A Response to Harry Partridge’s Silly Go! Animate Rant

“It’s not a gay lobster but still funny” – a response by “reddplague” to Harry Partridge’s anti-Go! Animate cartoon rant.

For the record, in spite of mixed feelings about automated animation software like Go! Animate, I am absolutely in favor of tools like this. As contemporary society extends itself beyond writing and still images, animation will continue its ascendancy as a vital communication form of the 21st century.

Nowadays, when a major event happens, more often than not I don’t read about it or see a photo, but rather I watch a video of the event on YouTube. We live in a video culture, and in tandem with these developments, younger generations are learning to express their opinions through the animation process. As the sophistication of easy-to-use animation tools increase, so will the ability of users to express themselves in unique ways.

To those who fear that these tools will replace the traditional role of animator, think about it this way. Today, a majority of the population knows how to write, but that hasn’t eliminated professional writers nor the specialized study of literature and writing. There is nothing wrong with a society in which writing is second nature to everybody, and it can be argued that a populace that knows how to write will be more receptive to quality writing by professional writers. That’s a good reason to look forward to a time in the future when everyone has a basic understanding of animation.


  • http://popyea.deviantart.com/ nick

    Can anyone tell if this video is supposed to be ironic?

  • W Muir

    That was rather a stale retort, Harry still proves his point even further. Yeah it might be quick and easy but still looks robotic and my opinion, something that came from a windows 98 movie game haha.

  • http://messytimbo.blogspot.com tim mccourt

    not feeling that one

  • http://www.okgrillo.blogspot.com Oscar Grillo

    Chuck Jones said in the early seventies that he had nothing against limited animation as long as it was well drawn.

    • Lamont Wayne

      Truth. Don’t forget (even though the cartoon itself was forgettable) that Chuck’s last project was Thomas Timberwolf, a Flash cartoon.

    • amid

      Around the same time, Ward Kimball called out Chuck Jones’s BS on these statements. Chuck’s definition of well drawn was limited to his personal taste. He likely would not have viewed art like “Yellow Submarine” or Robert Crumb as “well drawn.”

      Ward said that the quality of drawing shouldn’t be judged against one’s personal taste, but by whether the drawing style was appropriate to the subject matter. Case in point: a lot of Chuck’s later work is well drawn but it is excruciating as filmmaking. Drawing in animation is only a means to an end.

      • http://hand-drawn-animation.blogspot.com David Nethery

        Amid -

        I agree with you that “a lot of Chuck’s later work is well drawn but it is excruciating as filmmaking.” , but how is it better now to have ‘animations’ [sic] made with Go Animate that is poorly drawn (or not really drawn at all , just digital clip-art copy & paste) AND excruciating as filmmaking ?

        I have no record of what Chuck Jones thought of R. Crumb’s work or The Yellow Submarine. Do you ?

  • Kelfeth

    The folks using these programs thinks they’re making timeless animation classics, anymore than fanfic writers think they’re writing bestsellers, model train enthusiasts think their next step is running a real train, or weekend baseball players think they have a shot at the big leagues. You people knocking them are so busy being snarky you’re kind of missing the point of the programs. Harry’s video looked a lot more like insecurity and elitism than wit.

    • hitface

      Well in the author comments on new grounds, Harry said that he had no problem with people messing around with these programs, but if they were serious that they really needed to just get flash. It looked to me like he was fed up with the commercials making go animate look like its replacing honest work.

  • The Gee

    Man, it is this thinking that led me to reply in the other topic you are referring to:
    ” animation will continue its ascendancy as a vital communication form of the 21st century.”

    Live-action video–with or without sfx; “flat” or in Three Deeee!–will trump animation as a communication tool in the 21st C.

    You could say even if it only exists as a minor tool the point still stands. But, for goodness’ sake, Powerpoint is a prominent communication tool and people aren’t using
    it to send year-end letters to family and friends…If anything, they’ll make videos that they edited to share with their friends. Video-making is democratized. I don’t see animation rivaling it anytime soon. People just like seeing other people way too much, and rightly so. It’s human nature. And, if you are going to talk about communication, human nature matters.

    I hope that makes sense. That’s where I’m coming from on this. I don’t disparage the new auto-animation tools as much as I don’t think you should put much stock in them when viable alternatives are just as accessible and which produce end results which are widely appreciated.

    In fact, I think envy that a cousin made a video would lead to someone buying a computer just to make/edit a video themselves.

    Then there’s the development when the grandparents are three states away from the grandkids leading to a family participating in routine video chats (or, what used to be called, video teleconferencing).

    Etcetera, etcetera.

  • Bran L

    Didn’t think the film was that strong, but completely agreeing with Amids point here. I think at the end of the day in almost all cases, an animator is at heart a story teller. No matter what work we do, at heart we should be asking ourselves “how do i tell this story better?” as apposed to “how do i make this look cooler or more ‘correct’?”. I think tools like go animate and films I see on machinima along with some of the ultra limited animation on adult swim reminds me how much you can make a good film no matter how cheap looking so long as it tells a good story well. Some of these shows remind me to stand back from my work and think about what kind of stuff would a I try or change if I was able to create the animation itself very easily.

    There’s always going to be a demand for people who can animate well, but I’m personally excited by tools like go animate that are making limited animation very accessible to the masses and I’m sure in the future will result in some exciting ideas being produced.

  • Gray64

    Yes, the vast majority of people do know how to write, but the vast majority also view it as a chore and don’t bother to take the time to learn to do it coherently, much less well. Animation, even with electronic tools, is a time consuming process and is thus much less likely to spontaneous displays of feeling. You’re more likely to see a lot more care and ability in even the most amatuerish cartoon than you are in the majority of the personal opinion/ commentary rants that get written on the internet.

  • http://kelseighn.blogspot.com Kelseigh

    Given how none of the response video involves good animation principles, what is this supposed to prove anyway? Hell, it’s not even funny, just a simplistic revenge fantasy for what, dissing a new toy?

    There’s loads of really fantastic limited animation (the “Get Busy Living” music video springs to mind), but it helps if you know how to actually animate first. Go!Animate won’t teach you that.

  • Lionel Bee

    I don’t have a thing against easy animation tools. That being said this post doesn’t shine a favorable light on whatever point you’re trying to make.

  • dr. truth

    This is such garbage.

    I’m by no means an elitist.
    I just PERSONALLY feel this drastically cheapens the medium.

    If a young person want to express themselves artistically, half the
    fun is learning the skills to do so. Without the decipline of learning
    a craft, we’re raising a generation of hacks.

    This fad will die off.

    The silver lining in all of this is the fact that historically, people will simply get sick of
    sub par DYI movements.
    Just like crappy punk in the 70′s, crappy comic zines in the 90′s
    and crappy cut and paste webcomics in the early 2000′s.

    An audience at some point will want something with actual substance and move on.

    We just have to wait it out.

    • Lamont Wayne

      Did you read that before you posted it? Gosh, you sound JUST LIKE the traditional animators about Flash 15 years ago.

      You sound like this is going to be the new production standard for Disney or something…

      Here’s the real truth: This is the “social media” age. Websites like Facebook and Twitter are what’s popular now… instant communication. Tools like Xtranormal and GoAnimate fit into that right now. Is social media a fad? I’m with you, we’ll have to wait and see.

      And besides that… man, the animation industry is DESPERATE for new business plans. I applaud anyone who is daring to do something NEW in media…

      • Charles

        You know, I think I have to agree with Dr. Truth.

      • Johnny Burgess

        There is hardly anything daring about this software…and in response to the flash comment, there is a world of difference between what flash is capable of now vs then.
        This software is not going to replace anything, its an over simplified flash. It gives people that aren’t animators a chance to make stuff move, but is hardly going to make anything that comes near a quality level that an actual animator produces.

        And agreeing with other posters, that video was hardly a platform to use to support Go! Animate

  • Clint H

    Though Amid makes a good point, this response video just wasn’t funny.

    • Funkybat

      It was moderately amusing, at least the overall concept. It reminded me of the “Raw Toonage” segment “badly Animated Man” where the low-frame rate superhero was unable to stop the criminals who were more fully animated and able to evade him “in between” his movements.

      I am not a fan of these automated “animation” tools, but I don’t think they are quite the dire threat to our livelihoods some animators seem to.

    • Funkybat

      OOPS…I should have read Clint’s comment more carefully. I thought the original rant cartoon by Harry was “moderately amusing.”

      This “response” one really was not funny at all…

  • http://www.vitaminsteve.com Steve Flack

    “For the record, in spite of mixed feelings about automated animation software like Go! Animate, I am absolutely in favor of tools like this. As contemporary society extends itself beyond writing and still images, animation will continue its ascendancy as a vital communication form of the 21st century.”

    So, explain why “GoAnimate” is good, but “Motion Capture” is bad?

    • Luke

      How is what he said in anyway related to motion capture? People aren’t utilyzing multi/milion dollar computer software and hardware to make animation just to post on youtube, or send to a friend.

  • Grumpy Animator

    I’m looking forward to Harrys response to the response!

    • Thomas Hatch

      I bet it’s gonna be silly!

  • Lamont Wayne

    VERY nice post, Amid. Totally agree.

  • John

    No, the vast majority of people do not know how to write. The vast majority of people have difficultly spelling, punctuating and using correct grammar.

    All tools like GoAnimate do is enable those who don’t have the talent or perseverance to learn a specialised skill like animation and encourage them to flood the world with a sea of mediocre crap.

    • Chris Sobieniak

      And thus, putting guys like me out of a job!

  • Conor

    I’m sure it’s a fun toy for someone who doesn’t really care that much about animation (Family Guy fans), but if anyone’s really serious at all about animation, there are much better starting points, like drawing your own webcomic, or doing simple, animatic-style animation. Anything that has you creating custom drawings or images for a specific moment in a story.

    Regarding the response video, it’s just not funny or well executed in any way shape or form.

  • SuperBiasedMan

    It’s true that anyone can animate, but to animate well requires learning, effort and time. Go Animate tries to skip past the process of any of these, claiming that you can knock together a film and be just as good as other animated films.
    Limited animation works, but not when it’s doing all the work for you.
    The problem with tools like this is that they don’t make animation more accessible as much as they make it less effort, which means they’re not putting as much into it as someone who works on actual animating does.

  • reddplague

    Wow! can’t believe the hate in these post. FYI I’m a Flash Designer with 17yrs exp using Flash. In my world Action Script killed the timeline.

    Sure, I was like you, saying how programmers are killing Flash BLAH, BLAH, BLAH. The world is changing, you either change with it or get left behind.

    I’m sure all the haters are waiting for Harry to respond. That’s all your going to do is wait, LOL.

    • Topes

      Sounds like you got offended at someone who made a silly video for shits and giggles.

      “For the record I am indifferent to the software. I have no problem with people wanting to create animation with it for fun as long as those with loftier ambitions aren’t letting their skills stagnate. I spent a lot of time with 3D movie maker as a kid because I didn’t know how else I could create animation and I really wish I had discovered flash sooner.” -Harry Partridge

      I can’t imagine him actually spending the time to make a response video. If anything, I could only imagine him watching it and laughing at the fact that you took him too seriously.

  • http://zeteos.blogspot.com/ mick

    Go animate is to cartoons what play doh is to sculpture. Sure enough it is good fun and why not, no harm done. This wee retort however is just bobbins unfortunately… there is an increasing amount of lower end content on cartoonbrew of recent… is this in response to the ‘what would you like to see on the brew?’ question fapped out some while back?

  • http://ROBYULFO.com Rob yulfo

    You sure Showed him,Go Animation!
    That wasn’t even clever.I do give em Credit for fighting back but Come on!

  • Sant Arellano

    Maybe the approach the developers of GoAnimate had was not the best, its trying to jump over a lot of essential learning. But thats just the developers!

    I remember in 1995 when a computer software called 3D Movie Maker was released, it allowed kids to create their own CG movies, everything was pre-made, characters were already designed and all their actions were pre-animated, sets and props were pre-rendered, the only thing that was up to the user was the dialog, you could record it yourself if you had a mic.

    To many (myself included) it was just a stepping stone, it was just a taste of what could be accomplished, it was the thrill of trying to tell a story and make friends and family laugh. Then we jumped over to other stuff: comics, animation, videogames, etc.. But it inspired us!

    I think it will be the same with this type of software, a new generation of animators will use this as their door to animation and then they will go to other tools that give them more control

    • http://www.deptap.com Rajesh

      I remember that software. I loved it.

      The key difference between this and that was the lack of free video sharing.

      Go Animate lets you make it and share it, that lacked the ability to widely share it.

      I get your point though, and honestly, this just means any “brilliant” ideas for the next Family Guy can be done with this freeing real animators to focus on better uses of the medium – be it personal projects or more imaginative gigs with real money backing them.

      —–

      I disagree with Amid’s point though that democratizing writing has been better for the medium. We’ve yet to produce someone on par with Shakespeare, Dickens, and Dostoevsky. Instead we have Tom Clancy.

      It may be better for society that literacy is higher, but not for the art form of writing. The best seem to come from periods of time when few people can do it and are forced to do it well in order to meet standards of the gatekeepers of the medium.

    • Funkybat

      I would say that the best thing one could say about things like XtraNormal or GoAnimate is that they might inspire some budding artists to go to the next level. It’s OK for us all to doodle with finger paints and coloring books when we are little, but it’s good to know that a few of those kinds will pursue more refined artistic methods and media.

  • http://hand-drawn-animation.blogspot.com David Nethery

    ” younger generations are learning to express their opinions through the animation process.”

    ——

    Setting aside the question of whether something like Go Animate can allow someone to learn “the animation process” any more than a coloring book or a paint-by-numbers kit is “the painting process” , let me ask:

    Why is it important that everyone can express their opinions on every subject under the sun, especially when they are evidently ignorant about the subject they are opining on ?

    That mentality just perpetuates more “noise” on the internet that one has to wade through to find something worth watching. One of the bad things about today’s social media is the unfiltered airing of every random, idiotic thought that flits across someone’s mind.

    The response video proved Harry’s point all the more.

    Also, what does “the younger generation” have to do with it ? Bad is bad, no matter the age of the person who did it. If these were middle-aged or elderly people doing paint-by-numbers oil paintings of religious scenes, or “happy trees” by a babbling brook , or a Kinkadian cottage at twilight we’d see posts mocking them for their poor taste and ignorance , not lauding them for expressing themselves through “art”.

    • Iritscen

      I agree on the subject of “noise”, but really it’s all about the context in which something is presented. Rebecca Black’s “Friday”, presented in the context of someone trying their hand at singing and producing a music video at a low cost, is a decent first effort. Presented on a world stage as entertainment alongside pop music artists who’ve been doing this for years, it falls far short in comparison — but who decided to put it on that stage? It happened to become a viral sensation (if “sensation is the right word for it) for reasons unrelated to the intentions of the people who made it.

      Likewise, if simplistic animate-by-numbers cartoons are how youths want to express themselves, I won’t deride them for their efforts — I simply won’t watch them, just as I don’t read their blogs. If I were already following someone on Twitter or LiveJournal or YouTube or wherever, then I would care about their opinion, no matter the medium they chose to express it with.

      What I can’t understand is why this low-level noise of individual expression is even being paid attention to by more than that person’s friends online. Why bother highlighting it on an widely-read animation blog? It’s not bad in a certain context (the context of hastily-created knee-jerk self-expression à la 140 character tweets on trending topics), but is it worthy of being presented in the context of serious animation discussion? Does it merit more attention from us than an angsty blurb of text on a teenager’s LiveJournal that happens to be on the subject of animation?

    • Gray64

      It is one of the great truths of our modern age that, armed with the ability to comminicate with millions of people at the touch of a button, moreso than any other time in history, we learn that the vast, vast majority of people have nothing of value to say and all the time in the world to say it.
      I have a friend in publishing who said if nothing else, the internet demonstrates that all the obstacles that are in your way to get something published/produced are there for some pretty good reasons. For every avant-garde genius who the mainstream publishers don’t understand, there is a vast horde of untalented, verbose, incoherant hacks.

      • Chris Sobieniak

        This is how I feel about the subject every day of my life!

      • Chris Sobieniak

        This is how I feel about the whole thing every day of my life.

  • http://www.betobeto.com Beto

    Years (decades!) ago I dreamed of studying for a career in traditional animation. For lots of reasons this was not to be – and maybe for the better. Years later Disney began shutting 2d animation production down and Pixar began its meteoric rise.

    Now, I see there’s something like Go Animate and wonder if I could scratch that old itch with it. But it just took me a couple of samples to figure out this is just way below my expectations.

    I have a favorite example to explain this: Have you seen the iMovie demos? Isn’t it impressive how any average Joe with a Mac and a camera can now add postproduction values to his home videos that only big studios could afford before? And yet… I’m not seeing professional film studios and movie directors going out of business because of this. Now, an average Joe potentially can produce something out of his bedroom that can give Hollywood a run for its money. But that has actually little to do with technology and lots to do with the ability to tell a story, engage viewers, and transmit feelings and empathy that will perdure in the viewer’s memories. And none of that comes with any computer, software, or website. It has to come from yourself and your hard work.

    That said, if any professional animator feels his or her career menaced by these new tools, I’d rather say he or she has bigger issues to solve first.

    • Gray64

      See, now THIS is what stuff like GoAnimate is good for.

  • gipsy

    Why am I reading so many comments about how goanimate won’t teach you the basics or the art of animation from step one, I don’t know. All of the sudden a lot of people are so interested in getting the young ones to work hard and learn the craft, it strikes me as… weird, to say the least. Harry made an animation to basically say: “Hey, look how better I am than all those geek goanimators!”. He committed a big mistake though: trying to justify himself with big words about how the youngsters are not learning flash and instead they prefer to make an animation in half an hour… Oh, come on! Of course they do prefer to have instant fun at telling a story! You, the public, don’t need to like the animations. As with everything, there are people who make good stuff, and people who don’t. And, as with everything, the number of people producing bad animations with goanimate is going to be higher than those doing good ones… exactly the same as flash Animators, or… did all “flashers” all of the sudden became Masters?
    I can’t draw a gay lobster even if my life depended on it, so… am I forever banned from doing a cartoon? I don’t expect my animations becoming famous or applauded outside the GA limits, but… can’t I try to have fun with a tool that lets me tell a story without learning and buying flash? Oh, don’t worry, I promise not to pretend to be a “real” animator. But there is something nice about making animations accessible to everyone. After all, it’s all about fun…

  • http://oyetoons.deviantart.com Seni

    And the feud . . . begins.

  • Kate Burck

    But. It wasn’t funny. The animation was lifeless. Harry’s work was funny because it LOOKED funny. A program can’t produce appeal for you.

  • Sean P

    People are getting upset here because the term “animation” is a loaded term and it’s being used in the title. It is moving clip art that would suffice for a cheap e-card production. This isn’t going to change standards, just get the amateur and animation enthusiasts more enamored with the craft.

    • Luke

      It’s just frustrating that people can now put even less effort into making cheap mass produced art.

      • Gray64

        No, people can now put in less effort to produce cheap, mass-produced entertainment that they email around to their friends. No one, I think, is calling it art. And what if they are? Whose standards are you afraid are being lowered? If it’s the public, that ship sailed centuries ago given that the public will jump, for a while anyway, at anything new and shiny. If it’s you, don’t worry. I think you’re safe.

      • Sean P

        Exactly. Paint by numbers, spin art and lite bright.

  • hitface

    I enjoy that john K is allowed to be an elitist prick and take down anything that doesnt fit in with his personal tastes but Harry partridge is a douche for criticizing go animate for passing itself off as a replacement for work. he said he has no issue with people using it for fun in the author comments on new grounds, but if they want to make decent animation they need to work at it.
    also like some others have said, not everyone needs to express their opinions through animation or art.. last time I checked, writing did just fine for that.

  • hannah

    people who don’t like this video have not yet discovered the joy of Spiderman Cartoon Maker

  • http://GoAnimate mmarpreto

    I always loved animation.
    When I discovered the GoAnimate, eight months ago, I knew nothing about animation … Now I know everything.
    To you, I and nothing are the same thing, but not for me. I can have fun and entertain friends.
    In the production of an animation film:
    Producer (money), author, director and animator.
    Anywhere there, is good. The more on top of the pyramid better.
    I do 8 – 10 minutes of animation / month.
    Have already created 04 super heroes.
    At the end of the year, I will have my children’s books based on the superheroes that I created.
    Just get some money and find a good designer for styling the characters …
    Now, if I find a producer, I’ll hire this guy “Harry” to animate my stories.
    Lol

    • http://hand-drawn-animation.blogspot.com David Nethery

      Mmarpreto: assuming you are not being sarcastic or self-deprecating when you write: “eight months ago, I knew nothing about animation … Now I know everything” I can only respond that when I started to animate 33 years ago as a teenager I knew nothing about animation (but learned a lot in my first 8 months-to-a-year from Mr. Preston Blair’s book) , however 33 years later (27 of those years as a pro) I can honestly say I know a little bit about animation, but no way would I claim to “know everything” . It’s a life-long study and the more I truly know about animation the more I realize how much better I could be.

      You astound me, sir.

  • Azz

    What? Why have you even posted this?

  • http://www.enigmation.de slowtiger

    So it is clip art and crude animation – now. But in a few years it will be a lot more. I could predict some future animation-for-everyone software which will include a whole library of movements, from motion capture to cartoony, categorized and stored in a way that everything fits together nicely, and each movement can be applied to any character. The characters will most likely be 3D and rendered in cartoon style, with a nice fader for line thickness.

    The only problem such a software would have is that it’s nearly impossible to build a user interface for it which is intuitive and simple enough. But it will come, mark my words. Somewhere in the world there must be somebody already writing an Animation Markup Language (AML) to be used for organizing kinemes (the smallest units of movement).

  • http://Juxtaminute.tumblr,com Juxtaminute

    I love this stuff and I hope it only gets worse! You’re all missing the point. This is suppose to be fun! I remember people saying the same thing about all the horrible youtube videos and now they’re ingrained in our culture. Plenty of them are terribly unfunny with next to no entertainment value but guess what? They’re fun to make and you get to be a part of the online community. It doesn’t matter if it holds up to some hollywood standard of comedy as long you have fun doing it and sharing it with friends.

  • http://woweh.com Kelly

    “How dare you insult cheap, stiff, shitty animation! I’ll show you!”
    *makes a cheap, shitty animation*

    • reddplague

      I’m sure you also think 3D animation is shitty too.

      • http://woweh.com Kelly

        Personally, it doesn’t matter if it’s classical, Flash, 3D, stop-mo, or whatever – if it’s shitty animation with no skill or foundation, well, y’know. But that’s just me. :>

  • Amari H.

    I tried Go Animate today to look beyond the post on this blog and my last post against it (I’m using my short name here). And you know what…it kind of cute and innocent fun. I find it easy to use. The only problem I experienced is the lag from the Go Animate animator wizard tool. I’m not sure if the browser (firefox) is out date or what but if you have more than three characters on one frame, it lags so bad that firefox lags itself…and crashes.

    But I’ll give Go Animate another go.

    Anyway, from my last post on this program, I made the awful mistake of judging it before trying it. I’ll never do this mistake again, mostly because I felt like I betrayed my love of animation and art. Go Animate may have its limits and all but its for fun. Just fun.

    If I’m doing serious animation, I’ll go buy flash or get a large stack of paper and extra pencils.

    If I’m doing non-time consuming animation with little or no cost, there’s Go Animate.

    • reddplague

      I wish more people were as OPENED MINDED as you. BTW, I use chrome with no problem.

  • http://www.extraordinarytourist.com/ TET

    GoAnimate has expanded to over one million users who have been driving the development of the product since its humble beginning just over three years ago.

    It’s come a long way from where it started to the point that you could use it as a professional tool if you wanted to for online, short film creation. Personally I could make a professional, short film with it and you’d never know it was made with GoAnimate.

    Most people in the GoAnimate Community discover pretty quickly that to do the really ‘cool’ animation you need to learn Flash (GoAnimate supports the importation of custom flash objects). This is because there are professional animators using GoAnimate – just because it is actually quick, easy and fun. Their work inspires and directs those with a real interest in animation towards learning flash.

    I’m discouraged by all you proponents of ‘quality animation’ making flippant comments about a product you’ve barely even tried or seem to know that much about – other than what you’ve seen from people who can’t use the product to its potential.

    Instead of bagging a product that has potentially more than a million users interested in animation, there’s an opportunity here to direct new creativity.

    GoAnimate teaches users about film making, story telling, sound design and more. The only aspect it doesn’t yet teach is how to animate from scratch. That is where professional animators could really step in and showcase their work to an interested and willing audience.

    Harry never actually said anything in his video that the GoAnimate community didn’t already know.

  • http://www.bruandboegie.co.za Mike

    I think what’s getting people’s backs up, and probably why it gets my back up, is that the company/companies tout the software as being able to deliver top-quality animation. Which isn’t true. So the ‘true’ animators feel like the company is doing a smoke and mirrors job on them, using their hard work in truer animation and telling the public that they can achieve similar results without putting in the work.

    I think if the companies advertised the software as ‘the lazy person’s solution to hacking together mediocre animations’ then I doubt anybody would have any problems with it.

    • Lamont Wayne

      You know what, I think you nailed part of this. I think that some of these folks looked right at that Geico commercial that was made with Xtranormal and felt a cold chill down their spine… this web based stuff is ACTUALLY being used as production software.

      It’s a valid question. How do the clients see it? Pay $500 – $1000 to some guy on Freelance.com or pay absolutely nothing…

  • http://Mydrawingslive.blogspot.com Steve

    Do editors get together on websites and bitch about iMovie?

    • The Gee

      Well, yeah, sometimes…some do….
      http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1135747

      But more often than not they are complaining about the FCP becoming more like iMovie. Many are concerned about that prospect.

      I thought I posted something else to this thread last night in reply to the PR speak “TET” uses in their post, but my reply didn’t show up.

      As it goes without re-posting my back up copy of the comment (sigh), I did want to add that the software/service is the least of all issues. It either succeeds in the short or the long term or it sucks seed, sooner or later. There’s just too many options for how people can waste their time.

      It doesn’t matter if there’s 1 million animation enthusiasts who use the software, MySpace had tens of millions of users at one point…look where it is. Things change quickly when it comes to internet based software/services.

      The focus, as I see it, should be on whether or not this is a viable tool which people, in general feel a need to use. I don’t see it. I see it like David Nethery and others see it: transient, a blip that people won’t always use. Instead they will just gravitate towards better options, of which, there are many. Those other options probably better fit the variety of people who “feel the need to express themselves visually!” (you know, that thing some of us, just started doing before we could write a three word sentence…..)

      Supporters of this software are too focused on the Web being the Answer to everything. It isn’t. So, instead of looking beyond that and seeing other outlets for expression people have and can eventually put online, if they wish, they see the Web as steps One through Completion. Tain’t the Way it Always Is. Easier ways to animate isn’t that new and will evolve more because of Kinect and MoCap than through GoAnimate and whatever. But, live-action video will still rule the day.
      (to come full circle)

      • http://www.extraordinarytourist.com/ TET

        ‘PR Speak’? My posts are my personal opinion. Nothing more.

        GoAnimate is much bigger than most people’s experience of it here. After three years it’s still on the rise. In internet time that’s pretty good for an independent start up.

        For fear of being accussed of PR Speak I won’t go into detail about how successful it’s been.

        Few software programs have an infinite shelf life. How GoAnimate evolves to meet the needs of its users will determine if it’s still around in 10-20 years.

        Who knows, maybe they will build in tools so you can hand draw animation within their application – and completely remove the need to supplement it with Adobe Flash use altogether.

        Doink (another animation site for hand drawn flash animation) has already shown that’s possible. The animations produced there can be imported into GoAnimate as flash objects.

      • The Gee

        Wow.
        If you think of 10-20 years for a web site, that’s impressive.
        If you are an advocate for the site, bully for you.
        I will likely forget it exists in short order.

      • http://www.extraordinarytourist.com/ TET

        Clearly you’re not the target audience for GoAnimate. 10-20 years for a web site is not that unusual. Businesses don’t plan to fail and I’m sure GoAnimate will evolve. Currently it’s a lot bigger and more successful than people here seem to realize.

  • david

    truth is right.

    we have to wait it out. we have to wait for a war or an apocalypse to tear down all this BS technology. Most of it people use for all the wrong reasons. iphone games and ipads. Lame articles about here today gone tomorrow animation ‘news,’ tweets and facebook fanpages. People waste more time trying to figure out new things to do with the exponentially fast releases of new technology that they have forgotten how to wipe their collective poopholes.

    This(go!animate) just means more people will have more accessible means to churn out poo, which is fine, it’s been going on for a while and it won’t slow down anytime soon. But the important thing to remember is that Warhol was right. This is all disposable junk and trash. 10 years from now no one is going to tout some GOANIMATE film as groundbreaking, but 10 years from now classics will still be classics, maybe even appreciated more…or less. When you take away the technology and the insta-everything culture that all these conditioned ADD idiots love now, all you have left is a bunch of narcissists going through withdrawals. Maybe they will then learn to step outside and enjoy life and pick up a pencil or a hammer and build something with their hands instead of getting angry because their iphone app isn’t working or they can’t get the right pressure sensitivity on their ipad for emulating blackwing pencils, etc. etc. etc.

    yah.

    go!getalife.

    • reddplague

      “This(go!animate) just means more people will have more accessible means to churn out poo”

      This is laughable at best. People will churn out poo no matter what the use.

  • gipsy

    Correct me if I am wrong, but… aren’t you using technology this very instant to bitch about technology? Commenting on a Blog using an internet connection and a computer is right but facebook and twitter are wrong? Where do you set up a limit? Pencil and paper is alright and flash isn’t? Please tell me!

    • david

      Normally this site contributes to a discussion errr debate, just like other parts of the internetz offer valuable information. I am not damning all technology.

      But most of facebook and twitter is “omg werk sux 2day!” “lolz dood my lyfe is important plz comment”

      Flash is fine, but as soon as it came out it was an excuse for execs to cheapen and quicken the animation process, hence more crrraaappp. Tell me how that would have been possible before computers. It wasn’t. Some kid might have made a crappy flipbook on the bottom of his school book, but it wasn’t getting posted up anywhere. Now peeps can get popular by just adding hipster glasses to an ariel lil mermaid still frame and make it a meme. That’s how far we have come.

      wait it out.

  • Gr3mlinify

    I don’t think this will cheapen animation anymore than amateur home movies on YouTube cheapened Indie film fesitvals or Hollywood. If anything, it will set standards even higher because casual viewers will say “it looks kinda amateurish–cheap, even.”

    I’m apart of the second half of the millenial generation (Gen. Z, Gen. 9/11). In elementary school, we were introduced to Kid Pix, Movie Maker, Powerpoint, etc. These programs were designed to be simple, but it still introduced us to the user interfaces of computer design programs and workflows. The time that our professors could be using to teach us Photoshop, illustrator, Flash etc., we were using this time to teach ourselves the programs so that we can move on to more time consuming lessons.

    As spoiled as my generation may be, our experiences with these “democratized programs” helped give us an impetus to teach ourselves later programs so that we weren’t just sitting there, intimidated by all of the technology.

    When I was a young child, people were fan(boy)s of shows like X-Men, Batman: The Animated Series, Animaniacs, etc, but very few people (including adults) really knew how animation worked. I think that the way that “diluted” programs like Kid pix and Movie-Maker like video editing software, shows the average person just how “sub-par” and cheap projects can be made, but that high quality and well edited projects are still more appreciated.

    Who knows? Maybe this demystifying of animation will actually lead to a stronger appreciation for the work involved, and I think that only good things can come of that.

    Then again, what do I know? I’m still learning :)

  • Gray64

    Well see, here’s the thing. A LOT of people are creatively unfulfilled. Even today, parent still tell their kids stuff like “You can’t be an artist, you’re going to be a doctor/lawyer/corporate robber baron.” If GoAnimate give people a creative outlet, then good for them and good for it. It may even inspire some people to learn more about animation and actually get good at it. One of the major obstacles in learning anything, especially if you’re trying to do it unguided, by yourself (a lot of people don’t have money or time for advanced education, or access to guide books, etc)is the length of time it takes you to get any kind of results. It makes you think that the people who actually do animate stuff must have some kid of ineffible alchemy on their side. The benefit of instant results is it preserves your enthusiasm and desire to move forward. “Oh, it worked! I did it! Now, what more can I do with this?|

  • http://www.bobharper.net Bob Harper

    I think animators have to fear this product as much as live action filmmakers have to fear the public’s easy access to digital cameras and editing tools.

    Talent and ability and originality will trump fast and easy in the end.

    • The Gee

      For me it isn’t fearing the product/service…
      it is the “Hoohah, Looky Here! We struck gold!” people. I’ve read too many scripts from live-action writers, or those influenced by live-action comedy, who didn’t get how a good cartoon is made. This, like that other site, something Normal, are geared towards those chatty cartoons. They are geared towards snarkers who hurl zingers. They aren’t geared towards cartoon comedy, or what should or could be cartoon comedy. And, I won’t kvetch about the “serious” stuff. Sheesh.

      There’s a Warren Zevon song that goes: It just ain’t pretty at all.

      Nothing about this site seems any more impressive than some of the online tools I’ve seen over the years. A good many of them simplified things and something better came along to make them seem quaint. It’s just like software in that sense. There’s good stuff and then there is the rest. Most of these types of tools are a part of the rest.

      If it brings people some joy, yay.

      But, of course, I do agree that those three things you mention trump “fast and easy” (or, Quicker and Cheaper) any day. It is about endurance, not about sprinting out of the gate and out of sight.

  • http://hand-drawn-animation.blogspot.com David Nethery

    My objection is not about “fearing” apps like GoAnimate , as if I fear they will replace skilled professional animation. My objection is that something like GoAnimate is not really teaching someone how to be an animator , any more than a paint-by-numbers kit or a coloring book teaches someone to be a painter. It short-circuits the learning process. Now , certainly many people may have initially caught the “art bug” from a coloring book or a paint-by-numbers kit they received as a child and then they moved on to find out about real art and subsequently developed real artistic skills , so that’s good and I expect there will be similar cases where artistically inclined people will grow tired of the limitations of Go Animate and they’ll seek out the real thing.

    But wouldn’t it be better for them to learn real animation principles from the beginning ? Get Preston Blair’s book and/or Eric Goldberg’s book , grab some pencils and a stack of animation paper , or a wacom tablet with TVP ANIMATION , TOONBOOM , or FLASH, or if they can’t afford to buy an animation program then download a nice freeware app like PENCIL and go to it .

    • Lamont Wayne

      My sister’s son is interested in animation and how it’s made. He’s 9 years old.

      So, I did what you guys are saying. First, I took him to a film festival where a friend of mine did a demonstration of Maya. He said “That looks so hard” and he got discouraged. Then, I sat him down myself with Flash and a Wacom tablet. He understood a little better, but his skill level and his taste in what he wanted to see didn’t match up, if that makes any sense, and he got discouraged again.

      It was GoAnimate that made his eyes light up and get excited. It’s GoAnimate that’s making him pull out that sketchbook and draw and “storyboard” what he wants to do in it.

      Would I be happier if he were a prodigy and instantly understood Maya and Flash and could draw classically and all that? Yes, of course I would. But, while he’s beginning to practice to draw and learn, GoAnimate is that fun animation toy that he can use to keep him excited and I can pat him on the back and say “good job”. I don’t see anything wrong with that.

  • http://sutoruin.blogspot.com/ James.S

    Harry Partridge’s response to GoAnimate was hilarious in my opinion. I personally think all the drama surrounding it is a little unnecessary.

    I mean do people actually fear that GoAnimate is going to kill animation and inspire people to be lazy? Pshht.

    The only thing I’ve seen made with GoAnimate are silly Family Guy parodies and crude text to speech stories.
    No need to worry. This is a just a crappy tool and that is really easy to make fun of and make fun with.

    I even made some GoAnimate videos that were just “Blah blah blah dicks anus dadada etc” and the characters flipping around the screen doing nonsense. I am very experienced in Flash though, so hating and villanizing every being that uses the program is indirect and hateful.

    Chill out folks.

  • http://sutoruin.blogspot.com/ James.S

    GoAnimate is a just a piece of crap tool like Xtranormal, and fearing that it will actually inspire people to be lazy and kill traditional animation is just an exaggerated irrational fear. The only thing I see being made with these programs and are silly parodies and lude text stories.

    I even made a couple of videos where the characters are just flipping out and shouting random things in robot voices.

    Calm down. Also Harry Partridge makes great videos. I don’t see anything wrong qith his response to GoAnimated but the thing above was terribly unfunny, and poorly animated.

    • James Sutton

      Also, I apoligize for the dobule comment. It was believed that my first comment didn’t go through and I rewrote what I said before by generally restating what I thought had been erased. Turns out it wasn’t though.

      It told me “It appears your comment has already been posted”. Sorry for the inconvenience.

  • Lamont Wayne

    Oh, and another thing…

    Why is GoAnimate getting all this static when Geico used Xtranormal to make a commercial? Shouldn’t that be a subject of debate too?

    http://youtu.be/nlVo7O2qm-4

  • reddplague

    Wow!! I wonder how many of you think South Park is shitty??? How long has that been on? It looks a lot like Go! Animation very few movements.

  • Gr3mlinify

    To be perfectly honest; GA is starting to look like an audio-visual version of fanfiction: it attracts amateurs simply because it is easy to distribute work (no matter how awful it is). I don’t see Stephen King or JK Rowling, or even up and coming authors claiming that publishers will prefer amateur fiction to professional ones, so why is the animation community afraid of companies choosing GA over them? The program is derivative and easily accessible for a reason.

  • Prosecutor Godot

    Animation quality aside, I checked comments for a few of Go! Animate’s videos. I’m surprised that some of these people haven’t been banned. I kid you not, at least 10 comments for each video include or completely comprise of “Check out my vids.” On Newgrounds and other Flash websites, that will get your ass thrown out the window without the mods offering you the dignity of using the front door.

    As for Go! Animate itself, if people want to use it to get the hang of animating before learning how to start from scratch, that’s fine. You can’t teach a kid to play baseball by standing him up in the batter’s box at Yankees Stadium. Kids start out playing T-ball, then progress up to hitting off of pitches. Same idea here. Go! Animate is like T-ball; they don’t have to worry about curveballs when they can just hit a still ball. Of course, you can’t spend the rest of your career playing T-ball, and thus, if you’re even a little serious about playing baseball, you move up to actual pitching in games. Likewise, if you want to truly animate, you delve into a program like Flash and start from scratch.

    For the response video: Yes, Harry Partridge may, by someone’s standards, have gone off the deep end by lambasting Go! Animate. However, when you consider that these people using Go! Animate believe they can be better than Flash animators, that’s like a kindergarten T-baller saying he can hit home runs off of Randy Johnson any time, anywhere. It just won’t happen. Reddplague, despite his claimed experience, donned the uniform of that kindergarten T-baller, and with this video, he stepped up to the plate against pitcher Partridge. And in doing so, as I see it, he struck out in 3 pitches in the bottom of the 9th with the bases loaded. Game over. Newgrounds 10, Go! Animate 6.

  • Flashkid

    I don’t understand why Harry’s video is getting so much controversy. He’s a talented flash animator who made a video claiming that Go!Animate would never be able to replicate traditional animation. This is a true statement. I don’t believe he was “threatened” by Go!Animate, because the thought of anyone being afraid of this is quite honestly laughable. He thought it was a cheap program for bad animation and this “so-called” response video only proves his point. I wouldn’t be surprised if ReddPlague is just a child who got upset because a legit artist discredited his new toy. His response to Harry’s video was nothing more than a sick-twisted murder fantasy played out in a poorly animated short. It surprises me that Amid would post something like this and use it as a way to defend what Go!Animate stands for, when all it does is make people who use the program look like vindictive sociopaths.

    Go!Animate simply takes clip art and robotic voices to make cheap, quickly made videos. This is not a tool for people to learn animation, no more than a coloring book can teach a person how to paint. It is just a program for people to churn out quick, mediocre shorts to show their friends. Nothing more. If a child truly wants to become an animator (As I did when I was a kid), then he needs to find legitimate ways to learn, maybe not through programs like Flash or ToonBoom, but by reading books and practicing life drawing. If they like using the program for fun, that’s fine, but it will never be able to teach them how to develop their drawing or animation skills.

    Again, let me make this clear in case someone tries to misinterpret my post. Go!Animate is a program that people can use to make quick, silly shorts. I personally do not believe it is either a threat to traditional animation nor something that can teach people how to draw/animate. However, I’m fine with people using it as way to send joke videos to their friends and family. Everyone needs to just calm down.

  • Cybil

    I remember when I first gained interest in animation. Back in my day, you had to get a flip book and draw in it if you wanted to learn how animation worked.

  • Ananomous

    Many people are saying that GoAnimate is like “Scratch”, which is a drag and drop coding program. NO. At least Scratch teaches basic fundamentals of coding, like if statements, variables, etc. GoAnimate doesn’t teach you anything. Learning to animate takes the ability to draw, and picture 2d drawings as 3 dimensional ones. All GoAnimate does is make a character walk 10 steps to the right, and speak in Steven Halking’s voice