We’re always trying new things to make Convention Scene the best it can be. Some recent examples of that is the SDCC Community Hub that appeared at the top of our site as well as the Community Links section that can be found toward the bottom. Both of these allow us to get content onto the site easily and quickly plus all of the convention news, con reports, and YouTube videos we post appear in our Twitter stream and on our Facebook Fan Page. Plus, there’s a submission page where you can easily submit links to us.
So what do you think? Do you find them useful? Would you like to see a Community Hub setup for other conventions? Please comment below.
Whether you want to put the latest headlines from Convention Scene on your site or just what’s happening with Comic-Con International: San Diego, you can now do that with our official Convention Scene widgets. Just click on “Get Widget” below the widget that you want to get the appropriate code for your site.
These widgets and any other ones we add will also be avaiable under Resources – Widgets. Like to see a widget for something else? Let us know in the comments below.
I did not want to let the month of March go by without acknowledging that this is actually the 10 year anniversary of the launch of Comic Book Conventions.com, the predecessor of Convention Scene. In the next couple of months, I hope to start a dialogue with everyone about what we are doing right and what we are doing wrong, but for now, let’s celebrate with a look back at how it all began,and if you have time to post a response, let us know how long you have been following my sites or share a memory of your own.
It all started with a poster. Seriously. My foray into the World Wide Web began with an assignment to create a poster for a class in Photoshop I was taking, back around 1998. Having had the idea for a while to start a website listing all the events going on in Florida, I used the assignment as an opportunity to create a nice collage of images of celebrities taken at conventions (mostly by resident Convention Scene photographer Dwayne Gill) and launch my first website…FASN, The Florida Autograph Seekers’ Network. Located at GeoCities, the site is long gone, and I don’t even have a screenshot of it, but it paved the way for everything to follow.
My next launch came in March 0f 2000: Comic Book Conventions.com. This was my first attempt at using actual web design software – Adobe GoLive. Made from scratch myself,
the site was primitive, largely ignored at first, and often went months without an update.
I considered Comic Book Conventions.com just a warmup, though. My real target was my next website – Autograph Alliance, launched in August of 2000. Replacing FASN, Autograph Alliance was supposed to do for the whole country what FASN did for Florida. And it worked. For awhile.
Thinking to create a network of sites under one central domain, I moved Autograph Alliance under the domain of Massive Universe and made plans to do the same thing for Comic Book Conventions.com.
But a funny thing happened along the way. In 2002, I decided to buy a template and do a redesign of Comic Book Conventions.com. And lo and behold, I got an advertiser…Capital Associates. Still with us today in the form of Capicons.com. And I got more advertisers.
Comic Book Conventions.com was making money. Autograph Alliance was taking a tremendous amount of time and wasn’t making money. The writing was on the wall. It only made sense to concentrate my efforts on what was working, and that meant Comic Book Conventions.com. And so I did.
And Comic Book Conventions.com had a great run. The site grew in popularity and word of it spread throughout the industry. Slowly but surely it became the place to check when you were planning your convention schedule for the year. But as the years went on, I felt like the site was stuck. While I watched other sites grow and evolve, I felt trapped by Comic Book Conventions.com stagnant HTML, riddled with bad code that I could never hope to clean up. Sure, I rolled out a few changes and
improvements as time went on, but I knew the site could be more. I wanted it to be more. I knew it would be more.
For years, I began making plans, always telling my friends, “Next year. You’ll see. A whole new relaunch.” But funds set aside for programmers always ended up going for something else. So I waited. I waited until I found the right pieces of technology that I could knit together myself to create a superior site, one with a database of events, and a true archive, and RSS feeds for whatever you could possibly want.
So in late 2008 I began putting it together. While things did not come together in time to launch it for MegaCon 2009, I finally pulled the trigger in May of 2009 and Convention Scene was born, the latest in a long line of my internet endeavors. And I know Convention Scene has its detractors, those who long for the simplicity of Comic Book Conventions.com. But while I’m taking a look down memory lane today, I’m also looking ahead to the future. I still believe Convention Scene is only reaching the tip of the iceberg of its potential. But that’s a conversation for another day. For now, I hope you enjoyed this look back and will stay with us for the ride to come.
Just having some fun with Marvel’s “I am an Avenger” campaign.
For those of you who may not have visited us at our old Comic Book Conventions.com site, Connie was our Convention Awards/sometime site mascot. I plan to revisit the Convention Awards idea again, but it’s not in the cards for this year.
Thanks to The Weekly Crisis for the template.
And thanks again to Michael Golden, who provided this awesome rendition of Connie.
Testing something new today. If you visit the All Upcoming Events page right now, you will find Tabbed views which give you the option of seeing all the events in a list or seeing them in our Google Calendar. If everyone likes this, I was thinking of just keeping the Google Calendar there and deleting the separate “Calendar View” page we currently have up.
Please respond below with whether or not you like this option.
Also, where else on the site would you possibly like to see things put into tabs instead of separate pages? It won’t work well for our larger pages because basically everything is loading at the same time. It works best with small chunks. I’m open to suggestions.
Brian Pate, Owner
Convention Scene is happy to announce some new calendar features for the site.
First off you may have noticed some changes in our schedules pages. The “category” for each event is now in its own column, not in the line below. This will be important later. On the left of each second line, however, you will now set a “+” sign. Click on the +, and you now have the option to add that event to your Google Calendar or download the iCal information.
Also, if you look down at the bottom of each schedule page, there is now an icon for an iCal feed; you can get the master events feed or the feed for each category of event. What’s more, we now have RSS feeds for each individual category as well.
Taking all those iCal category feeds, we are now able to offer a calendar view for all the events listed on our site. You can even go back and look at past months as well.
Only interested in seeing certain categories of events? You can turn “off” whatever calendars you don’t wish to view.
We hope you enjoy these new features. You can view the master events Calendar view here.
Pretty much since the start, we have been plagued by memory issues on the back end of the site which made the submission process frustrating and confusing. In the few weeks, things seemed to take a turn for the worse because although submissions were making it through, promoters were seeing error messages on each attempt and were trying over and over again as a result.
To alleviate this situation, we have installed a completely new submission form system that we believe will make the process run smoother and easier for everyone. As with any process, there are changes and drawbacks, however.
- The new submission system is not tied into the membership system on the site so we will be asking for contact information with each submission, much like on the old Comic Book Conventions.com site.
- For Premium Promoters, you will no longer be able to edit your own entries at this time, but we will, of course, make any changes you need a priority. Also, the new Premium form is password protected so if you haven’t heard from me yet and need to make a submission, please contact me for your password.
We still have all the submissions made under the previous system and are working on getting those up as well.
To recap what forms are available:
- Free Convention Submission Form – Just want to have a basic listing and don’t mind until waiting a while for it appear on the site? Use this form.
- Premium Convention Form – Wnnt your convention added right away? Would you like to include information about your guests plus a description of your convention? Would you like to include your logo or flyer? Sign up for our Premium Promoter program so you can use this form.
- Convention Update Form – Did something change? Your date, location, etc.? Update us through this form.
- News Form – Have an announcement to make concerning your convention? Use this form. You can even attach graphics to go along with your story.
- Signing or Appearance Form – Is a creator appearing at your shop, school, library…? Use this form to let us know.
Thanks for your patience as we work out the kinks of the new site.
Brian Pate, Owner and Webmaster
More than a wax museum, Madame Tussauds Hollywood is LA’s newest attraction opening August 1st right next to the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Blvd. Madame Tussauds Hollywood opens with a great action and superhero section where you can take pictures with your favorite characters like Wolverine!
We’d like to invite the Convention Scene members to come see the attraction with a $5 discount when you visit before the end of the year. See below for details:
MADAME TUSSAUDS HOLLYWOOD
Receive $5 off regular adult/child admission to Madame Tussauds Hollywood when you present this offer at the Box Office at time of purchase. To receive this discount, you must print this offer to be exchanged at the Box Office. Good for up to six (6) one-day admission tickets. Not valid with other discounts, online ticket sales, or offers. Valid at Box Office only. Additional restrictions may apply. Not for resale. Only a printed offer will be honored. Expires: December 31, 2009. Promo code: 9011/9012.
UPDATED: Now extended through July 14. What’s 4 days when you can have 14? If you missed your opportunity before, you still have a chance at these 75% off savings.
If you have been interested in trying out our new Targeted Sponsor Ads, you’re not going to get a better opportunity than now! For the next 4 days, all Targeted Ads will be available at over 75% off!
That means the large 300×250, regularly $50, is just $12; the 125×125 ad spots, regularly $25 are just $6.
This offer is only available through the 4th of July. If you place a subscription, be aware that the ad will renew at the regular price.
Currently, ad zones are only available for the following 5 states:
But if you would like us to add add spots for any other states or countries, just request them in the comments below.
There is only one 300×250 ad spot available for each zone, but we will add additional 125×125 ad spots as needed.
For more information, see the Targeted Ads page. Feel free to ask questions in the comments.
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