An Open Letter to The Escapist Community

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So how much money does Defy want for the site?

I'd be happy to contribute something to the site. I've never published content anywhere before, but I've got a degree in creative writing which has been gathering dust; it would be cool to exercise it a bit.

Not sure what I would do, as I don't have the time or money to do reviews of new games or movies. Maybe an editorial column or something along those lines.

tippy2k2:

As to requirements "quality"-wise (if you were wondering about that, I'm not certain if you just wanted the technical part), it'll basically be kind of a judgement call on our part. We will have some standards when it comes to writing and video (even my silly "Weekly Game Release" thing goes through the team to iron out kinks and make what I write entertaining) so it's not like we'll just throw anything up :)

*looks at Taco News*

You sure about that?

ResonanceSD:
To all those decrying reddit for no coherent reason, feel free to post your ideas/solutions anywhere in this thread.

I don't like the format and layout of Reddit, and I also don't like the lack of user groups. I don't like trying to navigate Reddit, I don't even like how the thread links are designed so that if you want to see the comments on a thread that links to a different website, you need to specifically click on the comments link rather than the thread. And the threads themselves are a mess, an unstructured mass of chaos which forms a sea of disconnected comments that are nearly impossible to source or pick out from the rest of the pack. The entire website is one massive usability nightmare that I don't have any clue how anyone ever fell in love with.

No, I don't really have any other ideas or "solutions" because, frankly, nearly everything I would've cared enough to save from this website has been gone for years now, except for the small number of people I regularly chat with in aforementioned user groups. But yes, I and many other people have "no coherent reason" for hating Reddit.

ResonanceSD:

Elvis Starburst:

ResonanceSD:
/r/gaming is terrible, /r/games is also shit, but for different reasons, the best gaming sub i've seen is /r/pcgaming because it isn't chock full of idiots.

Could make ourselves a /r/EscapistMagazine or something if it comes to that?

You mean https://www.reddit.com/r/EscapistMagazine/? It's been up for two years.

I think Souplex made one a couple years ago too. It didn't catch on either. If the users here wanted to be on reddit, they'd be on reddit. We're on the Escapist because we like the Escapist (mostly).

damn its a real shame, i like to read this site.

Drathnoxis:

ResonanceSD:

Elvis Starburst:

Could make ourselves a /r/EscapistMagazine or something if it comes to that?

You mean https://www.reddit.com/r/EscapistMagazine/? It's been up for two years.

I think Souplex made one a couple years ago too. It didn't catch on either. If the users here wanted to be on reddit, they'd be on reddit. We're on the Escapist because we like the Escapist (mostly).

i agree this forum its easier to use than reddit when it comes to discussions and other stuff, not to say that their UIs have different uses and the escapist forums allows for a better organization on themes.

tippy2k2:

BreakfastMan:
So, what is the requirements you guys have for putting something on the site? Can you guys do videos as well as articles?

As you've seen with Taco News, we can do articles and we have the ability to do video I believe (though no one has tried so I am assuming but I see no reason why we can't).

As to requirements "quality"-wise (if you were wondering about that, I'm not certain if you just wanted the technical part), it'll basically be kind of a judgement call on our part. We will have some standards when it comes to writing and video (even my silly "Weekly Game Release" thing goes through the team to iron out kinks and make what I write entertaining) so it's not like we'll just throw anything up :)

I was thinking content wise. Are there like content or topic standards?

BreakfastMan:

tippy2k2:

BreakfastMan:
So, what is the requirements you guys have for putting something on the site? Can you guys do videos as well as articles?

As you've seen with Taco News, we can do articles and we have the ability to do video I believe (though no one has tried so I am assuming but I see no reason why we can't).

As to requirements "quality"-wise (if you were wondering about that, I'm not certain if you just wanted the technical part), it'll basically be kind of a judgement call on our part. We will have some standards when it comes to writing and video (even my silly "Weekly Game Release" thing goes through the team to iron out kinks and make what I write entertaining) so it's not like we'll just throw anything up :)

I was thinking content wise. Are there like content or topic standards?

Ask NewClassic--he's our volunteer Editor-In-Chief, now.

If it does go down. It's been a pleasure. It'll be an honestly strange experience removing something that's been on my site bar longer than facebook has been. I lurked from Zero Punctuation episode 3 onward before admitting to myself that after watching ZP I actually liked reading the articles and the forum over a year later and I think it might be the longest time I've spent in a single corner of the internet.

I truly am sad at the state of things.

I never thought there would be another use for this song, but life's funny that way.

I'll admit I signed on a couple of years after Yahtzee's first videos, 2010 according to my profile, and been a regular ever since. So like some of the OGs, I'll be here until the flick the lights off. When that happens, one less website on my favourites bar I guess.

ResonanceSD:
To all those decrying reddit for no coherent reason, feel free to post your ideas/solutions anywhere in this thread.

While I personally don't have a problem with creating a subreddit - I'm mostly on reddit these days anyway (incidentally for good gaming discussion I've found r/patientgamers to be alright and our Discord is pretty active with recent release and general patient gaming chatter plug plug shut up EscapeGoat - I think there's a general practical reason for not migrating.

Format stuff is a pretty easy one to see. As customisable as reddit is, some Users on here are just more comfortable with the familiar old trappings of the Escapist and that's fair enough. Given we've decided on going down this route regarding content creation I would suggest as well that it's worth continuing using this site because, funnily enough, it does still have a bit of a presence. Perhaps the best idea might be to create a sister subreddit and crosspost articles to it.

ResonanceSD:
To all those decrying reddit for no coherent reason, feel free to post your ideas/solutions anywhere in this thread.

I did. Host our own forum on the cheap. Hell, I'd be willing to donate. And I gave very coherent reasons for Reddit being shit. Also at the moment, I'm waiting on one of the staff to update us as to how much of the site we actually can modify.

As to what people liked about Reddit, they liked it because it (sort of) filled in the gap totse.com used to way back in the day by offering a sort of megaforum for everyone to talk about what they want. But it fundamentally fails at this for the reasons I described plus also, I don't agree with hosting it in the US.

Arnoxthe1:

ResonanceSD:
To all those decrying reddit for no coherent reason, feel free to post your ideas/solutions anywhere in this thread.

I did. Host our own forum on the cheap. Hell, I'd be willing to donate. And I gave very coherent reasons for Reddit being shit. Also at the moment, I'm waiting on one of the staff to update us as to how much of the site we actually can modify.

Unfortunately, not a lot. We don't have access to the technical nuts and bolts of the site, so we can only work with what already exists. We can create any type of article, add or remove sub forums etc, but we can't change things coded into the site like avatar sizes, or the forum healthbar.

ResonanceSD:
You mean https://www.reddit.com/r/EscapistMagazine/? It's been up for two years.

Nah you can cop the flak, happy to hand that one off.

I didn't know that, I don't browse Reddit enough to care. And nah, I'm good, you keep it

I appreciate the update and admire your dedication.

God bless you, volunteers! I hope we can keep the site up indefinitely!!!!

Wow. Quite a road this site's gone down, huh? I remember lurking around this place since 2010, since some guy pointed me towards this site after reading one of my old machinima reviews and telling me it reminded him of Zero Punctuation. I came for the ZP, stayed for the articles, and eventually became a forumgoer for a while. Crazy to believe that there were once expos about this site. I hope against hope that this site can rise again, and I'll say, seeing Taco News on the front page gave me a good chuckle, so maybe there's hope yet. I'll probably still be here if or when the lights go out, though in lesser capacity than previous times. Life circumstances and all that. I'll always remember this place as somewhere i made some damn good lifelong friends, even if many of them are dead or banned now, and the place where some wonderful content came to flourish.

I haven't frequented the forums in forever but I used to read/view a lot of content on here. It is still force of habit to load up The Escapist on a regular basis to check for new content which of course has been almost non-existent for awhile.

I wish you all luck and hope you can right the ship.

Well, since we all admit we're on a sinking ship now: Is there a way to archive this website? To freeze the forums in time, just not make posting or any other modifications possible anymore? This site has close to 10 years of my changing opinions, posts chronicling my rise to adulthood, and I'll be pissed if all that goes away. I joined when I was 16, and I'm 25 now, so it's a genuinely personally valuable documentation of a part of my life. It's like a diary. So am i forced to start taking thousands of screenshots of all the threads I've saved over the years (obviously I don't want all of my post history to be saved, just the ones I consider important), or is there some technical voodoo trick to preserve it in its current state?

JoJo:
Unfortunately, not a lot. We don't have access to the technical nuts and bolts of the site, so we can only work with what already exists. We can create any type of article, add or remove sub forums etc, but we can't change things coded into the site like avatar sizes, or the forum healthbar.

I wonder if Defy knew if that if we were given full control of the site software, we'd kick Yahtzee off because he doesn't give a shit about us. lol

bartholen:
Well, since we all admit we're on a sinking ship now: Is there a way to archive this website? To freeze the forums in time, just not make posting or any other modifications possible anymore? This site has close to 10 years of my changing opinions, posts chronicling my rise to adulthood, and I'll be pissed if all that goes away. I joined when I was 16, and I'm 25 now, so it's a genuinely personally valuable documentation of a part of my life. It's like a diary. So am i forced to start taking thousands of screenshots of all the threads I've saved over the years (obviously I don't want all of my post history to be saved, just the ones I consider important), or is there some technical voodoo trick to preserve it in its current state?

Defy has the database and it looks like from what Jojo's saying, they don't have access to that. There is the wayback machine but... XP Not very reliable.

bartholen:
Well, since we all admit we're on a sinking ship now: Is there a way to archive this website? To freeze the forums in time, just not make posting or any other modifications possible anymore? This site has close to 10 years of my changing opinions, posts chronicling my rise to adulthood, and I'll be pissed if all that goes away. I joined when I was 16, and I'm 25 now, so it's a genuinely personally valuable documentation of a part of my life. It's like a diary. So am i forced to start taking thousands of screenshots of all the threads I've saved over the years (obviously I don't want all of my post history to be saved, just the ones I consider important), or is there some technical voodoo trick to preserve it in its current state?

I've been here since mid 2009, and took a long break after the moderation team here went right mental. I agree with some of what you've said here in terms of your opinions growing up. Unfortunately you may already find that some of your older threads have disappeared. My thread about Extra Credits leaving the escapist has long since been deleted.

You should watch this.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=suRDUFpsHus

All I can say is, I'm relieved to see the elephant in the room finally acknowledged. I'll probably continue to stick around until the site disappears. Been occasionally posting since '09, and lurking for even longer than that, so it's a bit hard to let go, you know?

Major_Tom:
You guys are like the band that kept playing as the Titanic sank.

This is a beautiful metaphor.

If I can ever come up with some sort of column or something I'd be able to crank out at what I consider a reasonable quality on a weekly basis, I'll submit it for review. Even if just as a volunteer, I'd be happy to support this site if it needs it.

It's badass that you guys are holding in there. It's also amazing that Yahtzee is so important he is still getting paid even when others are not. That's a celebrity status right there. I wonder where he'll go and what he'll do after this?

Saelune:
*looks at Taco News*

You sure about that?

Yes; you not liking something doesn't make it low quality.

BreakfastMan:
I was thinking content wise. Are there like content or topic standards?

If it's good with the CoC, I imagine we'll at least consider it. Obviously the sites main focus is vidja games but if you've got something interesting to say about movies or comics or really anything in "geek" culture, we may be interested.

If there's something specific you have in mind, feel free to ask.

tippy2k2:

If it's good with the CoC, I imagine we'll at least consider it. Obviously the sites main focus is vidja games but if you've got something interesting to say about movies or comics or really anything in "geek" culture, we may be interested.

If there's sonething specific you have in mind, feel free to ask.

I think that'd be worth the Team having a chat about but personally I'm all for it. The site used to host stuff that wasn't just video game-centric, I'd hazard a guess that anything geek culture related will hold some interest for at least someone on the site and to be pragmatic, anything that might bring a few views to someone who wants to write is always worth a look at. Definitely be glad to see more non-video game geek culture stuff on here.

Loads of respect to the volounteers. I have neither the time nor the skill to help out with anything but suggestions, I'm afraid.
But as for suggestions: like all sites, the Escapist wants traffic, but you don't get traffic without content. And there's not a lot of new content. So how about making the tonnes of content that's been made over the years more accessible? Currently, you can't find any of the content that's not being regularly updated from the home page. Make the massive archives a selling point, don't hide it away. It should generate add revenue, not dust.

I'm glad that you're doing everything you can to keep the site going in these dark times. Man, this used to be my go-to site for game related news. It used to be so beautiful :(

I'd be too curious to miss out on BreakfastMan's content. Even if it's just once.

I don't know, making someone without a single post a mod just seems wrong to me. They aren't a member of this community.

Arnoxthe1:

Marik2:
What does Yatzhee feel about all of this?

Who cares what he thinks. He stopped caring about The Escapist a long time ago so I don't consider him one of us. As far as I'm concerned, we, being the collective Escapist community composed of volunteer staff members and users, now own The Escapist's entire spirit and most of the damn site since Defy has made it pretty clear that they don't want it.

Fine. We'll take it then.

Wintermute:
What's so bad about Reddit? I only visited it like 4 or 5 times.

It's not necessarily Reddit itself that's bad. It's the fact that upvote/downvote systems in general pretty much enforce mob mentality, prejudice, stale content, circlejerks, and witch hunts.

Yatzhee is the cash influx that keeps the site running. Don't bite the hand which feeds you.

The news are sad to hear, but very much expected, and honestly not news at all. I salute the volunteers who keep what was once a Bastion of game news media online. no matter if the situation turns to better - as unlikely as that is - or worse, the site stands defiant until the bitter end. Not many can say that.

Kudos, guys. I'm not going anywhere either, I enjoy the discussions, the differing points of view, and have made some friends even.

...

I... I might be able to try my hand at written book reviews? I read all the time, and would love to try my hand at writing up my opinions- subject to review prior, of course. I mainly read horror novels and short stories, and some sci-fi, but if there's an audience here for that, that might be swell.

I'd also love to link to some content that some friends of mine have been making- game reviews and general discussions on youtube, with let's plays as well. The have a ton of content.

Yeah, we knew the staff was mostly fired and that this site is currently dying. I don't think I'll be able to contribute much but my appreciation so my complements to the remaining mods and staff who are doing a good job considering the circumstances.

So question: is the site's back end still unavailable to the mods and team? Is there any hope for an eventual captcha or other measure against the spambots or similar problems that might crop up?

Pseudonym:

So question: is the site's back end still unavailable to the mods and team? Is there any hope for an eventual captcha or other measure against the spambots or similar problems that might crop up?

Yeah, it's still unavailable, and there's no sign of us being given the keys anytime soon.

ResonanceSD:
To all those decrying reddit for no coherent reason, feel free to post your ideas/solutions anywhere in this thread.

Personally I'd use a subreddit if it were me, but if people are against it you can rent forum hosting online or roll your own site using something prebuilt like Proboards and slap it up in a cloud instance or two. It's pretty damn doable, the main issue is actually getting someone to support and monitor it for free and paying the site rental.

I mean, if you dispose of the custom code and accept a smaller number of video articles you're looking at a fairly typical community site with a forum, setting one up is actually incredibly easy. The tricky part is either getting this domain or getting a domain everyone else knows but that's a separate issue really.

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