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BronyNet

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BronyNet
BronyNet user's newsfeed
BronyNet displaying a user's news feed. The user has selected a Twilight Sparkle banner and has set the site's display color to purple to match.
Founder Jacob Pritchett
Date founded November 25, 2011
Type of site Social Network
BronyNet was a social networking site for fans of My Little Pony Friendship is Magic. The site was run by Jacob Pritchett, and had nearly 7,000 members as of June 2013. It included an archive of every episode of MLP: FiM (PonyPlayer) and a fan-music player (BronyTunes).

About

BronyNet's affiliate tag

BronyNet's affiliate tag

Jacob Pritchett, a 19-year-old Idahoan student, built the website in November 2011 to provide a place for bronies to be able to meet and befriend other bronies from all over the world. It allowed bronies to be themselves (and be appreciated for it) without fear of rejection from their peers on Facebook. The site was run off of the NewsTime social networking engine, which is also owned and built by Jacob Pritchett.

History

BronyNet was Jacob Pritchett's fourth registerable social network. iSpace and Syndeo being some of the previous sites.

NewsTime (experimental social network)

NewsTime was a small experimental site by Jacob that ended up growing into a small social network.

NewsTime 2

NewsTime 1 with an actual theme and layout. (NewsTime 1 was simply black Times New Roman text on a white background.)

iSpace (NewsTime 3)

A renamed version of the NewsTime social network. It ran version 3 of the social engine, which was dubbed "NewsTime Engine" in honor of the site's original name.

Newstime engine-xsm4

NewsTime 4 logo

Syndeo (NewsTime 4)

After a security breach, Jacob took iSpace offline for about a week. During this time, he researched PHP security "best practices" and tightened up NewsTime's security significantly. With these new security systems in place, he upgraded the version of NewsTime from 3 to 4, and re-named the site again, this time to Syndeo (Greek for "connect"). Syndeo had the most registered users of any of Jacob's social networks before BronyNet. It runs off version 4 of Newstime, and is currently hosted on a free server.

Syndeo had a much more rugged look to it, and its members consist almost entirely of people from Jacob's former high school, MTCHS. The site is very much oriented towards local members too, asking for a local high school, and high school graduation year when registering.

Jacob has stated on Syndeo multiple times that he would not be making anymore updates, or changes to the site's code, directing users to BronyNet.

Newstime engine-xsm

NewsTime 5 logo

BronyNet (NewsTime 5)

When BronyNet was first opened to public in 2011, it ran on version 5 of NewsTime, which looks similar to versions 6 and 7. The biggest change from version 4 was that it now supported AJAX—loading new content on a web page without requiring a full page refresh. Other big changes included a brand-new layout and the addition of a news feed (that showed your friends' posts) and the addition of an actual friends list at all! (On sites running NewsTime 4, every user was essentially friends with everyone else—there were simply no friends lists. Adding a friends list to NewsTime 5 was absolutlely instrumental in having it support large sites.

NewsTime and Music Playback

The Newstime 5 engine also featured a Grooveshark app, with which users could select a song of their choice to be displayed below their profile picture. Clicking this would make the song begin playing on the site. This feature was removed early on in NewsTime 6, though, because of it causing bronynet to go over its daily Grooveshark song-play quota, resulting in songs not playing.

The empty space left by the removal of Grooveshark was planned to be filled by BronyTunes, but BronyNet was shut down before this happened.

NT6-xsm

NewsTime 6 logo

BronyNet (NewsTime 6)

Changes from version 5 to 6 focused on optimizing speed and performance. Users could now comment on posts without the browser refreshing the post after submitting the comment. Therefore, it was faster and easier, and if the post that the user is commenting on was a video, it would keep playing rather than starting over. Another change was an automatic load-by-scrolling feature for the news feed and profile pages' walls, rather than having to click a "load 10 more posts" button like in version 5.

BronyNet (NewsTime 7)

When BronyNet was first opened to public in 2011, it ran on version 5 of NewsTime, which looks similar to the current version, 7. Changes from version 6 to 7 included DataStream, a push technology Jacob developed to display new content on the page without any refreshses necessary.  This meant that users could comment on posts and see others' replies pop right in automatically.  DataStream was planned to eventually be used to replace the ailing, aging ArrowChat chat bar in mid-late 2014, but BronyNet was shut down before this happened.

NewsTime X

NewsTime X was a port of the core of NewsTime from PHP into a newer, much better language and framework called Ruby on Rails.  While it was originally intended to replace BronyNet's PHP core in mid-late 2014, BronyNet was shut down before this happened.  Instead, NewsTime X (and its companion kit, PonyXpress) will continue to be used for BronyTunes' song manager, Pegasisters Live's site, and other upcoming projects from Jacob. Stay tuned!  :)

Registration and Policies

All users are required to register an account before they are permitted access to BronyNet. Registration requires a user's first name, last name, country (which is automatically detected), city, gender, and e-mail, as well as confirmation on whether or not the user will be using the account for Role-Playing purposes. BronyNet's privacy policy (last updated November 26, 2011) in turn states that they may use any private information collected in any way, except for selling, trading, or renting it out. However, users are reminded that such information has to be given voluntarily, albeit that refusing to do so may restrict them from using site features. Non-private information, which is defined as technical information relating to the user's computer (OS, browser version, etc.) can be collected and used to determine which browser and OS usage demographics. The policy applies to the site and all products and services offered by BronyNet, including PonyPlayer and BronyTunes.

The End

As of April 6th, 2014 at 11:09 AM MST, BronyNet was shut down for good. Any attempts to access the site now will redirect to a page with a picture of Rainbow Dash, which below reads:

"R.I.P., BronyNet.

November 25, 2011, 1:49 AM — April 6, 2014 11:09 AM, MST. Due (to) a continued lack of funding and a lack of respect for what I do and who I am as a developer, I've decided to focus my efforts and personal investments on other projects.

-Jacob Pritchett"

Goodbye.

A screenshot of the RIP BronyNet splash page, which is the only remaining piece of the site.

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