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Old 16 August 2003, 15:36   #73
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Courtesy of the Lemon 64 forum &


As you know, I invited both Tulip Computers and Ironstone Partners to comment on their intentions for the C64 brand. Here is what Paul Gouge, Business Development Director of Ironstone had to say.

Thank you for giving us the opportunity to respond to your article. We have read Allan Bairstow’s comments with interest and his views are shared by a number of other C64 users that have contacted us. Whilst we do find it a little disconcerting that a minority of C64 enthusiasts appear to be forming very concrete negative views of our intentions before talking to us or even having any idea of our plans, we understand why they might have concerns so we welcome the opportunity to set things straight.

Firstly and most importantly, as we state in OUR press release, “Ironstone recognises and applauds the tremendous achievement of the existing Commodore 64 community and the web sites that have allowed it to flourish.”. As C64 enthusiasts ourselves we are very much aware that the C64 brand has been ignored by its owners for many years and would be effectively dead if it wasn’t for the unpaid support of the community. As Allan rightly points out the vast majority of the websites that support the community are not commercial and do not generate any revenues from their users. We have therefore have no interest in damaging, preventing or stifling the continuing operation of these sites. What would be the point? We are not saying that Ironstone won’t take action where companies are using the C64 brand for commercial gain, but as we have learnt from many years of business experience, it is always better to explore partnership opportunities first before resorting to legal action.

OK, so why have we paid all this money for rights to the C64? As a business we obviously have a duty to our shareholders to attempt to generate income but we will not do this by attempting to charge users for what they currently receive for free but instead by launching a range of C64 hardware and software products which we believe will appeal to both the existing community and a whole new generation of users.

Simply put, Ironstone’s key objectives for the C64 are two fold.

* To grow the Commodore 64 community both by delivering a new range of Commodore 64 products and services to the existing loyal user base and web sites.

* To bring the C64 and the Commodore brand back towards the mainstream and extend its appeal by developing new products and services that bring the enjoyment of the Commodore 64 experience to an even wider global audience.

To pick up on one final point made by Allan and many others, it was stated in Tulip’s press release of July 11th that, “there is still an extensive group of about 6 million loyal Commodore users and enthusiasts around the world.” As we are all aware, it is very difficult to determine the size of any community that doesn’t have its home in one place, or were all members have not registered, so we simply can’t comment on this. I’m sure the truth lies somewhere between Allan’s and Tulip’s figures. What we do know, however, is that the Commodore 64 has been an enduring success against all the odds and that it does have a significant fan base both on and off the internet, and we will attempt to build on the strengths that made this possible by adding our mark to the Commodore legacy.

On a closing note, I would like to add that we have received a large amount of very positive emails from the C64 community both offering support and some very interesting ideas and we would like to again thank all of those who have contacted us. We would also like to ask anyone who has any questions or concerns to contact us on I would also like to state that we have already started discussions with some of the largest fan sites with a view to working with them, so watch this space...

Kindest regards.

Paul. ".....................(end quote)

What are these mysterious "new products & services",pray tell?
Now whilst I have many happy C64 memories,& have great retro fun with CCS64,I cannot seriously see today's PS2,X-box, Gamecube,Raedeon/Geforce Mega PC 3D gaming youth getting excited about the C64.
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