Hello and welcome to SideArc! Formerly known as the gaming blog TakuChat.com, we’ve completely started over, with the exception of our site design, and are working to do things much better than before. Most importantly, however, we’d like for you to join us.
Wait, what happened to TakuChat?
We suffered a series of hacks that eventually led to our server being compromised. After three years maintaining this site and being concerned for its security, it’s something I can’t believe I let happen.
Not wanting to be discouraged, I immediately got everyone together, and we as a group decided it would be best to start anew, including changing the name. Rather than try to restore our database from our compromised servers, we will be recovering some of the articles we had posted here, which is a manual process and will take time.
I’m really sorry for everything that’s happened, but I hope you guys will be here for another three years, along with new faces!
What is SideArc, then?
“Spread opinions, reviews, informationals padded with news! A site that brings gamers closer to the developer (dream)” -KingKellogg (Jacob Kellogg)
SideArc, like TakuChat, means a lot of things to different users. During our process of coming up with a new name, one of our admins suggested gathering together what we all thought the site should be, to make coming up with a name easier. Liking the idea, I made a Google document for all of us to write our thoughts on. I encourage you to read and comment on that mess of a document here.
SideArc will be moving forward with the perspective and mentality reflected in this document along with new ideas of our current user base.
“Takuchat always seemed to me like a place for universal communication. People other than the site admins were allowed to make their own posts and contribute their thoughts, and thus the site felt like at least something of a democracy.” – Dracosummoner
The key part of SideArc is user content and its community. At SideArc, users write the articles, decide how the site should be moderated, and what features need to be developed.
Let me make that clear: you can register on this site right now and immediately start writing articles. New users will require approval at first, and we do have posting standards to iron out, but from there on, the sky’s the limit.
We want everyone involved, and we want the community as a whole to benefit.
“A community with the goal of bringing average gamers closer to media access and influence. While also being a platform to promote their own contributions to gaming. To be open to input and change.” – DigitalWolf (Isiac DaGraca)
“A demographic of people that are interested in contributing content for the media they prefer. People who are excited to be writing, and passionate about the topics they want to talk about. An atmosphere that brings out that flame.” – WolfDawgs
Of course, however, this site focuses not only on gaming but on the surrounding culture in general; the openness of the community breeds new interests and fandoms including anime, comics, movies, and other forms of entertainment.
“Same as the old one with less gap between story publishing and community features. Previously it was like two entirely different sites.” – m0re
Previously there was a rather large gap between the casual nature of SpeakOut (our open forum using Disqus) and the structured nature of Takuchat’s front-page articles. Most news hit SpeakOut long before the front page simply because it was so easy for us to share quickly. We tried many things to remedy this, but starting over, we’re trying something completely different.
While SpeakOut still exists here, its flaw was often that topics would get lost in the constant flow of new discussion, especially around the time of a new game release. We now have a forum that directly connects to our articles and posts.
Now when you write an article, a mirrored post is made on the forum, and all conversation on the forum appears in the article comments and vice versa. Just want to read articles and comment? Sure! Just want to hangout on the forums? Fine! And for everything else day to day, SpeakOut will remain. The forums will be fantastic for long-term discussion, while SpeakOut is great for daily short discussion. Please note that forum posts do not themselves make articles; only articles make forum posts.
We’re also be taking a more lax approach to front-page article standards; what this will be specifically has yet to be determined, but hopefully things will be more welcoming.
“A place where we all share a passion, talk about whatever comes to our minds. A home away from home where we have only a few specific rules regarding the posts. To attract new users to join in our discussions and promote our own original content.” – PhantomLink
Beyond these major changes, several older features have been removed to get rid of bulk, and we now have community features such as private messages, user pages, and more to come.
Whats to come?
There’s a lot of work ahead, and we’ll proceed casually, knowing there’s much to do. For one, we need a proper logo; in the coming weeks, we’ll set up a contest with actual prizes donated by our community for our site logo design. So please keep that in mind if you have the graphic-design skills.
“Anyone who wants to discuss and/or contribute to the topics they want.” – Hongo
“What this weeb said.” – PanamaPunk
In the meantime we’ll be making full use of the forums to discuss the site’s direction with everyone. You’re also free to give us suggestions on places like Facebook and Twitter as well (both of which we’d also like to be maintained by our whole community). We’ll also soon set up a “Contact us” forum, but for now, feel free to email the site at [email protected].
The main topic, of course, is making sure that our community is functional. We will be posting articles making fixes and getting everyone acquainted with new features like on our FAQ page and such.
“Takuchat was a place where you can be yourself and not be afraid of what other people say, Everyone has their own opinion and they don’t shun you for that.” – TimesTicking
“Those who feel like they want to be slightly more involved in the gaming industry without actually being in it. Accidently(sic) made this text big, I’m on my phone and drunk so shut up.” – GUN
We’re opening a new chapter on the tails of new game releases, anime to watch, and stuff to create. We’re off the beaten path of just being fans, and we’re well on our way to having a real voice as a community.
And I look forward to doing so with everyone here. Thanks for reading!