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YouTube button & FaceBook page
- added two YouTube buttons to game page, the first search YouTube for a review of that game and the second for a longplay
- created FaceBook page (link on the right bottom)


Upcoming Changes!
I was observing for a long time how the community was still hanging around, regardless of my laziness and negligence. And finally I gave up, you do want HotU to exist and you do want it to grow, so let it be your stubborn way :)
Since you really love it that much, let's bring HotU to its former glory (or at least make it fully functional again).

Of course there are several obstacles, but I think I got all or most of them covered. At the moment there is a discussion going on at the forum about the details.

But the overall plan is like that:
- an overhaul of the site (technical & functional wise - the look & feel will change over my dead body)
- more or less regular updates (like quarterly?)
- fundraising to assure long term survival and growth
- building a strong team of editors and other helpers (so I'm not the bottleneck)
- embrace the XXI century (to a reasonable extend, in the end we are all old geezers or geezeress (or whatever female geezer is called) who live in nostalgia world :))

For now I made a small overhaul which is:
- created Twitter account
- fixed/removed some outdated information

I will post more details once we got them forged out.


Stop ACTA!
A few days ago several countries signed ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. This act is threatening the existence of Home of the Underdogs and many other websites. It basicly allows big companies to effectively shut down websites based on SUSPICION of having an illegal content without court verdict. It is the duty of a website to prove the innocence and then the website might go back online (or not).

For example, we have on HotU images of several games from "Star Trek" universe. This can be interpreted as copyright infrigement by ACTA rules. So, they can request the company that provide our server to shut down HotU website and then I have to go to court, pay all the legal fees which I obviously can't afford, and PROVE that these images were not pirated (normally, in all other legislation in all legal systems on this planet there is an assumption that everyone is non guilty and they have to prove your guilt, with ACTA it is opposite).

What can we do? Well, if 6 countries refuse to sign that/ratify that act it will be nullified worldwide (unconfirmed). So, maybe if you never sent a letter to the parliament/senate representative you voted on, it is the time to do so? This might be enough to stop this madness.


- subgenres work now

- companies page improved
- some game download links added (mostly interactive fiction)

- themes work now
- instead of downloads there is asearch link which helps you find the site which might have that game.

The site is under reconstruction.
- All games are in the database and can be browsed and searched.
- Downloads, themes, subengres features do not work yet.
- Visit forum if you want to help with site reconstruction.


So much for a "monthly schedule" :P Between trying to regularly update my personal blog, writing a regular column for a local on-line magazine (sorry, it's Thai-only), working on the first book in my life (about my experience with US education system - writing in Thai, but hope to write excerpts in Engish when it's done), and jugging new responsibilities at work, HOTU has been pushed down my priority scale a little bit. Well, that's not exactly true: for the past 2 months I have been exploring ways to "upgrade" this site to a Wiki-style community site, so everyone can help contribute and maintain content. The problem is that the two gentlemen who offered to help me have disappeared, presumably busy with their real lives.

So let me make this official: if you have extensive knowledge about PHP and modifying Wiki codebases and would like to help upgrade HOTU, let me know. As I see it, this kind of site will hugely benefit from a Wiki-style structure where people can contribute concent, with a small team of 2-3 editors overseeing everything. As much as I love adding games and as much as I am skeptical about whether other people share my views on what constitute "underdogs," I do have to admit that the sheer size and scope of this site is getting to a point where it can't be a one-person thing anymore. Just keeping all the related links and buy links up-to-date is almost a full-time job (on that note, let me publicly say a big THANK YOU to forum regulars Jorpho, Anym and many others who tirelessly and constantly check countless on-line stores for game availability).

No promises on when the next update will be - but keep your eye on the tally on the front page ;) I will try to also somehow integrate RSS-style feeds soon, so visitors can at least keep track of updates.



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