• Meet The Blogponies: Cereal Velocity

    Hey folks, Ferret here with a new thing on EQD: Staff interviews! There are so many amazing folks working behind the scenes and in front of the scenes making sure this blog runs smoothly and I've decided it's time to show them off. First up is the amazing and fun Cereal Velocity. Get the interview below!

    So introduce yourself, what's your name, when did you join EQD, what do you do?

    C: Hi! I'm Cereal Velocity- or as Tabitha St. Germain once called me, Swift Oat. You can call me Cereal, though. I'm a security software engineer in the real world, and a horse on the internet.

    I didn't quite co-found Equestria Daily, but I figure it was close enough. Once it rose from the 4chan boards as an art and story archive for what appeared on the various pony threads I offered my services as a screener for fanfiction. This was very early in 2011-Late January or early February, depending on who you ask. I was the first author aside from Seth well before the site had broken into any kind of public view.

    For the first few years of EQD's life I did a little (and sometimes a lot) of everything- answering emails, compiling posts, screening fanfiction, and generally helping the site (and Seth's workflow) run smoothly. I was usually our liason for conventions we attended, and the first person to call when there were technical issues with the site itself. Over time, especially as I finished college and landed my first full-time software engineering job, a lot of those roles have been split off and handed to more specialized people or groups. I'm still around in an ancillary role, especially when the seasons are airing to head the episode followups that have ended up being read by the show's writers. So that's a thing.

    What's the best thing about working for EQD and what do you do in your spare time?

    C: There's a lot to say. These marshmallow horses and the people that gathered around them to drive them and the show into the spotlight have given me so many opportunities that I never would have had otherwise.

    I've been all over the United States attending conventions and meetups, I've met the people that make the show possible on more than one occasion, and I've made a home, and a name, in what is most definitely the most oddball but utterly fantastic and completely unexpected community I've ever seen.

    Most importantly, though, it's just damn fun. Equestria Daily has never been, at its core, a serious business kind of horse news organization. We're friends. We make stupid posts at three in the morning because a picture made us laugh, we argue about whose preferred pony is the best, and we don't take anything too seriously. I think that's what's kept us around (and sane) for so long, and why I'd never want to be anywhere else.

    My real meatspace job is something I worked towards all through college getting my degree in Computer science, and it deals with hardware and software security. Most of it is under an NDA, as you might imagine, but it's nothing out of the ordinary. I have a whiteboard and lots of monitors and we usually prefer instant messaging the guy across from us instead of removing a pair of headphones to speak. We're engineers.

    What's your favourite episode and whose your fave pony?

    C: Ferret has asked the most loaded question. Dangerous territory. Rarity is obviously the best. The best episode depends on how I feel that day. Today I'm feeling nostalgic, so it's A Canterlot Wedding.

    Do you think EQD helps the fandom?

    C: I think we're a good part of why the fandom is as big as it is. Certainly someone would have come up with the same idea we did- archiving and spotlighting the best fiction and art that was posted on the /co/ board- but it turned out in our favor. Permanency and exposure is important with those kinds of creative works, and I think what we did helped a lot of people make their start, and helped provide a nice landing point for someone who has never heard of this pony thing and wants to know what it's all about.

    It's never been about us, but about the community. I think we have- and continue to- showcase the best they have to offer. That helps everyone.

    Is Seth really as crazy to work with as everyone thinks?

    C: I think the defining feature I'd pin on Seth is his unerring policy to avoid unnecessary drama at all times. While at times that has- and had- been frustrating with regards to running the site, I think it ultimately became the right decision. It kept things at the level they should have been. It's cartoon horses, after all. If it wasn't fun in the end, none of us would be doing this.

    So: in a word, yes. Would I change that dynamic? No.

     That was the awesome Cereal Velocity, if you want to see more you can find him on Twitter here or the really cool Equestrian Innovation videos he made back in the day here and all of them here.