Propaganda 25 ch09

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        |MEET THE PRESS        |

The scene media has profound power to be
a positive influence. It has the chance
to tie the link between the consumer
and the producer, but also the other
way around. It represents the voice of
the scene, and does therefore deserve
to be heard.

MEET THE PRESS is dedicated to the
people behind the magazines, who are
responsible for the scene being one,
a family - together.

           M       T   P

It has become somewhat of a pleasurable
routine of mine to check in on my
American friends, the creators behind
DRIVEN, once in a while.

I have always had great affection for
the ntsc scene, which probably is due
to my history of calling the American
boards in the past. Those days the
cracking/fixing part of the NTSC scene
ran with most of the attention, but
today the demo scene is pretty much all
that is left to keep the home of our
beloved computer alive and kicking in
the name of the C64 - and the scene.

DRIVEN is to me a great example of the
one true reason why I love the magazine
business, as it was created in an
attempt to motivate the scene. Working
hard to do just that, they have
successfully injected new energy into
the old NTSC demo scene, and as a
result, we see a more lively NTSC demo

In addition, they have also managed to
bring more attention to a part of the
scene, that has been starving for
attention since the dawn of time.

I met up with two of the front figures
spoke about the popular American
magazine, that has just released its
24th edition to the world.



decided to answer all questions together
as though they were one voice.
(D) Welcome COOLHAND and ELWIX. Thank
    you both for granting us this

(A) No problem! It was nice and friendly
    of PROPAGANDA to ask.

(D) Well, as you know, it is our
    business to ask questions, and
    luckily we work in a scene of
    helpful people - which is the reason
    why the scene is still going strong,

    if you ask me. Anyway, let me begin
    by commenting the great work you
    guys have done to keep the world
    informed on an otherwise unknown
    part of the world. You have most
    definitely brought the NTSC scene
    back as a part of the scene, and
    we all benefit from that.

(A) Thanks, and we certainly hope most
    people agree with you - while it is
    smaller and less active, the NTSC
    scene can still make a great
    contribution to the whole world
    demo scene, in our opinion. It is
    still "rebuilding" so the future
    should be even better for it, if we
    work hard to keep it alive and

             THE POPULARITY
             THE POPULARITY

(D) DRIVEN continues to amaze everyone.
    Although a small magazine compared
    to others, it is as stabile and
    reliable as ever. What is the reason
    for the success of DRIVEN, and do
    you find it has grown to become,
    what you had hoped in the starting

(A) Lets start with the second question
    first. My hope at the start was just
    to create some kind of regular
    support and driving force to get the
    NTSC demo scene back into some
    respectable activity and growing
    again. I set out to only cover the
    kind of outfit with something

    relatively new (a very flexible
    color proportional engine).

    But basically my primary desire was
    to just do something that might
    increase the size of the NTSC scene,
    both in terms of demos released and
    active sceners involved. getting
    people involved - that was a major
    goal for DRIVEN.

    Why is DRIVEN successful? Of course
    this begs the question of whether
    DRIVEN IS successfull.. We would
    like to think yes, but there is
    still much left to be done to keep
    the demo scene living and moving

    There were some decisions I made
    prior to the first issue that were
    clearly good; some were made with
    purpose, some were just lucky moves
    that in retrospect were good ideas
    but at the time did not seem of any
    importance. I wanted to do something
    interesting and somewhat different
    with the outfit, to give it some
    initial appeal (the color propor-
    tional as I mentioned); I decided
    to forgo the classic NTSC diskmag
    approach of full disk issues packed
    with submitted art, music, and
    demo pages as well as text -
    because I didn't want to have to
    reply on anyone but myself initially
    for material - otherwise the
    magazine would have bogged and
    slowed down; I wanted to release

    extremely regularly so hopefully by
    example the NTSC demo scene would
    follow and start pumping up the
    activity too.

    Lucky choices were made when I asked
    COOLHAND to help out on the first
    issue with an Internet oriented
    article. I ended up asking him to
    be the co-editor, and only because
    of this has DRIVEN lasted this far.

    It was also fortuitous that DRIVEN
    was single filed. At the time it
    was just logical to make it one
    filed for the smaller amount of
    material, but as it happens, I
    believe this is the reason DRIVEN
    managed to catch on so well in PAL
    lands - 1 file is so damn easy for

    swappers to copy and fit onto their
    swap disks. DRIVEN ended up being
    spread fairly well from what we
    can tell, with almost no
    intervention from us (our gratitude
    to all the swappers who spread
    DRIVEN in the early days as well as
    in the present!). Seeing this occur
    was why we devoted ourselves to also
    cover the PAL demo scene from about
    issue #7 onwards, and we've gotten
    excellent support from many PAL
    sceners submitting their work.

    But apart from the beginning our
    success is pretty simple. We try
    hard to deliver quality content; we
    we continually trying to involve all
    sceners in DRIVEN by asking for
    articles from almost anyone; we try

    not to repeat too much of the same
    "regular articles" and push hard for
    variety: we've covered the
    commercial scene to some extend;
    we don't engage in quarrels. We're
    here for the scene and not for the
    magazine, because what good would
    it do having ourselves trying to
    look like gods in front of an
    audience of 3? What we want is to
    be a small role in a giant active
    scene playing itself to an audience
    of thousands of interested demo

               THE STAFF
               THE STAFF

(D) Please tell us about the current
    status of DRIVEN, and describe the
    people behind it.

(A) As we answer these questions #24
    was just released. We had our
    longest break yet (3 months) over
    summer, but we're back on track to
    finish this year and kick off the
    next. People currently taking an
    active role in the mag: ELWIX,
    and EL BANDITOS.

    The first two of these are the main
    editors of course. The next two are
    contributing with their demo
    reviews, the next provides some news
    and commercial scene coverage, and

    the last 4 make up the legal
    release list helpers, tho school
    and other things kept them too busy

    We would like to find a dedicated
    PAL demoscener with a desire to take
    an active role in driven. In the
    past we've had great help from a
    few different PAL friends, but what
    we really need is someone to take on
    a role of PAL co-editor and really
    work on the PAL demo scene coverage
    with us. Someone with a level of
    control over the PAL content nearly
    equal to ELWIX and COOLHAND. This
    person should ideally be on the

    We're basically offering the chance
    to help shape the content and
    even to some extend the direction
    of driven, if this person would be
    willing to put in the same amount
    of work and effort as the current
    co-editors. (Any takers? Heh).

(D) JAZZCAT is a former member of the
    DRIVEN staff. What is your opinion
    of this extremely involved C64
    scener and his work for DRIVEN?

(A) JAZZCAT (if we recall right) had
    actually offered himself to help out
    with the magazine, which is quite
    cool. We accepted and he started
    supplying some demo scene news and
    2 or 3 articles over the course of
    a few issues. Lately his help

    dropped off as, we imagine, he is
    mostly focused back on his own
    machine. So we're in fact basically
    let him go off the staff, of course
    *not* on bad terms. Our impression
    of him is similar to all the staff
    who've helped with DRIVEN over its
    life, that is to say we really
    appreciate their help and support,
    and we'd be quite happy for them
    to come back and be more involved
    if they so desire. But anyway, our
    search for a PAL co-editor was
    mentioned before.

(D) A while back, COOLHAND revealed
    plans for driven to switch to an
    IFFL-type file format. As we know,
    this obviously never happened. What
    is the reason for this?

(A) After lots of struggling and getting
    opinions and trying to make up our
    minds, we finally decided driven
    cannot be made much better overall,
    currently, from being beigger. That
    sounds odd, but knowing the full
    picture: the time our lives allow
    us to work on each issue, the
    already mentioned advantages for us
    in being single filed, and the
    general feeling of most sceners we
    asked that driven was good as it
    is, we backed off from making any
    radical change in format.

    We currently get just about the
    perfect amount of articles submitted
    or written by ourselves every month
    or so to keep up regular releases
    (1-2 months apart) without getting

    too much backlog or running too low.
    DRIVEN issues contain essentially
    31O-33O blocks of equ-packed text.
    For now, once again considering the
    big picture, this feels "right" for
    us. In the future we might
    re-evaluate this - if activity in
    the scene keeps growing, if we take
    on additional reliable help, etc.
    And of course we welcome the scene's
    opinion on what they'd like to see!

(D) DRIVEN is a perfect example of a
    magazine acting as flag-bearer to
    boost a scene, that is sufferinng
    from lack of activity. How do you
    keep America and Canada interested
    in the C64?

(A) Interestingly, by just being what we
    are. To clarify, we don't go under
    the assumption that DRIVEN is the
    sole force keeping the NTSC scene
    alive; we are one of several
    "factors" helping to do that, others
    being the active demo groups
    themselves, CMD with their huge
    product lines and fine magazine,
    LOADSTAR, etc.

    DRIVEN offers a varied but
    consistent range of articles and
    information on many aspects of the
    C64. Editorials and articles on
    demo scene issues and timely reviews
    of new NTSC demo releases are key
    areas which driven maintains.

    The interest is there; as you say,
    driven is just a "flag-bearer" or
    central point of information to keep
    that interest focused on the demo
    scene, our main purpose for being.


(D) How do you maintain a critical tone
    towards the developments of the NTSC
    scene, when at the same time, you
    try to encourage optimism?

(A) Balanced reporting is probably the
    best way to describe our formula,
    both in our editorials and in our
    demo reviews. In the reviews, for
    instance, we do tend to emphasize
    (but not exaggerate) the positive

    values we see in a demo. But at the
    same time we try to offer
    constructive comments and
    suggestions as to how the demo
    being reviewed, and future releases,
    might be improved. Ragging or
    unproductive comparisons to other
    demos do not have a place in driven.
    Optimism is in the eyes of the
    beholder, or driven reader in this
    case. We may try to plan the seeds
    of optimism for those who read
    DRIVEN, but we do so by being honest
    and accurate. So far, many people
    have takenn those seeds and
    produced a fairly healthy and
    growing demo scene.


(D) What is the difference between the
    driven coverage of PAL activities
    and the coverage served by PAL
    magazines, if any?

(A) DRIVEN is focused primarily on the
    demo scene. We generally do not
    cover any news or events unless it
    is linked somehow with the demo
    scene. The expectations are
    occasional commercial scene articles
    and coverage of Internet related
    topics, though we see the latter as
    as clearly beneficial to the demo

    Of course, DRIVEN carries less text
    per issue than other magazines, but
    we try and make it up with regular
    releases. Due to the space limits
    we filter out some "plainer" news
    and leave the room for interviews,
    group stories, party results/reports
    and the PAL legal release list. In
    summary we try and get the most
    important PAL demo news out to the
    demo scene fast and accurately, and
    in our opinion we often accomplish
    this, but it's up to the PAL
    readers to be the real judge of our

    Finally, and obviously, we cover
    the NTSC scene to a high degree, as
    the fundamental purpose of the
    magazine is keeping the NTSC demo

    scene pushing forward. Our hope is
    by covering both the ntsc and pal
    demo scene, we will do three things:
    provide PAL readers with timely
    material directed straight to them
    at the same time as getting them
    interested and informed that there
    really is a demo scene in North
    America, and has been since the late
    8O's; get NTSC readers interested
    and informed about the overseas
    scene so they realize just how huge
    and active the worldwide C64 demo
    scene is; and to bridge these gaps
    between the demoscenes and hopefully
    start communicating and working
    together in whatever ways are
    possible and that will extend the
    life of the C64.

(D) What PAL magazines are available to
    the NTSC-market today - referring to
    the fixing problem, most PAL
    magazines have remained unsolved.

(A) Refer to DRIVEN #2O which had an
    article answering just this question
    in a little more detail... But
    generally a quick list from memory
    looks like: ADWARP, CONTRAST,
    and a couple others; they've all
    released issues normally working
    well enough in NTSC.

    The biggest trouble in NTSC when it
    comes to diskmags is *loaders*. So
    hopefully more PAL diskmags will
    start using known NTSC/PAL loaders -

    a lot of NTSC sceners are interested
    just as much in the PAL demo scene
    so it can only help you!

               THE FUTURE
               THE FUTURE

(D) Please let us in on the future plans
    of DRIVEN.

(A) We're currently running the second
    year of the "NTSC 4K Compo" with
    events in 4K demo, 4K art, and 4K
    music this time (*anyone* is welcome
    to enter, entries are judged on NTSC
    machines, deadline is December 11th,
    send your entries to COOLHAND or

    We'll release another issue this
    year and then hiatus for about 2
    months until January of 98. We're
    pretty happy with 1997, the scene
    was slower during summertime but
    recently got extremely active again.
    Several new guys got active and
    some old NTSC legends even returned.
    We hope 1998 keeps the trend of a
    growing, more active demo scene.
    What it means for DRIVEN is that we
    need to keep trying hard to push for
    quantity and quality demo releases,
    get new sceners involved, and set an
    example by keeping ourselves coming
    out regular as well. Expect another
    year of at least bimonthly issues.

    Future content should include a
    series of articles coveringng the

    history of diskmagazines in NTSC,
    increased interviews with NTSC and
    PAL demo sceners, improved quality
    of our PAL demo scene coverage (by
    finding a PAL co-editor, ummm, did
    we say that yet? heh), continued
    coverage of C64-and-Internet
    related topics, and maybe some cool
    surprises. We're going to work on
    the DRIVEN Homepage as well and try
    to make it a bigger central
    information/gathering place for
    demo scene freaks worldwide.

(D) Thank you both for taking part in
    this interview and keep up the
    great work as a positive media

(A) We thank you very much for asking
    us. Our final words to our readers
    can only be: just keep up the
    activity, keep up the quality, and
    help us keep building up the demo
    scene, both in NTSC and in PAL!

Contact DRIVEN with your comments,
ideas, suggestions, criticism, or
entries for the 4K Compo:

EMAIL  :           or

POSTAL : 22 Cottonwood Ct,
         Greencastle, IN 46135


Welcome to the obligatory magazine
reviews, which has always been a popular
part of meet the press.

I have made myself the owner of the
latest c64 magazines to have reached the
internet, and will now serve you my
humble opinion, on the experience of
reading them.

The point-system on which the magazines
are rated should be obvious once it
appears. They will appear after all of
the reviews. Hope they are taken as a
sign, that improvement is always a
possibility in the world. Remember that!

Well, blimey! Nitro is back on the
magascene stage with another edition,
and what a powerful return it was as
well. According to the editors, it took
them more than 6 months to put together
this edition, so that certainly puts a
lot of expectations on this comeback -
of sorts - issue.

NITRO is notorious for its lengthy
issues, usually taking up whole disks.
The main reason for this, was the
extensive none-scene related chapters,
which - according to the editors - were
best left cut out. I salute this
decision with a loud sounding cheer!

In addition to a renovated program of
the magazine, the editors behind nitro
also proclaimed the desire to release on
a more permanent - reliable, if you
will - basis. Another reason to salute
the creators with a thumbs up.

But the editors seemed to have tired of
quantity and therefore taken upon
themselves the challenge of creating a
more quality based magazine. Whether or
not they will be successful at this,
this review will draw a picture.

Now having covered the stories behind
the magazines, I will turn my attention
towards the edition at hand. The 24th
of its kind.

nitro is fairly well written. The
editorial consists of SENTINEL, H-BLOXX,
among others. They appear to have a
good head on their shoulders, and know
their way around the scene - or at least
enough to qualify for the gig as editor
of a much celebrated magazine.

The news coverage is more of a re-cap
on the major stories since the last
edition of NITRO, and considering its
been a long while since that date, it
certainly took its toll on the news
chapter. What a pity!

The charts were based on old sheets,
which has been laying on the editors
desk since the last edition as well.
That gave a picture of who was on top

of the scene over half a year ago - and
not a accurate picture of today's
popular names. This chapter was best
left out!

NITRO has not created any of its own
chapters. All are based on the ideas
and works of others, and therefore
leaves nitro with nothing but a
hardworking ideology. Not one chapter
is exclusive to NITRO!

Generally the 24th edition was quite a
boring edition with no real intelligent
reports, no scoops or interesting
subjects or thoughts to leave the
reader even a little satisfied. This is
not what the editors had in mind, when
they set out to do this issue - or at
least so I hope!

Ah, yes. Another edition of relax, one
of the oldest and most popular media
institutions in the scene - or so the
editor eagerly reminds us.

Very well, RELAX is an old magazine, but
age is not important, health is what
matters. That being said, I have to
admit, RELAX is showing no sign of old
age - unless it is in terms of routine
and experience, which more or less
oozes out of this fine magazine.

Editor of RELAX, RRR, is one of the most
gifted editors the scene has today. He
has a strong, well documented opinion

about the scene; a colourful vision of
the path he would like to see the scene
take - and on top of that, he masters
the queens English quite well, which
ought to be expected of all editors -
but sadly is not.

RELAX is RRR's baby. RELAX may have been
born by other parents, but lately it has
grown to become more or less a creation
of RRR. He is an experienced scener
with knowledge about most corners of the
scene, which is obvious and to the
benefit of the RELAX readers. To make a
long story short, I am of the opinion,
that RELAX is a definite top magazine.
It is written by top editors and
supported by top sceners. The news is
covered and edited in a professional
manor, while the material is collected

by reliable, trustworthy and respectable
sceners. Everything appears fine and
dandy on the surface.

Although RELAX has a lot of fine
features, and serves the sceners with a
qualified scene coverage, there seems to
be lacking something. I had difficulty
trying to pinpoint, what I was missing -
till I took another look at the program.
Relax does not master the art of
creating its own chapters - having taken
the easiest road, and borrowed the best
of others.

chapters, which were first founded by
THE PULSE MAGAZINE - in fact of the
same names. The demo reviews are a world
of demos invention. THE LOST FILES is

inspired off the old SATIRICA - which
is now known as THE SCENE SHOW, and I
could probably go on and on.

All right, there are no copyright laws
in the magazine industry on the C64 -
if there were, we would all be going to
jail - but I do think RELAX should find
ways to distance themselves from other
magazines by covering the scene in a
more unique way, instead of just trying
to beat its competitors in the same
events - or chapters if you will.

However, RELAX is top of the class when
it comes to getting the news and serving
the articles in an interesting and
attractive way. Perhaps RRR has decided
to spend his energy on the writing
process, instead of taking the magazine

into uncharted lands. The writing itself
is important, but it does not make a
magazine champion by itself - in my
humble opinion at least.

A full coverage of the latest scene
events, a list of the illegal and legal
releases, the various charts and a guide
to the internet is pretty much a full
program for a magazine - and will leave
any potential reader satisfied. In
addition RELAX serves a lot of opinions,
which makes for an interesting read,
although much of it hardly is of the
interest to the scene. Three chapters
called GAMES PEOPLE PLAY is basically
RRR defending RELAX against all its
competitors in the magazine industry.
I find that to be a gross misinterpre-
tation of what a top magazine should use

its resources on.

RRR is a bit stubborn, and he is willing
to walk the extra mile to get his
opinion across - which is certainly not
to the benefit of the reader. RELAX is
much too proud for its own good, and
hopefully this will decrease in volume
in the coming editions.

A magazine should not only be casting
light on itself, but instead on others!

        - In it for the money -

THE CREST is the best thing to have hit
the magazine industry this year, and
they have surprised us all. Following a
hefty debate about the name, they have
proven true to their goal of releasing
on a monthly basis - as the only mag

However, the scene has changed since the
days of THE PULSE MAGAZINE, and due to
the decreasing activity level, it must
be difficult for the editors to put
together an exciting edition every
month. And it shows!
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