Here’s our newest Animal Jam Parent Connection video, detailing some of the ways my staff works to makes sure we are keeping all of our players safe, while encouraging an in-game culture of appropriate behavior.
(Don’t you just love the thumbnails Youtube chooses for you? 😐 )
I have spent years working for various children’s brands trying to make sure that every community I oversee cultivates a culture that encourages and promotes appropriate behavior online for child audiences, while offering resources for their parents.
I am so lucky to currently work for a brand that supports me in this personal and professional mission. I am proud to show off our new parents page. We have a robust vision for our parent outreach and this is just one of our first steps toward that vision. Check out my second video highlighting some of the many ways we work to do this at Animal Jam.
Yeah, I know. First, Community Manager Appreciation Day (#CMAD) and now Safer Internet Day? How many trumped up days do my peers need to feel good and noticed? (The answer is infinite – we are passionate, insatiable service providers, so we will take whatever we can get.)
That said – the twitterspheres I pay attention to were all over Safer Internet Day yesterday. For really great resources, run a twitter search on #SaferInternetDay or #SID2013.
At Animal Jam, we launched a new Parent Video series that we are calling Animal Jam Parent Connection. We will go through tips for frequent issues parents deal with and review some of the offerings we have at Animal Jam. This first one focuses on teaching good password habits.
I host the first, and my aversion to myself being videoed aside…, I think it came out ok. Let me know what you think and if you have ideas of other topics we should cover, like parent controls, bullying, naiveté, safe chat habits, etc 🙂
Izzy Neis and I worked on a primer of kids virtual worlds that we could share with people. Kind of a what’s good about them, what difficult about them, what they are and are not. Enjoy.
And as I was uploading this one, I saw this fantastically designed on on Slideshare as well. Guess which one of us has access to graphic designers 😛
So the big news is finally out! We reached 1 million players! It was last month and we are already climbing higher at a fast clip, but still something to celebrate. 🙂 Here’s one of the news outlets that picked up the press release:
Even more fun, our team celebrated at the Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City, our studio’s home town zoo and where we are sponsoring their EdZOOcation program and the coolio Allosaurus:
OMG, I am SO excited about this new addition to National Geographic Animal Jam. Dr Brady Barr from Dangerous Encounters now has a Gadget lab in Animal Jam!
It’s been live for only a couple hours and the room has been full the whole time. Dr Brady Barr specialized in cool gadgets that help him get crazy footage of all sorts of animals. And we are showing some good ones, including Brady getting into a Crocodile getup and tagging Crocodiles, hanging out next to a deer carcass to see wolfpacks at night and pythons and Mystery Swamp Creatures! ACK!
I love it! And this is just the first day. Look out for more cool stuff from this awesome-tastic Scientist/Celebrity that we are partnering with.
I find myself shouting at the videos – get away from there Brady!!!
5/12 – UPDATE! Brady’s answering the player’s animal questions!
Dr Brady Barr now has regular video answers to questions from kids in the game. So our kids can ask a real scientist their animal puzzlers and potentially have him answer their question. Love this kind of feedback and recognition. How exciting!
The reason I haven’t posted in forever is because I am hard at work on our newly launched project (albeit in open beta) National Geographic Animal Jam!
The day is finally here to live wild with National Geographic Animal Jam™. Now you and your kids can be among the first to monkey around in this virtual world of discovery and fun. Combining the chance for kids to be the animal of their choice with access to National Geographic’s limitless libraries, National Geographic Animal Jam will open your child’s eyes to a world of adventure and exploration like no other virtual world out there. Your kids will soon realize that they’re having tons of fun in the coolest jungle around!
Two years in the making, National Geographic Animal Jam represents an ongoing creative collaboration between the great minds at National Geographic and the gaming gurus at Smart Bomb Interactive. The goal of this virtual world is to provide a fun, exciting, and safe environment for kids to play online, as well as inspire them to explore and protect the natural world outside their doors.
So come prowl around inside National Geographic Animal Jam. With lush tropical kingdoms, amazing adventures, and fascinating facts in store—plus the chance to live it up as your favorite animal—mommy and daddy bears (and their cubs alike) will find a wild world worth discovering!
National Geographic Animal Jam – Jump into the Jungle Today!
We are tweaking and polishing through the summer, and as such, it is completely free to play through the open beta! When we have our Grand Opening this fall, we will offer premium subscription content, but the game will always have free to play features.
Check it out and let me know what you think!
It’s true! I got a fantastic opportunity to work with an insanely talented team of designers on one of the country’s most beloved brands, National Geographic. The game is out this summer and it’s BEAUTIFUL. So excited, stay tuned for updates. 😀
Joi Podgorny Joins National Geographic’s Animal Jam Team
Online Child Safety Veteran to Lead Community Engagement in New Virtual World
Washington, DC and Salt Lake City, UT (PRWEB) January 25, 2010 — Smart Bomb Interactive announced today that Joi Podgorny has joined the company as the Director of Community Engagement for National Geographic’s Animal Jam, an online virtual world for kids 5-9 launching in the summer of 2010. In her new role, Podgorny will architect and oversee all aspects of community management for Animal Jam, with the goal of creating an online destination that is an industry leader in child safety, parental engagement, and pure fun.
“This team and this project are a perfect fit for me,” said Podgorny. “Kids who love animals are going to be immersed in a fascinating virtual world of unprecedented depth, and they’ll be part of an online community that parents can feel good about letting their children explore. “
Podgorny is considered one of the industry’s foremost experts in online community and children’s marketing, specifically in the under-13-year-old demographics. Her management and production accomplishments range across six international children’s entertainment properties. She most recently served as Head of Community for Mind Candy, where she oversaw phenomenal growth in the user community of moshimonsters.com. She is a frequent contributor to conferences and forums on online child safety and digital engagement with children.