January 5, 2019

A Growing Community: The Beginning

Hello Wizards!

I hope you're having a wonderful first week of 2019. I wanted to make a blog post today about the community. The community has grown through multiple social media platforms such as Amino, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, etc. The community is growing every day! Today, I'm going to talk about what made this awesome community grow to such large numbers across social media.

Let's start with what the community is like today before we talk about the past. The largest communities today are the Central & YouTube communities. They, along with many other communities, provide great information about the game and have helped those communities grow for years now. While you can link your other social media accounts from YouTube, that wasn't how communities outside of these two boomed. Let's travel back in time to see how the community really got started.

Nearly 10 years ago (it's unbelievable that it's nearly been that long - but it has), Wizard101 teamed up with Wizard101 Central to have a contest on Wizard101's Official Facebook Page. As you can see in the video above from Technodude67, a danger hound was given away to everyone who liked their official page & was a Central member. This contest was used to get the Wizard101 Facebook page to 100,000 likes. This was one of the sparks that got the community growing & was effective. I still have my danger hound from this contest on my ice wizard. This was an awesome contest & I hope Kingsisle considers having a contest like this again in the future. :) While this contest helped the Facebook community, what got the other communities to grow? Simple answer: Podcasts & Fansites!

The first podcast that I can think of is none other than Ravenwood Radio (currently Spiral Radio). The first episodes of Ravenwood Radio aired in October of 2009. This podcast was the very first podcast/stream to ever occur in the Wizard101 Community. Many people would tune in every Wednesday night to listen to this awesome podcast by Stephen Spiritcaller & Leesha Darkheart. This podcast, for me at least, was what introduced me to The Friendly Necromancer aka Tom, Diary of a Wizard, and all of the other fansites. I was first introduced to this podcast by Wizard101's promotion of Ravenwood Radio on their official launcher - this was nearly 10 years ago, so I could be wrong. But I am thankful that Kingsisle promoted them because I wouldn't be making this post right now if they didn't. 

From there I'd listen to Ravenwood Radio every Wednesday night with the rest of the community. They would have special events such as the Mali-Fest of 2010. They made a lot of Wizard101 History because this was the first Malistaire-type Livestream with four well-known wizards (Leesha & Stephen of Ravenwood Radio, Thomas Lionblood of the Friendly Necromancer, and Fallon Shadowblade of Diary of a Wizard). It was awesome to see four great death wizards defeat Malistaire Live. Livestreams like these introduced me to the other fansites in the community. When people tuned into Ravenwood Radio, they would tell their friends about it. I remember inviting my friends to their podcasts & events. From there, the community grew even larger.

Diary of a Wizard teamed up with Ravenwood Radio and other great fansites in the community to have one large event in Ravenwood known as the Ravenwood Ball & Birthday Bash. This event brought so many people together that the event grew each year. These events were one of the largest (if not, the largest) events to ever occur in Wizard101. I was very shy when I first started attending these events but started talking a lot more. I was inspired by all of the people that promoted/threw these events that I created this website. There are many other fansites that were inspired by fansites like Ravenwood Radio, The Friendly Necromancer, Diary of a Wizard, Ditto Wizard, Paige Moonshade, and many other great sites that they created their own. They even started joining social media pages to follow them. From there, people would tell their friends about the community & it would continue to grow from a few hundred to thousands and today tens of thousands of active wizards across various social media platforms! 

While I know not everyone will agree that this is how the community boomed - it really was. Through contests & most of all, podcasts & fansites, the community grew. A lot of people, including myself, were inspired by these amazing people to start having events, creating blogs, podcasts & more to pay it forward. A decade ago, I was going through such a tough time. I'll always remain thankful to those who inspired me & many others in this community to pay it forward just as they did. They did what they did for free & some still continue to do that - those are people to look up to. Thank you to everyone who helped this community grow to what it is today across all social media platforms. Without you, there's no way the community would be as amazing as it is today. Thank you all for reading this random Saturday morning blog post. Until next time, I'll see you around the spiral. :D

1 comment:

Fatal Exception said...

And look at you, now. The next worthy hands, bearing the Mantle of Community Leadership. The Spir@l continues, ever onward, torches passed from Wizard to Wizard, each bearing the foundational bricks that make a Community unique unto itself. FWIW, I am proud of you.
Be Well!
-Autumn Duskhunter, HiaG Necromantress