There is a zine newsgroup called We Make Zines, and on it I suggested that we need to remember how important pioneers like Steve Jobs were to the desktop explosion, which in turn led to a golden age of zines, of which my zine Musea was a small part. That led to some lively discussion. Some said there were always zines or independent publications. But I suggested that period in time was a golden age of independent publications, a zine explosion. I summed up my point with this:
There was not the explosion of zines before that time, and there has not been since the internet . That technological time of copiers and desktop publishing was in between publishing the old way, and the prolific publishing we have with the internet. History of that golden age will show that it was a golden age of literature unmatched before or since.
This site (We Make Zines) is the remnants of that time. It was not just writing, it was the first golden age of writing, illustrating, book making, with certain zinester ideas and practices that were new to publishing. That specific type of publishing was never done before, and hasn’t been matched since with the same intensity and dedication. It’s like Impressionist painters. They arose at a certain time, peaked and then were gone, and art changed. Zines of this time were not books, they were something new. You can’t compare them to publishing before – because that was nothing like it, or publishing now because that was nothing like it. It was a rare golden age of art. Zines were very much a reaction to the technology of that specific window of time.