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Is it Me? Or is Deviantart Dying?

Journal Entry: Tue Oct 28, 2014, 8:36 AM

I was chatting to some art/writing friends online, and it seemed to be something we agreed upon.

Deviantart seems kinda dead, or like it's dying or something. Or is that just for me ( and the people I've spoken to?). Honestly, I think a lot of the changes they made are responsible.

Disclaimer (because I always need one for some reason). This is my journal. It is my opinion. If you have a different opinion I'd love to hear it. I'm not out to offend anyone (kind of sadly hilarious I have to post these more and more lol ).

I've been here a long time. Well, I suppose I wasn't active for many years. I lived in Japan and Deviantart has no presence there. But then 3.5  years ago I decided to teach myself to paint, so I suddenly became active.

I think a lot of the recent Site Updates to Deviantart have really made things hard for those of us who are serious about artwork ( or maybe everyone?). Usually, it was fairly standard that when you post a new deviation, you get a surge of views to your profile page. It's only natural, because you released ( or unleashed :crazy: ) something new, and thus it attracts more attention to you than when you're in between projects and doing nothing.

But not anymore.

I released new art before the update, and it did much like usual. I had an increase in page viewers, a bunch of new watchers etc etc.
Then I released a new one after the update, and there was a dramatic decline. I didn't get any such increase in much of anything at all. I'm not saying that the world should gather at my mighty feet and gaze, slack-jawed in awe over whatever art I post ( :XD: ), but the absolute lack of pageviews and activity is noticeable.  I get less pageviews when I post new art now than I did 2 years ago.

My friends said the same thing about their pages, that they actually got more views and new followers every time they posted about a year and a half ago than they do now. And it's not because they have changed focus. It's not because a style switch, or that they aren't improving. 

Is this happening to you too? If so, why do you think?

I think it's because Deviantart has created so much noise everywhere, so much distractions on every single page, whether it be the Browse pages, the Feeds, the 27 thumbnails on every single piece of artwork we upload that it's just overpowering that less and less people bother to look further into a single artist beyond one piece of work.  I can just say for myself, I don't actually interact as much as I used to. I think I've seen maybe, 2 Daily Deviations since the changes ( and bear in mind I'm a Beta tester so I've had them for quite awhile). And I've heard from artists who have received Daily Deviations that it just wasn't like it used to be, The overall views on them are far less no that they are no longer in the footer. They just don't have the same impact.

Now I will post a cute picture of my dog so the people who like to get offended will remember cute things are the only important things, and that this is an opinion,  and we all are having a nice conversation over tea and cookies.

Yuki2 by K-Koji

I've barely seen a popular journal or news since the update. Because though I think the Today page is better than it used to be, that whole endless scroll thing is just too much for me. I tried scrolling, and with all the information, if I touch the mouse just a WEE bit too much, it POPS into like.. last week. I found myself on October 24th today. And thus I don't even know where I am in it let alone see anything I want. It seems filled with the same artists all the time ( and don't get me wrong, they are talented and I like them but for me, it can get a bit old). Then I have to scroll through 800 articles from the same guy. I'm sure he's nice, but yanno, I'm not interested. If it was locked or had the option of being one neat little page, and there was one or two articles showcased, maybe then. But now it's too overpowering and I don't bother.
It's like hitting an information brick wall lol. So now,  maybe I look once a week and then Im repelled a bit.

Then with the Activity Feed. It is bombarded by a massive amount of thumbnails. You have the ability to comment and fav right there with no incentive to click on the artists gallery. If I actually did click on the artwork, sometimes I'm not even TAKEN to that art. I'm taken to a Collections gallery. I had to scroll through endless thumbnails to see some of the information and other comments (which is what I care about, not what Collections they are in), and often just got distracted and clicked away.
  I barely use my feed, but when I looked at it to try it out the first few times, I found the thumbnails were so large that I saw the painting perfectly fine so I didn't actually need to go in for a closer look. I also missed out when artists I actively watch posted a new deviation because it got lost in it all.

Once again...let's take deep breaths :meow: . You do not have to think the same as me

Yukimorning by K-Koji

In all this noise, there is still only ONE way to :+devwatch: an artist. You can comment, fav, share, and all that crap for people's Collections, but they didn't bother to add any :+devwatch: buttons.  Why not? I think they are desperately needed. Because if fewer and fewer people are bothering to click on someone's profile page, no one will be able to get a following.
 Don't think it's vain that people want a following. It's not some absurd, 2 dimensional quest for e-popularity. Well, maybe it is for some people, but for artists that need to sell their work, it's crucial. If you don't sell your work, or hope to one day sell your work, this might not make sense to you. But it's fact, and yanno, people need to have a bit of empathy for that.

The "More Like This" fiasco actually tanked a lot of stock artists trying to sell premium content. Because think about it:  you land on their page, like the stock, and see it costs 100points (less than a dollar). But then, there are 18 thumbnails beside it with more stock that's FREE. So you just endlessly click until you find something that costs nothing. And now, there are even more thumbnails on every deviation page.

I think for the first time, I'm beginning to understand why so many of the great artists I follow are moving to Tumblr, or other places.  I'm not saying this for dramatic effect or anything. I'm not leaving of course, I LOVE most of the people I've met here, but I think my focus is going to shift more now to other Sites. Because the feed system works on Tumblr ( I don't think so much here). I think things are very straight forward there. My blog page is mine, and it's free from advertisements. I dont have any overlords slapping things on my artwork with me having no say about it.  I know that it comes with it's own difficulties and limitations, as do all Sites, but it's beginning to look like the way to go.

It's funny that way. The more Deviantart tries to emulate other sites, the more it's directing traffic to them. Or maybe it's just my feelings and that of the people I talk to? I find I feel more disengaged with the community now than ever, but maybe it's because I just have the type of brain that finds a shitload of constant information shuts me out more than it makes me interested :o.

What do you think? I'm aware that maybe it's different for other people, so I'm open to hear about it.

But bottom line: We need more Watch :+devwatch: buttons. For the love of God, DA, throw the poor working artists a bone once in awhile.

Edit: I never knew a journal could get into the What's Hot section :ohnoes: . This is has received a lot more attention than I thought. Please bear in mind this is just one persons personal journal. I tried to present my thoughts with care.  This isn't a reflection of what I think of DA Staff. I think most of them are nice people doing their jobs as best they can and I know very well there are a lot of things none of us users can ever know regarding what goes on.

just throwing that out there because even with 3 disclaimers and 2 puppy pictures, as expected, people are still getting spiteful. :XD:

Follow me on Tumblr! 8D


ZACK FAIR by K-KojiKuroshitsuji: Claude Faustus by K-Koji


Commission Information:…

1. :iconargentkirin:
2. :icondoomdweller:
3. :iconxenobiacat:

*taking a wee break

No Requests by SweetDukeCommissions - Closed by SweetDuke


Add a Comment:
animedrawren Featured By Owner 11 hours ago  Hobbyist General Artist
fantastic art !! Free Slendy Lick icon 
K-Koji Featured By Owner 10 hours ago
 Thank you :3
PrincipemDeAurorae Featured By Owner 13 hours ago  New member Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I've got to say your art is absolutely breathtaking. ;v; Don't mind me going on a fave spree. XD There are literally so any pieces I can't stop staring at. The colors, detail, poses, and OC's are so tastefully done and your art style is one of my favorites. O': Keep up the good work, man! 

K-Koji Featured By Owner 13 hours ago
 Thank you very much :iconletmehugyouplz:
PrincipemDeAurorae Featured By Owner 13 hours ago  New member Hobbyist Traditional Artist
You are welcome! ;o; / *throws confetti* And I read your journal, and I agree o_o I've had other accounts on dA and such and I've noticed a decline in activity. :c But, I am grateful that artists like you and others make this site flourish with awesomeness~ O: So, like, don't stop making art, man. D: dA would be a dimmer place if you left. ;n;

DOLLce13 Featured By Owner 1 day ago  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Love your work!
K-Koji Featured By Owner 23 hours ago
 Thanks :hug:
DOLLce13 Featured By Owner 17 hours ago  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Welcome ^^
booklish Featured By Owner 1 day ago  New member  General Artist
You have some of the best art work I have seen in ages :happybounce:  I can't imagine ever being this talented
K-Koji Featured By Owner 1 day ago
 Thanks very much :hug:
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