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Jackabetes
Treekicker can tell you all about the history of apples. Oh you're not here for apples? Then you are up a creek.

Prehistory

The founding of MLPchan was influenced by demand for a better defined safe haven of anything pony related. Prior to the changes that coincided together both on Ponychan and 4chan that influenced its userbase, there was initially no need to open another imageboard. The initial wave of the pony exile on 4chan was the same traffic that jumpstarted Ponychan's relevance. The remaining posters on 4chan's /b/rony threads regarded the events as a random attack brought on via inconsistent mod communication and decided to stay.

British-army-addressing-b-pony-arrival

British Army addressing his stance on how Ponychan was handling the arrival of the "/b/ bronies"

The second wave in October 2011 on the premiere of the Luna episode proved that /b/ was not a safe haven, and so much of its pony lovers decided to bend to the way Ponychan was being run, which despite some Ponychanners feeling uneasy at the arrival of 4chan, it didn't prove to be much a burden at the time. They followed the link that moot provided in his /b/ sticky and arrived on /chat/ and formed a 'serial' called "/b/ and Friends". While some users such as Moony, Hipster Brony, Cross Breeze and others were very welcoming to these changes, this wave willingly decided to stand their ground as their own community. The arrival of /b/ and friends very likely pushed /chat/'s traffic alone to unprecedented rates of over 10,000 posts per day, yet the majority of the /b/ pony lovers still hadn't left their home on 4chan.

On 4chan

Rule-15

Rule 15, the very first de-facto site rule banning ponies on 4chan.

By February 17, moot decided that a more feasible solution to the spread of ponies on /b/ would be to simply give them their own board and established /mlp/. As a consequence, a vote was tallied on /co/ that same night that would decide whether posting ponies would still be tolerable on their old home. /co/'s community, with a bad taste of the pony spam on their tongue, voted against it, and moot in response to this near global disdain for pony threads decided to make this resounding "no ponies" rule sitewide outside /mlp/ altogether.

Thus, Rule 15 was established. The significance of this rule was that for the first time ever, /b/rony threads were outlawed and actually mandated mod intervention to sieze them, especially on /b/. Those who decided to leave only had the option to take the massive step-down to Ponychan, which not enough were willing to do. Any of those who decided to stay were presumed ban evaders, and the mods enforced this rule from three-day bans to permanent bans.

One faction of /b/read had spread to /mlp/ but the threads were deleted on sight, and later abolished altogether in a single ban wave.

On Ponychan

February was a significant month for Ponychan not only because it marked the site's first anniversary, but also because of an incident where the site's admin, emotionally compromised nearly walked away from the hosting bill. Users aware of the incident were shocked to understand that the site was only hours away from being terminated completely.

/fic/ dilemma

Meanwhile on /fic/, it had been no question to say that the current circumstances of said board weren't ideal. While the board was not falling behind in traffic, suggestions had been made to appoint a board specific mod and to provide new features that were of high demand there. However, these proposals had been either long overdue or ignored. The community at one point worked on a site application project named 'Gummii'[1] that would serve a better environment for /fic/, and at another time, tried to form a group on FiMfiction, but it never caught on.

Unpopular decisions

In March, the admin took an extended absence and so the mods had to improvise. As a result to these miscommunications for example, /gala/ was an introduced as a board for serials rather than a board for socializing. By the time May had arrived, a number of moderators were already facing serious inconsistency problems. The 2nd incarnation of !!PinkiePie was emphatically stressed out over personal issues that very well had an effect on his moderation actions. While his friends, especially Saikar tried countless times to reach out to him, !!PinkiePie proved to be very resistant from confrontation. !!Fluttershy (3rd) occasionally had gotten criticism for taking action with too much emphasis on bans mainly on old /ef/ that took some time to fix. !!Twilight (2nd) decided to leave out of frustration out of aforementioned concerns not being resolved. The newly recruited (3rd) !!Applejack mod was introduced apparently without enough familiarity of where the staff draws the lines with their rules. Their good intentions taking on their jobs were failing to reflect with their relations with their own community.[2]

Aborted admin handoff

Main article: Zamoonda

On May 11 however, the unexpected happened. After an extended absence by then-admin !!Celestia, he later decided to hand over his admin position to Zamoonda and intended to leave. The leak delivered by then threatening to quit !!Fluttershy/Moony was presented to a number of concerned users who feared the site would be sabotaged in a fate similar to the previous site he had run. After hours of pleading to return, !!Celestia relented and asked him to leave the mod chat. Leaked chatlogs later emerged[3] which revealed that this individual whom even then had a telling history was clandestinely granted modboard access under the discretion of the admin from the past month, and no one even knew about it.  And so this raised another concern - what else did they not know?

Demand for a new outlet

With not much room for promising improvement with the moderation fiasco amongst the current state of affairs such as the heavily criticized board splittings, and without making any attempts to sugarcoat this story, an Efchan thread proved that this was the last straw for many of them and were willing to leave if someone was willing to take on the responsibility of opening another imageboard. 

It was the following month that a number of reputable Ponychan regulars and some from /b/&f lead by Anonthony (element of benevolence) !EEEEEEEE2c would pursue exactly that opportunity. A few domains were bought ahead of time out of uncertainty of what to name the new site, as well as webspace that temporarily was quietly used as a dev sandbox. One skype chatlog between future site runners Anonthony and Eudae !K0I3bDrQc6  was posted on /ef/ that speculated that this new imageboard would be named "ponychan.co". On July 12, the site went live under the working title "MLPchan" and all unchosen purchased domains redirected there from day one until expiration.

Introduction to MLPchan

Fluttershy-oat-sticky

The first /oat/ sticky

A formal announcement of MLPchan's opening was done on /fic/'s IRC channel [4] with the promise of more attention to content creating boards, a /fic/ moderator, built-in site features, and overall more community inspired growth. Their technical admin !!Littlepip had already written a post editor and collapsible spoilers on the same night they were suggested. Though Anonthony kept his word with these promises, it put /fic/ in a dilemma. MLPchan was about to serve the best environment that seemed to be of their best interest yet, but if the decision to move wasn't an overwhelming majority consensus, the community would be stagnated across both sites and disfunction. That consensus wouldn't be made until four months later.

Unicon-tickets

Contest for Las Pegasus Unicon tickets (lol)

MLPchan's popularity instantly started trending word by mouth on the board where it happens the most - /gala/. /Pony/ After Dark, a serial greatly influenced by basically a soap opera of drama had half of its population bail.[5] However, a few Ponychan mods were concerned that its growth was coming from unwanted advertising and were asking the users to tone down the discussion there a bit. The niche that resided in /spacetime/ moved to the new site at its entirety. Regulars of 'Love and Advice' had been trying to fight against /gala/'s infamous ability to reduce content-producing threads to socializing serials and were in favor for the migration. /b/ & friends not only left, but were reunited with the pony lovers from 4chan's /b/ board that were struggling to find a place to go. MLPchan was flourishing as users saw its potential and invited their friends in with it. Thread Killers Club moved for reasons not much different from /b/&f.[6] /rp/ saw the introduction of newly founded roleplay story arcs like Open Equestria and attracted /rp/ers from Better Layton Never that liked both the freedom of its relaxed rules, the built-in site UI, and the lack of disruption from wordfilters. MLPchan's !!Fluttershy mod would later sticky an announcement on /oat/ stating that wordfilters would be made, but they'd remain subtle and random.[7] Users on /oat/ that preferred the relaxed moderation moved there. MLPchan had gotten some attention from some /mlp/ posters outside /b/read, though remained nowhere near as large as the attention brought from /b/ pony threads and Ponychan.

Early publicity

By September, MLPchan was making significant progress. MLPchan was perceived not as an off-site Lunachan-ish spinoff, not as a Ponychan based serial niche, nor another Efchan-like splintering. It was its own self-standing site whose relevance rivaled that of Ponychan. By the end of the month, the inline extension was largely complete, and mature threads were welcomed at the unveiling of the #Mature tag. An anonymous board was also opened, though it largely remained dormant for some time.

Mlpc-radio

MLPCRadio thread

During the fall, interest was brought up by Anonthony that sparked for a possible news outlet similar to the success of [[The Daily Oat]]. The first week was a news post on /oat/, though

SarfTheMagnifico and Shuckle later decided to present it in podcast format from then onward.[8] So a team of SarfTheMagnifico, Shuckle, Bleeding Raindrops and Amonisis joined together and founded MLPCRadio, as three of the consistent segments. They would even have guest interviews; for example, Moony once appeared (and sang for) Sarf and Amonisis' Advice segment, and Xeainith briefly appeared in his own segment to do his music reviews of artists like Replacer, once interviewing Vivace Capriccioso. Through it's history, there were a number of segments that came and went, including Culinary and News. The end of October also sought the creation of MLPchan's mascot, Sugar Bumpkin. 

214430 safe solo oc hat earth pony pink artist-colon-enma-dash-darei mlpchan sugar bumpkin

"Oh. I thought that was a magical lesbian spawn of AJ and Pinkie..." - some random derpibooru poster

By November, after attempts to get the Ponychan admin's attention to suggest content syndication on /fic/ with MLPchan had not been met with a response, they agreed on a deadline of November 6 to migrate to the new site to ensure that it would not divide up the community and be destructive.[9] However, !!Celestia stepped in two days before the movement and introduced two new features he and !!Lyra had been working on - collapsible spoilers and editable posts. A few users ultimately decided to stay. A poll was later held that would determine whether the community would consent to content syndication across the two sites, but the majority voted against it.

Mobius-art-contest-winning-entry

Mobius' winning entry in the /art/-/rp/ contest

MLPchan is known for hosting a number of contests, but perhaps the most successful one was the /art/-/rp/ contest hosted over the holiday. In its two week span, the contest concluded with 26 entries, the winners being Mobius, Greeny Nyte, and The Less Anonymous Top Hat.

Katamari

/oat/ Katamari

Entering January, !!Pinkie Pie came up with a crazy idea to invite /oat/ to a sticky to "play /oat/ Katamari", probably one of the best instances of mod shenanigans to date. Two weeks later, MandoPony introduced his 'internet rejection' video, which he accused /mlp/ of being hateful to his works rather than 'providing criticism', despite /mlp/'s previous successful attempt to make peace with him. It took that exchange that inspired Shuckle to join in on the fun, and so on the same night he did an entire MLPCR segment on critiquing MandoPony that got ample publicity.[10]


It later turned out that MLPchan became a target of a massive DDoS attack. The perpetrator of the attack remains unclear, though enough sufficient evidence has backed the possibility that the attacker was the same as the former attacker in from the summer. MLPchan went offline for two days for emergency hardware swaps and server migrations. 

1370646168049

Some anon telling a story about his self-awareness

Over March, Derpymouz and Tom organized the first League of Legends tournament to go inter-chan. The sites set up twelve teams with sixty participants, with Tom doing commentary and Dysro doing the broadcasting. The tournament concluded in three weeks, originally intended with 4 games per week set up, though some teams ended up playing less games than others. The winners were 20% Cooler (/mlp/), Bad at the Game (MLPchan), and EYO SON (MLPchan). At the end of April, the mods did some spring cleaning and removed some unused boards. As a result, MLPchan's /fan/ board was removed due to inactivity alongside a few hidden boards, notably /int/. At the end of the month, as a result of creative disputes, MLPCRadio went its separate way and briefly re-branded itself as "Pregnant Stallion Radio" before subsequently shutting down. It's currently ongoing spinoff show, No Hooves Barred, was created by remaining members.

The /anon/ era

Weeniehut

Lulz ensuing in a random /anon/ thread

Discussion shortly after the infamous !!SweetieBelle reveal had sparked about a possible merge with Ponychan with countless proposals on the table. However, circumstances had changed at the arrival of /mlp/ users. Starting in early June on /mlp/, the 4chan mods and janitors unexpectedly decided to crack down on their rules, issuing bans and deleting threads that kicked out their most popular generals, including Fluffy Ponies, Milky Way, and Tulpa threads. Due to the way 4chan is run, /mlp/'s posters had no way to resolve this issue with the 4chan staff for reasons not much different from what started the February Bannings. As a consequence, many of /mlp/'s users sought refuge on MLPchan's /anon/ board. Not only did these changes singlehandedly build a community on the formerly dead anonymous board, but it helped redefine the direction the site was going. Merger discussions with MLPchan were later put on hold at the state of affairs with the return of Ponychan's admin however.
Canon-burst

C/anon/ Burst (right), /anon/'s board mascot with an OC bat pony

It is with no doubt to say that June was the most progressive month that year for MLPchan since the founding of the site at its entirety. Accounting for these changes, the site's admins decided to restructure the boards. As a consequence, /pic/ was removed, /chat/ was merged to /oat/, /ooc/ was revoked, and /anon/'s forced anonymity was removed. With /anon/ panned out, it developed its own culture, some based on thread topics that were otherwise not possible on /mlp/ and some works on its own. In July, a famous thread on /anon/ inducted its board mascot, C/anon/ Burst. /anon/ also became an outlet of its own for roleplay, since names were still technically allowed. At the end of the month, LiveSmutAnon hosted his threads on /anon/, all of which are currently found in /arch/. 

!!Applejack on leave

Cutiemarkmywaywardson

/anon/ song thread

Near the end of the Summer, MLPchan's !!Applejack admin took a leave of absence to pursue his military training and handed over his community management role unofficially to !!Fluttershy and site management to !!Littlepip. The site's /oat/ regulars later begun collaborated on a greeting card while he was away. In a letter forwarded to Tom in October, apparently the letter was lost in the mail, though he later grabbed a copy of it in Gyropedia's article explaining the incident, albeit without the whitespace reserved for Tom's personal message filled in.

/oat/ occasionally had its dramatics during Anonthony's absence. But with the exception of Toybox and Sersys having at each other with their "hello pot meet kettle" esque bickering, we saw the arrival of several newcomers and the departure of a few. Power Chord started a serial called That Metal Thread, a place where Metalfags could "eat, sleep, and die Metal in a pony-related board". However, Power Chord had to depart from /oat/ for personal reasons and thus TMT had disappeared. However, MLPchan had also attracted some newcomers such as Calmsystems, an old resident from MLPG. Another serial that attracted some newcomers and panned out was the /k/ general. At the upcoming Season 4 premiere of MLP:FiM, Tom started an ad campaign on Pony Countdown. Anonthony later returned from Basic Training in late January.

/fic/ archival and closure

Alongside the return of the !!Applejack admin, it had been announced that in the aftermath of the plummeting traffic on /fic/, the activity as !!Littlepip/Macil described it "can be better served by our other boards"[11] and that /fic/ would go into read-only mode. On January 26, /fic/ was removed from the board header.

MLPchan today

Oat Off Topic

...

MLPchan and Ponychan formally re-merged back into one site, with a mix of staff from both sites as well as some new faces, as of 2015. The site, purchased from Orange for the sum of $4,500, is in the ownership of Macil and the administration of he and Fenolio.

References

  1. http://www.ponychan.net/chan/collab/res/34386.html#34386
  2. http://www.ponychan.net/chan/meta/res/113676.html#
  3. http://ponychanarchive.net/zamoonda/orange-zamoonda-part2.txt
  4. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1RBiVeQJPxHQX0EdfkM62Zr0T5EWfGU7ML5qtHAGCS0c/edit?pli=1
  5. http://www.ponychan.net/chan/gala/res/1214505.html
  6. http://www.ponychan.net/chan/gala/res/1205132.html
  7. https://mlpchan.net/arch/res/11.html
  8. https://soundcloud.com/shucklee/mlpcradio-audio-week-5/recommended
  9. http://www.ponychan.net/chan/fic/res/123620.html
  10. https://soundcloud.com/shucklee/mando-pony-contructive
  11. https://mlpchan.net/fic

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