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BIRTH OR REBIRTH? by Rad Man
January 26th, 1998

I can't quite put my finger on what inspired me to write this, but it's about time...

Every year I read atleast one article somewhere about how The ANSI Scene Is Dying, or how it just isn't as fun as it was. Every year! Each time it's the same article, same pessimistic message. Following it up would be another regurgitated response about how they have it all wrong. Typically, both would severely lack any factual content for support, consisting of no more than a bunch of poorly thought out opinions, all heavily biased towards the group they were in and who they were friends with at the time. :)
Does this really surprise anyone? I guess it shouldn't.

The ANSI scene has always operated in a sort of "knee-jerk" fashion. As if there were some sort of an automated mechanism which controlled it all. It's become almost too predictable. For instance, how many have been shammed by any of the following...
a) Someone hasn't been heard from in the past five days, rumor goes out that he died or quit the scene.
b) Group X's release is over a week late. It's dead.
c) Everyone from Group X has left and joined Group Y. You should too.
Anyone ever help perpetuate such a hoax, without first checking it's validity? Maybe it's just easier to sit there and and believe it, rather than dig down for the truth. It's a shame that we can disregard everything these people may have contributed in the past to US, members of the scene, and base our decisions solely on what we've heard in the last 24 hours. That's 0-day mentality.

Alot of people wonder why I'm still here, or what I think about the current state of the scene. In the past, I could have been the one writing one of those retorts to the garbage negativity. But here we are in the now. 1998. Now I read those articles about the ANSI scene going downhill and I think to myself,

" The ANSI scene I once knew is already dead. "

Speaking as a veteran going on ten years, many things in the scene have changed, both for better and for worse. I really wish that some of my most memorable and exciting experiences with the ANSI scene could be shared with you all, but I just can't do them justice in words. I know that alot of my decisions with my group have been misunderstood, and I accept that. No one else can see through my eyes, and maybe you're focusing too much on the last 24 hours. But to answer the question at hand, why am I still here if I believe the ANSI scene is dead?

Simple. It's the same reason -- exactly -- that I joined 10 years ago. Not to get warez, be elite, make money, talk on the computers, or any of that bullshit. Given, everyone is here for their own reason, but that's not what attracted me. The biggest reason you should be here is for the art itself. Everything else is just a frill. I continue to support the scenes because I have a deep appreciation for damn good art, and believe there may be an artist inside of me. People continue to seek good art, in all mediums. If you restrict yourself to one single artform in this everchanging digital world of ours, you could be holding yourself back.

There's something about the digital underground... The purity of it all. In the demo scene, coders were always years ahead of the commercial programmers. The tracking scene ran circles around mainstream computer composers. The PD folks could not even touch the raw talent of the ANSI scene. All of us; art, demo, and tracking people shared something in common. The ability to take a technical limitation and embrace it's boundaries, producing something magnificent, even claimed "impossible" in the past.

That is where the magic lies.

So if you've already have came to the same conclusion as I have, then you already know and understand that factors that have led this scene to it's downfall. But with every death there is a birth.

I'm not sure if what we're doing with ACiD could be considered a birth or a rebirth. The rules are very different now. It's art from our souls, not a comic store. It's free, not for sale. More expressive than ever, back to the purity that it began with. Original. We still share some similarities of the ACiD of the past... We're eager to get involved with other underground scenes, to work together and keep the wheels in motion. It's only been six months since we've made the switch and it's already proved worthwhile. Once again the impossible has been made possible. We've brought ourselves back to the basics. With a new medium and friends who are eager to learn and exchange ideas, while honing their skills to the perfection the underground has earned its reputation for. We've taken it to the next level, while going back to what is real.

The format may die, but the expressions and dreams will not.

This is why I'm still here.

RaD Man // ACiD Productions radman@acid.org // http://www.acid.org

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