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Farewell Geocities, It was Fun While it Lasted

October 20, 2009

Geocities.com is closing on October 26, 2009. To most people, the end of geocities probably doesn’t mean that much. But it makes me a little sad. I joined geocities during the early days of the internet. I joined geocities in 1999 when (according to wikipedia), it was the third most visited website. During its peak, geocities was wildly popular and successful. Its IPO started at $17 and ballooned to $100 a share. So successful that Yahoo bought geocities for $3.7 billion. To put that in perspective, YouTube was bought by google for $1.67 billion.

My website has been on geocities even since I signed up. It originally began with a black and green color scheme and featured a splash page with barstools that simply said “Welcome to Nick’s.” Here you could read movie reviews and see photos from high school. Afterward, I revisited that website and made it a Kelly Clarkson tribute website, before she won on American Idol. Later I transformed my website into a place where you could read the letters that Brian wrote to me during his mission to Italy. I even had a map where you could see the places he visited.

Then my geocities website went dark.

It remained unchanged for years. Until I took a job at the University of Washington, updating their Alumni website. I began to code html everyday. At that point in 2005, blogging was extremely popular and I decided to change my website into a blog. But I wanted to continue to code it in html. Never mind the fact that blogger, wordpress, etc., were widely available and free. I thought it would be more fun to do it this way. And on April 26, 2005, my blog titled, “because i’m asian,” was born.

In the first entry I wrote about an experience I had at Golden Gardens. About yam burgers and a woman with a broken arm. I wrote about all sorts of things. Tully’s girl. My fifth grade crush. Paying the Evans School delinquent bottled water bill. The Benton-Franklin County Fair. And more dating experiences than I can remember. It was a great outlet to have a clean looking website, with customizable headers, at no cost.

Now I understand why geocities is no longer viable. It is a web 1.0 website in a web 2.0 world. But geocities provided a way for people to share photos, writings, thoughts, and music for free. And you could design your website however you wanted. Geocities was a pioneer in the wildcat days of the internet. Before mp3s. Before Twitter. Before Facebook. Before RSS.

In the coming days, I am transferring everything from geocities to this new blog. I will tweet this entry, which will post to my facebook account. Maybe you will subscribe to my RSS and this entry will be delivered to your google reader or outlook inbox. You will be able to search my blog for your favorite entry. Make comments on my inanity. Geocities.com/nickoroni will go dark forever. It lasted ten years and it had a good run.

But here are my favorite blog entries and why.
1. Chinese Take-Out Loneliness, May 28, 2006 – It was the first entry that I added a title. And it was really funny. Paul to this day asks me if I need ‘chopstick for one.’
2. Why Babies Born in 1994 Will Need to Watch the TV Show Friends, May 19, 2007 – Very nerdy entry that showed that Friends influenced baby names after the show was released. It included a graph.
3. Ryan Berg Finished What the Light Pole Could Not, March 23, 2007 – The destruction of my car. Intense accident that I walked away from.
4. Eiger and the Death Hike, July 9, 2006 – I love this entry because the photos are great and Eiger was an awesome dog.
5. Untitled, August 4, 2005 – The incident that has sparked much debate. Did Tully’s Girl ever like me or is she simply working for tips. And the hearts on the cup. Killer.
6. Nick, There is Something I Should Tell You, December 13, 2008 – How can you not love a story about me dating that features a woman who has an arrest warrant and is married. Awesome.

Farewell geocities, it was fun while it lasted. We won’t see each other again but I am glad we danced together this long.

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