Production: Ludist’s Home on the Web
In 1994, David Bohnett and John Rezner created a web hosting service that was intended to allow its users to create their websites and categorize them into their choosing, users could also browse websites created by others based on their interests. By 1999 it began to pick up steam as it was the third most used website on the World Wide Web, Yahoo realized this and decided to acquire it. In 2009, with close to 40 million pages created, GeoCities announced its conclusion in the US.
On the Journey to finding a GeoCities that looked intriguing, I came across the TimeSquare neighborhood. After browsing many of the GeoCities I finally landed at “Ludist’s home on the Web”. Ludist (not entirely sure, but think this is his name) created this GeoCity in 2001 while he was a 20-year-old Junior at Troy University. Although an interesting GeoCity, it is apparent that Ludist didn’t put a whole lot of effort into his design compared to some of the other Cities that I discovered upon research. The eye-catcher to me was the four major sports teams he put at the top of his home page. This captured my interest not only because I am an avid sports fan, but also because the teams that he mentioned, Washington Commanders (Redskins at the time), Washington Wizards, Washington Capitals, and the Baltimore Orioles are all relatively close to Johns Hopkins. On the homepage, Ludist has uploaded a few pictures, one of his Girlfriend Laura and two of a video game that he was working on. He also includes a little biography and expresses his love for football, basketball, swimming, hanging out with friends, and above all, he is “just trying to be a nice guy.” Lastly on his home page is a dialogue of his friends chatting with one another.
Ludist’s GeoCity consists of his homepage and four sub-tabs. The tabs are named My NFL Thoughts, My Redskins News, My Paper Mario Page, and My Game Boy Advance Page. It is clear that Ludist created this city for mainly two reasons. One, to give his opinion about the NFL in 2001 like his predictions on how teams would do and why, and also to provide knowledge on his favorite NFL team and the types of moves they were making with trading, coaching, injuries, etc. Two, to give insight into the Game Boy Advance that he had previously purchased. Although his first two and last two tabs are on completely different ends of the spectrum, one being sports and the other being video games. Ludist is trying to illustrate his passions and is writing about what he and his friends bond over.
Throughout Ludist’s tab NFL Thoughts, he first discusses his conference predictions and predicts what teams will do well and what teams won’t. He analyzes and is quite harsh on some of the decisions teams coaches and management staff have made during the off-season. This is the tab that pulled me in. As an NFL fan myself, it was interesting to see somebody make a website to discuss the fate of the 2001 NFL season. It reminded me of a CBS article making predictions and discussing how teams are looking for the upcoming season, although he does it in a much more informal and crucial way, like how you would talk with your friends. This is demonstrated in the last section of this tab under his section “Things that piss me off about the NFL” where he lists a few problems that the NFL has in his opinion. Similarly, in Ludist’s second tab My Redskins News he writes about the coaching change and how he will impact the team. This tab is a little more statistical rather than an opinion piece. These first two tabs demonstrate Ludist’s passion for sports and how he expresses his opinions through his GeoCity, the way he writes is like he is talking to his friends, informal and a little cruel at some points.
Contrasting to the first two tabs, his last two tabs represent his passion for video games. His tab My Paper Mario Page is a FAQ about the game Paper Mario, he takes this page as a place where he answers some of the most popular questions and concerns about the game from his experience. His last tab My Game Boy Advance Page is a critique of the Game Boy Advance as he had recently purchased one and wanted to give his opinion about it. He discusses the physical and technological features of the then-new Game Boy and later goes on to list the 5 games that he had downloaded and critiques each individual in their page.
After completing the research on GeoCities it is very interesting to see how people like Ludist make their Cities to discuss their passions and interests. His GeoCity “Ludist’s home on the Web” is very relatable, he discusses his two interests, sports, and video games, and gives his thoughts on these two topics. Each GeoCity is different in its own right and is a representation of the producer’s main interests.