswire. 2006-03-28. Archived from the original on 2010-05-09. Retrieved 2008-11-28.
  11. ^ "Nickelodeon launches TurboNick broadband platform on Nick.com". Indiantelevision.com. 2005-07-07. Archived from the original on 2008-10-07. Retrieved 2008-11-28.
  12. ^ a b Steel AUG. 3, 2014, Emily (4 August 2014). "Nickelodeon's Digital Generation". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 28 October 2014. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  13. ^ Schwartz, Terri (July 25, 2014). "'Legend of Korra: Book 3' shift to digital explained at Comic-Con 2014". Zap2It.com. Archived from the original on August 13, 2014. Retrieved August 12, 2014.
  14. ^ a b Trendacosta, Katharine (26 July 2014). "Creators of The Legend of Korra Explain the Show's Not-Cancellation". io9. Archived from the original on 27 July 2014. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  15. ^ Koch, Dave (July 27, 2014). "Nick Pull Korra from Airwaves; Web Only". Big Cartoon News. Archived from the original on 2014-08-06. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  16. ^ "Nickelodeon announcement". www.nick.com. September 10, 2014. Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved October 5, 2014.
  17. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-12-24. Retrieved 2015-12-24.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  18. ^ "Nickelodeon hire Ralph for interactive ME:TV @ The Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards". M2 Presswire. 2007-10-18. Retrieved 2008-11-28.
  19. ^ "Nickelodeon And Clear Channel Launch Nick Radio". Radio Ink. September 30, 2013. Archived from the original on October 5, 2013. Retrieved 2013-10-01.
  20. ^ "Clear Channel's iHeartRadio Unveils Nick Radio". MediaPost. September 30, 2013. Archived from the original on 2013-10-03. Retrieved 2013-10-01.
  21. ^ "Nickelodeon And CCM+E Launch First Ever Nick-Branded Radio Station On iHeartradio And Nick.Com". All Access Media Group. October 1, 2013. Archived from the original on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2013-10-01.
  22. ^ "Nick Sitemap". Nick.com. Nickelodeon. Archived from the original on 24 October 2014. Retrieved 25 October 2014.
  23. ^ [cite web|url=http://www.parents-choice.org/product.cfm?product_id=24856&StepNum=1&award=aw Archived 2008-10-14 at the Wayback Machine |author=Mike Jovel |title=Parents' Choice Awards |date=2007-01-29|access-date=2008-08-15]
  24. ^ "Nickelodeon Launches Nicktropolis – A Quick Look Under The Hood". Archived from the original on 2007-10-09. Retrieved 2008-08-11.
  25. ^ Shields, Mike (January 29, 2007). "Nickelodeon Launches Nicktropolis Web Playground". MediaWeek. Archived from the original on September 13, 2007. Retrieved 2007-11-03.
  26. ^ Shields, Mike (2007-06-18). "Nickelodeon Launches Nicktropolis Web Playground". AD Week. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-01-29.
  27. ^ "It's a kid's life in new virtual world". Reuters. 2007-01-29. Archived from the original on 2021-10-27. Retrieved 2007-11-11.
  28. ^ Itzkoff, Dave (2007-06-24). "Nictropolis in the New York Times". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 2016-04-11. Retrieved 2008-10-26.
  29. ^ David Kaplan (2007-01-29). "Nickelodeon Jumps On "Virtual City" Bandwagon: Nicktropolis For Tweens". Archived from the original on 2008-07-08. Retrieved 2008-08-15.
  30. ^ Joanna Roses (2007-06-18). "Nickelodeon's Nicktropolis Reaches Almost 4 Million Unique Registered Users in Just Four Months". Press Release. Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2007-07-03.
  31. ^ "Nicktropolis Blog – Daily events". Archived from the original on 2008-12-19. Retrieved 2008-08-14.
  32. ^ "Nicktropolis Blog – An overview". Archived from the original on 2008-12-19. Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  33. ^ Nicktropolis (2008-03-13). "Nickelodeon Launches The Big Green Help – An Environmental Pro-Social Initiative for Kids This April". Nickelodeon. Archived from the original on 2008-05-17. Retrieved 2008-03-13.
  34. ^ "Nicktropolis.com – Website Review (from CommonSense)". Archived from the original on 2008-10-28. Retrieved 2008-10-26.
  35. ^ "MTV Networks' Nickelodeon Launches Nicktropolis: Unprecedented Immersive Virtual Community Playground Featuring Gaming, Video and Social Interaction". PR Newswire. 2007-01-29. Archived from the original on 2010-05-09. Retrieved 2008-11-28.
  36. ^ "Nick Awards". Nickelodeon. Archived from the original on 2007-10-11. Retrieved 2008-11-28.
  37. ^ "2003 Winners". Webbyawards.com. 2003. Archived from the original on 2009-12-02. Retrieved 2008-11-28.

External links[edit]