If you think about all of the photos, drawings, videos and posts that have ever gone viral, the vast majority all have something very simple in common; their sentiment is deeply genuine.
From kookslams to (the classic) chocolate rain, fisheye placebo, pepper and so on... countless are the examples of massive viral success. What we love about them isn't just the substance of their comedy, drama and/or beauty, it is also their genuine humanity.
The best art allows us to see and ourselves.
By contrast, I can't think of any success on the Internet that came about from auto-responding scripts, cut-paste responses, and phony "Thanks for the fav!" posts.
This kind of thing might increase counters, and get peoples attention for a few minutes because it upsets them. But it doesn't create any lasting value. For anyone trying to build a real audience, remember that your audience is smart. If something feels off with your behavior then you lose all of your efforts in being genuine with just one instance of perceived cheating.
I see a lot of quality accounts using spammy scripts to auto-respond to Llama sends, +Favs, and even direct comments. "Thanks!" "Thanks for the Llama, check out my XXX" - Let alone the many overt attacks that happen.
What a wasted opportunity. Every time you're given a chance to connect with another person, you're a participant in your community and you're creating the environment around you. If you rush through that with an automation and a cheat, you're failing twice. 1st you aren't going to get what you're after, and 2nd you hurt your community causing people to like you (and that community) a little bit less.
If you want other people to see you, to give you feedback, to enjoy your work (literary, visual, or even conversational), then try being that person you want to see out there.
Do you use scripts?
Do you copy-paste responses?
Let's talk about it in the comments. Answer these questions:
What value does this bring you?
Why do you do it?
Do you receive copy-pasted looking posts?
How does it make you feel?
We're all lucky if we are able to pursue our passions, it's not something that should be taken for granted. So I am deeply grateful for our team to have the opportunity to revisit the one thing we've been trying to do for about 9 years; the completion of Groups and their proper integration into DeviantArt.
For good solid real world reasons, we've not been in a position to try. And today, thanks to Wix, we are.
It takes ~12 years for Jupiter to make its loop around the sun, we're 75% of the way there since Groups launched in 2009. It looks like we'll make it happen with years to spare.
I personally believe it's the most important problem that's yet to be solved in online communities and social platforms. We know how to do it, and now we have the chance to.
Wish us luck. We owe you this.
Cover Image Credit:
Nineteen isn't usually the most exciting number of years to celebrate. For our 10th Birthday for example, we sold out the House of Blues on Sunset Blvd in Hollywood, with a red carpet and real live llamas you could take your photo with out front. Thousands of deviants showed up from all over the world, and it was insane.
Nineteen "19"? Not so much, typically. But DeviantArt has never been a typical place, and it just so happens that the timing of this birthday is incredibly meaningful. Serendipity. Especially if you could see things from my perspective.
The theme of 19 for me is that each of us has the power to manifest their own reality, to achieve what we dream of, and to become what we want to become. The trick is that we probably won't get there the way we think we will. The path swerves, it gets bumpy, we get ill and need to stop, schedules and plans break, flat tires, broken legs. We run out of money. Relationships hurt us. And we're merely human beings trying to get to where we want to be. And in some cases, to manifest what we see.
I've observed that in the lives of creative people, we rarely celebrate at the right time. If you design a character and make a movie, you know very early on that your character is special and that its very creation has immense meaning, but the true celebration for that character is usually after the movie is made and performs well and the movie wins an Oscar ... 7 years later! By contrast, if you win in basketball you get to celebrate the same evening.
DeviantArt's 20th birthday will ultimately appear to be more exciting, not only because we'll probably try and beat our 10th celebration, but because a lot of very big projects will have launched fully and the true excitement of all of our collective efforts will be in full swing. But today, from my perspective, is the right moment to celebrate. It's a moment where an incredible team at DeviantArt has truly started to hit its stride, to connect with our mission, and begin releasing incredible products for our great community.
Meanwhile, the DeviantArt community formed in August of 2000, and at that time I was 19 years old. DeviantArt becoming the same age that I was when we began is very special and strange to me, and as those 19 years fold into two so neatly, I feel a natural high that feels symmetrical and wonderful as we open a new fold in to the future.
What a collective, giant, immense success we have created together. I am so proud of us, all of the stories that I read and hear from all corners of the world with deviants beginning their journeys and manifesting their realities in all known creative fields.
So for our birthday, I'd like to raise a toast to Deviants, who for 19 years have overcome so many obstacles to manifest their realities. To the supportive and loving place that DeviantArt has remained throughout. And to the idea of celebrating the powerful moments you encounter on your journeys that others don't know to celebrate with you, because they just don't see what you see yet.
In other words, cheers to 19 years of deviations, and to 19 more!
p.s. A joy to see DeviantArt trending worldwide yesterday on Twitter (50K retweets) - We welcome you all back.
p.p.s. Check things things out for the birthday:
We got a staff release tonight with Feedback v2 (simple & advanced) and I'm using advanced mode (which most resembles the current MC) a whole lot. If you're testing Eclipse you should hopefully see this update within a week or two.
It's really early to tell, but so far it has really grabbed me. I'm in Eclipse and my behaviors are a lot more familiar and similar to green, and I'm on a bit of a rampage replying to people.
So to celebrate, I'd love to hear from you, answer any questions you might have presently, and generally make myself available for any feedback.
- Send me art to look at and comment on.
- Ask me DeviantArt Eclipse questions.
- Ask me general DeviantArt questions.
- Ask me most questions.
I'd really prefer not to discuss:
- Specific moderation desk cases.
- Interpersonal issues between you and other members.