Hi there, Tarro here. Today’s article is going to be a little bit different. It’s officially been one year since I joined the zoo community, and I wanted to talk a little bit about my experience so far. I’m going to try and make this generally zoo applicable, but I’ll be honest this is gonna be very me-centric. And I’m publishing it as an article because it’s a Saturday anyway and I don’t have time to write this as well as another article, so here we are. Strap in and enjoy the ride as we go through a bit of a Tarro 2022 recap!
I joined the community pretty much immediately after listening to the December ZooTT episode from last year. It wasn’t anything about the episode specifically, nor was it the first episode that I had listened to. I think I just realized that I wanted to be doing what they were doing. I wanted to be trying to change people’s minds. I figured I’m pretty good at talking, I’m an alright writer, and I know enough graphic design to create some fun memes every now and then. With those skills combined, I hoped to be able to help show that zoos are actually pretty darn cool.
I’ll be honest, at the start I wasn’t even thinking about trying to make friends or anything. I have zoo friends in real life, so I figured I’d keep this a generally business focused endeavor. But, it turns out that a lot of the people that I met were really cool, so that didn’t end up working very well. Now, I’ve got a small circle of people who I really love chatting with, and I really hope that I get the chance to continue working with them in the future.
At the start, I had three goals for the year. Reach 1000 followers on twitter, find some media project to either start or assist in creating, and to not get doxxed. As of today, I’m currently sitting at 2252 followers, I’ve launched both the magazine as well as the Discord server attached to it, and as far as I’m aware my kiwifarms page is looking pretty blank, so I’d like to think that we’ve managed to do everything that we were hoping to!
Speaking of the magazine, I just wanted to take a minute to say how grateful I am to everyone who’s supported it. Whether you just read the articles, retweet or engage with the content, or especially if you’ve written an article yourself, this project wouldn’t exist without you. Seeing people’s reactions is the thing that makes it so easy to keep going with it. The magazine twitter account is about 10 people away from 2000 as well, so it’s been really exceeding my wildest dreams. I want to give a big shout out to Lykon for having the original idea, Inter for always keeping me on my toes, Mike for being my voice of reason, and another person for helping me so much with delivering content week after week. We’ve still got tons of ideas for the magazine, so hopefully expect more great content from us in the weeks, months, and maybe even years to come.
I want to take a second to talk about the Discord as well, since that’s been kind of a smash hit too. I don’t want to retread too much ground since I’ve talked about it a lot, but the idea behind the Discord was always to create a really positive space where any zoo could join in and have somewhere where they felt welcome. A place where we could talk about zoo stuff for sure, but also pop culture, philosophy, or just about how your life is going. I wanted people to be able to do all that in a place where they didn’t have to hide who they are. And I’d say for the most part I’m really happy with how that’s gone. The server is at 218 members currently, and while it’s a fairly small number that are super active, the vibes are pretty impeccable. We’ve had a few issues here and there, but the moderation team has been awesome, and has really helped to cover for me while I’m not around. I wanna call out a few people here as well. Brass and Akito, the amazing hosts of Zoo & Me, who both also moderate the Discord server. Pup Jesse, who never ceases in keeping the server active, Dogteeth, for her frankly impressive love of dogs, and Martin for just being very cool in general. All of those people are awesome, and I seriously can’t thank them enough. We’ve done one game night so far. We’re hoping to do another one soon, and there’s even been talks of trying to start up a DnD campaign or two in the server. So hopefully there’s that to look forward to as well!
Outside of my own projects, I’ve had some awesome experiences being able to participate in other people’s things too. With the help of Smelly and Logic, I’ve had the chance to release two songs I sing for. That’s something I’m hoping to do more of next year as well. I’ve appeared on ZooTT twice (spoilers for the December episode this year), Zoo & Me three times, as well as another podcast one time. It was awesome being able to work with so many great and talented people. It’s always so crazy working with ZooTT since they’re really the whole reason that I’m here. But also, seeing the way that that group works is amazing. They really put so much time and effort into their production and it shows! Zoo & Me is also always really fun to do. It’s a little less organized, but I love hopping in over there and just getting the chance to chat with one of the two awesome amazing people that host over there.
With that all said, I want to set some goals for 2023. I’m a very goal oriented person, so it helps to keep me motivated. I have one huge content thing I’m currently working on already, but I want to do at least two more big media projects. I did one last year for 1000, which was “Robo-Voices reading my favorite hate DM’s” and it was probably my worst performing tweet ever, so clearly I’ve gotta take a different approach to it, but I’ve got some plans. I want to hit 5k on Twitter, which might not seem like that lofty of a goal if I’m already at 2300, but I think the pool of zoos that are on twitter is only around 2000 so it means trying to break out a little more into general appeal. Speaking of, I want to try and do at least 3 non-zoo podcasts. Doesn’t really matter what, just things to try and increase visibility outside of the community. And, last but certainly not least, I want to still avoid being doxxed. That would be very good and cool.
If you’re still here at the end of this incredibly self-indulgent piece of writing, thank you so much for reading. I’m a very analytics based person, but I want you to know that no matter how much I talk about engagement and numbers, I really do appreciate everyone who supports anything I do. From my close friends, to the bots that follow my account for some reason. I want to do amazing things for the zoo community. I really want to try and make a difference. And so, here’s to another amazing year. I think it’s going to be an incredible journey, and I hope you come along with me for the ride.
Article written by Tarro obviously (December 2022)
Find them at https://twitter.com/hereforthezoo
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