If Wired and Spin were fused with cosmic energy a la
that precursor of the computer age, Weird Science, the
result might look something like the Toronto-based ‘digital
culture’ rag Shift. Aptly named, the magazine began in 1992
as another Gen X arts and culture periodical but soon began turning
its eye toward new media; and after a relaunch in 1997 the
transformation was complete. Recent articles on the culture-jamming
group Rtmark and the new-media employee environment (reprinted in
Utne Reader, July/Aug. 1999) showcase the magazine’s
greatest strength: its ability to find the small-but-fascinating
story that its slicker counterparts tend to miss. Another personal
favorite: the list in each issue highlighting 15 top Web sites,
many of which have proven dangerously addictive. At a time when
even the once-revolutionary Wired is looking just a bit
stodgy, Shift is a breath of fresh, ionized air.

Shift, Box 706, Markham, ON,
Canada L3R 8N4. Subscriptions: $17.95/yr. (9 issues); 800/676-0466.

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