DATE: 15/07/2016

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fanzines in small editions created by me


All those fanzines are experiencing a second life by placing most of the content online for free
The punk subculture spearheaded a surge of my interest in fanzines as a countercultural alternative to established print media. 

As professional printing technology progressed, so did the technology of fanzines. Early fanzines were hand-drafted or typed on a manual typewriter and printed using primitive reproduction techniques. Only a very small number of copies could be made at a time, so circulation was extremely limited. The use of new machines enabled greater press runs, and the photocopier increased the speed and ease of publishing once more. 
Today, thanks to the advent of desktop publishing and self-publication, there is often little difference between the appearance of a fanzine and a professional magazine.

People are fed up with social networks and want to have something they can hold in their hands. There’s a whole generation that have grown up reading information on the net, and they see fanzines as something different and exciting. Even though fanzines can’t beat the immediacy of the net, they can offer far more depth. People pay more attention to things when they’re printed. There’s a growth of the DIY craft scene last few years and it could be interpreted as a reaction against technology and digitalisation. But the internet, rather than competing with the fanzine world, has been instrumental to its resurgence. You can promote things directly using sites such as Facebook or Instagram. Individual fanzines are harnessing the power of the net, too. Traditional outlets such as independent record and book shops may be in decline, but anyone with a webpage, blog or social network’s profile can add a PayPal button and sell their wares to the world, while social-networking sites also make promotion for free.

In addition, the specific social conditions that gave rise to the golden era of fanzines are back on the table. One of the things with the Eighties is the economic recession. There were people squatting, putting on gigs and making fanzines because there was no work and they had time on their hands. As well as unemployment and boredom, the feelings of hostility and isolation that led to punk. You felt like the whole world was against you but that sense of alienation, that feeling of aggression against you, makes you stronger and it makes you more creative. With a sense of anger simmering again, as people are faced with economic and environmental crises not of their doing, perhaps these growing feelings of isolation and aggression are bringing with them another burst of creativity. 
The current wave of fanzines / graphzines / risozines / webzines / prozines / whatever, will prove to be the most significant documents we have of this turbulent period in time.