History and Future of Creative Writing on the Internet

History and Future of Creative Writing on the Internet
Creative Writing on the Internet has evolved from being mainly an educational tool used over a network realized by a limited number of people who had the technical knowledge to access the data, to a widespread phenomena including not only including educational purposes but also personal interests, hobbies, and private consumerism as current browser technology makes the Internet more user-friendly and easily approachable.
Since the earliest days of the Internet some of the largest providers and gateways have been universities and colleges across the world (like the University of Minnesota and its Gopher program ); many of these educational facilities would offer information about their programs . In this manner, facts about programs in English and Creative Writing were easily and widely dispersed. Universities served as keypoints of Creative Writing, as they had since the time of St. Thomas Aquinas at the University of Paris and even earlier, and very much wanted to distribute information on what they had to offer. So even in the very beginning, Creative Writing had strong roots in the Internet, because of the fact that Universities and Colleges were hosts to the technology needed, and were generally interested in the potential educational purposes.
In the following few years, Creative Writing was not the most accentuated of the University disciplines; in fact, by 1994, only 35% of public schools were connected to the Internet, most teachers could not show their students what resources were out there . Because of this, most Creative Writing material at that time was either University-based, or (in a new trend continuing to today) commercial; soon publishers and book sellers (like www.amazon.com, who was one of the first) began to advertise and market their products as consumer traffic on the Internet increased almost exponentially (from roughly one million hosts in July 1992, to roughly 38 million this year ).
Then, as browsers such as Mozilla, Netscape and Internet Explorer were available, more and more people had a way to view the information, and the universities and colleges began to elaborate their pages and include more design elements and incorporate graphics, logos, and eventually HTML 4.0 (Hyper Text Markup Language, the translation code that data on the Internet is viewed with) and Java design. The success of these browsers spelled good news for Creative Writing on the web; now, as it was becoming apparent that the general public could also access the Internet, affordably, and the general public, with all its diversity and variety, had more need for Creative Fiction than even the academics and scholars who currently were using the World Wide Web for their own purpose.
Then, around 1996, things began to change. Private interest projects began to increase in popularity. Sites such as www.poetrymagazine.com and www.fiction.com and other advanced projects were founded, and more and more people began designing their personal web pages (Note: the author started his web page, which contained his own creative fiction from its inception, in the summer of 1995, almost a year before most commercial sites caught on). More and more Creative Writing sites were being added to the databases of such search engines as Yahoo, whose has had a subdirectory, dir.yahoo.com/Arts/Humanities/Literature/Creative_Writing/ since 1994, and Magellan, whose has had a similar directory since 1997, containing sites it would rate based upon quality and content .
Personal pages soon became more and more popular as Internet Service Providers (henceforth referred to as ISPs) began offering webspaces (or, server space where a consumer could design his own webpage) as part of sign-up deals or offers including connection to the Internet; America Online (AOL) was notable for providing its users with a unique program to design their personal pages, and as AOL grew in popularity, the volume of personal pages did as well.
Historians, bibliophiles, sociologists and many other scholars of the arts and of human nature in general have noted that there is a great need for literature in any society, and that this need manifests itself in whatever means are available (there are cave paintings detailing the life of the earliest man, there are papyrus scrolls from Greece and Egypt housing the literature of those ages, paper from pulp immediately became the receiver of the ink of many pens, and so on), and so soon naturally when an electronic means became available this need again became manifested. Soon people commenced placing their poetry and short stories on their homepages, sharing their experiences and ideas about literature and language with each other electronically. Past that, some more advanced users began scanning entire texts (Electronic Texts, or e-texts) and putting them on the Internet for general access; works such as Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, and Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen, were available on sites s. This demonstrates that as the technology on the Internet became more and more developed, so did the Creative Writing resources, showing that any future developments would utilize all available resources also.
In the present day, late 1998, Creative Writing is poised at the edge of a new turning point. Today, websites such as www.shakespeare.com/Poetry/Poetry.html and prominence.com/java/poetry/ use Java programming, a new language used extensively for Internet functions, and apply it to Creative Writing. Now users can observe the latest developments in web design, such as frames, marquee text, and refreshing, redirecting code, in their favorite poems, stories, and folklore. Book selling is now a tremendous financial force on the Internet, especially around the holiday seasons.
Another positive aspect of Creative Writing on the Internet is its appeal to the disabled. People who would otherwise have trouble getting out and buying books, or writing and sending a manuscript to a publisher, are put to ease by today's easy-access environment. They can write and send a text through E-mail to a publisher, or order new or used books online. They can read poetry and comment on it; the whole online experience is made available to them, and Creative Fiction in particular would be more enjoyable, for it is specific to something that can be done as well online as in the physical world, like chess or reading the news, unlike basketball or mountain-climbing.
The future of Creative Writing on the Internet has many promises. In addition to expanded resources of e-texts, more and more Java applications, it is more than likely that it will soon use whatever new developments take place on the Internet; stories where each visitor to the webpage contribute a sentence or two will likely happen soon, and may even be published. Online estimates of writing will be available in the nearby future, and peer self-help groups for poetry and fiction will surely appear in large numbers. More and more critics will turn from newspapers to online to publish criticism first. All these and more are natural outgrowths of existing resources and technologies.
So in conclusion, Creative Writing on the Internet has turned from being based mainly in the advertisements of the universities and colleges that sponsored and harbored the early Internet to being based on the hobbies and private interests of the mass consumer who accessed them through the increasingly popular ISP, and will continue to grow and expand as the Internet does. The need for Creative Writing in general is clearly demonstrated by the great diversity and bulk of information found today, and will be even further expounded by whatever technology is next developed.

History and Future of Creative Writing on the Internet 9.2 of 10 on the basis of 1846 Review.