Hello all and sundry!
I am Ozoneocean as most of you know and I've been around this place for quite a while now. I joined up in 2003 and then again in 2004 and started posting my comics. I got more and more involved with the community over time till I eventually took over running the place, which I do now with the help of some lovely people here; currently Kawaiidaigakusei, Tantz Aerine, Banes, Pitface, Alexey our programmer and all the other great people who pitch in, in all sorts of ways with all sorts of things!
Managing a big comic website isn't straight forward though. I thought I'd chat a bit about that.
Firstly, like anyone who manages something big, your power is never as great as people think it is:
People still come at me with suggestions for what we should do with the site- make it mobile friendly, give us notifications, make the forums better, change the logo, create an app, change the site colours, add a widget, etc. Before I was in this position I used to make the exact same demands!
On a site as large and complex on DD none of that is easy, even for a professional programmer, which I am not. To make many of these changes they need to be designed and tested first, which takes a lot of time, we need to cost them out, and then we have figure out HOW to pay for them. All of this is a slow process unfortunately.
We CAN make things happen, it just takes time. All of us who work managing DD have jobs and other commitments so the time we have to devote to major web design overhauls is limited.
My day to day, week to week duties with DD consist of deleting the spam accounts that sign up every day, helping DD members with issues, making sure our newsposts go up and are cross-posted to social media sites, recording, editing, posting and promoting the weekly podcast, reading reviewing and promoting the featured comic bi-weekly (Kawaii doses every other week), Writing a Friday newspost article, dropping in on the forums making sure the place is ticking over, talking to advertisers, checking for bugs, responding to help enquiries in our Facebook site…
Once a month I collect the money from our Project Wonderful ads and then I pay the bills to Amazon Cloud services for our image hosting, Libsyn for our podcasts and Linode for our website, and once I year or so I pay for our domains. If there's a shortfall (often), I make that up from my own pocket, if we have excess cash (rare), I use that to cover a previous shortfall. If we develop a surplus I put that towards paying for new features, which I'll contribute a lot of my own money to.
Sometimes there are other weird things I have to do… We recently got back the official Twitter account for the site!
That was in no way straight forward! It took a whole week and a bit of money to sort out but I eventually wrangled it back. Tantz Aerine will be managing it from now on.
It's a lot easier to manage DD now I have to say. When I first took over full operation of the site it was daunting, very costly and exhausting.
Now everything is routine pretty much, we had the site extensively re-setup and programmed so that the costs were cut down to a quarter and the place runs better now than than it EVER has in its history, and with all the good people helping me and all of our active and regular members it's far more of a joy! DD still takes up a lot of my time but it's doable now and not a drain like it used to be.
All in all I think DD is definitely a worthwhile project to continue with. We still retain our community, we have our exalted history as one of the very first webcomic hosting sites, and more importantly than ever we provide an open and non-judgemental platform for all types of webcomic: Manga, adult sex comics, family friendly newspaper strips, furry comics, Sprites comics, copy and paste comics, fan comics, photocomics, superhero, adventure, 3D etc, ALL are happily welcome here, no need to hunt for a speciality site for your weird genre :)
ozoneocean at 12:00AM, Oct. 20, 2017
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