These videos of Radio Shacks and Furry Conventions in the 1980s are incredible time capsules


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Is that Rob in the military jacket?



I recall an early instruction manual for AOL dial-up service had a dancing otter as an example of a .jpg. Upon looking at the name of the sample, it was from a furry erotica collection. Someone was being too clever.


The Radio Shack video really really needs a Richard Attenborough voiceover!

Look at those reams of paper - stacked up and ready to go! But look, what’s this…!


Was it originally? Or was it created somewhere else, and added to the furry erotica collection.


“The young males are confused. Their breadboards are perfectly arranged and their electronic signals working correctly. But while they have begun the soldering process, the females still have not presented themselves. Perhaps the exhibition of their ‘free battery a month’ club card will create the interest they so desire.”


Aaaah, the Prancing Skiltaire, the first “furry house” and organizer of the first furry get-togethers. From a few people in a hotel ballroom to last weekend’s MFF convention that drew nearly 11,000 people, raised $85k for kids’ literacy charities, and was attended by Violent J and SonicFox… it’s come a long way.


The Radio Shack video was shot by Mark Merlino the person who started that first convention. He was also part of the founding of the first Anime fan group CF/O back in the 70s.

Seriously, the fandom has come a long way.

I’m part of the Skiltaire’s video digitizing project and we keep having our decks die. We got through 3 tapes and both uint’s just outright died. Thankfully a place in LA is fixing them and we can get though the rest of the old fandom video and get them up there. Really these old formats are just dying on the vine here.

Also the person at the radio shack computer at the end is the old furry Andre Johnson who ran the Tigers Den BBS back in the 80s.'s_Den_BBS


Tigers Den, that’s a blast from the past! I used to run around on TigerMuck with Croc and Spuds and Panthyr back in the day. Was my main go-to, along with SocioPolitical Ramifications. :cat:

Just checked out your twitter. I see you have an appreciation for a certain van mural artist. :smiley:


Isn’t “underperforming Radio Shack” a redundancy?

Honestly they would have stayed alive longer if they’d just gathered more information from each customer who came in to buy a phone cord.


I think SocioPolitical Ramifications is still up, old mucks just keep going.

Am I a fan of Zootopia? Yes, yes I am.

To be honest, I’m a greymuzzle that has been around socal fandom for the better part of 20 something years and know Sysable really well.


I had to wonder if Mark shot that footage! Thank you for working to keep these videos alive. And I used to visit Tiger’s Den back in the day as well.

As far as I know, SPR is still up and running, though like FurryMUCK it’s a small crowd these days.


Looks like a lot of yiffing was going on back then.

jk, i haven’t been able to look at the video since i’m at work but that thumbnail is not totally safe for work.


I worked at a mall store with a computer center to help support earning my degree in the late 1980s. I recognize just about every inventory item on display. Gawd, what a crap job that was. One of the many unpleasant details of working there was that for every large item on display, the quantity of store stock was either 1 (the one on display) or 2 if you were very lucky (one in the stockroom).

Most typically, you had to spiel and/or lie your butt off trying to get the customer to buy that display model regardless of its condition. Example: “The fact that it’s been sitting out here operating is a benefit, not a problem! Did you know that most electronic products fail within the first two weeks, and if they still work after that they will last for years?” We were never allowed to negotiate down on the price, even if the customer walked. The best we could do was throw in their janky free batteries, or if pressed hard enough provide an extended warranty.

That was just one of dozens of godawful retail practices. How they lasted as long as they did is a testament to sleazing your way to success.


The person who shot this video (Mark) was saying how bad his Radio Shack job was. Less then minimum wage and on commission but the guy you see doing the stock inspection was more the good looking salesmen guy got all the sales. Mark was put on fixing the displays that went over really well so he was drafted into this video project, he eventually quit and started his own HiFi speaker company.


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