Internet movies / Giveaway cars

Detail of VHS cover image from The Hit (1984) shows filtered images of Tim Roth in aviator sunglasses (yellow), a concerned Terence Stamp (blue), and a grim John Hurt (red)
Detail from VHS cover of The Hit (1984)

Today: David Roth, an editor and co-owner at Defector; and Joe MacLeod, Creative Director at INDIGNITY, and author of the column MR. WRONG.


Issue No. 33

For Free (With Ads)
David Roth

Dream Auto Raffle!!!!
Joe MacLeod


For Free (With Ads)

by David Roth

I am old enough to remember what seemed like a small, shabby, silly internet, which is something you’d already know if you could see what the part of my face immediately around my eyes looks like. I have been on the one that we’ve currently got for a long time, too—long enough to remember its more utopian pretensions or possibilities, and long enough to have long since forgotten them. At the time, I promise that it barely registered; whatever the internet might have been, it was for me mostly a place where a very rudimentary webpage took a very long time to load one image of Angie Everhart in a bathing suit.

The lords of our shrinking, cynical internet were by and large the same people pitching all that then, which either does or doesn’t put things in perspective. It might be that the internet actually could have been everything that those curdling doofuses once promised—which was, more or less, The Place Where Everything Was, forever and for free (with ads). But it is not that, and it feels likelier, in retrospect, that those twice-sociopathic aspiring landlords and full-tilt, full-spectrum cretins were selling something that they thought they could own, or just presumed they already did. 

It’s a paywall, but a small one

Read this post and get our weekdaily newsletter for $3 a month