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I'm not really sure how to go about this. But here is me looking back on the last six years of me being on the website. I'm going to organize my experiences by my username at the time.
I joined the forums during the summer after my freshman year in college. I had been watching Marriland's walk-through of the upcoming Pokemon game, Black 2 and White 2. I stumbled upon his website and then the forums. I basically just joined the forums on a whim. I had no reason to join. I didn't join to trade Pokemon or anything, but I just wanted to join to see what being on a forum was like.
My username as you can tell, shows how much of a newbie I was when it came to the forums and I certainly acted like it too. I was spamming all over the place and got 1000 posts within the first month of me joining the forums. I even got verbally warned by George (Bonkenhi) for back and forth posting.
I also had a tendency to want attention during these times. I posted photos in the photo thread like every other day, got myself into two e-marriages, and within the second month being on the forums, I had a reputation for being an attention seeker. As a result of that, I experienced my first encounter with cyber-bullying by a couple of members on the forums. I remember someone making a spam thread just to say "screw kaity" with a photo of them flipping the bird. It really hurt, but I also understood why people were picking on me at the time.
Some of the early friends I made of on the forum certainly made up for that like Griffin, Melvin, and Lizzy. Through PM conversations with them, I did grow to feel comfortable around the majority of people on the forums. Well....Except any member of staff. How ironic is that?
I did have this desire starting in December to bring people of the forums together. I wanted people to hang out with each other and have fun. So before the end of the year, I created my first event. Marriland Survivor.
This year was the year I started to get to know a lot more people because of another forum called Fourplay. This forum introduced me to a lot more members of the community and was the main reason I became comfortable with the Marriland staff team. These forums made these mods seem so down to earth and human to me. When the staff team announced in early 2013 about staff applications, I immediately applied for the position even though lets be honest, I had no idea what I was doing. However, this was also the year I would take my leave from the Marriland forums for about a month.
The reason for my leave was the curse transition. I thought personally I could make these new changes work but I just wasn't able to do it. I hated how the website looked, I hate how hard it was to simply even make a post, and because all the friends I had made up to this point was already a part of fourplay so what was the point? So I left the forums in March of 2013 and came back in the middle of April to make the greatest club in Marriland history (well in my opinion).
Team Elm was the reason why I came back to the forums. The people I hung out with on Fourplay wanted to have a club where they can chill and meme in. This was the purpose of Team Elm. The club was a literal meme to begin with but I was having fun with all of my friends and I was honestly proud of what would be called the internet toilet of the Marriland forums.
2013 was also the year I experienced trying out a long-distance relationship for the first time. He and I just clicked and enjoyed spending time together. However, it wasn't meant to last because we split up by August and he just kind of dropped off the face of the forum earth. I do value the time he and I did spend together and it did make the summer of 2013 very special.
It was during August that I got an interview for the moderator position that I applied back at the begging of the year by Kenshin. That interview taught me a lot of things, the most important thing was why exactly did I want to be a staff member. At the time, I was not really sure. So to no surprise, I did not make it to the September 2013 wave. Which was all good.
What 2013 pushed me to do forum was is to really think about what do I want to do for these forums. I wanted to help the forums literally anyway I knew how. I just honestly had no idea where to start and then.....Music.
Yes, my name during this period of time was a MLP name. I know. This year was the year was the year my passion for the forums went into overdrive. I found myself reporting left and right, posting in every thread imaginable, and actively participating in every sort of discussion I could.
This was also the year I hosted my first version of the 100 song face-off. If you participated back then, you could really tell how much that game grew. That event was my child. That event, out of all the events and projects I participated in during my whole six years on the forums, was my most popular event.
During February of 2014 was when I got the PM people on the forums dream about. THE PM from my now boyfriend, Jasper (huh. that is kind of weird now that I think about it)asking if I would like to join the Marriland staff team as a global moderator. I was kind of confused at first on why I didn't get a specific section to moderate like other mods did, but I was more than happy to take on the position. I was so excited to help the community I grew to love so much.
After I got modded, I decided it was time to let Team Elm go and to replace it with a club that is still alive and kicking to this day. The Southern Island. This club is my baby and it made me so happy to see it thrive and have it full of discussion, unlike my previous club that was just meme city.
Being a moderator was kind of tough for me, I made a lot of silly mistakes, but with each mistake, a new lesson was to be learned and I loved going through with it everyday.
During this year, I started off with resigning from being a staff member. It was during a time I was really depressed and stressed out about life in general and I had doubts on why I was even a staff member in the first place. I felt like I really did not fit in with the staff team. By the end of the month however, I regretted my decision and joined the staff team once again.
This period of time included the first year of the Luvdisc Grams, an event that is still very near and dear to my heart and made me single-handedly fall in love with Valentine's Day again. Other than that, this period of time really hasn't been that eventful except with making a lot of thread topics, rule topics, all that stuff.
The time of the Bijou was the time where my passion for moderating and the forums began to deteriorate if I were to be completely honest (more accurately late 2017). I was still pushing out event after event from a face-off, to being on the azuricast, hosting games such as "Who's That Pokemon" only to feel like the events I was running were a waste of time.
I loved the people I see everyday. I love spending time with them. The motivation to do a whole lot? That's debatable. It was during this time I started graduate school and trying to learn a whole new way of studying and just going to school in general. I earned my place in graduate school, I just need to show the school, and the world that I deserved to be here.
This was also the period of time where my relationship with birb began to grow. It began one day in April of 2017, I was just simply laying in bed at my apartment just watching some YouTube videos and then I get a notification from skype. Jasper, who doesn't really regularly talk to me asked if I can join him in a skype call to prepare for a quiz bowl tournament coming up the following week. I was confused because well, we didn't really talk that much at that point but I was just like, "sure why not?" and that was probably one of the best decisions I ever made. By the following October, we told each other we had a thing for each other. However, neither of us wanted to try anything until we met up in person. Which would happen the following year.
By 2018, I knew my passion for moderating wasn't really there anymore. It didn't help that so many staff members were resigning. I wasn't ready to resign yet. I wanted to give another push and let out every ounce of passion I possibly had left in my little body. I started another event, the top fives, I had my music playlist, the azuriprom, the theater company, and the azuricast. However, my willingness to post was dwindling by the day and I knew for the sake of me and the forums, it would be better off if I resigned indefinitely. I announced to the team I was going to give up my staff position on July 25th of 2018 and was officially demoted on the 27th.
I decided to change my username as a brand new start for me. For the first time in years was I able to casually post and participate in discussion without having a lot of weight on my shoulders. I was happy that I wasn't under any sort of pressure and I had to force the motivation out of me to even make a post.
Now a days, I'm just derping around. I have an amazing boyfriend, and I finally feel like I have passion again for the forums that has been a part of my life for the last six years. While I'm not actively a huge part of the forums anymore, I still make the most out of my time here. Without these forums, I am not sure exactly where I would be now.
Thank you for the last six years of being on the forum. It was an honor for me to serve all of you during my time on staff, and I'm so happy to see that this forum is under good hands and how we are all moving forward. Together. I adore all of you. Thank you all Azurilland for everything. Now let us go home to Marriland soon. <3
Good read! I'm glad that I could be a person to have stuck with you and watched you develop for all these years. Thanks for having me be one in charge of TSI, enjoying hearing from me, and liking what I have to say for myself and share. ^_^
Thanks for laying it all out for us Kaity! It's been an honor spending some of my time here on the forums with you, you were also a delight to chat with, and the events that you held that I participated in were lovely (Luvdisc Grams <3). I hope you find a good place to settle in and join us at Marriland again, it'd be sad to lose your fun attitude there!