An assortment of info on the history of TheOneRing.net as a website

what needs to be done

Before TORn - "From The Pages To The Screen" | April 1999

Finding out that The Lord of the Rings movies were being filmed in New Zealand, the home of his online friend Tehanu (Erica Challis), Xoanon (Michael Regina) got the idea to "follow the production, find all the information I could, snap a few photos and tell people about it." Tehanu was excited to work with Xoanon, and they set up a simply designed site on the free (now defunct) web hosting site Xoom*, and called it From The Pages To The Screen. 1

An April 29, 1999 news article posted on Herr-der-Ringe-Film.de credited and linked back to From the Pages To The Screen which shows the url as: http://members.xoom.com/_XOOM/Xoanon/LOTRnews.htm

*Kristin Thompson in The Frodo Franchise identifies the hosting site as Geocities 2 but the evidence doesn't bear this out.

April 10, 1999 - first story for "From The Pages To The Screen" printed

The first story was posted on April 10, 1999. 3 These stories would later be loaded onto TORn where they retained their original post date. 4

TORn is Born | April-May 1999

Two friends, Corvar (Bill Thomas) and Calisuri (Chris Pirrotta), contacted Tehanu and Xoanon and suggested the four of them partner up to create a professionally designed website on a dedicated server with a unique domain name. From many names considered, they chose the domain, "TheOneRing.net," opting for .net - which conveyed more of community sense - than .com - which conveyed more of a corporate sense. 5

April 26, 1999 - the domain, theonering.net, is registered

The domain, theonering.net, was registered on April 26, 1999. 6

May 5-9, 1999 - TORn, as a website, debuts on the internet

According to Xoanon, "It was May the 5th, 1999* when the hard work of Calisuri and Corvar changed the old green site (some of you remember) that belonged to Tehanu and I into what you see today! Our first day ‘live’ had all of 22 unique visitors, so you can tell we started with a BANG! The first story we ever posted on TheOneRing.net was 'Sean Connery was here, maybe'." 7 But a TORn News Article dated May 9, 1999 declared, "Hello there and welcome to TheOneRing, our new, bigger, faster website. We think you’ll find this new address easier to get to and faster to use." 8 In The Frodo Franchise, Kirstin Thompson—working off a timeline provided by a TORn staffer—also set TORn's debut as May 9, 1999. 9

*It can be noted that the date attached to this story is May 4, 1999. This is probably attributable to time zone issues.

Stories can be found in TORn's News Archives that are dated before either May 5 or 9, 1999. At least some of these were posted at the Xoom site. On April 29, 1999, the German LOTR site, Herr der Ringe Film. posted a story on casting Aragorn that was credited to "From the Pages to the Screen" with a link to the url: http://members.xoom.com/_XOOM/Xoanon/LOTRnews.htm. This story also appears on TORn with the date May 5, 1999. It's also possible that some stories were written on a particular date and held until the site went live without being posted at Xoom. According to Corvar: stories were written before the site was up; the site was registered on April 26; then it was started up a few days later; then the stories being held were posted. 10

TORn Grows | May 1999-Dec 2001

In the time leading up to the release of the "Fellowship of the Ring" movie, TORn grew rapidly as a website. An August 27, 2001 Press Release described TORn as having a volunteer staff of 40 coming from more than 10 different countries and having readers from over 150 countries. 11

Pretty much all of the 40+ sections, sub-sections, and features shown in the site map for the site in October 2007 (when the site went through a major overhaul) were added from May 1999 (inception of the site) to December 2001 (release of the FOTR movie).

Mathom-house Wiki Articles: 1999 Timeline; 2000 Timeline; 2001 Timeline; 2002 Timeline - timelines showing significant additions and upgrades to the site
Mathom-house Wiki Articles: Old TORn Site : Sections - full list of all sections on TORn as of Oct, 2007 when the site switched over to "New TORn" - links on this page lead to the archived pages at TORn and to Mathom-house wiki articles.
Mathom-house Wiki Articles: Old TORn Site : Sections - Appendix - breakdown of when sections, sub-sections, and features were added to TORn

New Message Boards | February 2007

NEEDED: research and writing

TORn is Reborn | October 2007

NEEDED: a summary of information from these two articles

Old TORn & New TORn
TORn 2007 Server Crash

TORn Gets a Facelift | 2012

On October 17, 2012, TORn again changed the homepage design. 12 Altaira (Superuser/Moderator) explains that "these changes are meant to bring the TORn Home Page up to date compared to similar news reporting websites, to better organize similar stories of interest so they're easier to locate, and better highlight important stories of interest." 13

Mathom-house wiki article: TORn Home Page Skins : Standard
 

1 December 18, 2001 ~ TORn News Article: My LOTR:FOTR Review!!

2 Thompson, K. (2007). "Click to View Trailer." In The Frodo franchise: The Lord of the Rings and modern Hollywood. (1st ed.). (p. 155). Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press.

3 Thompson, K. (2007). "Click to View Trailer." In The Frodo franchise: The Lord of the Rings and modern Hollywood. (1st ed.). (p. 156). Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press.

4 April 10th, 1999 ~ TORn News Article: List of all stories posted on Old TORn's Home Page

5 December 18, 2001 ~ TORn News Article: My LOTR:FOTR Review!!

6 Mar 25, 2009 ~ Private email from Altaira to TORn Founders Day planning committee that relayed details of her conversation with Corvar

7 May 5, 2001 ~ TORn News Article: TORN is TWO Today!

8 May 9, 1999 ~ TORn News Article: Welcome to TheOneRing.net!

9 Thompson, K. (2007). "Click to View Trailer." In The Frodo franchise: The Lord of the Rings and modern Hollywood. (1st ed.). (p. 156). Berkeley and Los Angeles, California: University of California Press.

10 Mar 25, 2009 ~ Private email from Altaira to TORn Founders Day planning committee that relayed details of her conversation with Corvar

11 August 27, 2001 ~ TORn News Article: TORN DIGITAL IS HERE!

12 October 17, 2012 ~ TORn News Article: Under Construction! TORn gets a Facelift

13 October 17, 2012 ~ TORn Message Board post by Altaira: Please be patient!



LINKS RELATED WIKI PAGES

TORn 2007 Server Crash
Old TORn Site Sections
TORn Site Page Skins
TORn Technical Aspects