Jump to content

Glowsticking.com....Where did things go wrong?

Recommended Posts

I am writing this many years later after so much has happened on a site that I have no clue if anyone will ever read....

Glowsticking.com was the number one website for the art of glowsticking. It linked up people all over the world and allowed people to learn, love, and respect each other all over a 1$ piece of plastic. It was a place where we could have fun, we could be free, where we can learn and be part of something when some had nothing left. 


This was the safe haven for people who might not have anything in the world.....


So what happened? Where did we all go? Why did the people who gave their all just...vanish...


Let's go back to a time...lets say 2006/2007.


The Meetups were powerful, the ultra circles were meaningful, the love for each other was at its peak. This was the family anyone could ever dream of having or being a part of. We were a crew, we were a family. We woke up, we practiced, we couldn't wait to show each other how we grew. We looked up at people as mentors, and some looked at others as their own little brother and sister. For example: I remember the First time meeting Azzie and one of the first things I saw was a motherly nature in her. She took care of everyone in the east coast as if they were her children, gave advice, showed pride in everyone's skill if they were new or veteran in the art. I remember going to my first meetup in central park and seeing just everyone was there having fun, people who I never met opened arms and it didn't matter your background, it didn't matter about looks, style, nothing mattered. Just pure love. This is what made glowsticking.com flourish. I remember when Sparrow and Photon came to NY for thanksgiving, my house was opened for thanksgiving dinner, since in my eyes, through a 1$ piece of plastic that connected us on this site, they were family. 


I remember a time when the love was so real others were flying in from other states for meetups, to see other members of this Family we once was, to learn and grow, to appreciate and love. 







So where did we all go?


Yes we all grew up, we all moved on to careers that kept us away from the art...but what about the "youth" of the site, why did we not have successors to keep this site going? Where is the new blood in the community that was supposed to keep this art, this site, this family alive?


I saw someone in another post state the following 


Lol, No one follows those old GSC rules anymore. Those rules are why this place is a ghost town. 

This site was never a ghost town once, you could spend hours a day checking on what others did, said, viewed videos, critiquing and giving advice on what a person should work on to be better then they already was. 

Then I stumbled on a post by Photon labeled "Are we elitist". As much as one can argue that we were not, It was a double edged sword. We monopolized the glowsticking community. There was no other site like us. There was no other safe haven for people to be themselves. From club heads, to house artists, this was at one point the biggest most badass website out there. We knew it, no one from anywhere else could tell us otherwise. We had the Ultra circles, we had the meetups, we had it all. We had members pay out of pocket for studios for other members on the site to practice, to join together, to share and experience. We had rules and philosophies deeper then the catholic church. We had beliefs and morals that were as simple as just saying "just be a decant human being and show love for each other."

Damn I miss those days and would kill to relive every memory I ever had with every member I was able to come across again.

But at the end of the day, the site turned into another Jonestown Massacre. But who actually made the Kool-Aid for us to drink? I know I am making some real cult labeling references, but at the end of the day the only difference between us and a cult was that...well lets look what  merriam-webster has to say about what a cult is:


a: great devotion to a person, idea, object, movement, or work (such as a film or book) especially : such devotion regarded as a literary or intellectual fad

b: the object of such devotion

c: a usually small group of people characterized by such devotion

Well I'll be damned....

The only difference was I guess we weren't a "small group". 

Then I remember 



That-Which-Must-Not-Be-Named. A new glowsticking site which was becoming popular, whose morals and philosophies were a bit different then ours. A site that was more laid back on the rules and didn't care much but just was about glowsticking. But wait other sites have done so in the past? History does always repeat itself. Let's see, String-E People....and they loved their crews and battles. We didn't close then, and honestly this site was still remained strongest on the internet...but still we failed somewhere? Did we not install a failsafe on this website in case an "O shit" moment pops up? The wall around this website became higher, the rules became stricter, and there was more protective measures put into place to keep everything in its purist form. But is to much protection always good? Did the site shut its doors in fear the wrong people would join? This site always had lurkers, bad seeds, the site always had poisonous people in the community that were eventually weeded out. But how come the site didn't continue to grow? We say we weren't a crew, but we became so about ourselves we saw nothing else as "good" in our eyes. Anything else was our enemy and either they joined us or they fell. This goes back to being "Elitist". One website pops up and the site became so wrapped up in itself it choked out.


Close the borders!
We only support one thing!
China! Mexico! MS13! (Sorry had to throw in a trump meme) 

That was the last I saw of GSC. All my love and devotion was pushed away over the "needs of the good order of the website". Yes I posted in That-Which-Must-Not-Be-Named, isn't that what love was about though? Supporting other people for their love of glowsticking? Even if they weren't part of our family? Still support them under a 1$ piece of plastic. All I remember was others were also behind me in a whole #MakeGSCGreatAgain movement. GSC was always great though. 

What happened at the end...GXG died out...GSC died out....What is left out there? The art of glowsticking nuked itself to death over nothing. I post this never knowing if it will be read, I post this with hopes that one day this art will become alive again, that meetups will occur, that a family double the size of what we had will happen, that the love and care we had for each other will be reborn.

So how do I feel now looking back at glowsticking.com?

Yes we were elitist. Yes we showcased and performed, we didn't do it for attention yet 50 of us would create a circle using Ultra's and move a whole crowd so we could perform, so others can see, so we can showcase what we learned that year and that we progressed in our art. A painter can put his paintings in a gallery and make 0 dollars which is essentially what we did. We went to the clubs, we showcased and performed, we had our own clique our own family. Doesn't that go against all our beliefs and values?

We Kept the mantra of "Fuck crews and Fuck battles", which to this day even as I still practice at home I still keep that value, but at the end of the day...all we were was a crew so big that we stretched across the globe....

and I would give my all to see that family one more time....This is where I met some of the greatest people in the world, and even after all that happened with me, I still have love for every member I ever came in contact with. 

12 years later and yet I still find this place a home for myself....

Icy Out.

Edited by Icy
  • Upvote 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Man, you're not wrong. I haven't been on here since 2009 or picked up a stick since 2010. We grew up, found careers, moved on. Some of us got old, some of us will never get the chance. The old days might be gone, but it was a hell of a ride.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 months later...

I'm in the third one. This community means so much to me and everything you said was true icy in one way or another. You where one of the first sinor members I met at my first meeetup in 08. I don't get out much anymore unless I'm working or DJing a event. But when I do I'm normally the only freehander there. I feel so alone at times being part of a dying breed.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 weeks later...

people have lives to live. most people went into other props, shit happens. why overthink it? what are you doing/have you done to keep the scene or art going? i'm sure life happened for you, which is why i can assume you haven't been active or done anything.
post up a video. lemme see some content.

i wouldn't be here if it wasn't for the community. gsc made me the sticker i am today. a place to meet likeminded prop artists, have a little fun and to learn and teach with content sharing.

but if this is the community now, just a circlejerk, then i want just about nothing to do with that. (i know it's not a circlejerk)

12 years later and yeah, you want to feel nostalgic, but when was the last time you picked up some sticks or pushed a concept. looks like from your post history you just like to pop in every now and then, and leave. no consistency. before that,you made a thread about coming back...and then you left again. i get it, you want to come in here and feel nostalgic, flex on "newer" members. no one cares man. if you want to keep it alive, put out some content, start a meetup, teach someone at an event. threads like this sure as hell don't help your cause. unless you just want story time, then hell yeah brother, keep it up. let's go down memory lane all day instead of stick.

just because you may feel like it died, sure as hell doesn't mean that it died. glowsticking is and will always be a daily part of my life.

Edited by Demo
  • Like 1
  • Upvote 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 year later...

I don't think people at festivals even know the word "battling" anymore. it was relevant in 2000 - 2008ish. But honestly, Gen Z kids are a bit nicer, and not so influenced by the 80s and 90s (well I mean, they have fun DRESSING like it). Music itself split into a bazillion genres. Festivals play everything. That was good, but then it lead to a loss of unity because the rave got consumed by what is now "EDM", and it mixed with the mainstream of every other niche music genre. over all. In the end, it became about the WHO. The ones who were really effective organizers found something a bit less casual to devote their energy to. The awesome staff and people who spent money or a lot of effort to support the cause.. well those are the type of people who can get jobs and have a family. Raves were like punk or underground hip-hop. It became such that the culture became older, and we became adults, and the most successful of us, packaged it and turned it into a multi-billion dollar enterprise.

There just aren't as many inexpensive raves anymore, everything is licenced, streamed, and owned by big corporations, and the underground parties in LA don't have a glowsticker vibe. They are jam packed with elite clubbers and models. Those are fun, but there isn't room for glowstringing and a freehand glowstickers. You'd probably get kicked out fast at an underground event by underground security, not because they think you are a drug user, but because it's not a rave. It's just an illegal party with EDM music. You know, I live i a high rise in downtown LA. back in 2010 it was a ghost town. now every single former parking lot is also high rise. In fact, 1 block away, there used to be a shitty afterparty club where I'd used to glowstick. It's an organic pet food, grooming, and accessories store. The doggy treats are so good they encourage humans to try it. We used to be able to have big events literally on the streets of downtown LA.  Giant New Years 07 was a street party. Together as one 2001 was the colliseum AND the sports arena. Insomniac ate up the rest of the production companies and moved their shit to Vegas. 

What happened is that EDM got cool, mainstream, and very very expensive. Glowsticks are not cheap anymore. Supply lines have dried up in terms of quality. 2008 recession made me realize I should work my ass off (and probably lots of other people too), and by 2012, I was a full on committed for career success. I kept the site up over the years, and every now and then I'll spend an entire 2 weekends patching holes and fixing code, or paying another 300-400 on community software for a patch and a fix to not have spammers infest this place. It's a lot of work. The same kind of rationale is probably why the true die-hards slowly got to working and making babies.  There's a lot of other priorities, especially when through this site, they made their friends. 

I did see a noticeable decrease after 2010 with FB, and then with IG. Pay hasn't kept up with inflation, and now Coachella, EDC, and other massives are time commitments lasting 2 weeks. That's just nuts. And so fucking expensive. DJ's have to pay for music. Teens and young adults are dealing with much more pressure these days to keep up with the economy. Colleges are way more competitive and way more expensive. Now they can socialize and emote online in video games and stream. I don't blame them. The only thing sparking in glowsticking is corporation sponsored competitions for Lumica.  Which is hilarious. These kids don't "battle" even if Lumica tries and frame it like they do. They are just imitating. 

What I can tell you is that people who made good friendships are going on strong. Glowsticking is a verb. It's in Wikipedia.  In the end, if that's our legacy, I'm cool with that. But it's not, because I want to make sure we at least have the materials up, and provide bread crumbs and artifacts for when times are more opportune. I'm willing to spend whatever it takes to keep it going.  i don't give a shit what other people want to say. I have a mission like I always had, and I always go back to it when I can. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.