Comic Talk and General Discussion

So what's the DD story?
Bruno Harm at 9:12AM, Feb. 9, 2016
(offline)
posts: 121
joined: 10-18-2015
So I've only been making comics for a year. I've been on other sites for a while. I've heard of Drunk Duck, but nothing good. Something about it shutting down? Anyway, I hadn't really followed up because of this, but stumbling upon it now…. it seems cool.
So what did I miss? Am I woefully misinformed? or can an old timer fill me in on the tragic details?
ozoneocean at 10:29AM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
Well the site was started by Dylan Squires as a free comic host in 2002.
It was one of the first, alongside KeenSpace. (Keenspace became Comicgenesis later)

In 2003 a bug caused almost all comic accounts to be deleted and people had to start over.

At the end of 2005 the entire site got deleted because the hosting server people messed up and their company tanked.
At the very start of 2006 the site was rebuilt and we all started over again. I worked hard to rally people back to the site searching out deviant art and wherever else people had gone to.

In about 2008 (I think), Dylan sold the site to a media publishing company called Platinum Studios, who he also went on to work for. This was extremely popular at the time and we attracted a massive influx of of new members and pro comicers looking to be noticed by Platinum.

New and good things started to happen with the site like sponsored promo events at conventions, paid for tables, Platinum would pay to advertise DD comics, DD members got money from platinum to advertise platinum comics and other ads on their comics on DD. There was an event where artists auditioned to get a job making their comic FOR Platinum and get paid for it. Some artists were paid for the movie rights to their comic…
New features and a store were added to the site. Admins were paid for their work on the site.

Eventually things came unravelled for Platinum and they started losing money. Bugs and issues cropped up at DD and there was no one at Platinum who could fix things here so stuff got worse and worse.
Plat introduced more ads here to try and make their money back and those were VERY unpopular.
The deals with the paid comic artists came unravelled and they weren't getting paid. Admin money dried up and the money artists got for the various other deals also dried up, and most of the original admins left till It was just me and Skoolmunee.

Platinum transferred the site to Wowio ownership in 2010.
They got some more money to fix the site and things started happening again. They got a programmer to do a major revamp of the site so all the old buggy code would go. Admis started getting paid again.

In 2011 the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) hit Wowio HARD and their financial backers and deals fell appart. Without the money they were relying on they couldn't afford to pay the programmers to finish the upgrade of the site so it was basically left 75% done. And with no programmers or money all the bugs and issues that crop up just got worse and worse with no prospect of a fix. The money dried up for the admins and people who had deals with Wowio. Skoolmunkee left and I was the only admin here.

In 2013 (I think), the site went down HARD for a good few months because Wowio didn't pay hosting bills on time and the hosting company deleted the site from the servers with no backup- which was a mistake. The guy at Wowio set to handle DD was inept and made things worse.

At the point it was down to me to do a fuckload of negotiating and having meetings with former DD members through all my social contacts to rally people and gather the ones we needed with expertise, meeting after meeting with with the former programmers of DD, Dylan, Lawrence and more, meetings with other programmers and layers getting advice, meetings with the owner of Wowio etc.

Eventually I got some of what I needed and we set about rebuilding.
The most valuable person I got on board was JNP who helped immensely with getting the site physically up again and through him the creator of the site ComicRocket. With their skill we got the site running on the servers again, and I rallied as many people back as I could.
As a gesture of good faith I paid $400 in hosting fees fr the site.

I recruited new people as part of our admin team (Hippievan, Kawaii etc), and we set about delegating tasks and bringing life back to the site.

2014-2015 The last guy managing us at Wowio left and things looked very shaky for us so I convinced the owner of Wowio to give me full control of DD and all assets.
At the start I had had to pay all the hosting costs from my own money but eventually he ads we put up through Project Wonderful started making enough to cover those costs with enough extra to slowly pay me back.

At the end of 2015 I used my own money together with some money we'd raised through the ads on the site to pay a programmer to make the site run better.

Currently we're paying the same programmer to fix the remaining bugs on the site as well as finish what was started back in 2011 AND add new features to the site- which we're asking the community about because THAT'S who the site is in the hands off now.
We're also asking the community to donate money to our Indiegogo campaign to help us pay for it:
http://igg.me/at/DrunkDuck
 
Genejoke at 10:55AM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 3,629
joined: 4-9-2010
Drunk duck was a fantastic site but the troubles drove a lot of users away, hence a lot of negativity. I even mostly stopped using the site for a time, but I never found another webcomic hosting site with as good a community. Sure it's not what it was in its hay day but things are picking up now that the site is independent again.
usedbooks at 11:12AM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 2,980
joined: 2-24-2007
It's a great community that has struggled under unstable and changing management (leading to several episodes of catastrophic technical problems). Current management is within the community, so it's not under such a threat but currently in the state of fixing/improving.
ozoneocean at 11:20AM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
The “hey day” of DD is tricky… I tried to pinpoint where it was myself but I found that what I did was conflate a bunch of different peiords:

In the early days of DD around 2004 there was a lot of energy and good people in the forums all the time, but the site was buggy as HELL and kept going down once every 2 days.
The site was also tiny and even though the forum was busy it was only because all the members ere always on- there were only maybe a hundred active people.

After 2006 when the site was remade it was a little bit more stable, so would only go down once a week. We got our people back, more energy again, great new features too… And more bugs.

When Platinum bought us it was the biggest the site ever got: thousands of new comics and members. It was TOO busy! This was a time of money sloshing around and all sorts of hopefuls coming to DD looking for their chance and all the other comic sites were jelous of us. We were getting new features and new opportunities all the time.
And the good networkers were getting cash!

Ironically most of the people most cynical about the Platinum days actually joined during those days because that gave us fame far and wide… I was VERY cynical about Plat at the start, one of the most cynical… and then I started getting money and benefits and I saw the good side XD
I think that's why they reached out to me, because they knew I'd bring people along if they got me on side.


So those are the three main hey days of DD that I know of. All different in character.
 
Genejoke at 11:31AM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 3,629
joined: 4-9-2010
I joined in that time and indeed became quite cynical about things, mostly during the wowio period.
Bruno Harm at 11:48AM, Feb. 9, 2016
(offline)
posts: 121
joined: 10-18-2015
Wow, in the words of Cyndi Lauper(who's getting these refrences?),“Money changes everything”

Well the site seems cool now. I hope things go better moving forward.

ashtree house at 11:54AM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 112
joined: 1-15-2015
I had always wanted to know the history of DD, so that was a great read! I'm a big fan, so let's make 2016 the new heyday!
KimLuster at 2:39PM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 716
joined: 5-15-2012
Wow… I just admire Ozone's dedication and tenacity in holding this thing together with what seems like his own sweat and blood!! I'm very impressed and thankful. The site is free for most of us, but certainly not ALL of us!! Thanks Ozone!!
ozoneocean at 4:20PM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
Thanks :D

My DD history is a little self serving because it's from my perspective, but the most important fact is that if it wasn't from the community here there wouldn't be a site, no matter what anyone did to try and keep it together.
 
HippieVan at 4:20PM, Feb. 9, 2016
(online)
posts: 3,003
joined: 3-15-2008
Bruno Harm wrote:
Wow, in the words of Cyndi Lauper(who's getting these refrences?),“Money changes everything”

Well the site seems cool now. I hope things go better moving forward.

I think they will! All of us who are in charge/doing various things around the site now are long-time users who are quite devoted to a) seeing the site improve and b) doing so with the input of the community. No tyrants or fatcats here.

KimLuster wrote:
Wow… I just admire Ozone's dedication and tenacity in holding this thing together with what seems like his own sweat and blood!! I'm very impressed and thankful. The site is free for most of us, but certainly not ALL of us!! Thanks Ozone!!

Seconded! Oz is awesome, there is literally no way the site could have survived all those bumps in the last few years without him.
Duchess of Friday Newsposts and the holy Top Ten
bravo1102 at 1:00AM, Feb. 10, 2016
(offline)
posts: 4,634
joined: 1-21-2008
You know some of the biggest sites get buggy and go down. So many forums are like roller coaster rides. But it is the best and friendliest and most helpful communities I've found. And a lot of that is Ozone. The man is amazing. And he has a full-time job to boot. What dedication. Hats off to a great master hat wearer. Ozoneocean.
Banes at 3:52PM, Feb. 10, 2016
(online)
posts: 447
joined: 8-13-2008
Gotta add in more kudos to ozoneocean's dedication and for going above and beyond to keep this site alive. A great guy, and the hero of the Duck.

He also got me off the street and into this really nice Sanitarium. Thanks bud!
Ironscarf at 8:19PM, Feb. 11, 2016
(online)
posts: 1,460
joined: 9-9-2008
Glad you're enjoying it Bruno Harm. I tried another site myself when things were not looking so good on The Duck, but it wasn't as good as the community here, to put it mildly!
The admin team now is really great and of course, Ozone is the coolest of cats. Thanks to the dedication of these talented folk, the site going from stregth to strength.
 
Whirlwynd at 1:47PM, Feb. 16, 2016
(online)
posts: 218
joined: 1-6-2006
Whoa, I was actually here for most of this but some of this is new information. Thanks for the writeup ozone!

toondoctor at 3:43AM, Feb. 26, 2016
(offline)
posts: 14
joined: 12-27-2014
@ozoneocean so to be clear you now own the full assets and rights to The Duck? Wowio is no longer involved at all, right?
Black_Kitty at 7:44PM, Feb. 26, 2016
(online)
posts: 1,487
joined: 1-1-2006
I just want to slip this in here~

http://www.rmcomics.com/Movie/Movie.htm
  
ozoneocean at 6:54AM, Feb. 27, 2016
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
The text under the vid is wrong- DD code wasn't lost in 2003/2004. I think Chuck misremembered.
Volte6 had code on that version of DD that deleted comics that didn't update for more than 3 months, unless they paid for “platinum” status (not related to Plat studios). At the end of 2003 a bug in that code caused it to delete all non-platinum comics with the changeover to 2004, regardless of update status.

@Toodoctor-
Brian Altounian owns the copyright to the name and to the old code and structure of DD.
That's the way it had to be if I was to get the level of control I did.
 
Black_Kitty at 7:20AM, Feb. 27, 2016
(online)
posts: 1,487
joined: 1-1-2006
ozoneocean wrote:
The text under the vid is wrong- DD code wasn't lost in 2003/2004. I think Chuck misremembered.
Volte6 had code on that version of DD that deleted comics that didn't update for more than 3 months, unless they paid for “platinum” status (not related to Plat studios). At the end of 2003 a bug in that code caused it to delete all non-platinum comics with the changeover to 2004, regardless of update status.


I don't think Chuck got it wrong honestly. That page with the video has been up there for quite a while. I just happen to stumble upon it again a few weeks ago while Googling up stuff about DD.

There was definitely a time very early in DD's life where the code was completely lost. I don't think platinum status even existed yet and we were still using comic ratings out of 10. Volte6 essentially had to recode the whole site, but wasn't sure if it was worth it so he put it out there for people to decide.
  
last edited on Feb. 27, 2016 7:21AM
ozoneocean at 8:43AM, Feb. 27, 2016
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
Yeah, that was at the end of 2005.
The host site Volte6 used was called “fairly Stable hosting” I think. They subleased their hosting from another company and offered ultra cheap prices. But the guy stopped paying his bills and DD became frozen for about two months and Volte6 couldn't access any of the site controls at that time, and people started to move away to other hosting. There was nothing Volte6 could do about it because he wasn't the owner of the sub-host so the main host wouldn't let him access DD either. He was powerless and that made him pretty depressed.
Then the site completely disappeared when the main host deleted the subleased hosted sites all in one go.

So Chuck conflated the 2005/06 event with the ‘03/’04 one.

At the start of 2006 the site started up as a forum only and he was asking people what the site should be because he didn't have the heart to start again. You can see it in the oldest forum posts in this very forum, it's all still there ^_^

There was talk about DD just becoming something like a list site like Buzz comics.
 
ozoneocean at 8:46AM, Feb. 27, 2016
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
It's all here, preserved in formaldehyde XD
http://www.theduckwebcomics.com/forum/9899/?page=67

The tragedy ad phoenix rebirth!
 
phinmagic at 10:57AM, Sept. 4, 2017
(online)
posts: 82
joined: 9-26-2006
For me, the heyday here was around 2008 ish. We had Civil War, DD Zombies and lots of great stuff going on.
What can we do to jump start that kind of creativity and fun back into here. THAT is the kind of stuff, I think, that will help bring folks back to DD.
ozoneocean at 4:51AM, Sept. 5, 2017
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
phinmagic wrote:
For me, the heyday here was around 2008 ish. We had Civil War, DD Zombies and lots of great stuff going on.
What can we do to jump start that kind of creativity and fun back into here. THAT is the kind of stuff, I think, that will help bring folks back to DD.
The trouble is that we have to get a critical mass of active members to make it happen.
Hahaha, the forums here are as quiet as the old Buzz Comics forums used to be….
 
Tantz_Aerine at 5:43AM, Sept. 5, 2017
(online)
posts: 1,677
joined: 10-11-2006
Though it's a year late I feel the need to say Oz has gone above and beyond, and is DD's superman, clearly.

I remember the ‘hayday’ around 2007-2008 and exactly because of the community. The bugs didn't matter to me; it was for the people and the nurturing environment that helped me grow as an artist that I kept coming back to and actively participating.

I didn't like the Platinum surge either. SOmehow it felt like a lot of things started being gradually derailed, rather than streamlined. But the coup de grace was WOWIO- even before the crash they clearly had no idea what it was that made DD a success. In fact to me at least it felt like they actively went out of their way to kill the very thing that has DD's beating heart- the forums.

It might sound petty but for me the forum format right now is very aversive. My eyes hate it and as far as usability goes, it's subpar (though I'm getting more used to it). I'm making a very conscious effort to post here again, exactly to help bring back the activity.

Perhaps we should start working on the old good stuff that made DD big between ourselves. DD Awards is still going on. Perhaps if we make it a task to revive the old activities and support them, people will come to partake. Everyone likes exposure and comments.
 
Mister Spook at 5:15PM, Sept. 6, 2017
(online)
posts: 61
joined: 1-11-2006
phinmagic wrote:
For me, the heyday here was around 2008 ish. We had Civil War, DD Zombies and lots of great stuff going on.
What can we do to jump start that kind of creativity and fun back into here. THAT is the kind of stuff, I think, that will help bring folks back to DD.

I totally agree, the Civil War was a lot of fun even if you weren't a terribly active participant. I seem to recall there being a DD/ComicGenesis War back in the day too.

I also have a fondness for the site circa 2004 when I was just getting started posting comics on the web. I owe a lot of my growth as a cartoonist to the community here and the pseudo-spinoff site NightGig. Also enjoyed the Platinum era, though it felt at the time like some sort of Gatsbyian time of plenty and excess. Even after drifting away from the Duck for a good while, I always missed the camaraderie of fellow artists, collaboration, and fun.
ozoneocean at 1:55AM, Sept. 7, 2017
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
Lovely to know you're still around Spook!
 
Mister Spook at 5:41PM, Sept. 7, 2017
(online)
posts: 61
joined: 1-11-2006
Thanks! It's been fun searching around for new comics to read.
Ironscarf at 7:58AM, Sept. 8, 2017
(online)
posts: 1,460
joined: 9-9-2008
Tantz_Aerine wrote:
Though it's a year late I feel the need to say Oz has gone above and beyond, and is DD's superman, clearly.

No doubt about it, DD would have ceased to exist some time ago if not for the wizard that is Oz.
 
Emevsa at 4:05PM, Sept. 15, 2017
(offline)
posts: 29
joined: 8-17-2017
I joined under Emma_Clare 11 years ago so I saw a lot of DDs history at the beginning. I left in the heyday of 2008 or thereabouts to finish my studies and soldify my career before returning only very recently under this name. The heyday was a heady rise of enthusiasm and prosperity.

There were so many quality comics which unfortunately aren't here anymore. The community was also growing so fast and you could get a lot of eyes on your work without much promoting.

I come back and it's like walking into a storm torn village, with half hinged doors creaking in the wind which is so sad to see. This was a great community and the powers that be stripped it away bit by bit.

But seeing it back in the hands of the community fill me with such optimism as that is what made it great to begin with. It's why I came back. OZ has always done what's right for the site. :) I'm looking forward to seeing what this community evoles into this time.
ozoneocean at 3:12AM, Sept. 16, 2017
(online)
posts: 26,723
joined: 1-2-2004
Emevsa wrote:
I come back and it's like walking into a storm torn village, with half hinged doors creaking in the wind
Ha! Good description! ^_^

Functionally the place is more solid than ever but yeah, the community is flagging. Thanks for buying ads BTW!
 

Forgot Password
©2011 WOWIO, Inc. All Rights Reserved Google+