By some standards, I (or my lovely doppelgänger, about whom too much has been said already) achieved Fixture status in the local BBS scene in the middle-to-late 1980s. However, it must be said that while there were plenty of users in my chronological cohort, most of the headlines were inevitably made by, so to speak, punks half my age.
Except for Jack Flack, who was one-third my age.
Flack’s memoir Commodork: Sordid Tales from a BBS Junkie, published under his ostensibly-“real” name of Rob O’Hara, is now out and about, and it’s about as unfiltered a history of this era as I’m ever likely to see: yes, there were some, um, illicit activities going on, and O’Hara knows copyfests and krackage as well as anyone in this time zone. Today, of course, is (sorta) different:
I pay for the software I need, the music I listen to and the services I use. But this book isn’t about now. It’s about a time when pirated software ruled the land. Those with the most, newest, and best programs had the power; those who didn’t groveled at their feet. It’s about good friends, good times, good memories, and good warez.
And woe betide he who pronounces that last word as though it were a city in Mexico.