Posted this on tumblr, thought I might as well post it here.
Yes, it’s the end of Harry Potter, yes it’s the end of an era, but by no means is it the end of the world. Many people of today’s generation and especially those around my age (21) grew up with the Harry Potter franchise, first the books and then the movies. It holds a huge nostalgic and sentimental value to me. I can remember reading these books, waiting anxiously for them to be released every summer, wondering what adventures they were going to go on next. What new spell they were going to learn. What new mythical creature they were going to come up against. JK Rowling is a (creative and literary) genius and she knows how to speak to kids with these extraordinary adventures and at the same time, adults with analogs to political and religious things. I’m a firm believer that the Harry Potter books are well and truly one of a kind and that there is something in there for everybody to love and associate with.
Watching the movies, you see these actors grow up and you grow up with them. You see not only the characters progress and grow, but the actors themselves. It’s a natural feeling to feel that you’re losing something with the end of the Harry Potter movies; I know that I do. But it’s not the end of the world. You’re not going to die. Everything isn’t suddenly going to come to a halt. You’re forever going to have the movies and the books to look back on and read again with nostalgic and sentimental value. People are making a bigger deal of this than they need to be.
So take this for what it is. The end of something magnificent, something ground-breaking, something monumental, something magical. As they say, all good things must come to an end. But don’t make it more than it needs to be. Harry Potter will always be here, always be accessible. And on top of that JK has said that she could easily write more books should the notion ever strike her. I wouldn’t be counting Harry and his cohorts out of the mix just yet.
There are some new evolutions variant covers coming out (xerox-kitty talks about them in her topic What Do you Think... About the 'X-Men Evolutions' Variant Covers?) and a few of them really caught my eye, specifically the Kitty and Emma ones. So, I checked out which comics they were the variants to and it turns out that the Emma one is for Hulk #33..a comic that I have no intention of reading. I'll pick up that issue anyways, simply for the variant cover, because I'm a HUGE Emma Frost fan. So my question is this, will you buy a comic that you don't read simply for the variant cover?
During part of the Roundtable discussion that I was part of today, we discussed solicits for the month of July. I read most of my comics as trades and as such, never really paid much attention to the solicits, as I didn't want to spoil myself for future story lines. Today it came to my attention the amount of tie-ins and associated issues that there are for some events. I think Caligula counted something like 17 for Flashpoint and around 24 for Fear Itself (it's ten of 6 am, I'll go back and count them myself later); so my question is this: how much is too much? How many tie-ins are too many? Whether they're issues that you don't have to read to comprehend the main story, or issues that are crucial to understanding the plot? Do the kill your interest in reading the story when you have to buy a large amount of issues that aren't really pertinent, but that fill in gaps? Or do they make you want to wait for the trades to be published (which is what I'll be doing)?
As I'm sure you've noticed there have been some minute changes to Comic Vine in the past three days or so. The final (I believe) change just went live, which was the header and a few other little things. I'm sure it's going to take a while to get used to, but what are your thoughts on it? Yay or nay?
Will have screenshots added in to compare the two in a little while.
Here's a comparing of the two versions. Newer version is on the right.
Today (March 25) is my one year Vineversary (copyrighted by icarusflies).
It was on this day one year ago that I made my original account courtney12490.
In the span of one year, I have met some amazing people here. Some of them are great acquaintances who I have awesome conversations with, the others are lifelong friends. The Vine is first and foremost a community and I'm happy to be a part of it.
So in one year I've
Amassed a whole lot of friends
Nearly 30,000 wiki points (28,243)
37,840 posts and am Whiskey Media's top poster of the year (cementing the fact that I spend way too much time here) x_X
Have a pinned thread in the quest forum (clues to the quests that I've written up and a ton of other people have contributed to)
Am a top poster in the off-topic forum, editing & tools forum (with both accounts), quest forum (with both accounts) and bug reporting forum
I love Comic Vine... am addicted really. My favorite website. That's based a lot on content, but more than that, it's based on the community. I've met some of my best friends here, people who I've come to grow really really close to. Met my ex-boyfriend here, and my current..not quite sure what we are. So when I say that I love the WM sites and the people here (minus a select few), I mean it. I adore the layout (they've pretty much ruined me for other websites) and I adore the conversations that I have with people. Whether it's RPGing or just talking about random crap in off-topic. I love this site so much and appreciate what you guys have done so much that I opted in for a paid membership. The main motivation for this was because it allows for access to the mobile site, everything else was just a side benefit.
That being said, Whiskey Media has less than ideal customer relations. We are never notified when the site goes down for maintenance. We are never notified when the site receives a "super-human upgrade", there isn't a set date for when quests come out and we aren't notified when the engineers do something that may result in bugs. I understand that you guys started out as something really small, that Dave built something really impressive out of very little and I admire that. But I think that that would give you guys even more reason to communicate better with us. The Whiskey Media websites (most of them) are part forum and part wiki, but they're all user-added info. Without the community you guys would have nothing. The databases would be about an eighth of the size (if that) and you would have no forums. Two things that I think everybody loves about the WM family. You're able to learn things and then discuss them, without having to go to a bunch of different websites to do so.
I'd think that you'd be a little more interested in reaching out to those users and making sure that they're happy with the way that things are being handled, considering you rely on them for so much. Even more now that you're offering paid services and pushing for 15,000 subscriptions so that you can do the Giant Bomb world tour. I don't see that happening, though and it's really disheartening.
Something happened today that finally prompted this little rant. At about 6 PM EST things on CV (and from what I'm hearing at least Giant Bomb and Anime Vice as well) got FUBAR. It started with slow loading pages and 504 and 502 errors. It progressed to 500 errors on basically every page. Here is a list that another user and myself compiled of bugs that we noticed:
Profile page leads to a 500 error No points rewarded for wiki editing Wiki submissions do not reload themselves, endless processing image, can't view changes without page refresh Post count isn't updating Posting in the forum is hit or miss Forum post time ago is broken Number of posts in new threads is not displaying Internal server errors 504 and 502 errors Following feed/activity is broken @replies are broken Activity on profile pages isn't updating Writing on walls leads to a 500 error until you refresh the page
To sum it up: the only thing that seems to actually be working is PMs. The items in bold resolved themselves.
At about 9:30 EST I tweeted @whiskeymedia, asking if there was any word on the bugs that were effecting at least three of their sites right now. I was replied to with "We have had no other reports of errors. Could you please give details? Email support at if you need more than 40." (despite the fact that they had been tweeted at earlier by sora_thekey asking nearly the exact same question I had) and the fact that there are literally ten topics covering these bugs in Bug Reporting right now. Which is another issue, because things aren't properly posting, nobody can see the OP making the bug reports pretty much usless. I emailed email@example.com with as many details as I could provide and with screenshots. Some of which I will provide now.
When you're running a forum website, I'd say that it's a main objective to be able to have people effectively communicate with each other. That didn't happen last night. When you run a wiki, I'd say that it's a main objective to be able to have people have their edits process properly. Again, something that didn't happen. At the time of me writing this, the site has been down for over eight hours without one freaking word from anybody or a response to my e-mail. I understand that the engineers have lives, but a simple "we're aware that there's a problem, we will fix it as soon as possible" would be nice.
I'm not asking for a magic switch that when you flip it it suddenly makes all the bugs go away. I'm asking for a little communication. When you get a lot of your money from paid subscriptions and your websites are both forum websites and wiki websites that are edited by users, I think you should have a good rapport with those users and try to at least keep them informed of what's going on. Something that Whiskey Media as a whole is doing a pretty lousy job of.
So I guess my final point is this. I love Comic Vine and I love the community here. But customer (because that's what some of us are now, we're your customers, we give you money for services rendered) relations leaves a lot to be desired.
And just to note, this was written at 3 AM EST March 11, 2011.
Added note: Not all of use follow Red LAMP on Twitter. The only reason I even knew he tweeted about it was because Sora re-tweeted and it showed up in his status update. Would've been nice if Whiskey Media could have tweeted it, as I'm sure they have more followers than Ethan.
Last night I was insulted in the Real Life Pic Thread. As somebody with really really low self confidence, it hit me pretty hard. Aztek, FTBB, ComicMan24, Sexy Merc and Lord_Oraculous016 and Donnie were all quick to jump to my defense and to tell me otherwise. So I just wanted to say thank you.