twenty 600 reasons to hate magazines

jess.thomson 7 December 2008 26

For the most part, I couldn’t care less about magazines, much less ones in Canberra, and the rubbish attempts at them here are usually a joke, but for some reason the last year has seen rise to few magazines.

I read Frankie and Yen, and at least have an understanding of what looks good, but I’m not exactly sure what the aim of twenty 600 and the team of social retards behind it is?

Who gives a toss; about stories of yourselves and what you’ve done? Fictitious stories including your wildest fantasies and perceptions of yourselves leaves me wondering what the hell this is actually about? For me to want to read about you, you’d have to have done something significant, or be attempting to.

Writing a magazine aimed at feeding your ego, by giving yourself a title because you’re too talentless to achieve one, is the farthest thing from exciting or interesting.

This self indulgent drivel, is barely worthy of a blog, let along the paper you print it on, and joking about jerking off your mate, when the editor would actually consider it… leaves a salty taste in the mouth. Oh, and my god, it is the worst design, layout and attempt at anything creative this city has ever seen, you’re worse than Capital Magazine or Shitty News, at least I open those to check out the social pages—you’re a joke.

[ED – Perhaps readers would like to take this opportunity to share their thoughts on the Canberra street press / magazine scene?]

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26 Responses to twenty 600 reasons to hate magazines
Footloose Footloose 4:08 pm 06 Dec 08

OMG, I totally agree! I chanced upon a copy of it whilst waiting for a coffee and was confused and bemused as I perused the pages. Who and WTF were they on about?
It was the most self congratulating, self promoting drivel I’ve ever read.
They’ve obviously got a bit of money behind it, fuelled mainly by a mate who does the marketing for a local plastic surgery business.
Their entrepreneurial drive fails to mask the complete lack of talent on staff…or is it just a group of friends? whatever.
Having said that, I’m completely ineffected by its existence, much like Canberra Goss. If it keeps the hoes off the streets then good luck to them; I’ll stick to BMA thanks very much.

I-filed I-filed 5:01 pm 06 Dec 08

Don’t be mean and classist. This is just what “Cody, Takeena and Benjiamijne” come up with when they jump up a level and graduate from the CIT graphic design course and join a local ad agency, or attempt a creative life outside public service HR and web helpdesk duties. (And no, I’m not knocking CIT itself, I am doing a course at CIT myself.) They seriously don’t know any better.
Anyway, The middle-class Front has had many moments that have been easily just as bad, in their gallery, and no-one is knocking the Front over it.

NickD NickD 5:05 pm 06 Dec 08

On the other hand, twenty 600 is free and you don’t have to read it if you don’t like it. I agree that it’s pointless and self-indulgent, but it’s not actually doing any harm.

BMA is a pretty good magazine considering the size of Canberra. Its coverage is broad and it doesn’t appear to play favorites with local bands.

Tibbs Tibbs 5:12 pm 06 Dec 08

Geez Jess, that was the most over the top rant I’ve read in a long time. Considering you “couldn’t care less about magazines”, this sounds more like a personal attack at the people making the magazine rather than the magazine itself. So you don’t like reading articles from people talking about themselves. And yet you like Frankie magazine?

Everything has an audience, and if you don’t like something then it’s probably because you’re not it. Free press is inoffensive. Most people read free press (twenty600, BMA, City News, Chronicle etc), find what they like in it and move on.

In the twenty600 I picked up today I quite enjoyed the article about climate change and the interview with the investment bloke. I also picked up a copy of The Berra today, and enjoyed reading the letters asking the editor not to ignore their no junk mail signs.

I think the problem with Canberra’s street press is that there’s too much aimed at the same sort of market, and the same sort of advertisers. Sadly, for a city with more than its fair share of quality intellectuals and various experts, we still don’t have an issues/features focussed street press.

New Yeah New Yeah 5:32 pm 06 Dec 08

Hey jess.thomson – tell us what you really think!

I think that twenty 600 deserves props for trying to portray a side of Canberra other than the ‘nice place to raise a family/full of pubes and pollies’ cliche. However, as no one outside of the ACT would ever probably read it falls in a hole – people who live in Canberra know what the place is about and as Tibbs says, plenty of other street press cover this.

Furthermore, visually it is the magazine equivalent of a fluoro coloured, tight fitting, badly screen printed t-shirt. The mag (at least issue 3 that I have here in front of me) doesn’t look very enticing.

I agree that the book and cd reviews are self-indulgent and pointless; you’ll find much more informative reviews written by more informed journalists/bloggers almost anywhere else.

At least the plastic surgery ads are funny. I now know where to go in Canberra for vaginal rejuventation.

I think that a far better local publication that covers our aspiringly sophisticated youth is orphan magazine. It has better photos, layout, articles and even a more classy paper stock than twenty 600. I didn’t see one plastic surgery advertisement inside issue 0 and it was still free.

Did anyone ever catch the doomed magazine known as Walter? It was a short-lived attempt at talking up Canberra’s ‘creative economy’ and heralding a move back from the suburban sprawl of the ‘y-plan’ to something more closely approximating Burley Griffin’s original vision for the capital.

ant ant 6:06 pm 06 Dec 08

Is this the same mag that elicited a similar post a year or so back? I cannot remember the name, but the complaint was that it was basically about the writer and their friends.

I rather enjoy the local freebie that John Hewson puts out. Yep, that John Hewson. It’s all advertorial, but it’s *really* well done. Called Home Aura or some weird-arse name, advertising local shops and galleries and things. But the graphic design of it is top-notch, it’s attractive, and after looking at the story and pics for a gallery, I was quite disappointed to find out it was in Gunghalin (too far for a casual visit).

It’s quite hard to find, too. I get mine from the foyer of the Manuka Coles.

Jonathon Reynolds Jonathon Reynolds 6:33 pm 06 Dec 08


Firstly congratulations on using (we assume) your real name, a rare occurrence on this site.

I’ve just hopped over to their website: and had a read of issue #4. I don’t see any problem with it. If George Poulakis and his team are making a dollar out of it, then good luck to them – perhaps if you believe you have a grasp of the local market demographics and can do better job, then you should do so. However, your posting as it currently reads, is nothing more than a stream of sanctimonious piffle.

Smackbang Smackbang 9:45 pm 06 Dec 08

Takes one to know one, Jonathon Reynolds.

MYERgirl MYERgirl 3:53 am 07 Dec 08

…and yet, it has got you talking Jess LOL 😛

I am a fan of the magazine. I mean, I am not exactly going to jump in here and defend it with my dying breath. But I do give copies to friends in and out of Canberra, and they liked it.

But what is bugging me is how negative you are being. I don’t just mean about the magazine. I mean really uptight in that like stereotypical Girls Grammar way. You don’t like magazines. You don’t like magazines in Canberra. You don’t seem to like Canberra. Is it any wonder you don’t like twenty600?

PS: If you are the same Jess from my work, I hate working with you. Stop treating customers like they have germs. Plus, do yourself a favour. Lose the uber-snob glasses, fix your fringe, and stop scowling.

I am pretty sure it is you, calling people ‘social retards’ etc. Don’t be so prissy. As far as I am concerned, it’s a raging success if those who’d call people ‘social retards’ and are uptight don’t like it 😛

poptop poptop 7:43 am 07 Dec 08

LMAO – sounds like things could be interesting at Myer on Monday.

Jess’s effort has certainly raised twenty 600’s profile.

johnboy johnboy 10:00 am 07 Dec 08

Perhaps best not be make things quite so personal in future MG?

el el 11:12 am 07 Dec 08


ant ant 11:46 am 07 Dec 08

reowwwwrr! saucer of milk to table 6!

I-filed I-filed 1:15 pm 07 Dec 08

Hmmm, ‘newbie’ MYERgirl, that’d be viral marketer Miss Jo again surely from awhile back, with this clumsy placement:

Looks as though she is well hooked into the Cody/Taneeka/Benjiamyjne-esque Marketing 1.01 circle!

astrojax astrojax 2:01 pm 07 Dec 08

must say, i was tempted for a moment to write up my (negative) reactions to the first issue of ‘the berra’, then thought better and let it slide. what an appalling piece of ‘journalism’ all over, really. how awfully bogan. [i know this will get me flame; c’est la vie]

yet for twenty600, apart from the name (would make the place have a postcode of 20600 – wrong!), i think it is a pretty fair street press zine and would support it (am still working out an article to submit at some time, but will do so). well done, haven’t seen volume 4 yet but had a chat to the editor in braddon one day after the first one was out; he seemed to have a head on his shoulders – good luck for the next four.

Gungahlin Al Gungahlin Al 4:58 pm 07 Dec 08

Yeah I don’t mind it now and then when I happen upon it around the city.
The graphic design is OK too.

Just love the Julie-Bishop-claws-out post above 🙂

Masked Avenger Masked Avenger 7:25 pm 07 Dec 08

It’s abysmal, and I’ve heard almost libellous things about the editor, which make me like it even less.

But for those of us who don’t like it, we can now ignore it and read the aforementioned Orphan magazine, which was relaunched last month. It covers some similar territory with better design and photography, more advertising integrity, and no wanky “look at me, I’m so funny!” music reviews.

imhotep imhotep 9:39 pm 07 Dec 08

OMG! A pretentious and self-indulgent post about how pretentious and self-indulgent some new magazine is.

Seriously Jess, get over it. You sound like Paris Hilton, only dumber and nastier.

jess.thomson jess.thomson 11:25 pm 07 Dec 08

Haha, I can see you up there on your high horse Mr Reynolds, how’s the view? In terms of sanctimonious piffle – I dare say after reading some of the articles you write, that this refers to your own writings? I quite enjoyed reading some of them… however, I dare say considering the fact that you’re commenting on my understanding of a magazine aimed at myself as part of their demographic is a little odd… considering you’re well outside of it.

‘Our target readership is young professionals who identify with the unique lifestyle that Canberra offers. twenty600 is written by and for young people who understand the social, intellectual and creative fabric of our city.’ I’d consider myself to fall into this category; being a 26 year old female, working in the legal industry – or is it a really small window for the classification of a ‘young professional’? It is after all quite possibly the most juvenile of attempts at a publication I’ve seen.

My issue isn’t with Canberra at all (on the contrary), I love this city, my issue is with people promoting mediochrity and substandard work, which detract from people’s perceptions of this city. This is pure and utter crap, and the fact that you Myer Girl feel the need to defend it’s quality exposes your own ignorance. Check outside the small bubble you live in, and see what the rest of Canberra and the world is doing.

Yours in vaginoplasty.

jakez jakez 11:57 pm 07 Dec 08

Hmm, the ol ‘you are wrong because you are wrong’ argument. Take THAT Myer Girl.

I have read Twenty600 and found it to be quite enjoyable. Not every article appeals to my tastes however that can be said of every magazine I read (with the possible exception of the IPA Review).

I think, City News, BMA, Orpheus, Twenty600 et al all have their charms. However in my mind you can’t go past a good copy of Vice Magazine. It appeals to my alternative style and is chockablock with filth, nudity, stories about homeless nazi’s, toys from Japan, and disabled people being insulted. What more can you want.

It’s just a shame the thing is so hard to find.

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