Where The Scene Spirit Has Gone
By EP / CosmiK
The scene is something socially interesting: In front of yourself, you guys with one common source of interest: computer science. But hey, what's cool, is that we can meet each other to do something together. It's better to meet that just exchange emails. You have a lot of things to share: different weather, different type of meals, different culture, different girls, different boys, well - really interesting stuff. And when it comes to demos, and scene stuff, you surely have also great tools to do demo related activities like painting, composing, coding, and so... Trying and succeeding to be more organised is also something we really need in the scene to improve the spirit: time saved is important for everybody. Why are so many project abandoned? Why does the Net contain so many programs doing the same things? The answer to all of this is simple! Because nobody can browse the whole net to find what others have done and have expressed in another language: the best painting program is perhaps Polish, sadly I don't know a word of this language so I don't know that this program exists. In other words, what we need in the scene and in computers in general is something to avoid multiple similar projects to be built in parallel without awareness of each other. We also need a site with tools to code, to paint, to compose because I have seen so many sites with productions but with nothing to build good demos, and that's also really important: if you want to create something, you need to get tools to do so. Another essential thing to get is moral support and the opportunity to interview demomakers in order to learn how they do this and this. We need communication. Perhaps it might be a good idea if scroll-texts appeared in demos again.
The scene spirit has gone because, just like me, a lot of sceners have different things to do in life; the appearance of the entity known as money in their universe has also changed a lot of things: with money you can buy a car, buy this, buy that, you have what's called buying power - in fact it's nothing :) But money is a source of the problems, if there is any problem concerning scene spirit. In fact in our capitalist system, everything is about money: if you have a lot of money, you have time for you to do what you want, you have money that permits you to pay others to do things for you, and while they do them, you can do other things like talking with girls, taking care of your wife(s) and children, travelling... well, money is a way to get more free time and a higher social rank. So people with money can show off. When there is money, the spirit disappears, and interest replaces it.
Another source of the fading disappearance of the scene spirit is coming from the machine we use today: built primarily for business, they are today used for business too, and even playing video games is considered a kind of business. So as we are in front of these machines all the time, their competitive spirit changes our spirit too. We imitate them and we compute a lot to make more money, to spend less time, well - to be competitive.
Time is something really important for a lot of guys now and as we are closer to an age of thirty years than twenty, we also dream of a family. There are priorities like getting a well paid job, a lot of diplomas to get a better paid job, to have a better social rank,... And as the active life is also competitive, we regard time as a precious thing not to spend with unpaid or uninteresting activities. So certainly the scene is considered by some of us an activity that is not interesting enough.
But I'm sure one of the source of a lot of the scene spirit problems is the Internet and emails: Years ago, getting into the scene was a hazard, a present, and communication with talented and, in fact, real sceners was rare. Nowadays, using the Internet, everybody can easily contact a lot of people and in fact is able to write absolutely bullshit without thinking about the consequences before. That certainly is the case of the guys (in fact "lamers" or people who have not been introduced to the scene spirit) who have got enough nerves to contact demomakers and tell them: 'your stuff is shit, you have to change this and this' although they don't even own these products (since they have been created by others, and they can be freely copied).
This is something also in direct relationship with the US products you can see at movies and TV: the lack of respect, the loss of values, slang and force appear in all of them. The loss of spirit is something connected with the capitalistic model of economy: when a client is not pleased by a product he will firstly tell the salesman or the producer that he is not happy with it and secondly he won't buy this product anymore. Newcomers to the scene are like customers: they get demos and tell demomakers: "Your stuff doesn't satisfy me." But demos are art, they aren't done for money, they are for people who can appreciate them. Demos are something you can't understand unless you have coded or made them in another way yourself. Demos are like classical music: you can appreciate it if you don't know how it is made or how it is built. So for having a better scene spirit we have to explain and show how demos are built.
This is something also in direct relationship with the TV: people are in front of the screen and watch what others and politics have chosen to show us. This is propaganda: that means people are brainwashed and can't understand how beautiful a demo is just because they don't have enough spirit to do so. That means people aren't educated to art: interesting broadcasts are late at TV and for example here in France, only young people know how to record them on a VHS / DVD recorder.
But to keep the scene alive, we also have to protect it from the masses: they aren't ready for this and will probably never be to. Masses are not subtle. We are nowadays in an era which is exactly the opposite as the anicent Egyptian era: pyramids are still up, but 5-year-old computers aren't :) That means we are in an era of consumption and quantity while the Egyptians were in an era of creation and quality. Everything nowadays is built to stay for 5 years and then get broken in order to let the industry produce and the salesman sell you something else. In the age of the Pharao, everything was done to stay for a life time or more. The scene is consumed like anything else. In the Egyptian era, only engineers understood why their pyramids where so great and so protected. Demomakers avoid becoming like the Egyptians engineers: Egyptian engineers were either killed and intered with Pharaos in the pyramids or their tongue and hands were cut to avoid them to tell thieves how to steal the Pharao's treasures. Demomakers don't die of debugging demos nor talking using emails till your death!!! In the Pharao's epoch, there was religion; nowadays, sciences and reason have replaced these: there is no more mysticism, nor philosophy, nor metaphysics. People who can't understand a thing use force to get what they want; George Bush with his last war was an example. "It's easy to criticize but art is difficult" (Destouches). So demomakers don't try to convince or to talk with annoying people not educated in scene spirit: simply ban them from your mailbox using a filter. You don't have time to do everything, you have to make choices.
Something else is responsible for the loss of spirit: loss of body health. We spend too much time sitting and that's bad for our health and our body. As you should know: "a healthy mind (ought to live) in a healthy body." People have nothing to do so they write emails full of bad thoughts.
This is also the result of seeing absolutely everything and especially nothing really interesting and challenging for the mind on TV: sceners get filled with boredom, and so they start to eat and drink alcohol for example. Alcohol is bad for your health, there is millions of alcoholic people to prove this. Why not releasing a demo showing the alcohol flow in your body and the effect it has on your organs? Guys, boredom is everywhere in our lives and this is why so many people drink, smoke and even take drugs: the devil finds work for idle hands.
The loss of imagination is the result of the capitalistic organisation of firms: everything is done according to so many laws, so many constraints, so many numeric criteria, or in illegal conditions. So we always follow visible or invisible rules. We are always in stress: "The boss can tell you: this is not like I want it to be, I want this, if it appears again, I will dismiss you!" or: "The police can catch us", so we are in a "survive mode". And in this "mode" we can't dream, we have to do the right choices and we can't dream or coin something different than what is in the trend. It's simple: we behave like sheep or robots and so originality and imagination disappear. Too much competition make us follow methods used by other guys who have succeeded before. Try to be different, guys, stop drinking because you have seen others doing this, be yourself, be unique, stop miming the others, have your own ideas, your own rules, your own sources of creativity. Don't be a democoder because you have seen others being it, be yourself, be a man, be something else. Be an artist, don't be a machine. Machines rule our world enough, we don't need any more of them: cars, buses, planes, washing machines, computers, engines, printers, microwave ovens, hifi-chains, watches, phones & mobile phones, scanners, vending machines, money machines, scooters, boats, and so many others, we can't do anything without meeting them. Try to be human, to put the human element in your creation. Try also to get some culture from books instead of always taking your sources of inspiration from TV series or movies: these are compressed and simplified stories, which lack something interesting - psychological and intelligence profoundness.
Last but certainly the most important: We need different music styles, and we need great music in the scene. Music is something really important for mental health and for a great life in general:
La musique « impuissante à exprimer quoi que ce soit » institue « un ordre entre l'homme et le temps » (Stravinski).
The music "powerless to express anything" institutes "an order between the human being and time" (Stravinski).
« Si la musique nous est si chère, c'est qu'elle est la parole la plus profonde de l' âme » (R. Rolland).
"If music is so important for us, it's because it's the soul's deeper speech" (R. Rolland).
« De la musique avant toute chose » (Verlaine).
"Music before everything else" (Verlaine).
The Scene and people who call themselves "sceners" are like life: everything is relative, everything is changing, nothing is there for ever. Cultivate your mind and imagination with good stuff only. Good stuff is what makes you feel better, really better. Be real guys: just take a positive slope and become better.
EP / CosmiK
Comment from Adok: Now this has been what I'd call an excellent article.