So very recently I finally decided to take down my FA account. I posted a journal with some sarcastic remark asking if people enjoyed all the new updates, as the site continues to be INCREDIBLY slow, not showing announcements, not uploading icons nor submissions properly, and generally being unpleasant to navigate.
As your average gal, I am entitled to get mad about some things, and I rarely do. I see a million of journals of people whining about most everything, sharing drama, being generally negative. When I decide to be negative, I make a joke out of it.
But, no. Even sarcastic remarks of OBVIOUS problems come off to some people as being too mean.
"How dare you say bad things about my dear, precious FA?" is what they are thinking?
Or what goes through your head when something as insignificant as my words can bother you?
This is something that I've always found... extremely odd. As humans, we express various emotions and use various words to better communicate how we feel. If something bothers us, we express it. If something brings us joy, we express it. This are essential functions that have let us progress through history. Our most primal instinct that keep us safe and help us prosper.
Why are we not allowed to be angry at things that infuriate us? Why are we not allowed to take action?
FurAffinity is a popular site, and a great site to some extends. But it has problems. I'm not a coder, programmer, hacker, whatever. I know nothing about how codes and design work. But I am a person with common sense. This site is falling behind, and it has a myriad of almost-daily problems. Not to mention how toxic the community can be!
Whenever there are updates, be it on the FA main site, forums, or the Twitter people are downright VILE.
"Thanks, FA. Why aren't you fixing this or that instead?" "You know it's been a week instead of 3 days like you said?" And so on. Usually more "mean" words that I could ever muster with my expressions of distaste.
There are MUCH better sites with much more friendly filing systems, nicer communities, and many other useful features!
Sites like InkBunny and Weasyl are my prime example for art sites that are extremely good and take their community to heart.
Oh, but here comes the haters against InkBunny... they say:
"Man, fuck that baby-fuckers site. It's filled with ponies and pedos!"
Yes, there is an abundance of cub porn on InkBunny, and it could be argued that it is the main focus on the site. BUT this doesn't mean it can't be worked around unlike on FA. Let's say you don't like pictures of rape, but you are browsing newer pictures on FA and, oops! That thumbnail looks fairly rapey! Fuck, now I'm triggered and feel awful. Day ruined...
Both at InkBunny and Weasyl, and even SoFurry to an extend, this can be averted no less than 95% of the time. IB and Weasyl have a wondrous tagging system. You can make a list of words you rather not see, and pictures with such portrayals are completely blocked off. You don't see the thumbnail, and you can find EXACTLY what you want. FA doesn't have such a function. And while it does have a tagging system it is an unexplored concept. People in FA don't even USE their tagging, or tag things properly, most of the time. If you forget to tag or add a proper tab at FA the best you can hope for is someone sending you a note. But that never happens.
In IB and Weasyl, OTHER people can add tags for you and make suggestions. And, oh boy~ Do they do it.The community is much more active, they are always watching out for each other, be it of self-interest or obsession, it functions! No hassle, no mean words, just a notification of suggested tags you can add. That makes me feel like people in those sites really do care about order and helping each other, which in an art gallery is imperative to communicating and sharing your content.
And you know what else is good for art sites? Folder systems. Why is it that IB, SoFurry, AND Weasyl have folders, but FA doesn't? What are they waiting for?!
This may be minor for a lot of people, but the utter usefulness and, again, organization that this function presents is simply immense to me. You make a comic and you don't have to waste time putting BBCode in every single page.
You post the comic page, go to your last submission, grab the text, paste it, fix the numbers, submit it, grab the new numbers, go back to the last picture, edits in the numbers, and fucking finally it's all connected!
Any other site, you make a folder, stick it all the in the same folder and done!
No coding, no mess. Simple, efficient! FA is a battle. A battle with the site itself, and a battle of emotional endurance dealing with all the people and journals sharing drama and negativity.
Not to say other sites are perfect but they have SOOOO so so so much less of it. And they provide options to deal with any obstacle that they present best they can. While in FA, what you see is what you get. Deal with it.
And before you mention that all this sites are free, deal with it. Yes, they are free... up till recently as FA has started begging for donations. Money that, so far, hasn't really show any fruit. Other sites are also free, but they provide incentives for you to donate, again to make you feel like you are part of that community. (Looking at you, IB)
FA isn't the worst site ever. God knows what kinda efforts they put into keeping it going, and all they drama and bullshit they have to deal with to keep it running. It is basically the art site that really pulled everyone together. But it do
esn't mean we have to stick to it and not look toward better things.
I was told leaving FA would be a disservice to my watchers, that I am loosing fans for leaving. But, if people REALLY care about my work, they will follow. You, the ones that enjoy my work not JUST to fap, but that understand why I draw and enjoy everything (or most) that I draw, those are the ones that I want close to me. It's not about numbers, is about creating and having people enjoy what I create. Sorry you can't keep up with me, but this monstress doesn't stay where she doesn't belong.
Give InkBunny, Weasyl, and even Sofurry a try. IB needs more artist with different skills to grow. And Weasyl simply needs more people to really get going. If you are an artist you while find them incredibly useful. If you are a Watcher, give them a fair chance and explore their functions. You can customize them more to your taste and find what you like.
Sites are only as good as the community. It's up to us to make them grow and become more like we want. Don't be afraid to give your input and try new things. But aim for positive things.
See you there. Much love~