Everything, by Everyone.

The very essence of why I love flash starts with the site which is synonymous with the form. Newgrounds.

Here’s the actual history from the horse’s mouth, but I want to give a synopsis of innovation rather than biography.

Newgrounds had humble beginnings in the dark days of dial-up in essentially 1999 or so. Some college kid(Tom Fulp) made a site for his games about murdering celebrities and killing animals in the very first version of the Flash software.

Little did he know it would become a corporation, and spawn his own console video game company(The Behemoth).

Many of the common memes of our time came from this site where anyone could submit their content. A meme, by the way, is : an idea, behavior, style, or usage that spreads from person to person within a culture. According to Merriam-Webster, that is. Here are two that I would shocked if you haven’t heard of them:

I apologize in advance:

This one is more awesome:

Both came into existance, for good or ill, because of flash and Tom’s site where anyone could submit.

This of course led to what the internet is most notable for: spam. One of the fascinating features introduced later was the flash portal, and it’s streamlined system for self-regulation. He figured if the users could be tasked with submitting content, they could handle moderating it themselves. Saving himself a lot of trouble and putting power in the hands of the users was the best of both worlds. Though many of the worst individuals use the internet for their annoying habits, the system actually works, deleting content that falls below a certain score of quality. Seemingly, trolls are just a vocal minority.

At a later point I’d like to touch on other parts of the site related to flash, but that is a story for another day.

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