Hugi Magazine #33: MP3 Power

Hugi #33 header graphic

Interview styles changing with time (By Rumrunner/Void)

I've noticed that interview styles have changed with time. Let's go some years back and look how interviews used to look at the times of the early Stolen Data diskmag, RAW or other diskmags from the same time.

The introduction to the interviewee was there back then as well, just as it is now. The interviewer usually asked some questions about who the interviewee was, which group he was in and what function he had.

The endpart of the interview also was much like it is today, usually the interviewee gets the chance to send greetings, tell people what upcoming productions from his group to look out for and similar.

What's different is the main questions. One typical topic of the better days (read late 80's to early 90's) was related to a production the group had released. There are several examples here, for instance the interviews with Andromeda coders (I think it was Mr Hyde who answerred the questions) and with Lone Starr/Spaceballs after D.O.S and State Of The Art was released. This particular interview I'm thinking about came from RAW, and had a series of questions connected to what they thought about each other's and their own productions. Of course, in most questions, each of the interviewees were most enthusiastic about their own production, just like people were in those days. It seems that most of the pride of those days are gone today. The first difference is hereby noticed. Instead of promoting your own production in every way, people seem to find it easier to also enjoy other people's productions at the cost of one's own.

This indicates both a bad and a good tendency in the scene today. It is of course nice to be able to enjoy others groups' productions even if that means realising it's better than your own. It might even be inspiring, and lead you on to new and better products yourself. The bad side is that I strongly suspect that people now in many cases would rather join the group with the best productions instead of bringing their own, perhaps lesser known, group up to the same level. With the lost pride, I also fear that less interest in competing about the best demos will occur.

Over to difference number two. You almost never saw an interview in the old days where people were interviewed for something they had done way back in the past. This has become rather common today, and we can read the old adventures of our heroes of the past. I think one of the first interviews I remember seeing in this genre was called "The Hunt for Tec" or something similar, where Tec/Cryptoburners told about his coding, mostly about the vectorroutine which made him famous. There are also other interviews in this category of sceners with other purposes. One example I can quickly think of is the interview I read some time back (I don't remember which mag it was is) where Coma spoke about his past as a scene musician and the ftp server he now runs, hosting loads of modules from both wellknown and unknown people. I find this quite profitable for the scene, making it known where you can find inspiration for own work and of course also bring nostalgia to old sceners.

The different kinds of people interviewed is also quite interesting. In some of the earliest interviews I've read, it's mostly swappers who are interviewed. Among others, I remember an interview with a swapper of the legendary group Crusaders. He told about his work, how many contacts he had, and even answered quite strange questions like which programs he used, to which the reply was Crusaders' own Swappit, Diskmaster, Xcopy and so on. These kinds of interviews disappeared quite quickly, in favour of interviews where the interviewee got questions of a kind where a bigger audience was interested in the answers. At the same time, it seems that some of the swappers themselves turned to become article writers. Some of the explanation for this might be that certain mags, like Grapevine from LSD, offered a free advert for everybody who wrote an article for the mag. In any case, most of them turned out as better article writers than interview objects, and many a swapper has written interesting articles throughout the days.

Now, can we predict anything about how the future interviews will look? I of course assume that the scene will survive, people started predicting its death long ago in the eigthies and it's still alive. Complaining about a scene dying seems to be something people do at times when they're out of motivation to do appreciated work, and thus, I stopped listening to it a long time ago.

Well, I think that the trend of interviewing old sceners will continue. I also strongly suspect that new people entering the scene will quickly become popular interview objects. What I (sadly) suspect though, is that the interviews of the future will be in a more web-friendly form than we have seen so far. Sadly, mags seems to get released more and more seldom, and as everybody know, the web isn't the right place for long articles like a diskmag. In any case, I suspect there will be quite a few interesting interviews to read in the next years.

Oh, and while on the topic, the next issue of Saxonia will contain a couple of articles as well. So there, I have just put an illegal ad in this mag, hehe.