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I've been coming the Newgrounds since before there was any Flash, back when Tom Fulp just had a handful of HTML based games on this domain. I'm sad to say that I think my time of visiting Newgrounds has come to a close. It is a combination of a lot of things. For one, I don't like the redesign, I feel everything is "too large and clunky." While the background images and everything give the site a little more visual "pizazz," it doesn't look as streamlined and easy to navigate as the older sites. Since the redesign I have gone from visiting this site almost daily to only about two times total in the past six months.
Secondly, and I hate to say this, but I feel like Newgrounds has gone from being innovative to being a follower. You could tell that when Youtube debuted, they copied a lot of features that Newgrounds had. Now it is Newgrounds that seems to be following Youtube. Unfortunately Youtube now wins out because, in my opinion, it is more streamlined and easier to navigate and not so cluttered with visuals. Most of my favorite NG artists now upload to Youtube so there is little point in coming here. Newgrounds is also trying to be some kind of quasi social media site, it seems. Newgrounds used to be about being rebellious and being on the fringe (many controversial videos that would be deleted on other sites made headlines on Newgrounds over the years). Now Newgrounds just seems like any other social media website.
Lastly, and this is the biggest reason: the fact that Adobe Flash is so readily available and now taught in most schools has been a double edged sword for the site, I feel. On one hand, many incredible artists and story tellers can now get there movies and games out there, but I feel the downside is that many not so talented people have flooded the site with less than quality work. Not so poor that it gets "blammed" but not entertaining. Just average and dull. The average age of the Newgrounds visitor has probably plummeted down to around 12-14 years old and you can really tell. The humor is very juvenile around here. Maybe it's just because I'm 14 years older than I was when I first started coming to Newgrounds, but the same old "dick jokes" and all the usual Newgrounds humor just isn't funny to me anymore.
Back in the year 2000 you had to be dedicated to this art form in order to create a good movie or game. Adobe Flash wasn't readily available on a torrent site and it wasn't taught in high schools. Kids back then hadn't grown up with the internet from birth. Look up a movie called "The Final Task." To this day you could easily make the mistake of thinking that this movie was created in the year 2012. It wasn't. It was made 12 years ago on one of the earliest versions of Flash, which was much harder to use and lacked many of the features that Flash has today. Also, back when Newgrounds started featuring Flash, we had dial-up internet. Watching a single movie could mean waiting up to 20-30 minutes of load time. This meant you had to be a dedicated fan of the artists and the site in order to stick around for any length of time. Now that movies load in seconds, just about anyone can stick around here and troll.
Will Newgrounds go one for many years to come? No doubt it will, but unfortunately I am moving on. I wish Tom Fulp and the rest of the creative team behind the site success for many years to come. I thank them for 14 good, solid years of entertainment.