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<nettime> Luc Sala: My Mondo2000 Years
Patrice Riemens on Fri, 13 Jan 2012 12:03:55 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> Luc Sala: My Mondo2000 Years

Dutch IT entrepreneur and 'New Edge' evangelist Luc Sala was very much
part of the 'digital hippies' scene of the 80s and 90s on the West
coasts of both the old and the new continent. You can read the full
text of his reminiscences to Mondo2000 here (with new versions as they
appear, this is from version 2.2, the latest):


Cheers, patrizio & Diiiinooos!

New Edge and Mondo 2000: my personal perspective

At the request of Simone Lackerbauer and R.U. Sirius this is a
personal and maybe somewhat opiniated account of what I remember and
could trace.

Mondo 2000 has been, for me, a door to understanding and experiencing
the convergence and integration of technology, new age, philosophy
and art. I believe the magazine and the scene were at the root of
the development of the cyberculture and have helped bridge the gap
between the more traditional new age (fairly conservatively focused
on eastern traditions, health and body, somewhat negative and Luddite
about technology) and the computer/information wave.

My involvement with the actual magazine was limited, I sponsored with
money and was international distributor (paying in advance helped to
print the magazine). My involvement with the people of and around
Mondo was what was most important for me, those contacts opened a door
into the world of cyberspace, cyberart, psychedelic (ontological)
philosophy, design and counterculture. The Mondo scene was where one
would meet the great alternative thinkers and writers. They were easy
with their contacts and networking, opened many, many doors for me
and I am very grateful for what I took home, not so much in material
things, but in thinking for myself. Mondo inspired me to publish a
similar magazine in Dutch, called Ego2000, and has been a source
of contacts and new ideas for my activities in the nineties. Apart
from writing and publishing this encompassed my broadcast television
station in Amsterdam. This Kleurnet channel (colored net) produced
some 8000 television programs between 1995 and 2001, covering a wide
range of subjects, many with a similar focus and taste as what Mondo

Mondo 2000 was a focal point where the counterculture, psychonauts and
mind-researchers met, physically in Berkeley, and at various events in
SF and elsewhere. They met in person, but also communicated via the
then emerging email and budding internet communications of the times
such as The Well. It united the greatest out-of-the box thinkers and
change agents of the era, but was not a commercial success, money
to pay the printer had to be found every time. Lack of commercial
talent and financial savvy hampered its development so that the newer
Wired was able to capture the flag of the cyberculture. Wired was
more of a hit, but remained more gadget-oriented and lacked the heart
and zeal of the Mondo initiative. Funny enough, founding publishers
Louis Rosetto and his partner Jane Metcalfe (after their Electric Word
venture in Holland) contacted me in early 1990 to ask for funding
for a new magazine in the US, which later became Wired (1991 trial,
1993 first issue). Jane was a great networker and organiser and I
actually employed her for a while, she set up the seminal September
VR-party in my house in Hilversum, near Amsterdam. I always considered
Wired as overly commercial and not so ethical and was proven right
when Wired tried to go public and failed because their data were not
very honest, to say the least. While many contributors wrote for both
magazines, the Wired-Mondo dichotomy, the difference in focus taught
me a lot about the soul, the root energy of a venture, how the initial
thrust kind of shaped its future. Wired in a sense was a cheap market
oriented venture, it lacked the quality and integrity of the Mondo


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