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Running a comics website

ozoneocean at 12:00AM, Oct. 20, 2017
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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!
https://twitter.com/DrunkDuck
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 :)

comment

anonymous?

angelajal91 at 8:19PM, Oct. 22, 2017

Very nice to read that you care a ton for this site. I didn't know that this was one of the oldest webcomic site out there. That's really interesting and cool! I am pretty new and haven't been involved with the community as much yet because of other things I have to do, but reading this has made me want to jump in. I hope to stay for a while and see how things get even better.

cdmalcolm1 at 9:33PM, Oct. 21, 2017

A Big thank you goes out to you and all the ppl here that keeps us all informed, and a wonderful place to host our comics. P.S. your podcast are awesome. At times too funny.

ozoneocean at 4:23AM, Oct. 21, 2017

Yes, the community is the thing! Without you guys this place would be nothing at all.

plymayer at 3:45AM, Oct. 21, 2017

For that matter, thank you all for what you do for the site and the community.

plymayer at 3:44AM, Oct. 21, 2017

THANK you for every thing you do.

Avart at 7:19PM, Oct. 20, 2017

Sincerely, I admire and respect you so much and all the DD team too, all the people who stay always here and make things happen. Awesome and incredible work Oz :D

bravo1102 at 7:10PM, Oct. 20, 2017

He is just incredible. Hearty thank you for all you've done and continue to do.

skreem at 6:46PM, Oct. 20, 2017

SO ... is it all to do with Valves or sommat?

Emevsa at 6:32PM, Oct. 20, 2017

You have always done an awesome job Ozone! I was happy to see you took it over because you have always advocated for the creators on this site. So much love goes out to you man!

Tantz_Aerine at 12:28PM, Oct. 20, 2017

Oz is Captain DrunkDuck.

thunderdavid at 11:41AM, Oct. 20, 2017

I've always been a fan of ol'Ducky. And after reading this, I'm even a bigger fan. To me its really does feel like a community.

ozoneocean at 9:20AM, Oct. 20, 2017

Thanks guys, it's much appreciated! :) Yeah, I wanted to give a bit of an insight into how the place is run ^_^

Jason Moon at 8:35AM, Oct. 20, 2017

You are awesome Ozone! Glad you kept this site going man!!

Jason Moon at 8:33AM, Oct. 20, 2017

wow! sounds like you are busy most of the time Ozone. Very cool to hear your history on the site! Glad we have so many talented people keeping the site going. God bless you guys :D

Whirlwynd at 8:17AM, Oct. 20, 2017

I found this to be an interesting insight as to how the site is run. Thanks for sharing ozone =)

Banes at 8:11AM, Oct. 20, 2017

KAM, for a second I thought this was gonna be Oz stepping down, too - just a moment of panic was felt. 'Zone does so much to keep us going, and pretty much singlehandedly saved the Duck from disappearing for good. He is worthy of as much regard as we can give him - and give his comic Pinky TA the love it richly deserves, too!

mks_monsters at 7:41AM, Oct. 20, 2017

I think you guys do good and I'm grateful. You care about people here.

KimLuster at 7:23AM, Oct. 20, 2017

I don't mind if it sounded self-serving (it didn't but wouldn't mind if did) because you really do go beyond the call in keeping this thing going. Appreciated and admired!! Thank You!!

KAM at 6:51AM, Oct. 20, 2017

Self-serving? I was afraid it was going to be bad news, like you're stepping down, or shutting down the site. 8-o

ozoneocean at 5:54AM, Oct. 20, 2017

I didn't mean to make this post sound self serving! Hahaha! And I also meant to tank all the fantastic contributors who helped support DD during our Indeigogo funding campaigns and those who continue to support us through paying for PW ads on DD ^_^


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