diskmags - the demo scene´s mouthpiece
Diskmags are beyond doubt the most important medium of the demo scene. Having developed since the 80´s as a means of electronic newscast, by now they have reached a high degree of professionality. Back then (when the internet as we know it now did not exist) distributed as disks, nowadays news and information are shared via mailbox systems and internet services. That´s why they are as much called E-mags as Diskmags.
Diskmags provide information about anything of interest for the demo scene subculture´s members: a calendar of events, fair- and party revisions, instructions and tutorials for programming as well as 3D graphics and soundtracks and, of course, the internet are the preferred topics, besides anything else that includes creative work on the computer. Main language is english - Diskmags apply to a large international community.
The importance of Diskmags for the maintenance of the demo scene cannot be overestimated: this is mainly where the discussion and overall communication of the scene take splace (apart from events like the demo parties). Diskmags represent and ensure a constant (re-)construction and revision of the scene´s appropiate rules and values concerning aesthetical as well as technological or ethical aspects.
As the format changed from disk to download there was a striking progression towards artistic and journalistic professionality. As much quality standard and content as operator convenience and handling of diskmags have reached a respectable grade. Nowadays, many programmers focus on a comfortable menu navigation which in many cases makes surfing E-mags with pretentious reports and background stories an interesting form of entertainment.
Responsible for the mags are specialised editorial groups, formed by scene members. Even though most diskmags still have to be downloaded from the relevant webpages, the diffusion of the internet as a different means of distribution has had an impact on the diskmag´s distribution. Some mags have completely adapted the online version, some backup their rather classical editions with an online version. The advantages of the web in this respect are obvious: a quicker exchange of information and updates and, most of all, a high number of interactive features.
However, concluding that the old-fashioned format of the diskmag is about to dissapear would be wrong - due to mags like „Generation“, „Scenetime“, „Hugi“, „Sunray 1999", "PAiN" or "Wildmag", a cult status has been reached. In the WWW, Scenet (www.scenet.de) presents a nice starting point to explore the world of demo scene´s news distribution, including disk- and onlinemags. You´ll also find a small selection of some major diskmags on digitalcraft´s link section.