Fanzines: The DIY Revolution

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from The Mobtown Shank Review by Benn Ray
Okay - the fact that this book making my year end best-of list could be considered, by some, controversial is both astounding and ridiculous.

The issue is that, evidently, Triggs didn't get everyone's permission to take photographs of their zines and include them in this book, and some zinesters feel exploited by this. Of course, zinesters aren't exactly well-known for making sure they notify people before using their artwork, photos and text in their own zines. Plus, this book is more like a curated collection of zines. For zinesters to feel like they have to give their permission before a photo of their zine can be used in a book not only undermines what zinedom stands for, it reveals a profound lack of understanding about the way archival books like these work.

If you want to criticize something, criticize Triggs for being a tad too UK-heavy with her selections. Otherwise, Fanzines is a gorgeous - GORGEOUS, oversized yearbook of the zine world. It reinforces a rarely discussed design aesthetic, it is very complete in it's collection, and reading it is a bittersweet process - as it's heartbreaking to think that not so many of the publications included there largely lost to the ages, but it's also profoundly saddening when you realize that in 5 - 10 years, the equivalent of this book - an e-book about blogs - well, if such a thing were to ever get made - would be wholly unsatisifying. (Posted on 2/4/12)

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