Announcements Meta Music and Gaming Festival New

MAGFest in Sight

For the first time in twen­ty five years, Walt Moss­berg will not be attend­ing the Con­sumer Elec­tron­ics Show this com­ing month. Appar­ent­ly, he expects it to bore him, and he’s no longer in the mar­ket for a tele­vi­sion, any­way.

Then again, we won’t be there either, because we think Maryland’s Music and Gam­ing Fes­ti­val will make for bet­ter sto­ries, and the two have been simul­ta­ne­ous­ly sched­uled. A less­er writer might use this space to waste your time with garbage diver­sions involv­ing the con­trast between the mete­o­ro­log­i­cal aver­ages of the two loca­tions in ear­ly Jan­u­ary, but we have long since suf­fi­cient­ly grasped the basic orbital habits and sea­son­al pat­terns of our plan­et to be spared sur­prise, and we’d like to respect you — the read­er — enough to assume that you have, too.

Of course, ole Mossy’s posi­tion is the pre­cise oppo­site of the vast major­i­ty of tech­nol­o­gy jour­nal­ists, and per­son­al attacks are a mas­sive waste of time, so there’s no need to be bit­ter. Instead, I’d like to offer you an alter­na­tive:

Extra­tone’s core staff.

Though we are as yet untest­ed — most of us will be meet­ing face-to-face for the first time despite years of colleagueship/friendship — I have absolute­ly zero doubt that only extra­or­di­nary hap­pen­ings can result from gath­er­ing these superb peo­ple togeth­er for 72 hours.

It takes trust to invest in such a thing, but I have made the deci­sion to open up Extra­tone to crowd­fund­ing in light of this trip and future endeav­ors.


The stag­nant, eggshell-tra­vers­ing cul­ture this indus­try has found itself in is very dan­ger­ous in the worst pos­si­ble way.

What is con­sumer jour­nal­ism with­out char­ac­ters, icons, and leg­end-elects?!

With­out being exces­sive­ly con­ceit­ed, I’d like to note that there is not a sin­gle one among us dull enough to be unable to find worth­while con­tent at an event as large and gray mat­ter-stuffed as CES, regard­less of how stale the setlist has become.

I’m pret­ty sure my CTO could sin­gle­hand­ed­ly make it front page news again on a two-fig­ure bud­get, actu­al­ly.

As of this moment, I’ve yet to revert to zeal enough to claim exclu­siv­i­ty in my vision for this com­mu­ni­ty, but per­haps — in my estrage­ment from tra­di­tion — I have redis­cov­ered a bit ear­ly what all inevitably must — left with­out counter-cul­ture, cul­ture prompt­ly asphyx­i­ates.


For the long game, I am ask­ing you to pay us what we’re worth to you, so that we may con­tin­ue to freely meta­mor­phose from any chance depen­dence on adver­tis­ing.

It is my sin­cer­est hope that scrib­am quid non leg­erim has the poten­tial to be more than just a pre­ten­tious arti­fact for you — that you may find your­self sup­port­ing us finan­cial­ly because you trust our all-con­sum­ing incom­pe­tence with una­nim­i­ty, and know orig­i­nal­i­ty is inevitable.

It’s not going to begin with Cil light­ing up a cig­a­rette in the midst of an Apple Keynote after tak­ing Jony Ive’s inter­view notes with a Palm Pilot, but shit… I can imag­ine few more aspirable futures.

How many more router com­par­isons can you real­ly con­vince your­self to con­sume?

Remem­ber awe?

Remem­ber intrigue?

These days, it’s not always easy for me, either, but I tell you now - these kids are damned near your last hope at ever cash­ing in on your fair share of won­der.


If you’re hes­i­tant to trust me, I don’t blame you, but you can trust that my only remain­ing day­dreams are about the pos­si­bil­i­ties of this thing — there is noth­ing else I’d rather spend your mon­ey on.


You wan­na know my ulti­mate fan­ta­sy???

The abil­i­ty to pay my staff.

I’m already in love with this com­mu­ni­ty, but when we become a mag­a­zine…

That is the most intense thrill I could ever hope for.

But if you still find your­self erring on the bit­ter side, I’d encour­age you to take risk on us for this tri­al run, at least.


Esti­mat­ed total cost of the trip will be refined as the date draws clos­er. Cur­rent­ly, we expect to spend about $350 on car rental and fuel. Entry badges are $70/piece if reg­is­tered under my group.

You have three options:

And dang… what­ev­er you decide, know your time is appre­ci­at­ed.