CreditsPokeZam would not be what it is today without the contributions of Sean Cooper (Alakazam) and Freezewarp aka Shiny Raichu. There has also been many contributions over the years by many pokemon fans.
PokeZam was started way back in 1999 by Sean Cooper. Pokezam's history is detailed in his words below:
On September 1, 1999 Alakazam's Pokemon Cheats and Codes was created on a free host called Angelfire. I had a friend named Adam or Zapdos who had started his own web page, so I decided I would do the same. My friend started out on Angelfire, since it didn't really require any HTML knowledge and it was free, so I did the same. Soon enough, I started to understand HTML and I started to get some visitors to my site. I remember when I opened up a message board and someone from Australia said that he liked my site, which made me happy.
My site continued to get bigger as I added more content. I wasn't happy with my layout, since I wanted one with tables, like all the other big Pokemon sites. I looked at the source code of other Pokemon layouts until I figured out how layouts work. Eventually I made my own layout, but it wasn't very good because I based it on Psypoke and the UPNetwork's layouts; I even stole the right menu picture from the UPNetwork and linked to it directly, since I didn't know any better. At that point I was getting about 50 visitors a day, but I wanted more.
One day when I was at a site named Diglett's Cave, I applied for something called affiliation. I wasn't sure what it meant, but all I knew was that if I put his link on my page, he would put mine on his; it made sense since I was in desperate need of getting visitors to my site. After getting over ten affiliates, I noticed that my site was doing well in the Pokemon Top 50. Before Nintendo closed it, the Pokemon Top 50 was what determined if your site was doing well or not. At its prime, the Pokemon Top 50 had well over 2000 members. My site started at around the 500's and moved up to the 200's; higher than some of my affiliates. I remember when you could find out what rank your site was in your country out of all the Pokemon sites. Psypoke was always in first place, while my site eventually made it into the top ten for Canadian sites.
It was around the middle of 2000 when I finally decided that my site had outgrown Angelfire. I wanted a layout with SSI so I didn't have to edit every single page when I wanted to make a change to my layout, plus I wanted to open my own topsites. I decided to move to Hypermart, a free host, which offered 50MB's of space and SSI support to boot. I took advantage of the SSI by adding a brand new layout thanks to the webmasters section of PikaPals.
Besides setting up a topsites, I also set up Newspro for the first time and got my very first staff member. I started to hire lots of staff to post news, but a lot of them didn't post news that often or quit after a short while. I even hired a co-webmaster called Brock who dissapeared for like 2 months and never helped me out at all. My site continued to do well in the hits category, as it got up to around the 150's in the Pokemon Top 50. I even made my own UBB (Ultimate Bulletin Board) that had over 100 members. I became friends with the webmasters of Poke Pichu (the Johto Network) and Poke Lodge, two of my affiliates. I had a nice affiliate, Kadabra's Palace who was hosted by Pikamon.com. He was kind enough to make me a new button, since mine wasn't very good.
I was on the verge of giving my site a new layout, when a disaster struck. I was going about my usual online routine of checking my email when I got the email that changed my site forever. Hypermart said that because of my UBB, which I had got for free from a friend of mine, they had deleted my site because it violated the terms that I had agreed to when I joined. I wasn't alone, as my affiliate Poke Lodge was deleted also. Normally, it wouldn't be that bad since I could just find a new host and reupload my site. The only problem with that was that I didn't expect my site to get deleted, so I didn't have a backup copy.
I thought about phoning Hypermart and trying to get my files back, but I gave up, since I didn't want to get in legal trouble over my web site. I thought of giving up, but I loved my site so much I decided to rebuild everything, but this time even better! Luckily some of my files were in the Temporary Internet Files like my layout, so I started rebuilding my site from scratch. I did learn a lesson though; to always keep a backup copy of your site, since anything can happen and all your hard work can dissapear in an instant.
3. Virtual Avenue
It took awhile, but I found a new host in Virtual Avenue. I managed to totally rebuild my site even better than before. I remember it took me about a week; everyday when I got home I would work unrelentlessly for at least 6 hours. Now that my site was up and running, the only problem was that I had lost all my visitors and I had no way of forwarding them to my new URL. I tried to register again my Hypermart account, but it wouldn't let me, so I decided that if my site was good, the visitors would come eventually.
One day I decided to download AOL Instant Messenger (AIM), since all the other webmasters were using it to converse. That's when I was introduced to the world of online chatting. I thought it was so cool that I could talk to other people who liked Pokemon and even the fans on my site!
So now that I had AIM, my next step was big. I decided to buy my very first domain name. Previously I had used www.theapcc.com, which I got for free at Namezero, but when a year expired, Namezero took over the domain and I lost a ton of visitors. The only problem with buying a domain name online was that my parents didn't like using their credit card online and I can't blame them. Eventually I convinced my stepmother to let me buy it with her credit card and so I had my very first domain name, www.the-apcc.com.
By the way, the reason why I chose www.the-apcc.com was because www.apcc.com was taken, so I decided to shorten the name of my site and add "the" to the beginning of it. So now instead of Alakazam's Pokemon Cheats and Codes, my site was simply known as The APCC. With my new domain name, I had another hurdle to climb, I needed to find a new host.
4. Sakura Star
I applied for hosting at a few Pokemon sites like the UPNetwork and Bulbagarden, but I didn't even get a response. Then I applied at a Card Captor site called Sakura Star. I was thrilled when I got accepted, but that feeling of joy would only last a few moments because tons of headaches were ahead.
When I finally uploaded my site to the Sakura Star server, I tried to contact the webmaster to ask them about if I was allowed to host any sub-domains, but he ignored me. I asked him about opening an e-mail service with Everyone.net for my visitors, but he ignored me again. Then I found out from a friend of a friend of mine that Sakura Star was moving servers. My reaction was anger, since my host had ignored me for all this time and didn't have the decency to tell me that we were moving. The whole time I was hosted, he didn't even acknowledge my site as a hostee with a link. I emailed my host to ask him what the deal was. He didn't respond until Sakura Star had already moved servers.
When finally I got an email, but it wasn't the news I was looking for. The webmaster of Sakura Star said that he couldn't host domain names anymore on the new server, so I had to find another host. "Great!" I thought because my site was now not online anymore and there weren't very many free hosts around that would accept a site without seeing it first.
5. Poke Sky
So now with no host, I applied at various Pokemon sites, including Poke Sky, a site that I was affiliated with when they were known as Blastoise Lake on Zapchu. I got a response from the webmaster of Poke Sky and he said that he had to talk to his host Jiggly, the webmaster of PPN. After a lengthy discussion, Jiggly finally agreed to host my site and so I moved onto Poke Sky.
Everything was going fine until one day when I found out that Poke Sky was going to be hosted by Poke Webmasters. I didn't want to move since I was tired of moving hosts and reinstalling Newspro, plus I liked PPN, so I decided to stay with PPN and leave Poke Sky. I wanted to tell the webmaster of Poke Sky my decision, but he was on vacation.6. PP-Network
When the webmaster of Poke Sky got from vacaction a few weeks later I told him that I was staying with PPN, which made him angry. I asked him if we could be affiliates so we could still be connected, but he said that my site sucked and blocked me on AIM. Life with PPN was a lot better and I started getting lots of people applying for hosting. I finally got my first hostee, Icy Anime and oddly enough they lived in the same city as me. That didn't last long, since PPN deleted them for having over 100MB's of MP3 files, which I can't blame him for doing.
My layout was getting old, so the webmaster of Johto Legends made me my favorite one yet, the one I have been using for over 2 years now. I want to get some new hostees, so I emailed my host, but he either didn't respond and was hard to talk to on AIM, always leaving for long amounts of time between responses. I got tired of being ignored, so I wrote him an email asking him why he had lied to me. Instead of simply responding, he said that I was ungrateful and said that I had to find a new host, since my site would be deleted in 2 weeks.
7. Cinnabar Gym
Again it was crunch time and I had to find a host quickly, but luckily I found Cinnabar Gym, one of my affliates who was accepting hostees. My stay was short at Cinnabar Gym, since the server had a lot of problems with downtime and it was really slow. Eventually, my host moved without telling me and didn't even give me time download a backup copy of my site! She said that I could use the Internet Archives to retrieve everything, but there wasn't an updated version of my site, so I ended up losing some new content that I had create while I was on her server, which ticked me off.
8. The Unknown Dungeon
At my latest host the Unknown Dungeon (hosted by another PPN) my site was gettting record visitors each day. My host along with Poke Safari, PPN and my site decided to open up something known as the Poke Community, a message board where all Pokemon fans could gather and post. We all went together on it, since we all had message boards on our own, which didn't do very well and failed. Originally the Poke Community was on the Unknown Dungeon web site, but then it got its own domain name due to its overwhelming popularity. It was a big hit and we got over a thousand members.
My host's host PPN had converted his site to PHP, since SSI was out of date. I asked a few people about how it worked and when I understood the basics of how it worked, I switched my site from SSI to PHP. It took a few nights, but after everything was change, my site looked better than ever.
That wouldn't last, since my host was having problems and my site was always going down. My interest in Pokemon was also starting to fade. Then I found out that my host had decided to not renew his account with PPN, so my site simply went down around March 2003 and dissapeared off of the Internet without any proper goodbye. I did however post a petition to get people to sign and have the Pokemon anime cancelled. I also got people to send me responses of why they thought I should keep my site open.
9. Closed Down
For a few months I took a break from my web site and enjoyed just reading other web sites and posting at various message boards, including Zapchu's Evolution Boards. What I didn't enjoy however was the Poke Community. When my site was closed down I got kicked out of it and banned for voicing my opinion on numerous subjects. I always vowed to create my own message board that wasn't a dictatorship like the Poke Community where you could say whatever you want.
I started to get interesting back in owning my own web site, so I started to make one of WWE, since it was my number one interest at the time. I spend a couple days before giving up and then deciding to make my own web site on Gadget and the Gadgetinis. Instead of doing that though, I managed the TV Tome page for Train 48 since I didn't really have enough information to make a web page about it.
10. Ice Shadow Network
One day my friend Will, the former webmaster of Poke Lodge contacted me and said that he was going to open up a hosting site called the Ice Shadow Network and get his own server. He asked me if I was interested in reopening my site and being hosted by him. I thought, "what the heck?" and so The APCC was back alive after a 5 month hiatus. I had to update a ton of content since a lot happened in the world of Pokemon while I was away. I also had to reinstall Coranto and fix a few PHP errors I was having.
After a few weeks, my visitors were starting to come back. This was when I found out how expensive hosting could be. Before I was hosted by the Ice Shadow Network, I didn't really think space and bandwidth matter since it had never been an issue with all my former hosts. I would just upload anything I wanted, except for media files. My site was using up a lot of bandwidth; over the 25GB a month limit that BlueWho.com allowed. Will had to upgrade the hosting package twice because of my site. The hosting plan wasn't suposed to be just for my site, so I decided to move to a new host.
I asked around for the best bargain hosts that gave you a lot of space for a good deal. I eventually found one that I could afford if I added banner ads. It had enough bandwidth, so that I wouldn't have to worry about exceeding every again. Now I have to rely on banner ads to be able to pay for my site. On the bright side though, I'm finally my own man and I don't have to report to anyone.
12. Closed Down Again
After graduating from high school in May 2003, I took a year break before I went to college in May 2004. During that year off I had lots of time to work on my website; however, when I started college my time was very limited. On top of that I worked over 20 hours part time a week; I had no choice, but to close my site down.
13. Domain Name Stolen
When I finally had some time, I decided to reopen my site. I wanted to open it so that I could sell it so I could get money for school books because money was really tight around the house. Someone called toisupprt said he would buy my domain name for $200; however, when I transfered the domain name he refused to pay me and sold my domain name to someone else for $200. I was devistated because my domain name was how I got all of my visitors to my site.
I tried to get my domain name back, but the only way was to go to court and spend thousands of dollars in legal fees, which I couldn't afford. I decided to email the new owner and try to get him to negociate a deal with me for the return of my domain name. At first he seemed reasonable and allowed me to use my domain name for my site, but when my site wasn't making the kind of money he wanted, so he shut down The APCC for good. Without a domain name I gave up and pretty much forgot about my site.
In May 2005 I realized something was missing from my life. I thought back to how much fun I had with my website and how much it teached me so much. I realized I missed having that excitement and interaction with the fans of my site. The only problem was coming up with a new name for my site. The APCC wasn't good because visitors would always call it The APPC instead and I would lose tons of hits. So my friend Bullados (TCG master) helped me come up with the name of PokeZam for my website by combining Pokemon and my favorite Pokemon Alakazam. Tiegeodemon was also kind enough to create a banner for my site. This is where I am right now; hopefully everything will work out for the best because a lot still needs done.