Today we present you with some more Amiga disks from the collection of Thorion a.k.a. Smily, a German Amiga swapper and graphics artist who was active in the late 1980s and the early 1990s and whose letters we featured here some months ago. Full of stickers and scribbles, they remind us about the materiality of data exchange in the era before the mass availability of the internet. You can download the high-quality scans in our archive, or browse the pictures below.
By the way, if anyone wants to talk to me about Got Papers?, hand over some materials etc., the Evoke demoparty in August in Cologne/Germany would be a good place to do so!
After a break, we can present you another instalment of the vast New Balance Bochum / The Movers collection. This time it’s not just letters, but also party invitations, stickers, and other artefacts from the European 1980s C64 / Amiga cracking scene. There are highly interesting materials among these papers, such as shopping lists for originals in London; a contemporary memberlist of Elite (which was kept secret at the time); an early circular letter from Fairlight; Venlo party tickets; and much more… You can find detailed information on many of the documents, including details provided by Skylab, in the metadata sheets.
• Letter from Digital Marketing to betatesters of COP SHOCKER, 30 Jan 1989 [scan/metadata]
• Address sticker by Executor/Damage Inc., ~1987 [scan/metadata]
• Circular letter from Fairlight to all Amiga contacts, 1988 [scan/metadata]
• Letter (draft) from General Zoff/Elite (Germany) to Thor & Zeus/Teesside Cracking Service (UK), 1989 [scan/metadata]
• Holly/FAME disk cover, 1980s [scan/metadata]
• Letter from Laffen/Raw Deal Inc. (Norway) to Skylab/The Movers (Germany), 1987 [scan/metadata]
• List of London software shops, compiled by Skylab, ~1986 [scan/metadata]
• The Movers and the Stormtrooper Atari sticker sheet, 1987 [scan/metadata]
• Newsroom disk, 1980s [scan/metadata]
• Scouse Cracking Group disk protection cardboard, 1980s [scan/metadata]
• The Organized Crime Copyparty 1987 invitation [scan/metadata]
• The Orgasmatron Crew sticker sheet, 1987 [scan/metadata]
• Triad & Fairlight Copyparty 1987 invitation [scan/metadata]
• Venlo Party April 1989 ticket [scan/metadata]
• Venlo Party December 1991 ticket [scan/metadata]
• Letter from Zeke Wolf/Triad (Sweden) to Skylab/The Movers (Germany), 1987 [scan/metadata]
After a break, we are back with mixed 1990s demoparty materials, provided by Goat, Cupid, and leZone. More to come soon.
• Flag 1997 flyer [metadata]
• Remedy 1998 flyer [metadata]
• Symposium 1997 flyer [metadata]
• Symposium & Mekka 1997 flyer [metadata]
• The Party 1994 votedisk [metadata]
• The Party 1995 flyer [metadata]
• Tribute 1994 invitation brochure [metadata]
• Trilobite #1 by Nuance disk [metadata]
• unidentified C64 party flyer, 1996 [metadata]
• Zone 4 1998 invitation brochure [metadata]
Here is a mixed bag of demoscene objects, provided by Ile/Aardbei and iks/Titan. There is some unusual and remarkable stuff among these, such as a whole pile of Scene Event 2001 organiser badges, or the actual disk of a PC musicdisk. Enjoy!
• Bronx BBS sticker, 2005 [metadata]
• Maximum Overdose 2006 sticker [metadata]
• Novocaine group badge, 2001 [metadata]
• Plural Bazz disk, 1999 [metadata]
• Saturne 2005 invitation [metadata]
• Scene Event 2001 organiser badges [metadata]
• SF2K 2001 wristband [metadata]
• Summer Encounter 1999 badge [metadata]
• The Gathering 2001 ticket [metadata]
• Titan table reservation sheet, 2000s [metadata]
• Tristar business card, 2006 [metadata]
• T-shirt ad, 2006 [metadata]
Here is a mixed bag of demoparty-related scans accumulated over the past months. The materials range from 1992 to 2004 – a time span during which the demoscene evolved into what it is nowadays. Contributors for this update are Craid, Exocet, Goat, Ile, and Titus.
• Acrise & Excess Party 1996 invitation [metadata]
• Bizarre 1999 badge [metadata]
• Evoke 2000 votedisk [metadata]
• Scene Event 2002 badge [metadata]
• Scene Event 2004 badge [metadata]
• SILIConvention 1997 flyer [metadata]
• SILIConvention 1997 brochure [metadata]
• Sun’n’Fun Conference 1992 newspaper article [metadata]
• Sun’n’Fun Conference 1993 invitation [metadata]
• Symposium 1996 invitation [metadata]
• The Gathering 1996 invitation [metadata]
• The Party 2000 brochure [metadata]
• The Party 2000 prize money envelope [metadata]
• The Party 2000 writsband [metadata]
• TRSI Easter Conference 1992 invitation [metadata]
• Warf Meeting 2 (1997) invitation [metadata]
• X 1995 invitation [metadata]
Once again, we received some byproducts of hedning‘s C64 excavations: two stickers by the 1980s cracking group “Software of Sweden”, plus a number of C64 disk covers from the late 1980s to the mid-1990s. The disk sleeve by Case/Energy is a particular beauty – hand-drawn exclusively for his swapping partner and not just a photocopied semi-mass-product like most scene disk covers, and looking very “timeless” in a way.
• Software of Sweden sticker, ~1987-1989 [metadata]
• Software of Sweden sticker (personalised), ~1987-1989 [metadata]
• Disk sleeve by Case/Energy, 1992 [metadata]
• Crazy disk cover by Logoboy(?), 1990s [metadata]
• Extend disk cover by Electric, 1990s [metadata]
• Paragon disk cover by Hellraiser, ~1989-1991 [metadata]
• Rock’n Role rubber-stamped disk sleeve by T.O.XIC, 1991 [metadata]
• ROLE disk cover by Kirk, 1989 [metadata]
• “Puzzled” disk cover for Shape by Lord Red, 1994 [metadata]
• Trance disk cover by unknown, ~1989-1990 [metadata]
• Triad disk cover by Guran, 1992 [metadata]
3.5″ floppy disks, used with Amiga computers, were much sturdier than their 5.25″ predecessors from the C64 days. Thus, sceners could not only use them for a much longer time period, but also could subject them to a rougher handling. Disk covers were not needed anymore – instead, swappers left the marks directly on the casings of the disks. Like graffiti taggers, they fought for the best spot on the disk to leave their mark on a medium that was to pass through dozens of sceners’ hands. Even the tiniest unoccupied space was used to squeeze one’s tag onto the plastic surface.
Craid/Haujobb provided us with a small batch of 17 disks from his swapping days. They stem from the mid- to late-1990s. At that time, mail swapping was on the decline due to wide-spread modem usage and the victory march of the internet. Only in Poland, where the Amiga demoscene was vibrant, yet telephone/internet costs were high, mail swapping remained the main means for sceners to exchange data. Thus, the majority of the signatures and scribblings on the disks belong to Polish Amiga scene figures, but also some names of Amiga enthusiasts in Western Europe, like Ghandy, Kure4Cancer, and Craid himself, are seen. These disks are among the most recent remnants of a vibrant culture of digital filesharing networks contructed by analogue means of communication – which existed for nearly two decades, before all-digital “filesharing networks” became the top buzzword of a new age.
You can download the package with high-quality scans here.
The sheer amount of C64 disk covers presented here might give one the impression that only the C64 scene made an effort to decorate their data carriers. This would be a wrong impression, of course. The Amiga scene mailswapped floppy disks just the same, and made sure the recipients of the fresh wares were aware where the disks came from. However, since 3,5″ floppy disks were not floppy at all, and, most importantly, featured a shutter, Amiga users did not have to stick them into custom-made paper envelopes anymore. Instead, swappers (that is, the people whose job was to distribute the fresh releases by post as quickly as possible) decorated their disks with stickers, rubber stamps, and signatures. And since the 3,5″ disks were much more robust than their 5,25″ predecessors on the C64, they had a longer life span and could be circulated for a long time – accumulating countless stickers and scribblings until there was no space left on the casing.
While digitising some Amiga disks from Ziphoid‘s collection, Menace stumbled upon two interesting (and comparably pristine) disks he would like to share with us. First of all, there is a virgin disk with a custom-tailored sticker label from the legendary C64 and Amiga group Dual Crew, done by their Swedish swapper Snuskis in 1992 and sporting the group’s motto: [link] The other disk has been in circulation for a bit longer, carrying a rubber stamp from the none less legendary group Fairlight, and a sticker from another Swedish swapper and BBS operator Zike!: [link]
You can expect more materials from Menace’s excavations.
Edit: The blogpost originally stated that Snuskis was Finnish, while in reality he was, of course, Swedish.