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URBAN75: ABOUT US
Urban75 could perhaps lay claim to have pioneered the genre of interactive political cartoons, with its Punch/Slap games. Online since 1996, these simple Java animations let players virtually punch politicians and celebs by clicking on their faces. A click comically distorts the (over) familiar face.
The Guardian, May 13, 2004
Around this time, a Watford FC fanzine editor living in Brighton offered to post up material from the campaign on his BSAD website, and so the first web presence of urban75 was born!
Being back in the Dark Ages of the web, the site was a basic affair, but with news developing fast we soon needed more 'hands on' access to the server, so moved the site to a demon.co.uk homepages account in 1995.
Fired up with enthusiasm after being donated a modem by rock band The Levellers, the site started to take on related issues and offer up more diverse content, with the change in focus being reflected by a new name, 'urban75'.
Word got around and urban75 was soon picking up traffic and web awards, with the mix of political content, satire, games and original photography sending the hit rate soaring.
In 1999, the editor was invited on to the US chat show, The Jenny Jones Show to befuddle the audience with his odd looks, his 'crazy Wales-land accent' and weird political talk.
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As the hits to the site continued to climb, urban75 was eventually booted off Demon Internet after the success of their 'Punch a Politician' gallery and (since departed) 'Slap A Spice Girl' game sent the site bursting through their bandwidth barrier - by a factor of 40!
A happy new home was donated by Dircon, until growing bandwidth and server space requirements saw us expanding the site across the urban75.org and .net domains (originally sponsored by 1&1 until we pushed our luck too far by becoming their busiest UK site, and now hosted on commercial space at exonetric).
Over the years, the site's been fortunate enough to receive glowing praise from the media. Here's a few back-slapping examples:
'probably the finest and best-designed independent site in Britain,' Daily Telegraph
'one of best 100 websites in the world,' FHM Magazine
'cutting edge culture and satire,' the Guardian.
'top 50 London website, London's number 1 community website' Time Out
Back in 2002, UK newspaper, The Guardian was suggesting that "the Chinese government's decision to block Google "had something to do with the 14th result it throws up when you search for the name of that country's president" - our game called, 'Slap The Evil Dictator Jiang Zemin!'
More recently, the site spawned a story about Brixton's crack squirrels while the First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation at the House Of Commons declared urban75's drug info pages to be "disconcertingly well-informed", adding that "supporting websites such as urban75.com is essential."
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