In Burning Man’s pre-Internet years, the community relied on printed communications to stay connected. These early publications contain some of the first essays on the emerging culture and philosophy, and provide some intriguing insights into Burning Man’s evolution.
Published from 1991-1999, this newsletter was a primary means of connecting the community between Burns. Its pages feature some seminal writing on the event and the culture from Larry Harvey, Stuart Mangrum, Louis Brill, Erik Davis, and other early observers, including the mysterious Darryl VanRhey (hint: it’s an anagram).
Founded by Danger Ranger in 1992, Black Rock City’s first daily newspaper was published onsite during the event until 2005. Occasionally informative, frequently absurd, its wry humor was rooted in the prankster culture of the Cacophony Society and the outsider spirit of ‘zine culture.
In 2000 the Building Burning Man newsletter morphed into a glossy four-color magazine with an emphasis on art and culture. Its wider coverage also facilitated discussions of post-event issues like playa restoration and helped launch the Regional Network.
Starting in 2007, when the population of Black Rock City started to outstrip its ability to communicate culture across the broad expanse of its citizenry, Burning Man began creating “Tip Sheets” to provide key information to participants, whether they be newbies or multi-year veterans. They are handed out at the Greeters Station, to educate people about the ins and outs of being a citizen of Black Rock City.