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post #142 of (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 06:09 AM
Ambrose & Cesaro 'nuff said!
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Join Date: Oct 2006
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Re: 360 Achievement / PS3 Trophy Help & Discussion

Why MyGamerCard.net Has Been Shut Down

Hugely successful gamertag-linking community site, MyGamerCard.net, has had to cease operation following a difficult decision made by site founder 'Morgon', following a lack of support from Xbox.com. The service enabled you to connect your gamertag to create a unique Xbox Live calling card for yourself, share gamerscores with the rest of the Xbox Live community and compete in gamerscore leaderboards.

Originally started around a month before the launch of Xbox 360 in 2005, MyGamerCard.net launched on the same day that the console released in North America on November 22nd, introducing the first gamerscore leaderboard, with several thousand gamertags soon spiralling to millions in a relatively short period of time since its inception.

"For over five years, MGC has served the Xbox Community in ways that I had never imagined," says Morgon in a farewell statement. "What started as a "test of concept" for a few Xbox.com forum users led to a rollercoaster ride that has been one of my life's greatest adventures.

"When I started working on the code that would eventually become the heart of MGC, I certainly did not imagine that nearly five million unique GamerTags would end up using it. Nor could I ever fathom that the handful of requests that saturated my home cable modem (and kept me from playing Halo 2!) would eventually require five servers to handle the load of thirteen million daily requests!"

Apparently, a gradual loss of interest in its community from Microsoft lead to a steady decline in support for MyGamerCard.net, which has ultimately resulted in the shutting down of the site and service altogether.

"However, in the past few years, that love for community has been lost by Microsoft," Morgon's statement continues. "The closure of customer-to-company community-centric interfaces (that weren't tech support (no disrespect towards the awesome @XboxSupport!)) was a huge blow for Xbox fans. Especially those who really felt like they had a connection to the company they were spending their disposable income on. Similarly, the Xbox Community Developer Program - the program that was essentially created for MyGamerCard and a select few similarly broad-minded community projects - stagnated, with extremely few updates or new data features (despite constant requests), and waning communication as Xbox was not allocating any time to the program.

"To make matters worse, while most of us who insisted on playing by the rules (Terms of Use) of the XCDP, others were showing their lack of respect and selfishness by setting up 'screen scraping' mechanisms to gather additional data from the Xbox website that are otherwise unavailable to us," Morgon adds. "If you've ever been to Xbox.com and noticed how slow it is - they are the reason why. These sites - some of them for-profit corporations - benefit from having the type of information that the rest of us had been asking for, which quickly started eating away at our traffic. Repeated discussions with Microsoft regarding this issue have gone largely unacknowledged (and certainly un-actioned) by anyone beyond my initial contact."

'Scraping' is used by a variety of websites to gain gamertag information without permission - not this site, we hasten to add - and in doing the right thing and "playing by the rules," as Morgon puts it, MyGamerCard.net has seemingly been increasingly overlooked by Xbox.com over the years, failing to garner the support it clearly deserved.

"Eventually, the rise of these websites, coupled with the declining advertising ecosystem, pushed my out-of-pocket expenses upwards as advertising alone couldn't maintain the (quite modest, comparatively) monthly hosting fees," notes Morgon. "Eventually, the decision had to be made to take down the site. It wasn't (and still isn't) a decision I've made lightly; proof of that is the simple fact that I've been running half of my monthly costs out-of-pocket for over a year now. But despite the sadness of having to shut down this part and chapter of my life, there's a part of me is a little relieved that there's a set 'closure' to all of it, rather than infinite abandonment."

MyGamerCard.net will be sorely missed by its community - which includes some of the staffers here at X360A - so we wish Morgon and MGC all the best for the future.

"Thank you again for your praises, suggestions, and criticisms; awards, interviews and invites; and Tweets, Friend Requests, emails, and posts," Morgon concludes. "But most of all, thank you for being a part of MyGamerCard!"

You can read Morgon's complete farewell statement on MyGamerCard.net

[Thanks to everyone who sent this in]

...kinda sucks, liked that site
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