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Zombo is a satire website that was created in 1999 as a parody of the flash-based intro animation that became widespread during the early days of flash animation in web design.
Zombo.com was launched in 1999 as a joke poking fun at how websites would play a small Flash animation before actually transitioning into the main page. It took this concept to the extreme, playing small animation along with a repeating tune with a voice track welcoming the visitor to zombo.com. After some time, an option to purchase T-shirts or sign up for a newsletter would appear, and if neither were clicked, the loop would resume indefinitely. These services have since been discontinued. The website steadily gained notoriety and was shared throughout emails and forums all throughout the Internet.
In 2011, webcomic XKCD released a strip about Zombo.
Video game producer Bill Roper and artist Dave Rowntree have each listed Zombo as their favorite website. Rowntree explains, “I think that paraphrases the net. Promises you the earth but delivers a bit of animation with a scratchy soundtrack!” Web animator Joel Veitch chose Zombo.com as the least useful website, since “it doesn’t do anything except tell you how wonderful it is.” Mark Sullivan of PC World listed Zombo among the Internet’s ten most useless websites, concluding: “Well, in fact, nothing happens at zombo.com.” Samela Harris of The Advertiser calls Zombo.com “the most welcoming website on the Internet”, while Daryl Lim of Digital Life calls Zombo.com “the ultimate time-waster”. A listing in The Australian writes, “Zombo.com has just one joke, but it’s a good one.”
In 2004, “Conservitives.com” owner Paul Walters set his site to redirect to Zombo.com, causing some to believe political hacktivists had attacked a political party.
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