At the end of the 1990s, the cultural scene in Berlin had no platform on the Internet. First online projects had already failed, the commercialization of the Internet was progressing. Facing these conditions, Krystian Woznicki started a new publishing project. Its aim was to take both the social dynamics of the Internet and the idea of the classic feuilleton seriously (the culture section of the conventional newspaper). Thus, in July 1999, Woznicki founded, within the online community Kulturserver, the Berliner Gazette.
At first, Woznicki’s project took the form of a weekly electronic newspaper: not a newsletter, but a weekly feuilleton in the form of an e-mail, delivered every Wednesday to its readers’ mailboxes. Choosing the content, the editorial staff followed guidelines still relevant today: turning readers into authors, while also inviting outsiders to become authors. In order to distribute the content, the staff also seeks synergies with various offline formats: symposiums, anthologies, etc. In this way, the network of the Berliner Gazette has continued to grow – leaving the physical boundaries of Berlin far behind.
When in 2002 – after the crash of the new economy – the Internet was declared dead by many, the Berliner Gazette presented itself with an extended Web site. The staff launched Germany’s first collective blog and systematized their thematic work: the editors interview representatives of various sectors of cultural innovations ((sub-)politics, economy, technology, art, science) on annual focus themes and publish weekly protocols of these interviews. Be it “Work,” “Language,” “Time” or “Water” – the annual themes continue to question important issues of our time as the commons of the 21st century.
In the press:
The voice of Post-Germany.
A new form of journalistic intervention.
Christoph Dreher/Digital Spirit
Smart selection of authors.