Tag: rss

Belated Welcomes, and an Open Call For Writers

writer.jpgAs the genre of alternate reality gaming continues to grow, so does ARGNet. Last year, we welcomed the additions of five new staff writers, and while we officially announced the addition of three in April, we were remiss in failing to officially welcome Nicko Demeter and Jessica Price to our staff in the latter stages of 2006. As faithful readers (you all are, aren’t you?) you’ll have already had an opportunity to enjoy Nicko’s articles on topics like Stranger Adventures and Perplex City, while Jessica has written about Ny Takma and Sammeeeees and was a driving force behind the 2006 Year in Review. Although they’ve both been kicking around our staff lounge for a while, partaking of our wonderful buffet of nachos, we want to officially welcome these two bright, enthusiastic writers to our staff.

If you’ve not visited the ARGNet web site recently — perhaps you subscribe to our RSS feed instead — this month has been one of the busiest periods in ARG history. Our What’s Hot section has ten games we’re currently keeping tabs on, and there are a few more which are starting to show up on our radar as well. With all of the news coming out regarding ARGs, we are hoping to find a few good men and women to assist us in writing articles and features for our web site. Therefore, starting today, I am putting out an open call for writers, in the hopes that there are still people out there who don’t mind a little bit of volunteer work in exchange for worldwide notoriety and fame. Okay, maybe not fame, but definitely notoriety.

If you are someone who is dependable, honest, and willing to write an article for ARGNet once a month, we’re looking for you. The submission guidelines are as follows:

  1. Write a 100-150 word blurb-style article on any currently running game. For recent examples, see The Case of the Gumshoe Radio Play and The Trouble With Tropes.
  2. Write a 400-500 word feature article about any of these topics: 1) a game, current or historical; 2) an interesting story or aspect of the ARG community; 3) a topic of interest to the ARGNet readership; 4) being a puppetmaster or behind-the-scenes game creator.

Submissions need to be sent in to [email protected] by 11:59 pm (CST, GMT -6) on Friday, February 2nd, 2007. Naturally, spelling and grammar count, and a submission does not guarantee an invite to join the ARGNet staff. However, we’re confident that through this process, we’ll be able to expand on our award-winning* team of journalists**, so if you’ve always wanted to be a part of our dynamic*** squad of writers, here’s your chance.

* No awards have been given to ARGNet in the past. This is simply a precognitive statement.
** The definition of “journalist” is broad enough for us to use this term liberally.
*** Dynamic doesn’t even begin to describe our staff.

Feed Me!! RSS and Alternate Reality Games

rss.jpgAlternate Reality Gamers are always looking for the best way to keep informed of what’s going on in their favorite game. Not everyone can surf the boards reading each and every post all day long (yes, some people actually have to work at work), so players are always looking for ways to stay as current as possible without having to sacrifice huge amounts of time. Historically, moderated lists or blogs that would email updates to players’ in-boxes were pretty much the standard vehicle for letting players know about game updates in a timely way.

Recently however, ARGs and their corresponding player-authored resources have begun taking advantage of RSS syndication, which is a way of pushing new content out to players, but surprisingly, this great vehicle is often going underutilized. So, we thought we’d offer a little primer for those of you who have always wondered what those little RSS buttons that show up on various websites are for.

What is RSS?

RSS stands for Real Simple Syndication, and is a standard format for publishing and distributing regular updates around the web. Using this standard, website publishers can provide updates like the latest news headlines or blog postings to consumers who use RSS reader applications (or one of a growing number of online services) to collect and monitor their favorite feeds in one place (RSS content viewed in one of these readers, is often called a “feed”).

Major news websites such as Wired and news-oriented community sites such as Slashdot and Fark offer RSS feeds, but it’s not just for news. Almost anything that can be broken down into discrete items can be syndicated via RSS: the “recent changes” page of a wiki, new items for sale on Amazon.com, even recent postings or new topics in a forum. Once information about each item is in RSS format, a feedreader program can check the feed for changes and notify you when they occur.

Continue reading