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This journal is simply my opinion, meant to encourage and hopefully help others.

Comments will be hidden that are abusive, contain mature language, or incite drama.

I won't respond to any debate or long-winded comments.  It's not that I don't care, but I need to use my time working on art instead.





I've only been on dA for a little over a year now, but I've seen so much drama and hurtful comments on closed species.  Here are a few topics that effect me the most.


Closed Species are not Closed Features


This seems to be one of the biggest issues non-closed species owners have.  Let's say you came up with a new species called Muffin Cats.  They're simply muffins with kitty features, but you love them and want to keep them closed so you can make sure they stay to your original vision.  Then someone comes along and berates you for it.  They say, "you can't claim such a basic idea!  Anyone could've made this!"  But you never said no one else could make muffin based cats, you only said they couldn't make "Muffin Cats", your specific closed species.

A closed species isn't made of only features.  It's a combination of features, plus story, behavior, environment, their name, the unique artist's style, and so many other things.  It can be as basic or complex as you like.  That's why I personally have no problem claiming my "simple" species, and fully encourage everyone to be true to themselves!


Free the Species!


Just because something isn't illegal, doesn't mean it's morally right.  You might not be arrested for laughing at someone when they fall and break a leg, but it still makes you look like a jerk and hurts the other person's feelings.  The same thing applies to artistic ideas.  It might not be illegal for you to make species knock-offs, but it's still rude and hurtful.  If you feel this strongly about artist rights and promoting freedom of ideas, why not try more positive methods?

Instead of attacking others, maybe you could create your own awesome species, and make it completely free to use.  Or make a group called "Everyone's Species is Beautiful" and use it to showcase lesser known species.  Hatred only breeds more hatred.  Find a way to encourage and uplift others instead, and you'll find not only are people are more receptive of your message, but you'll feel happier and more peaceful as well.


Closed Species Limit Creativity


This is one of the silliest things I have ever heard!  As a matter of fact, quite the opposite is true.  Let's go back to Muffin Cats.  So you've made and posted the species, you're so proud of them, but uh oh!  You find out someone else created their own Muffin Cats a whole year before yours.  That means you'll have to give up on your species right?  Not at all!

Instead, you could think of new ways to reinvent your idea.  How about Batter Buddies?  They could be any baked good, any animal, which still means you can make your muffin based kittens!  But it's a whole new idea, and now you have something that stands apart from the other person's Muffin Cats, because your species might include Pancake Pups or Doughnut Dragons as well.  You could also take it a step further and invent a unique back story for them.

Maybe instead of being actual food based animals, they're tiny animal spirits who take on the appearance of food to test people.  At first glance they might look like delicious abandoned food, and greedy people will pick them up and try to eat them.  But kind hearted people will try to find out who lost their little cupcake, and when the animal spirit sees this, they reveal themselves to this person, and grant them one wish with their magical powers.  You don't have to stop there though!

How about behaviour?  Since Batter Buddies live their lives in secrecy, maybe they're extremely shy and run away from loud noises.  They could be born from magic flour baked in moonlight.  Maybe they eat raw cooking ingredients instead of regular food, and if you have a kitchen infestation, they leave their little crumbs everywhere.  Leaving kitchen crumbs leads to them making friends with a mouse based species.  Then maybe they are enemies with a large cat based species; there's nothing better than tying your species together and expanding their world.  There are so many ways to further your creations, it's actually a terrific thing that some ideas are already in use!  This challenges people to work past their first ideas that were so easy to come up with, and invent really amazing things!

Check out griffsnuff's design challenge for example.  She gave the theme of "canine + light" and look at how many unique designs there are all from the same idea!:

Awesome challenge time!SO  Iwant to prove that we are all actually able to be creative if we put our mind to it! this is a small experiment and I would absolutely love for you to participate!
HOW many different versions are we able to make? Is this myth about how something can only be one thing true? Lets combine all our artistic skills and minds and find out!
The rules
PART 1
:bulletgreen:design  a creature inspired by these words Canine + Lights
:bulletgreen: Make a simple refrence sheet explaining its important features (scroll to bottom for example)
:bulletgreen:Name it something
PART 2
:bulletpink: ENTRIES : http://griffsnuff.deviantart.com/favourites/63491680/DOG-and-LIGHT-challenge
 I will put everyone in a folder and link here, your CHALLENGE is to look at what is added, if you see something to similar to what you were going to do, then do your best to change it add/remove things/features, think outside the box, think endlessly, show everyone



Don't Assume You Know It All


"Closed species owners are just looking for a fast buck!"  This is one of the most untrue and hurtful things I've heard on this site.  For me, it's not that I'm a greedy thug stealing someone's lunch money.  But I really love inventing little creatures and their stories!  How much more awesome is it that I can build my passion into a occupation?  There's been those times that if I didn't have my art funds, the electricity might have been turned off, or I couldn't afford a new comforter to replace my old torn one.  I am so grateful and I thank God I'm blessed with the opportunity to do what I love.

"Closed species are a ripoff and a lie!"  When you make this assumption, it's not only hurting the species creators, but everyone who bought from them.  It's like calling them stupid just because they enjoy spending their money on something different than you.  Suppose you frequently go out to the movies.  Well, when you see a movie it only lasts for a couple hours right?  There's nothing you physically take away from the theater right?  What if someone said movies are a ripoff and a lie?  You might be offended.

"Simple closed species show how lazy you are!"  No one has to make super complicated species if they don't want to.  Some people, like myself, really enjoy simple designs.  I like basic things because they look cuter to me, and they're easier to replicate when I want to draw the new adopt I purchased.  I prefer short back stories rather than reading a novel's worth of info.  I admire the more complex, long legged creatures other artists make as well, but they're simply not my style.  It doesn't make me less of an artist, or mean that I'm lazy, we just have different interests.

Bottom line is, try not to assume things, when you're not that person, and you have no idea how they really think and feel.  Chances are they're just as caring and passionate as you are, they only have a different point of view.


Be Careful with Your Opinions


So you see a new species, and it really looks like another more well-known species.  Or maybe you think they're too simple, or too such and such for someone to claim as their own.  No matter the reason, giving advice where none was asked for is extremely rude, and can hurt others' feelings.

What if you baked a cake for your sibling's birthday, and you were really proud of it, but someone comes along and criticizes it because the icing colours don't go well together, or it looks too much like a cake the bakery down the street has, or they think the quality should be better?  And then they list all the things you need to do to become a "real" baker, when all you wanted to do was give a gift to someone you care about?  It may be your right to exercise your opinion, but when your "rights" hurt others, it's never the right thing to do.

I'm always reminded of what my mom says, "dipping and dapping and don't know what's happening."  Just as you didn't ask for anyone's opinion on your birthday cake, unless another artist actually asks, offering unsolicited advice can be offensive.  If you truly believe you can help the other artist, instead of posting publicly, try writing them a note.  But be sure you're only offering uplifting advice with ideas to improve, remember to mention the good things about their species as well.  If you believe they're infringing on another closed species, privately note the other owner instead, so they can make that assessment for themselves.  But really it's best to just not say anything at all.  If no one asks for your two cents just keep it to yourself, and then you can avoid the hurt feelings and ensuing drama.


Don't Let Yourself be Bullied


So many times I see artists let themselves be pressured into doing something they didn't originally want to do.  If you came up with species "A" and find out during the auction that it slightly resembles someone's species "B", you don't have to credit species "B" just because someone is harassing you.  How can you credit something as an "inspiration" when you never even saw it before?  Instead, if you find the resemblance is too close and causes an issue, develop your species a little more, come up with some awesome differences so they will stand apart from the other person's.  There's nothing wrong with coincidentally creating similar ideas to someone else, it happens to all of us.  There is nothing new, nothing truly original that hasn't been done in some facet before.  As a Christian, I always refer back to Ecclesiastes 1:9, "What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun."

You are never required to change just because of someone else's opinion.  People will pick on you for any reason they can think of, it's inevitable that someone will someday have an issue with you, no matter how kind you are.  So what if your species is too simple, too blue, too cute, too fat, etc.  If it makes you happy, stick with it, and just ignore them.  Just because there's ten million similar ideas out there in the world, none of those artists have the exact same experiences and personality as you, so they will never be able to make their artwork exactly like yours.  You and your art are unique and one of a kind, don't ever let anyone tell you otherwise.

And when you do find yourself under attack, the best approach is to not approach it all.  Ignore them, hide their comments, block them, and if they are abusive, report them to dA staff.  You aren't required to entertain rambling diatribe just to make the other person feel better.  Debating needlessly will not only drain your energy, it usually does nothing to change the other person's mind.  Normally bullies are just looking for a reaction, if you fail to give them that satisfaction, they should get bored and move along.


Learn to Forgive


Just because someone has insulted your artwork, purposely copied your ideas, or done all kinds of hurtful things to you, doesn't mean that they are any less deserving of love than you are.  Remember, just because you may not have done the same things they did, somewhere, somehow in your lifetime you too have done things that are wrong and hurt other people.  Try to have mercy and forgive them.

Now forgiving doesn't mean you have to forget, and become best buddies overnight.  Suppose you have a store, and your employee steals a few dollars.  You might forgive them and let them keep their job, but it would be very foolish to put them back on the register again.  Same concept here.  If you blocked someone for good reasons, don't feel pressured to unblock them and take more abuse because you want to be "forgiving".  Instead, forgiving and loving others simply means to treat them with respect.  You don't need to make call-out journals, or go around spreading mean comments about them, it will only turn you into a bully as well.  Forgiving others isn't for their benefit, but it's for yours.  Forgiveness means you can let things go and live your life peacefully and happily, regardless of what others do.

And if you're someone who may have accidentally hurt someone's feelings and they refuse to forgive you, don't beat yourself up about it.  It's their loss if they decide to hang onto their anger.  One mistake doesn't define your whole future.  Be happy and know that you are still a wonderful, unique person, and God loves you very much, no matter what.


Never Give Up


At the end of the day, it's only art.  Just because someone disliked your ice cream puppy today, doesn't mean the sun isn't rising tomorrow.  Don't let narrow minded comments ruin your happiness.  Everyone starts out unknown, and with nothing.  We all struggle and it takes many people years to finally achieve their success.  Love yourself, love your art, and no one can ever take that away from you.<3
Add a Comment:
 
:iconbubble-deer:
Bubble-Deer Featured By Owner May 3, 2015
All you say is the complete truth ; o ;
And I already want Batter Buddy
Reply
:icontinytlger:
Tinytlger Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2015   Digital Artist
Thank you so much, I`ve been developing a closed-species for a few weeks and I`m still working, but I got discouraged when I saw more popular species or how much people berated others for having a vast concept, thank you for this journal, it really inspired me~!
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:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner May 2, 2015
Good luck with it!!^^
Reply
:icontinytlger:
Tinytlger Featured By Owner May 2, 2015   Digital Artist
Thanks!
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:iconjamdii:
JamDii Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2015  Student General Artist
This is so inspiring! All this time I'd been afraid to put up species of my own, but thanks to you, I got some encouragement to continue on. Thank you!
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:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Apr 6, 2015
I'm so happy!  It's just art and it should be fun.^^
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:iconjamdii:
JamDii Featured By Owner Apr 6, 2015  Student General Artist
I agree!!! :)
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:iconhypervon:
HyperVon Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2015  Student Digital Artist
Thank you so sooo much for this!
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:icontruucey:
Truucey Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thing is, some species look near identical to existing ones. And species owners tend to be very defensive of their species. If someone makes something with all the traits of, say, a Yevren, save for maybe one, and you call them out on it? They and their fans will attack you nonstop. There's a line someone's species can cross to make it way too similar to an existing one, and I don't think that people should be able to get away with that. "They're not Yevrens! They're Nerveys! My own original species! NOT YEVRENS! Nerveys have a horn!" If a species is closed, nobody should be able to make ripoffs like that and get away with it. I think in those cases, it's right to call them out on it and get them to change it regardless of how much they like "their" species.
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:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2015
Of course, that's the difference between copying and coincidentally having something similar.  The more similar traits, especially on complex designs, the more likely I would believe that person was doing it intentionally.  But that's why I wrote a huge section on how to make yours unique again?x3  I wrote lots of parts against ripoffs, I'd never support such a thing and never once said so.  This is for all those ridiculous arguments where someone gets accused of stealing, like "I have a cat with a unicorn horn, you do too so you're a THIEF!!!" lol.  But "calling" people out, that's just in bad taste, will make the person doing it only more frustrated if the other person doesn't respond well, and I would lose respect for them too.  It's never right to attack people, for any reason.  Now if someone is causing a major disturbance that is actually illegal, like large amounts of art theft or charge back scamming, you should post a PSA and let everyone know about it so they can protect themselves.  But it should never be done with the mindset of calling someone out, I think those journals focus more on personal feelings with the intent of hurting them back, instead of the actual problem and how to solve it.  For instance, I intend on securing a trademark for myself as soon as I can afford to.  If someone was intentionally copying and stealing my business, I would pursue that legally, instead of trying to rile others up to harass them.  But if they were causing a mass amount of confusion for my supporters, I would post a short message that I'm aware of the problem and it will be addressed legally, so no worries guys.x3  Or if they might attack others and there is some way they can protect themselves, I would post a message for that.
Reply
:icondelusionallove:
DelusionalLove Featured By Owner Feb 23, 2015
It was very nice of you to write this. It gives a clear idea of basic respect and how to react in difficult situation. 
I especially liked the parts about the unsolicited advice, forgiving, and not letting yourself get bullied.
- Just because you can say it doesn't mean you have to say it.
- Forgiving means respect, not allowing harm inflict upon you. 
- Believe in yourself and don't let bullies reach you.

I just really wanted to tell you that this journal was really helpful :>
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2015
Aww I'm really happy!!!
Reply
:iconsoulsplosion:
Soulsplosion Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015  Student Digital Artist
I love you.
Reply
:iconienidei:
IEnideI Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015
The problem here is that many don't accept advices, "this is my own style and I'll not change", even if there are many problems, so good comment with advices become bad comment from rude people, expecially about "closed species". I personally don't like the idea of this "closed species", if I have a similar idea I MUST have the possibility to do it without that a fan of muffin cats or what you prefer come and say to me that I've copied a closed specie that I discover in that moment.
If I start to use a specific tecnique or to draw something particular I've no rights to say "no one has to use/copy it".
This is not my problem since I don't draw species, so I don't care but when I see "closed species" for 800$ I think that people are getting mad.
Reply
:iconquinnbee-s:
Quinnbee-s Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for clearing up the resemblance thing, I was worried about some species I made! ^^
Reply
:iconkuroeko:
kuroeko Featured By Owner Edited Feb 7, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
This is super well written! I feel like this should be in every adopt group, I've had drama try to happen with me before but I just ignored it and it went away by itself. Hope lots of other people read this so they understand how to deal with things!
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:iconkevink214:
Kevink214 Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Too many words.
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:iconsilicogasa:
Silicogasa Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Nobody said you had to read it, or even click on it.
Reply
:iconshord89:
Shord89 Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Never Give Up

At the end of the day, it's only art.  Just because someone disliked your ice cream puppy today, doesn't mean the sun isn't rising tomorrow.  Don't let narrow minded comments ruin your happiness.  Everyone starts out unknown, and with nothing.  We all struggle and it takes many people years to finally achieve their success.  Love yourself, love your art, and no one can ever take that away from you.<3

YES You get me!

I work with my mouse no fancy gizmo I mean heck it's not even a wireless mouse dark ages >>
I have never let a comment get me down =3 I here all the time I can't draw, BULL You can to you just have not hit a level yet, if you can pick up a pen an put it to paper sign your name make a dot random line YOU CAN DRAW!

Skill's are learned over years not 1 night =D

Fight for what you want, one day you will have it. <3 
Reply
:iconelypsi:
Elypsi Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Very well said. :nod: I think the analogy of baking the cake for the birthday works very well.
Reply
:iconsophthespoh:
SophTheSpoh Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This is so well said Llama Emoji-21 (Speechless) [V1] respect level 93832759486789371283759 *^*7
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:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Aww thank you!
Reply
:iconzoetaylorarts:
ZoeTaylorArts Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Can I like...feature this masterpiece of a journal??
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2015
Sure, I'm probably missing some things so it's not that good, but thank you.^^
Reply
:icondiigii-doll:
Diigii-Doll Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I really like this!
The first time I made a species, I was bullied into terminating it because it had similar features to another "species" :<
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:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2015
Aww just keep trying!
Reply
:iconkiwicide:
Kiwicide Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This. So much.
Very well said, Sari. <3
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:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2015
Aww thank you.^^
Reply
:iconkiwicide:
Kiwicide Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
no problem~
Reply
:icon0okamiseishin:
0okamiseishin Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You pretty much summed up how I feel about it xD It's not hurting anyone so why be a jerk about it? People just like creating stuff and if it makes a bit of money then why not?

I actually have a species idea I'm working on I'm just not sure how many people would like it xD;
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Yesyesyes!  There's no reason to go all crazy on things, but on the other hand, I hope I am not encouraging those who abuse leniency and go around stealing stuff and don't try for originality.Dx  That's awesome, you should just post your ideas, don't worry about others, if you like them that's all that matters.  As long as you keep producing them, there's bound to be others who feel the same as you.
Reply
:icon0okamiseishin:
0okamiseishin Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yeah because what fun is it if you're just trying to copy someone elses idea? Everyone will know where it came from and if anything it'll be in bad taste.

Lol I should give it a shot as soon as I plan a bit more out of them x3
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:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Yes!  Awesome, please let me know when you do.^^
Reply
:icontesvp:
Tesvp Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015   Digital Artist
I believe your post is the most clear and precise one I've seen so far on this subject.
A lot of others didn't explain their messages clearly and came off as hypocritical and etc. xD

Thank you for making this post for everyone! It's really good!
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Aww thank you, glad you think so!
Reply
:icontesvp:
Tesvp Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015   Digital Artist
You're  welcome ^^
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:icontinylaughs:
tinylaughs Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015
*applause*

I have seen so much drama unfolding, and read so many posts and journals trying to address it. It has been getting me down, honestly. But then I read this. Your positivity and kindness really shines!

I hope the species community calms down and focuses some of this wild energy on what we all really want: beautiful, fun, creative art and characters and stories.
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Thank you, glad you feel it's supportive!  I want to see more pretty art too.^^
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:iconmonochromera:
monochromera Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015
this is absolutely beautiful <3
thank you for writing this, and for being so smart and tolerant *happy sobs*
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Thank you!!!!
Reply
:iconomop:
omop Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Student Digital Artist
Thanks for this
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:iconunluckyxse7en:
UnluckyxSe7en Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Student General Artist
oh wow - I knew that closed species concept had some stigma attached to them, but I didn't realize it was this bad!! I know for the longest time I had avoided closed species myself, but for none of these reasons so much as I never felt like I had money to spend on it, personally. But I never judged others for it, or for making them, and even today I'm happy with the fluffbit I purchased from you. 

That said, I think you did a good job on presenting compelling arguments to these issues, and I hope that the people who read this will broaden their minds just enough to accept and let live when others get involved in the creation of closed species.
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:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015
Thank you!  Species and adopts are really fun though, those with issues make up a very tiny percentage.x3
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:iconunluckyxse7en:
UnluckyxSe7en Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015  Student General Artist
Ah, that's a relief. It sounds though like sometimes some of that tiny percentage make it into a real mountain-out-of-a-molehill deal. x3 That was more what surprised me.
Reply
:iconmischievousraven:
MischievousRaven Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Beautifully written and inclusive of so many aspects pertaining to closed species! Thank you for writing this. ^_^ Keep up the fantastic work; thanks for being a positive light here in the dA community!
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2015
Thank you!!!
Reply
:iconpastrypuffs:
PastryPuffs Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
 I learned a lot from what you have said above, not just in species but mostly in life, you are very wise!
If i knew the first person who created the closed species I would ponch them on their face >_>* they caused unneeded dramas in da world
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015
Aww thank you, but all my wisdom comes from the Bible, I'm pretty foolish left to my own devices.xD

Lol nah, I think they did a great thing.  As people we all have our faults, so even if there wasn't an issue with species, someone would've had an issue with something else.
Reply
:iconmorgiee:
morgiee Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Sarilain! My goodness your point of view is wonderful QwQ)/ I'm so glad I read it, because I felt the same exact way when it came to this issue

Thank you so much for posting this! You're amazing!
Reply
:iconsarilain:
Sarilain Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2015
Thank you so much, I'm really happy I could help encourage others.
Reply
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