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June 2000

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Greetings Constant (we hope) Reader:

   Welcome to the virgin issue of The Independent Reviews Site (IRS). I hope you like what you see. This column will be devoted to an editorial on what ever is bugging me at the moment. This month what was bugging me was the lack of good venues devoted to the review of books, cd's and films. There is no bite or no personality in reviews any more. I have designed this site with two issues in mind. First of all, I love the look and feel of a newspaper or magazine. I've tried to create a real looking web paper that you can open up and enjoy, and secondly the site has been designed to withstand the demands of a money dependent publishing industry. This way I can give the writers free range to express their opinions and ideas in their reviews as well as review material that they find interesting regardless or whether or not it makes it on any best seller lists.

   I have worked for print zines most of my adult life. First, writing reviews and then becoming a review editor over the course of time. I loved being able to give indy artist their due by getting word about their material out to the public; and I'll be honest, I also love trashing stuff I find to be bad. The problem with indy zines is that they need money to survive, money comes from advertisers, advertisers are generally the people who give you review material and somewhere along the line the zine must suck up or die out. Most of the zines I've worked for have died out.

   Enter my friends Brett and Jason, who design web sites for a living. I've been coordinating the review material for their site, 420.org, and as quid pro quo, they offered to design a web site of my making. An offer I couldn't refuse. (Of course now I'm going to be the media coordinator for their site till I'm 90). The use of the internet for reviewing books, cds & films allows a low cost high visibility, easy access way to present opinions. Idealistic? We'll see.

   That being said, I approached all my writer friends, many of whom work as paid writers, and found that they were more that willing to write for a publication that wanted them to tell the truth about the material they were reviewing. With this in mind, I encourage you to look through the staff bios before reading the reviews. All opinions are relative.

   That's about it. Please browse the site and let us know what you think. All opinions are also welcome.

Carlye Archibeque
IRS Editor


 


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