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Josh @squeakytoad

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15 years on Newgrounds... what happened?

Posted by squeakytoad - October 8th, 2020


Where did all this talent come from? I was told NG was "dead" (by people who live on Twitter), but every week there are animations/games submitted that would've been top 5 of the year In the 2000-2010 "glory days."


This is officially my 15th year on Newgrounds dot com.



I somehow have

456 saves

&

456 blams? Whoah.


I have 10,436 XP, which I think means I've voted on ~5,000 videos/games? Avg 30 seconds each, I've spent at least 2,500 mins on videos here. That's 42 hours at least. And there are apparently 10,000 users who've watched more?

Joined at 13 years old in 2005 and submitted this really, really bad Star Wars cartoon that somehow has 250k views.


Newgrounds was so popular it propelled talentless hacks like 13-year-old me to e-fame.

Time is a flat circle, cause 15 years later, I'm still parodying the Star Wars prequels.


Star Wars was a global phenomenon, so it's how I, an American kid growing up in a remote Thai village with a 56k modem could relate to both my American friends over AOL Instant Messenger and with my Thai friends.

So of course it's the first thing I animated when I learned Flash.


Here's me in a Bangkok newspaper for an animation award intended to advance Thai kids' in arts and technology.

I don't think I was what the program creators envisioned...

iu_178006_1360104.jpg


First taste of NG "relevance" was when my poorly tweened shape-tool (didn't have a tablet yet) cartoon "Dare" featuring Switchfoot's "Dare You to Move" somehow picked up a lot of views.

It's been removed here and YouTube a lot of times when the record companies came for the internet.


This was before thousands of Facebook and YouTube channels capitalized on the "wholesome content" craze, so I think it did well because people found the positivity refreshing among all the "edgy" content?


My mom and aunt went to watch it and accidentally clicked on a nearby submission under judgment and saw Strawberry Clock's head on some naked dude swinging schlong. Ah, Newgrounds.


If you were around then, you probably remember that I had a weird chip on my shoulder, which is a bummer cause I missed out on having a lot of the fun early on that I had in my later years here. @MindChamber rightfully called me out.


Thankfully, artists far more friendly and talented than me looked past that to collaborate and burn time on the old AOL messenger, cause I learned an insane amount from those folks, like @AlmightyHans, @RuberNinja, @Luis, Edd Gould, @RWappin, @FunyMony, @Gerkinman, @MiddleFingerRings, @Godlimations, @TommyVF and @MarcyVF and many others. Probably missing some. Thanks for the fun times, all. Trying to follow what you're all up to these days.


Since 2005, I've graduated high school, graduated college, gotten a few jobs, moved all over the US, gotten married, had a kid, and here I am.


I want to do something original soon. Tried an original series a while back, but it was pretty derivative.

At least I came back in 2013 and finished it.


While I was at it, I realized nobody ever finished their "To be continued" cartoons from the 2000-2007 timeframe. So I figured I'd do it a decade later.


I got active lately cause COVID's opened up weekday evenings and weekends.


But I'm really enjoying the connection with old and new content creators here and on twitter (https://twitter.com/joshwimble). I'll try to not go on such a long hiatus again, unless this whole having a kid thing gets to be a handful.


15

Comments (17)

Congrats on being here for 15 years. Yeah some people on Twitter want to pretend that this website doesn’t exist. (Which it is sad)

Their loss. And thanks!

Congrats man. Had no clue you spent time overseas as a kiddo. Cool backstory!

Congratulations!

I remember Dare, and I loved it! Glad you're still here, congrats on 15 years!

Hey thank you! The video was a cool experience - got messages from all over the world - glad it resonated with some folks. @Godlimations refreshed the art with the same story a few years later, but I see it also got pulled due to copyrighted music. Bummer.

Congrats on the milestone!

Thanks man! Hope you're doing well!

Congratulations. 15 years, that's impressive!

@StickmanMarkinson @squeakytoad Any time now, enjoy your stay with the next 15 years!

@SevenSeize4President @squeakytoad It's so incredibly stupid to me to see animations of songs pulled for copyright. To me that should be covered as a cover or a tribute or something similar. What harm was it doing as long as you gave credit???? Dumb.

456 saves

&

456 blams

...not intentional?

Not intentional. I went to look at my count a week ago to see if I was near some kind of milestone (like 500 or something), saw that and thought "hm, I guess I'll just not blam or save anything for a little bit - I like how that looks."

Going from 250,000 views to 882 views with the sequel though, man... if only we still lived in those glory days! I remember this place being hard to keep up with, but it's hard to fathom exactly how hard to keep up with it really was. Was it really THAT active? Of course views probably amount overtime. But still. What a crazy time we probably had back then. All a haze now. And then them record companies came and ruined it.

You bring forth some really interesting numbers and observations here; introspective glimpses into a past that seems fascinating, that I wouldn't mind reading more on. How did you earn that Thai award? Did it lead places?

Regarding the mind-blowing number of people who have seen a mind-blowing amount of content... some people are probably just a little bit obsessed with numbers. ;) Seems you've been living, and learning, and chattin' with the real legends instead... what a journey!

Congrats on the first 15 years of a hopefully long and ongoing; awesome, creative venture!

Hail to the king of numbers!

Yeah, Newgrounds had insane traffic back in the day. If there wasn't something funny on cable (which there usually wasn't back then), you had Newgrounds or hot garbage like Ebaumsworld. YouTube didn't start picking up steam as anything more than a "fail video" and Family Guy clip hosting site until 2007sh. Now there's Netflix, Hulu, and a million other streaming options a click away.
As an example of how easy it was to hit it big on NG back in the day, that first Worms video I did above never made the front page, but it has nearly a quarter of a million views.

The Thai award didn't really go places. At 13, I took a bus up to Bangkok and bunked with a friend for a week-long training course on how to use Flash (at the time, I did correspondence courses with the US, so I didn't really have art classes as a kid). Somehow my creation from the course was one of the top 3 and there were folks there recruiting with art programs in the city, but I had to return to the little town in the country where my parents worked, so I couldn't pursue anything further at the time. Any "success" I've had in digital animation is entirely due to Newgrounds.

Thanks for the kind comments!

Huzzah!

Ah man don't mention Ebaums. XD Though they had an interesting ride too, I remember this article about the founder and his dad... though apparently I don't really remember at all because I can't remember what it was about at all. I know it made me see them with a bit less enmity than I used to, though. They've had some tough times too.

Also to think that through all this turmoil and traffic-related turbulence - the whole world searching the corners of the Net for cable replacements and finding the one and only - the entire site was running on a regular computer in Tom's closet... Probably far before its peak, though. YouTube didn't even exist back when we started gaining that crazy traction. To think how quick attention can shift from one thing to another, even when you seem to be doing everything the right away; expanding like crazy...

Do you still have any of those early Flashes you worked on in school around? Any of them uploaded here? I guess the correspondence courses were more so traditional art, letter-based? Though how did that even work in those days? It's cool to hear NG is the one entity that's had such a profound influence and impact on you though. Also: same here. All I ever got into, except for simple writing and graphic design, was at least in large part thanks to this place.

Crazy about the Worms video too. Though the fact that you unintentionally landed at 456 saves and blams both... that might just be the craziest thing of all. :)

Wow 15 years. I remember finding your Spirit of Halloween series years ago when I was in elementary school. I showed the series to my sister and we were instantly hooked. Years later, as a freshman in high school, I saw part 3 was frontpaged on this site. I immediately told my sister. "He made a part 3". We stopped what we were doing and watched it.

Thanks for years of entertainment ✌️

Get out. This is the coolest comment. Thank you so much for sharing that.

Good read, seems like great people can't stop doing great things. Keep shreddin

Congrats son that's like almost 8 million minutes or 6 trips to a Dunkin Donuts drive thru.

Thanks! Haven't had time to check the portal today - find anything underappreciated that I can steal credit for recommending?

Holy hell, I actually remember watching your Dare video back in 2008/2009 or something like that, and loving the hell out of it.
Cool to see ya back, tho

This was an awesome trip down memory lane.. didn't know you lived in Thailand..as a kid growing up in the S.Bronx, that personally sounded awesome.. always great reading from an OG.. luv ya man.

Nice to hear from you dude. Makes me feel nostalgic for the good old days on the art forum! Good luck with your upcoming projects :)