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The Pokemon Net Report
Written by MewDragon   
Tuesday, 10 March 2009 10:02

Hey everyone!  Welcome to the Pokemon Net Report, a special article detailing the current state of pokemon fandom as it exists online, collectively through all of the different english speaking pokemon sites.  While the article does use pokemon sites as it's primary focus, that is a very limited focus when compared with the totality of english speaking online pokemon fandom, which includes the graphic, tcg, mmorpg, rpg, and generic pokemon forums sectors, as well as the pokemon segments of the larger video game communities on megasites such as gamespot, ign, gamefaqs, neoseeker, etc.  We will be mentioning most of these segments of the pokemon community, in passing, and regretably we will be unable to cover the international elements of the pokemon community for rather obvious reasons.  The Pokemon Net Report also facilitates our analysis and conclusions of the current state of pokemon fandom using interviews with webmasters of six different pokemon sites: Kat from Eevee's HQ, Zeph from Pokemon Omega X, Sean from PokeZam, Eevee, from Veekun, Sableye from PokeNightmare, as well as Butterfree from The Cave of Dragonflies.  I would also like to take this moment to thank each and every one of them for their time in participating in the interview and making such a critical contribution to the creation of this article. 

------

With Pokemon's introduction to the United States on September 30,1998 in the form of the Red and Blue versions for the Gameboy, a phenomenon was unleashed on the world that continues to this day with the release on March 22, 2009 of Pokemon Platinum.  The enormous success of the Pokemon franchise has spawned a large international online community with many different areas, which I touched on above.  The fact that the Pokemon franchise has spawned a variety of different 'mini fandoms' is without a doubt a major indicator of Pokemon's popularity and appeal.  While that may be true, arguably the face of the pokemon community online, remains the top tier of pokemon sites, such as serebii, pocket monsters, bulbagarden, and smogon, among others.  While it is a markedly small group of sites which makes up this elite tier, it is undoubtedly serebii which shows true dominance over this tier.

In a very real way, there are really only 2 types of visitors, as far as pokemon sites are concerned, the visitor who is familair with the pokemon community and is a member on one of its' sites or forums or is a webmaster, and the visitor which is not.

It is obviously the latter of these types of visitors which serebii has specifically targeted and with a very great deal of success.  Serebii's dominance of the community is however a double edged sword.  While its' success has provided both a very defined hierarchy for the top tier and leadership of sorts, this 'leadership' has largely been confined to facilitating the 'industry standard' of the 3 column layout.  While certainly the 3 column layout's use isn't in any way restricted to the pokemon community, it has had a profound and rather negative effect on it by encouraging the proliferation and abuse of the 3 column layout and stifling innovation and attempts to differentiate from it.  However, one good thing that has emerged despite its' dominance over the years has been an increase in the general popularity of of Pokemon.  Throughout all of the interviews that I conducted with webmasters (you can read them below) everyone observed an increase in the number of different pokemon sites on the web.  At the same time however there was a simultaneous misconception regarding the size of the pokemon fanbase as if all the various pokemon sites were competing for the same limited number of visitors.  I'd like to bust this myth wide open first because if anything the problem is that most casual pokemon fans don't utilize anything other than serebii.  While I have no statistics to support my claim, it is my belief that the second type of visitor that I mentioned earlier, constitutes nearly 90% of all pokemon fans.  If those fans visit much other than official nintendo and pokemon sites, they visit serebii.  The primary indicator has to do with sales of Pokemon games.  Pokemon Platinum sold 1 million units in the first 3 days of its' release in japan.  That was in one country alone, and with Platinum's launch on March 22, 2009, I expect a repeat of those statistics elsewhere.  Further indicators of the growth of the franchise include that the tcg National and World events will now also host National and World Videogame Showdown tournaments.  This is the first time in the history of the Pokemon franchise that this has been done.  While we've had other pokemon videogame tournaments, officially sponsored, such as the Journey Across America, they have been limited.  With the video game segment of the fandom getting the tournament treatment that the tcg has enjoyed for so many years, I can only conclude that Nintendo is doing this because the fanbase which plays the Pokemon games, is growing.

Furthermore I've observed that webmasters (of pokemon sites, obviously) have adopted a myth that pretty much everything that can be done or covered by a pokemon site, has already been done.  In addition to Serebii's dominance it is without a doubt that it and this myth have contributed to virtual stagnancy, as far as innovation goes, in the pokemon site community.  This lack of innovation is directly connected to the lack of differentiation between pokemon sites.  It is this problem which dominates the pokemon community and is, in the end, a major source of the problems that plague it.

However the pokemon site community, lacks the coherence and connection of a true community.  The ties that bind it constitute almost solely through the web of affiliations.  As far as bringing the pokemon site community together, affiliation is almost more of a problem then a solution as it allows the formation of, what essentially constitutes, "cliques", or groups of websites who all affiliate with each other, and not many other people.  This gives the illusion of pockets of pokemon fansites that are linked together.  The "community" is also visible through a handful of large pokemon forums which give a place for webmasters to gather and talk and share through a "webmaster lounge."  Such webmaster lounges unfortunately largely serve to only demonstrate tension in the community by clearly demonstrating the gaps between skilled webmasters and noob webmasters.  Such elitism does nothing to serve the needs of the community and in the end only serves to mine the entrance to the community for new webmasters.  In a very real way, the hardest part of being a webmaster, is being a new webmaster.  There is no place for new webmasters or people interested in starting a site to get their beginning, find out what the pokemon site community has to offer, how they can go about creating a site, how to generate traffic, what's considered good, what's not, and how to learn the basics of coding.  If anything new webmasters are almost universally scorned for their lack of coding ability and welcoming new webmasters has not been one of the pokemon site community's "fortes."  Such elitism becomes much more of a problem as you go up the ladder through the different tiers.  In the first and second tiers, webmasters shield themselves from other webmasters and the public through a network of staff members and close friends and affiliates.  An aura permeates it, and makes the first and second tiers more or less a very exclusive club, with a small handful of exceptions.

Lack of differentiation is an obvious problem, as you can see that very little real differences separate most pokemon sites.  There have been a growing handful of pokemon sites which have adopted different layouts, but a real problem still remains in a lack of innovation.  When I say "lack of innovation" what I mean is that there remains only a handful of different and accepted methods of displaying content.  The main issue that I observed throughout all of the interviews I conducted was that the last real source of innovation where a truly unique site was created, was bulbapedia.  While bulbapedia and bulbagarden are to be commended for having developed such a powerful user generated pokemon site, in the end, it is merely a pokemon version of wikipedia.  Something that someone was bound to have done eventually.  True innovation does not have to be on such an enormous scale, nor does it have to require the resources that bulbapedia requires.  All that innovation requires is to either bring something new to the table that has not been done before, such as contests, which have been very much neglected by pokemon sites.  Or doing something old, in a new and different way.  The easiest way to achieve innovation is through the display of content.  With most content being displayed in a very similar fashion, across the pokemon site community, there is a very real call for such innovation.  Not only that but innovation is directly connected to differentiating your site from other sites in the community.  Serebii was successful because it targeted casual pokemon players, who don't do a lot of surfing through the pokemon site community.  The next step which serebii has not taken is to ensure that all content is displayed in the catchy ways which attract visitors.  Flash was mentioned several times as the main alternative in displaying content in the traditional way.  First, flash has been used for years by nintendo for its' pokemon sites.  Secondly, that's just simply not true.  Flash can be used to differentiate from other sites, but with web 2.0 sites and coding techniques, it's just simply no longer the only alternative.

One of the largest problem's which hides in plain sight through the aforementioned differentiation and innovation issues, is the complex of originality and the myth that 'everything has already been done.'  It is difficult to nail down this problem's origin, but an integral part of it seems to be a 'surrender' of sorts, both to believing in the myth and in allowing it to go unchallenged.  The complex of originality and this myth go hand in hand and the problem of originality cannot be solved until webmasters stop believing that everything has already been done.  Perhaps a large part of this myth is simply laziness, that we don't root through pokemon guides or cruise through pokemon sites enough to find out what everyone else is doing.  Regardless, originality isn't difficult.  While it can and often is as simple as writing the same content yourself and adding different stuff, displaying it differently, etc.  There remains plenty of content in the pokemon world that has not been fully tapped by the pokemon site community.  Off the top of my head there exists no site which provides Mystery Dungeon players with a way to sort through SOS requests and answer them.  In the end, both originality and the myth can be solved.  This is just a head game, and the webmasters in this community can win.

While we've already discussed the top tier of pokemon sites, that is only a part of the picture of the pokemon community.  As the community has grown, along with the rest of the Pokemon franchise, a "middle class" of sorts has slowly emerged.  Arguably, Mew's Hangout was probably one of the easiest sites to identify as leading the emergence of this class.  With it's death other sites have come to take it's place.  The most important thing about Mew's Hangout though was that it allowed the emergence of a widely defined "middle class" of pokemon sites which successfully allowed a host of new tiers in the middle to become more clearly defined.  At the same time though, this middle class is still largely confined to the 10% of all visitors who are familair with the pokemon community.  Without a doubt, some of the other 90% were encouraged to join the 10%, but the problem still remains.  The emergence of the middle class though has also unfortunately allowed an increasing number of pokemon sites to emerge who have very little actual content that is related to pokemon.  They make no statement as to the site's purpose (to differentiate their site from pokemon site's with pokemon related content), provide content that few other then the webmaster are interested in, and generally serve only to confuse and muddy the waters of what are the true pokemon sites.  The real problem rests in the fact that if we are to attract that 90% of visitors who are casual players, then we must presume that they will be really only one click visitors to our sites.  They may look through our site's homepage briefly, but it will be only to quick read the news articles, and to see briefly what the content and navigation structure of our site looks like.  If that's so, then we have to have a clearly defined navigation that is easily viewable, and we need it to be interesting.  Furthermore the fact that so many of these pokemon sites which have no, or little, pokemon related content, are affiliated with pokemon sites which do work hard to provide related content to the community, muddies the waters even further and makes it difficult to, essentially, differentiate 'fact from fiction.'

Over the lifespan of the pokemon site community, we've obviously lost various major players, both in the top tiers as well as some of the leaders in the middle class, such as Mew's Hangout, PokeMasters, SutaRaito, and more.  While the middle class has what I would regard as 'sufficient' growth and variety, in that there are multiple major players, and the death of one of them allows others to rise up to take their place, this seems confined just to the middle class as the top tiers have little to no growth.  PokeMasters death for instance, did not result in the emergence of another strong pokemon site, nor has Suta Raito's which rests somewhere between the top tiers and the middle class.  In a strange way the different nature of the major parts of the tier system, has resulted in a diminishing of sites in the top tiers while more sites join the middle tiers.  Why this exactly has occurred how it can be fixed is difficult to pin down.  Unfortunately to many visitors, a site's tier placement inevitably appears to be closely related to its' affiliates list, and with the top tiered sites clamping down on those they are affiliating with, this illusion of the top tiers having no growth, will no doubt continue.  This can be circumvented, but it requires the creation of a true community in the pokemon sitedom, and not one based around a Webmaster's Lounge and the understanding that competition in the pokemon site community is what will ultimately drive it to being successful for all of it's webmasters and websites.

At the end of the day exists the myth that a webmaster must be either one of vision or one of coding skill, and that neither of these attributes can exist in the same webmaster.  Worse still is the webmaster who has vision, but has neither the time, resources, or attention span to carry them to fruition.  Combined with what we've already covered in the article, it is easy to see how this is perhaps one of the most dangerous problems of all.


So, to briefly summarize and conclude. 

The pokemon site community is a better and more populous place then it has ever been before; with more sites and more webmasters having better coding knowledge in general.  In addition with Pokemon being generally more popular then it has been in the past, with new secondary games having been released (Mystery Dungeon and Pokemon Ranger) there really is no better time to have a pokemon site.  In addition the fact that such huge gaming sites have devoted communities of pokemon fans is only further indication of the depth and strength of the pokemon community in general.  However, while that may all be true, the Pokemon site community is a fractured and difficult place to survive as a webmaster, especially a new webmaster, given the number of new websites which emerge and then die or go into permanent hiatus every year.  Furthermore a continued reliance on the 3 column layout standard, with the occasional right/left aligned 2 column layout, has resulted in a lack of innovation and differentiation between pokemon sites and this has directly contributed to giving visitors no reason to go anywhere else other than serebii if the looks of the site isn't much different and the content is not substantially better nor more informative.  Furthermore the fact that different segments of the pokemon community remain merely segments and separated segments at best, makes for a fractured pokemon community in general, and further complicates the issues facing the pokemon site community.  Until all webmasters address these issues on an individual level, and demonstrate a commitment to providing a higher standard of pokemon sites in both layout and content, we will remain a fractured and divided community. 

Once again many thanks to everyone who contributed to the creation and development of this article and to those who are working so hard to make this community great.

 

 

{tab=Kat}

 

The following interview was conducted through msn with Kat (Eevee-chan) from Eevee's HQ.

 MewDragon says (12:04 PM):
-start-
MewDragon says (12:05 PM):
Hey there folks.  This is Kat from Eevee's HQ with us today to discuss the current state of the pokemon community and provide insight through their career as a webmaster.
MewDragon says (12:05 PM):
Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Kat. ^^
Kat says (12:05 PM):
^_^ My pleasure!
MewDragon says (12:06 PM):
So, just to start things off, how do you think, as a community, the pokemon sitedom is doing today?
MewDragon says (12:06 PM):
from what you've seen both as a webmaster of Eevee's HQ and talking to other webmasters.
Kat says (12:06 PM):
Hm, well, I actually think it's lagging.
MewDragon says (12:06 PM):
hmm, more so than in the past?
Kat says (12:06 PM):
Yes sir.
Kat says (12:07 PM):
In the past, the technology available to webmasters has been limited, but now, a lot of new sites are coming out with some great new features.
MewDragon says (12:07 PM):
sure
Kat says (12:07 PM):
While this is good... I think it's also caused a lot of the regular fansites to slow down
MewDragon says (12:07 PM):
do you think this is due to better coding experience among the average webmaster?
Kat says (12:08 PM):
Well, I think it's because a lot of the popular sites are run by older webmasters who have more skill in coding, yeah
MewDragon says (12:08 PM):
of course.
Kat says (12:09 PM):
And I know a lot of younger webmasters that are trying to learn, and a lot of them have just shut down or restarted completely
MewDragon says (12:09 PM):
indeed, they probably perceive the pokemon community as having stiff competition for visitors and thus decide not to partake?
MewDragon says (12:10 PM):
I mean at the very least, we do have a lot of webmasters who use someone else, say Eevee's HQ  , as inspiration but then opt not to deviate very much from whatever pattern they're imitating.
Kat says (12:10 PM):
haha, yeah.
MewDragon says (12:10 PM):
and while imitation may be the best form of flattery,   it certainly does breed a lot of similarity between sites.
Kat says (12:10 PM):
It's possible, but more likely, I think it's because the community has been going for.. ten years now? Really, almost all possibilities have been exhausted for all the "normal" fansites, and almost everything you see is just repeated on every other fansite.
Kat says (12:10 PM):
Webmaster content.. done it.. Episode guides, done it..
Kat says (12:11 PM):
Games, done the don't click, done the marquee, done the "find the character"..
MewDragon says (12:11 PM):
lol, very true.
MewDragon says (12:11 PM):
do you think it's a bad thing that we don't see many differences between sites sometimes?  
MewDragon says (12:11 PM):
it does seem kind of inevitable at times.
Kat says (12:11 PM):
I don't think it's bad or good. I just think it means we're not going to see a lot of progress
Kat says (12:12 PM):
What I've noticed that's happened is the past, is that certain websites will come out and do something that will spurn a new turnout of content and ideas
Kat says (12:12 PM):
Like Mew's Hangout
Kat says (12:12 PM):
And now with all of the advanced PHP going on, I think that's the next big thing.
MewDragon says (12:12 PM):
well obviously we've had many 'top sites' such as serebii and pocket monsters and bulbagarden, and of course Eevee's HQ which have been up there for quite a long time.
MewDragon says (12:13 PM):
do you think it's true that we don't see a lot of change or growth sometimes in top tier sites?
MewDragon says (12:13 PM):
with the exception of a small group, including your own site.  
Kat says (12:13 PM):
I think so. Almost all of the biggest and most popular sites stick to a routine, ie Serebii, and don't move from it
MewDragon says (12:14 PM):
kind of a 'if it works, stick with it' thing?
Kat says (12:14 PM):
Exactly
Kat says (12:14 PM):
Which.. is helpful because we get our information, but it doesn't really help bring out any new ideas in the community
MewDragon says (12:14 PM):
Do you see who's at the top and who's at the bottom changing?  Or do you thing that the top will be pretty stagnant?
Kat says (12:14 PM):
I think it's basically all on the webmaster. You'll see sites like Serebii get to the top, and stay there
Kat says (12:15 PM):
Then with sites like Suta-Raito and Mew's Hangout, which were huge, but have been dead and gone for many many years
MewDragon says (12:15 PM):
very true.
MewDragon says (12:15 PM):
but even with their death, we've not seen any really major site to come up to take that vacuum.
Kat says (12:15 PM):
Right, which is kind of sad
MewDragon says (12:16 PM):
it almost seems like there's a psychological barrier where new webmasters say "well, I'll try and make a 'fansite' but I can never be as big as 'them"
Kat says (12:16 PM):
I think it's about either consistently bringing the same content to people and doing it very well, or bringing new content that will really inspire people, and most of the sites I know of don't do that. Even EHQ is pretty dead and at a standstill while I work on it.
MewDragon says (12:17 PM):
but you constantly seem to try and bring something different, it may take time, but it happens.  Such as the EHQ Extravaganza.
Kat says (12:17 PM):
Hmmm... yeah! There aren't many, but there are some sites who are really working on upgrading the standards for the community
MewDragon says (12:18 PM):
So do you think there are more pokemon sites these days than there have been in the past?
Kat says (12:18 PM):
Oh god, definitely. It's so much easier to make a website now and kids are so much better informed nowadays.
MewDragon says (12:19 PM):
Do you think we are seeing a generally better quality crop of webmasters or that it's better than the past?
Kat says (12:20 PM):
Hm... I think we're seeing certain groups with higher quality, yes, now that people are learning how to program
Kat says (12:20 PM):
I think that's the key factor heres
Kat says (12:21 PM):
Nobody goes to small fansites for episode guides and Pokedexes, they go to Serebii or Veekun
Kat says (12:21 PM):
I think what'll start happening is websites will close and the ones that don't will focus on one aspect of the Pokemon fandom and get good at it.
Kat says (12:21 PM):
Interactivity, information, resources..
MewDragon says (12:22 PM):
That's true, but if small fansites don't have anything to offer in the first place, or attempt to differentiate their 'pokedex', etc, people won't have any reason to go to their pokedex or what not instead of serebii or veekun.
Kat says (12:22 PM):
Exactly, which I think is partially why they close. You just can't compete with the big sites. When it comes to information, it's virtually impossible to outdo a dedicated webmaster; to get to the top or at least to grow your website, you need something fresh.
MewDragon says (12:23 PM):
So with the state the pokemon community is in these days, do you foresee things getting better?  More innovation, more development and differentiation between sites?
Kat says (12:25 PM):
Of course! It's all ready starting. I know numerous sites that have closed to refurbish and clean out useless content - when this starts happening at a large scale and people really get good at providing visitors with new things to see and do, that's when it's going to get good
MewDragon says (12:25 PM):
that's awesome, I think speak for everyone when I say that'll be fantastic to see happening.
MewDragon says (12:26 PM):
Excellent, well thank you so much for speaking with us today.
Kat says (12:26 PM):
No probs!  
MewDragon says (12:26 PM):
Did you have any other comments or observations you wanted to say before we're finished?
Kat says (12:26 PM):
Hmm... yes.
Kat says (12:27 PM):
I think we really have to nurture this idea of being original. I know everybody's always talking about "original, original", and it gets boring, but it's true. Webmasters really need to step it up and find something to do that hasn't been done before, not just make guides about how everyone else can be original.
MewDragon says (12:27 PM):
lol, indeed
Kat says (12:28 PM):
We need to help the smaller sites and webmasters learn and expand their own websites
MewDragon says (12:28 PM):
Well, thanks again for being with us today.
Kat says (12:28 PM):
^_^
MewDragon says (12:29 PM):
Folks, once again this was Kat with us from Eevee's HQ, speaking with MewDragon from pokemonfan.net for our special article, the Pokemon Net Report.
MewDragon says (12:29 PM):
-end-

{tab=Zeph}

The following interview was conducted through msn with Zeph from Pokemon Omega X.

MewDragon says (3:59 PM):
-start-
MewDragon says (4:00 PM):
Hey there folks.  This is Zeph from Pokemon Omega X with us today to discuss the current state of the pokemon community and his observations as a webmaster.
MewDragon says (4:00 PM):
Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Zeph. ^^
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:00 PM):
No problem. ;D
MewDragon says (4:00 PM):
So, just to start things off, how do you think, as a community, the pokemon sitedom is doing today?
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:01 PM):
Not very good.
MewDragon says (4:01 PM):
hmm, do you think it's gotten worse over the last couple years then?
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:02 PM):
I think so.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:02 PM):
A lot of sites that start up nowadays related to Pokemon always seem to drift away from Pokemon and turn into something like graphic or fanfiction site; it's like nobody cares any more.
MewDragon says (4:03 PM):
So perhaps there's a lack of new dedicated webmasters?  Perhaps a greater willingness to just pick up on a trend and go with that?
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:03 PM):
Yeah
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:04 PM):
I see a myriad of websites spring up here and there all starting out with Pokemon content, if you could call it that.
MewDragon says (4:04 PM):
Well I know sometimes it seems like there's not a lot of difference between pokemon sites, do you think that's to blame for the decline as well?
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:05 PM):
I think so.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:05 PM):
Sites like Serebii covers in one way or another every Pokemon game.
MewDragon says (4:05 PM):
hmm, very true.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:06 PM):
And I think webmasters try to emulate Serebii
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:06 PM):
and they get discouraged by the daunting task of covering every game.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:06 PM):
The reason i think is because they think they -must- cover -every- Pokemon game.
MewDragon says (4:06 PM):
ahh, quite possible.
MewDragon says (4:06 PM):
I think for many that it seems like the collection of top tiered sites has been stagnant for some time, and changes very seldom.  There's not a lot of new blood up at the top.
MewDragon says (4:07 PM):
Do you think there's this mentality among a lot of webmasters where they think "well, I can never be as good as serebii, so I'll just kinda do whatever."
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:07 PM):
Hm. It sounds very reasonable.
MewDragon says (4:08 PM):
Do you foresee any change in that top tier, new sites becoming popular, etc?
MewDragon says (4:09 PM):
I mean we've had in the past couple years some losses like Mew's Hangout and SutaRaito.
MewDragon says (4:09 PM):
But it seems like we've had no sites who've come up to fill that gap.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:09 PM):
I think if there are webmasters out there who are patient and dedicated, we can see some new blood up there.
MewDragon says (4:10 PM):
I think it's practically like it's harder to start a good site then it is to maintain a site once you've gotten somewhere.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:11 PM):
It is
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:11 PM):
You have to design a layout, get some starting content, and get your name out there in the search engines--its a very hard task to do.
MewDragon says (4:11 PM):
Do you think we've got more pokemon sites these days then we had in the past?
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:12 PM):
Yes.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:12 PM):
In terms of quality, no.
MewDragon says (4:12 PM):
Indeed.
MewDragon says (4:12 PM):
So it's almost like there's a lot more competition in some of the lower tiers than there is in the top tier.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:12 PM):
Yes
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:12 PM):
It's a lot like society; everyone in the bottom is fighting each other to move up.
MewDragon says (4:13 PM):
Do you think we'll end up seeing any new innovations being brought into the community, at large, by some new sites?
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:13 PM):
Probably not.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:13 PM):
Unless there is someone out there willing to single handly ready to replicate Bulbapedia.
MewDragon says (4:14 PM):
So do you think we'll see any improvement in the general quality of pokemon sites in the future?  Or maybe movement in the top tier?
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:16 PM):
No, not as long as we have webmasters who set out to cover Pokemon games and then switch to something else like graphics, coding or what have you. If we have webmasters who easily get bored with Pokemon, I don't think it will happen.
MewDragon says (4:17 PM):
It has to cease being something that's "cool to get into" in a way.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:17 PM):
Yeah
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:17 PM):
Webmastering isn't a fad that can come and go as it pleases.
MewDragon says (4:18 PM):
Absolutely.
MewDragon says (4:18 PM):
Well we definitley seem to be painting quite a bleak picture here Zeph, one can only hope that we're wrong. xD
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:18 PM):
Difficulty is a great motivator.
MewDragon says (4:18 PM):
Quite so.  But, I definitley appreciate you being with us today.
MewDragon says (4:18 PM):
Did you have any other comments or observations you wanted to say before we're finished?
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:19 PM):
I see a lot of websites out there with blatantly stolen content
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:20 PM):
That infuriates me to no ened.
MewDragon says (4:20 PM):
Change definitley seems to be needed, throughout the pokemon community.
MewDragon says (4:21 PM):
Well once again, thanks so much for taking the time to speak with us.
[c=3]Zephii[/c] says (4:21 PM):
No problem.
MewDragon says (4:21 PM):
Folks, once again this was Zeph with us from Pokemon Omega X, speaking with MewDragon from pokemonfan.net for our special article, the Pokemon Net Report.
MewDragon says (4:21 PM):
-end-

 {tab=Sean}

The following interview was conducted through msn with Sean Cooper from PokeZam.

 MewDragon says (11:04 PM):
-start-
MewDragon says (11:04 PM):
Hey there folks.  This is Sean Cooper from PokeZam with us today to discuss the current state of the pokemon community and provide insight through his career as a webmaster.
MewDragon says (11:04 PM):
Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Sean. ^^
Sean Cooper says (11:04 PM):
Thanks, it's a pleasure.
MewDragon says (11:05 PM):
So, just to start things off, how do you think as a community at large, the pokemon sitedom is doing today?
MewDragon says (11:05 PM):
from what you've seen as a webmaster and talking with others?
Sean Cooper says (11:21 PM):
Well I think it's doing relatively well, but I don't it will ever reach its peak at around 2000 when sites like the PokeMasters, Psypoke and Bulbagarden were big.
Sean Cooper says (11:22 PM):
I also remember an amazing site called Pikamon and you can't forget the UPNetwork.
Sean Cooper says (11:22 PM):
The sites of today are good, but they will never reach that level.
MewDragon says (11:22 PM):
hmm, very true.
MewDragon says (11:22 PM):
but it does seem like we have quite a few sites these days in the pokemon community, albiet newer ones.
MewDragon says (11:23 PM):
do you think perhaps we'll continue to have growth, and perhaps ultimately better sites?
MewDragon says (11:23 PM):
or at least some fresh blood in the top tier?
Sean Cooper says (11:24 PM):
Well I think the sites of today are a lot better.
Sean Cooper says (11:24 PM):
Back in the day there were a lot of Pokemon sites, but they weren't very good.
Sean Cooper says (11:25 PM):
So yes, I think as long as Pokemon continues to produce games and episodes there will be growth.
MewDragon says (11:25 PM):
that'll be good.
MewDragon says (11:26 PM):
Sometimes though it does seem like there's not a lot of variety or difference between sites, as especially new sites attempt to just copy off existing models.  Do you think that's just a phase that everyone goes through until they find their stride?
Sean Cooper says (11:33 PM):
Yes, there isn't a lot of originality today in websites.
Sean Cooper says (11:34 PM):
They all seem to be carbon copies of Serebii.net... although with a better layout and better spelling (Serebii Joe spells at the level of a 5 year old).
MewDragon says (11:34 PM):
lolz.
MewDragon says (11:35 PM):
Do you think perhaps that'll change in the future and we'll see more innovation, people trying out different ideas?
Sean Cooper says (11:35 PM):
Well I think that depends on the evolution of the Internet.
Sean Cooper says (11:35 PM):
Perhaps when Flash is more ubiquitous it may happen.
MewDragon says (11:36 PM):
or at the very least people try out different layouts. xD
MewDragon says (11:37 PM):
Do you think we'll see any change in the make up of who's in the top tier of sites?
Sean Cooper says (11:37 PM):
Not really unless the big dogs close.
Sean Cooper says (11:37 PM):
Unless a website can duplicate the originality of Bulbapedia I don't see it happening.
Sean Cooper says (11:38 PM):
A website will really need to offer something very unique.
MewDragon says (11:38 PM):
hmm, true
MewDragon says (11:38 PM):
So then do you expect anything significant to change in the state of the pokemon community in the future?
Sean Cooper says (11:39 PM):
Not really. What do you mean exactly?
MewDragon says (11:39 PM):
like do you expect to see anybody doing anything that differently, or do you think it'll remain pretty much the same?
MewDragon says (11:39 PM):
in the way sites are created and maintained.
MewDragon says (11:40 PM):
kind of content, etc.
Sean Cooper says (11:40 PM):
Yes, I see some sites trying to innovate, but I'm not exactly sure what they will do.
Sean Cooper says (11:41 PM):
If they can utilize social networking websites like Facebook I think a website could be really big.
MewDragon says (11:41 PM):
hmm, that would be interesting.
MewDragon says (11:42 PM):
I know Pokezam's been around for quite some time, how do you think your site's impacted the community?
Sean Cooper says (11:47 PM):
Well PokeZam has been around since 1999.
Sean Cooper says (11:47 PM):
It has been through a lot in 11 years.
Sean Cooper says (11:48 PM):
It started from a simple one-page website to one of the most popular Pokemon websites.
MewDragon says (11:48 PM):
then you more than anyone's seen pretty much everything in the community over the years.  
Sean Cooper says (11:49 PM):
Yes. Probably the saddest moment was the downfall of the PokeMasters website.
Sean Cooper says (11:50 PM):
It was such a great website. I have so many fond memories of it.
MewDragon says (11:50 PM):
I remember back when they were around, it was really sad when they decided to take it down.
Sean Cooper says (11:50 PM):
Yeah, they had to shut down due to server costs.
MewDragon says (11:50 PM):
It wasn't just the site either, but the community they'd gathered around it.
MewDragon says (11:51 PM):
do you think we've had anyone come up to really try and replace them?
Sean Cooper says (11:52 PM):
Not really. It isn't the same. I don't any site can really replace the greatness of the PokeMasters.
MewDragon says (11:53 PM):
it seems like we've had more than a few good sites that went down.
MewDragon says (11:53 PM):
I mean even SuitoRaito has been inactive for quite some time, even though it's still up.
MewDragon says (11:53 PM):
It seems like we have some pretty big sites which have shut down or gone inactive, for one reason or another, but few sites have risen up, even to at least attempt to fill that gap.
Sean Cooper says (11:54 PM):
Yeah, remember Zapchu?
Sean Cooper says (11:54 PM):
Hasn't been updated in years.
MewDragon says (11:55 PM):
very true, unfortunately.
MewDragon says (12:19 AM):
well thanks so much for being with us today.
Sean Cooper says (12:19 AM):
I appreciate you taking the time to interview me. I feel honoured.
MewDragon says (12:19 AM):
the honor was mine.
MewDragon says (12:19 AM):
Folks, once again this was Sean with us from PokeZam, speaking with MewDragon from pokemonfan.net for our special article, the Pokemon Net Report.
MewDragon says (12:19 AM):
-end-

{tab=Eevee}

The following interview was conducted through aim with Eevee from Veekun.

(2:40:05 PM) MewDragon:
-start-
(2:40:42 PM) MewDragon:
Hey there folks.  This is Eevee from Veekun with us today to discuss the current state of the pokemon community and provide insight through his career as a webmaster.
(2:40:54 PM) MewDragon:
Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Eevee.  :)
(2:41:33 PM) MewDragon:
So, just to start things off, how do you think, as a community at large, the pokemon sitedom is doing today?
(2:44:12 PM) MewDragon:
I mean do you feel that we're seeing a generally better community of webmasters, sites, and visitors than we did in the past? 
(2:47:23 PM) LexyEevee:
well, that's a bit..  broad.  I'm hardly an expert on the community, but we seem to have a big rift now: there are still new younger players (who are really the target audience of the franchise) drifting in and hanging around serebii and some smaller newer sites, and there's everyone left over from when Pokemon originally started, the bulbagarden/smogon lot, who are more serious but less interested overall
(2:47:42 PM) LexyEevee:
so whether we're "better", I suppose so, since we now have an older group that just didn't exist before
(2:47:55 PM) MewDragon:
sure.
(2:48:42 PM) MewDragon:
So we're almost having a divide between sites that are catering towards different levels of skill and age.
(2:49:09 PM) LexyEevee:
probably not deliberately though
(2:49:24 PM) LexyEevee:
just that sites run by the older group will naturally attract other people from the older group
(2:49:52 PM) MewDragon:
It does sound more unconscious than anything, just that certain sites have been around longer, and of course are going to have an older, dedicated user base.
(2:50:04 PM) MewDragon:
Do you think that there are more pokemon sites these days then there have been in the past?
(2:52:11 PM) LexyEevee:
actually, it seems like it.  a few of the older more central places are gone -- pokemon forever, upn, even pokemasters looks to be just a forum now -- but I've seen a lot more smaller sites lately than I did a few years ago
(2:52:40 PM) LexyEevee:
but the web is more popular and accessible now so that's not too surprising
(2:52:47 PM) MewDragon:
Absolutely true.
(2:53:35 PM) MewDragon:
Of course some times it seems like a lot of the new webmasters that crop up don't try hard to differentiate themselves from other sites, and so for a while now it almost seems like we've got a lot of sites which look very similar, and more often than not, even have the same types of content.
(2:53:49 PM) LexyEevee:
oh, sure
(2:53:55 PM) LexyEevee:
there will always be tons of the really tiny sites
(2:53:58 PM) MewDragon:
Do you think we need more diversity represented between different sites, or that it's just inevitable given how long pokemon's existed, and that we're just running out of variety. =\
(2:54:02 PM) LexyEevee:
back in the day it was all about maxpages and pikablu codes
(2:54:19 PM) LexyEevee:
but there are a lot more medium-sized polished sites now
(2:54:55 PM) MewDragon:
It's almost like we've developed a bit of a middle class, then.
(2:55:05 PM) LexyEevee:
well, honestly, the pokemon universe is only so big; across as many sites as we have, there's going to be a ton of duplication
(2:56:06 PM) MewDragon:
Quite so, but it almost seems like nobody's even trying to display their content differently.  I kinda fear that we're seeing a lack of innovation in favor of going with 'the flow' of whatever's popular. 
(2:56:23 PM) MewDragon:
Short and sweet webmaster guides, tic tac toe and fishing games, etc.
(2:57:02 PM) LexyEevee:
sign of the times.  everyone wants their fifteen minutes of internet fame, and everyone falls for the cargo cult trap.  site X has these features and is popular, therefore if I make a site with those features I will be popular too
(2:57:29 PM) MewDragon:
I mean, if we're going to have any, fresh blood, so to speak, create some great new site(s), then really we need to have some webmasters who are willing to break away from the trend, and try something new, even if it's just from a visual perspective.
(2:57:44 PM) MewDragon:
Veekun's obviously a case in point.
(2:58:08 PM) MewDragon:
though with age, instead of without. :P
(2:58:11 PM) LexyEevee:
haha, sucking at design is certainly something new
(2:59:01 PM) MewDragon:
I mean, I think I speak for many, when I say that Veekun is clearly a step away from this trend of little differentiation between pokemon sites. 
(2:59:17 PM) MewDragon:
How do you see yourself and your site contributing to the rest of the community, now and in the future?
(3:08:48 PM) LexyEevee:
I'm a programmer far more than a PR guy, so I'm primarily concerned with building something I can be proud of.  veekun has always been a learning experience first and foremost anyway.  if the community decides veekun is useful, well, I must be doing something right; beyond that, I'm not all that involved.  but hopefully I can someday make a complete resource, so people don't have to keep hopping around a dozen sites and archived forums before giving up and and asking the same questions we've all answered before
(3:09:52 PM) MewDragon:
Heh, a skilled webmaster and modest, a rare breed indeed. ;p
(3:10:18 PM) MewDragon:
Well given your coding experience you're obviously in a very good position to grade other webmasters.
(3:10:36 PM) MewDragon:
Do you think we see the quality of webmasters, and their coding expertise slowly increasing over time?
(3:10:58 PM) MewDragon:
You would think, given how web 2.0 stuff is in increasing use these days.
(3:14:26 PM) LexyEevee:
hard to say.  there are more people getting into web development, but there are also more tools that ensure a beginner doesn't really have to learn anything to get a half-decent result
(3:14:36 PM) LexyEevee:
but the web as a platform is only really starting to mature recently
(3:15:12 PM) MewDragon:
Well that said, do you think that the 'vision', so to speak, of the webmaster should be given more weight than their coding experience?
(3:15:47 PM) MewDragon:
It almost seems like a trade off sometimes, especially with some obviously skilled webmasters, coding wise, just not doing much with that skill.
(3:20:26 PM) LexyEevee:
nobody said vision and development skill have to come from the same person.  all that really matters is what gets made
(3:21:01 PM) MewDragon:
perhaps not, though it's obviously convenient if they do. xp
(3:21:27 PM) LexyEevee:
of course, but that's rare and twice as hard to pull off
(3:21:56 PM) MewDragon:
I was also wondering what you thought of the current structure of the community.  Do you think we'll see any new popular sites emerging to be added to the current list of top tiered sites?  It doesn't seem like we get much growth at all.  We've had pokemasters and a couple other sites dissapear, but no one has risen to take their place.
(3:30:54 PM) LexyEevee:
what more big sites could we have?  there's only so much to say about pokemon.  it's amazing we have the community we have, really, given that it's primarily for a video game series and an okay anime series.  if we want to expand, well, we either need a huge fan universe, to expand our scope (digimon?  other first-party nintendo property?), or to just wait for nintendo to expand the universe
(3:31:42 PM) MewDragon:
heh, that seems to be a common lament.
(3:32:05 PM) MewDragon:
well I really appreciate you talking with us today.
(3:32:16 PM) MewDragon:
Did you have any other comments or observations you wanted to say, before we're finished?
(3:34:33 PM) LexyEevee:
well, the one thing we do have control over is the content; if anything, we could stand to consolidate all these resources and try filling in the gaps
(3:35:23 PM) MewDragon:
Definitley true at that.
(3:35:36 PM) MewDragon:
Well thanks again for being with us today. ^^
(3:37:02 PM) LexyEevee:
no problem
(3:37:25 PM) MewDragon:
Folks, once again this was Eevee with us from Veekun, speaking with MewDragon from pokemonfan.net for our special article, the Pokemon Net Report.
(3:37:30 PM) MewDragon:
-end-

{tab=Sableye}

The following interview was conducted through skype with Sableye from PokeNightmare.

-start-
[6:03:39 PM] MewDragon:
Hey there folks.  This is Sableye from PokeNightmare with us today to discuss the current state of the pokemon community, at large, and provide insight through his career as a webmaster.
[6:03:53 PM] MewDragon:
Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Sableye. ^^
[6:04:21 PM] Sableye:
No problem
[6:04:52 PM] MewDragon:
So, just to start things off, how do you think, as a community, pokemon sitedom is doing today?
[6:05:44 PM] MewDragon:
from what you've seen both as the webmaster of Pokemon Nightmare and talking to other webmasters.
[6:07:01 PM] Sableye:
Well, it's great to see new Pokemon websites out there, and I like the fact that most people are putting in the effort to making their website really good
[6:08:07 PM] Sableye:
So I think that the community as a whole is doing alright. There is a whole variety of Pokemon sites out there, and each one looks a bit different. I think each Pokemon site has potential, and there's always room for development. A site is never 100% complete because a there's always something new that can be added.
[6:08:35 PM] MewDragon:
Do you think we're seeing more pokemon sites these days, then in previous years?
[6:09:00 PM] Sableye:
Absolutely. There's so many fansites out there that are dedicated to Pokemon.
[6:09:32 PM] Sableye:
Take a look at a website's affiliation list and you see at least 20 pokemon sites on it
[6:09:43 PM] MewDragon:
an excellent point.
[6:10:26 PM] MewDragon:
I know, speaking for myself, that we often see a lot of very similar, at least visually, websites.  Do you think this, lack of differentiation, is a problem, or just a phase that a lot of beginning sites go through before finding their identity?
[6:11:54 PM] Sableye:
It's both. A beginner's website will most likely have the same 3-column layout with the navigation on the left, the content in the middle, and the affiliates/topsites on the right. Now that's a problem because it lacks originality
[6:12:12 PM] Sableye:
and what makes a site stand out is originality
[6:13:12 PM] Sableye:
In my opinion, it just doesn't work out well when you see every site with the same thing
[6:14:05 PM] MewDragon:
Definitley, I'm sure I speak for both of us that that fact has definitley been a motivator in our attempts to differentiate our sites from this norm. xp
[6:14:47 PM] MewDragon:
Do you think it's difficult though for most webmasters to break away from this trend, and that's inevitably why we see so little except for the typical three column layout?
[6:17:38 PM] Sableye:
It's not that it's difficult, it's just that they don't realize. I know that when I first began my site, I started out with the 3-column layout because every other site was like that, and I of course thought that that was the best. After many years of doing this, I now know that there are many types of layouts that can be used, and it's all about finding one that works the best for you.
[6:19:33 PM] MewDragon:
I've spent quite a bit of time recently looking around the pokemon community, sitedom; at the various trends, and it seems like there's a similar trend in content being picked up, along with this trend for 3-column layouts.
[6:20:23 PM] MewDragon:
Obviously PokeNightmare is a site that's nestled nicely in the top tier.  Do you see any trends in your affiliates or other sites in the top tier?
[6:21:48 PM] Sableye:
PocketMonsters.net is one of my favorite sites, and I think they have a lot to offer
[6:22:02 PM] Sableye:
I think that a lot of them have their own separate ways of how they want their website to work and look. Sure, you will see a few sites using vBulletin for their forum software, but the look of the forum will always be different.
[6:24:49 PM] MewDragon:
Have you been seeing a lot of innovation in pokemon sites recently?  New ways of displaying content, etc.
[6:26:42 PM] MewDragon:
and do you think people are slowly picking up on how successful pocketmonsters.net is, and using it as a model?
[6:27:17 PM] Sableye:
There's a lot of sites that have their own systems of displaying information. Layout wise, I think there's a good variety out there with some sites
[6:28:08 PM] Sableye:
Yes, pm.net is very successful, and it will be a good resource for fans out there
[6:29:44 PM] MewDragon:
Well I'm sure you're aware that over the past couple years, and even more recently we've been slowly losing a couple of the bigger sites.  pokemasters has been relegated to a forum, suta raito hasn't updated in months, dratini's den suffers much the same fate as well.
[6:30:06 PM] MewDragon:
Do you think we'll see any movement, with new sites becoming popular in the top tier, at the least to replace such losses?
[6:31:10 PM] MewDragon:
I refer to sites such as your own, pocketmonsters.net, pokezam, pokedream, serebii, psypoke, etc. collectively as the 'top tier' xp
[6:31:25 PM] Sableye:
Usually those bigger sites slow down because the webmaster either loses interest in pokemon, or wants to move on with their life
[6:32:24 PM] Sableye:
It doesn't seem that the top tier sites will be going anywhere soon, so I'm sure we'll continue to watch them grow
[6:33:13 PM] MewDragon:
Do you expect any site to move up and become popular, to replace those webmasters who've opted to move on?
[6:35:20 PM] Sableye:
As long as we see originality, there will probably be a few new Pokemon sites that will rise up.
[6:35:50 PM] MewDragon:
That should be interesting to watch.
[6:36:33 PM] MewDragon:
Any thoughts as to how the community will continue to develop in the future?
[6:38:39 PM] Sableye:
There's always going to be Pokemon fan arounds, so as long as people have a place to get their info, the big websites and the communities will be around for a long time
[6:39:20 PM] MewDragon:
Cool, well thank you so much for speaking with us today.
[6:39:33 PM] MewDragon:
Did you have any other comments or observations you wanted to say before we're finished?
[6:41:52 PM] Sableye:
Yes. If you are someone who is thinking about making a Pokemon site, make sure you put a lot of thought in it. Also, ask yourself why someone would want to visit your website when they can just visit one of the bigger, popular sites. If you are really serious about making a big, successful site, you have to offer something that no other site has
[6:42:21 PM] MewDragon:
Absolutely, excellent advice.
[6:42:32 PM] MewDragon:
Well thanks again for being with us today.
[6:43:28 PM] Sableye:
No problem, I hope this interview can help new webmasters and others
[6:43:51 PM] MewDragon:
I definitley think it will. :)
[6:43:58 PM] MewDragon:
Folks, once again this was Sableye with us from PokeNightmare, speaking with MewDragon from pokemonfan.net for our special article, the Pokemon Net Report.
[6:44:01 PM] MewDragon:
-end-

{tab=Butterfree}

The following interview was conducted through msn with Butterfree from The Cave of Dragonflies.

MewDragon says (8:18 PM):
-start-
MewDragon says (8:19 PM):
Hey there folks.  This is Butterfree from TCoD with us today to discuss the current state of the pokemon community and provide insight through her career as a webmaster
MewDragon says (8:19 PM):
Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Butterfree. ^^
Butterfree says (8:19 PM):
You're welcome.
MewDragon says (8:20 PM):
So, just to start things off, how do you think, as a community, the pokemon sitedom is doing today?
MewDragon says (8:20 PM):
as a webmaster of TCoD and talking to other webmasters.
Butterfree says (8:22 PM):
In terms of what exactly? What it is like to run a site, or observations about the actual sites?
MewDragon says (8:22 PM):
well over time you've seen many different pokemon sites, good and bad, well designed and poorly designed. 
MewDragon says (8:23 PM):
If you think of all the different pokemon sites there are now and take them together, how do you think the community is doing, compared with the past, per say?
MewDragon says (8:23 PM):
Do you see more sites, better webmasters, lots of different unique sites, etc?
Butterfree says (8:25 PM):
I think there are more sort of largeish sites now than there were a few years ago; there are more website cliques, so to speak, than when the sites were mostly the big few and then mostly mine and my affiliates, and then the smaller sites.
Butterfree says (8:26 PM):
One thing I also like is that 'original' sites have a lot more influence now than they did; when new sites start they tend to have a more creative and original focus, while before, sites tended to try to imitate the big few more often.
MewDragon says (8:27 PM):
so do you feel that we have more differentiation between pokemon sites then we did before?
Butterfree says (8:28 PM):
Yeah.
MewDragon says (8:28 PM):
Sometimes, it feels like we still have few sites willing to break away from the traditional 3 column design.
Butterfree says (8:29 PM):
I really don't think layout design is much of an issue in terms of site originality compared to the actual content on the site.
MewDragon says (8:29 PM):
Excellent point.
MewDragon says (8:29 PM):
Do you see a lot of websites these days trying new things whether it's through their layout or their content?
Butterfree says (8:31 PM):
It varies. Most sites are always largely composed of recycled ideas from other sites, but I would say I see more of them today with fresh ideas than some years ago.
Butterfree says (8:32 PM):
Layouts haven't really changed notably to my notice, but I don't really tend to pay a lot of attention to layouts.
MewDragon says (8:32 PM):
Sure.
MewDragon says (8:34 PM):
Do you think we'll see more webmasters in the future willing to try different ideas out and bring them into the community?
Butterfree says (8:36 PM):
Well, I certainly hope so, and the clique of original websites is ever growing, so I think so, yes.
MewDragon says (8:36 PM):
that's awesome.
MewDragon says (8:38 PM):
I know sometimes it seems like a lot of the good sites which are trying new stuff, people aren't using them as rolemodels, so to speak.
MewDragon says (8:38 PM):
Do you think as more people try different stuff that it'll spread out like a wave effect and more webmasters will be encouraged to break the mold?
Butterfree says (8:43 PM):
Yes, definitely. I myself have been advocating originality for years and making it an important part of affiliation requirements and such, and I know that inspired other webmasters who were thinking similar things to do the same, which in turn expands the influence of that philosophy even more.
MewDragon says (8:44 PM):
That's a great idea.
MewDragon says (8:44 PM):
I know some other webmasters I've spoken too have sometimes expressed that there's kind of this impression in the pokemon community that "everything's been done already." 
MewDragon says (8:45 PM):
What do you think of that, and do you think that's more of a psychological barrier that webmasters have to overcome so they can start thinking of ways to be different instead of basically giving up before even trying?
Butterfree says (8:50 PM):
Well, there are always original ideas to be had if you spend some time thinking about it. I like to take inspiration from discussions I've had with other fans or off-hand comments people make, as well as my specialty of making sections that I feel there is a need for in the fandom.
Butterfree says (8:51 PM):
People need to open their minds to that kind of inspiration, effectively always have the site in the back of their minds and train themselves to think "Oh, hey, that could make a good section" when a potential idea springs up in their heads. I don't think it's a matter of individual creativity so much as just that.
MewDragon says (8:53 PM):
good point.
MewDragon says (8:53 PM):
Obviously over time we've lost a couple larger sites, like suta raito for instance.
MewDragon says (8:54 PM):
Do you think we can expect to see the hierarchy of which pokemon sites are at the top change over time?
Butterfree says (8:55 PM):
Not a lot, really, unless the larger sites fall out as you mentioned, which doesn't happen that often (the larger sites tend to be the ones with the most dedicated webmasters who are the least likely to quit).
MewDragon says (8:55 PM):
which is why they got there in the first place.
Butterfree says (8:55 PM):
But it does happen, of course, and then other sites rise to fill the niche.
Butterfree says (8:55 PM):
Yeah.
MewDragon says (8:56 PM):
Well obviously as you said, the dedication of the webmaster is a very important part of why sites rise to that level.
MewDragon says (8:56 PM):
What kind of quality of webmasters do you think we see running sites these days, compared with the past?
Butterfree says (8:58 PM):
I think they're a bit more dedicated on average today, possibly just because people who are still into Pokémon are less likely to lose interest in it now, but I don't think there's that much of a difference.
MewDragon says (9:00 PM):
Awesome then
MewDragon says (9:00 PM):
Well I think we're pretty much done, thanks so much for speaking with us today.
Butterfree says (9:00 PM):
No problem.
MewDragon says (9:00 PM):
Did you have any other comments or observations you wanted to share before we're finished?
Butterfree says (9:01 PM):
Nothing in particular, I think.
MewDragon says (9:02 PM):
Well, thanks again for being with us today.
MewDragon says (9:02 PM):
Folks, once again this was Butterfree with us from The Cave of Dragonflies, speaking with MewDragon from pokemonfan.net for our special article, the Pokemon Net Report.
MewDragon says (9:03 PM):
-end-

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