When I opened the up The Linkin Park Association last December  as a cheesy Angelfire fan page, I didn't expect much from myself, the visitors, and certaintly of the site. You see, I had a tendency on quiting on the last 5 sites I had made, and well I didn't think this was going to last any longer than the rest; which never opened. As I had just become an active member of the LPMB [Linkin Park Message Board] I incidently recieved my first Private Message from a user known as LinkiedTheory, requesting to help me on my crude experimental site. So, unknown to the dangers of instant recruiting I signed him up with me thinking I've associated myself with some average fan with little or no experience of creating websites, and that I was still on my own...Derek changed everything for The Association, and if it were not for Derek, I can strongly say it would not be around today.
As it came, Derek was more than a faithful partner, but one of the best examples of people you can meet on the net these days. Working with Derek, forced me to pursue the site, and finish on it's deadline. And we did just that, finish I mean, we actually opened several months after the deadline on my birthday but, there it was none the less, The Linkin Park Association was born. To be honest, there was very little content on that site compared to the one which you are reading from now but, Derek and I were persistant in the belief that we could establish the greatest Linkin Park fansite there even was, but how? We needed something tangible, to show people we weren't just another fansite with the same content, and sometime during June of 2002 we got our big break.
Ironically, I was back in New York, the state I keep trying to get away from, but can never seem to. Listening to Hybrid Theory in my father's car as we drove to a friend's house, my dad attracted my attention, to tell me that Z100, one of New York's pop stations, was parodying In The End. I stopped briefly to listen to the lyrics, but there was nothing humorous, instead it sounded more like a local DJ mixing up the song, with some side-kick phony rapping over Mike's verses and it was the best fan mix I had ever heard. As usual, I signed onto the LPMB later that day only to discover that the mix I heard was 'Enth E Nd' the remix from Reanimation. I wished for another taste of it, but didn't get my chance, until I met an aspiring rapper by the name of Hydroponikz.
Hydro, who lives in the NY area, and is indirectly affiliated with LP [though I can't dispense any more info on it] had ripped [meaning recorded from a radio station] the song from his mic, and uploaded it to his computer. I don't know why, but for whatever reason Hydro decided to give it exclusive to us. Words cannot express the feeling of Joy Derek and I felt, we finally hoped to get a glimpse of what most other larger sites get daily. After several trials and errors, we managed to get the song up onto the site. However, we also missed a rather big detail. Angelire only gives you 2GB of bandwidth a day. meaning, everytime people view, or download files from your site, it takes away from your daily bandwidth. We must have gotten "timed-out" [meaning temporary closing b/c of bandwidth limitations for a few hours] more than 10 times before we opened a mirror site [used to host larger files for your site, but not eat away at your bandwidth] and more than 20 times after that. When both sites were timed-out we knew we had succeded, however many visitors complained about that. Since, they could not succed in getting the song, several of us started giving it out through other LP sites, Kazaa, AIM, and various other file sharing devices. Shortly after this, we signed Hydro to our staff list.
A few weeks later we encountered a similar experience as a fan known as "papercut" was able to get us the 'Pushing Me Away' and 'With You' Reanimation mp3's before anybody else, but the link was leaked onto the LPMB and apparently before we even uploaded the songs, Slice [The Official site's administrator] requested us to take it off. Thank God we hadn't put those up for download as a couple of sites were terminated for failure to comply with Slice's demands. And this is how papercut, or as he is now known as "PPR:KUT" became a member to the site. However, unfortunately a few months after the site's opening PPR:KUT for reasons beyond our control decided to resign from his staff position on The Linkin Park Association. We will miss him working on our staff, greatly.
So here we were at the time, 4 members, 1 site, and no visitors. Back in the same hole, but now I had dragged 3 others with me. Until that one day, where Derek IMed me, with some rather unbelievable news. A fan named Alex he met on the LPMB had offered to give us our own domain, and being a fan of LP he came with us onto the site and got us our own host for free! But, in reality Alex pays monthly for this service, and I can't thank him enough for it. Money is money and especially when your in college and you need it the most. Alex was the last step in completing the dream and if it were not for him, we would still be on a cjb free redirecting service.
In less than no time, Alex setup our very own forums [to which I visit daily] and skinned completly on his own using Invision Board, to which he was formally a support staff member on. Shortly, I devised my first design for the new version, but anybody who knows me knows I'm constantly coming up with ideas. The original design was actually one out of five and I quickly trashed this one as well. After a few days of crafting and expermentation, I completed what I thought was the best HTML design I had done. But, like Reanimation, this site was a remix to the original and Alex astounded me when he showed me his "reanimation" of my design. I thought it was brillant and we quickly went to work on it. I remember the night I created the site logo, I was in New York, on my father's PC and I tossed it back and forth to Derek who used Photoshop, since the only imaging program my dad had was Microsoft Paint. Eventually though, it was fine tuned by Alex to be suitable for the site's standard. After a few weeks, the forums really began to take effect as we hired ourselves a handle of mods, began working on the site content, and us, being Derek, Alex, Gary[PPR:KUT] and I became Admins. Although, by now it was evident Hydro was not sharing our dream of a great LP site, but following his own to become a powerful rapper. Hydro is still a friend to The Association and we'll always be grateful for Enth E Nd.
In the following months, Alex completed all the pages, which were done in PHP scripting, just one of Alex's many talents, Derek found, edited and tagged over 1500 LP photos, and I got to know our good mods Akuma-Sama, Todd, and Chester76. Unfortunetly, I found out yesterday(which at the time of writing this was November 1st) that I never knew Chester76's name, how embarassing, I'm truly sorry. As for LPFAN05, he's not a mod here anymore...he's moved up to admin! The purpose of this "short" story is say thank you to everybody that's helped us and present the life of the LPA in a child's storytelling fashion. Who would have thought that if you actually keep trying and never gave up, you can reach your goals. I always wanted something I could be proud of, but when I opened the up The Linkin Park Association last December as a cheesy Angelfire fan page, I didn't expect this much.- LPAssociation Co-Founder Omar, 2002