http://www.takepart.com/internets-own-boy (to rent or buy – as of 6.27.14)
[and now free online: https://archive.org/details/TheInternetsOwnBoyTheStoryOfAaronSwartz ]
jan 2015 –
Additional Outtakes and Interviews from the film “The Internet’s Own Boy”
if you don’t ask for the impossible – you certainly can’t get it – Cory
the relationship between change and making the world a better place – Lawrence
if we make you angry enough at someone or afraid enough.. you will put away your decency – Bryan
– – –
one thing – as the day after i watched – i’m listening in on aspen ideas festival. wondering why so much is going on and yet – seems so little is getting done (toward equity). reminded me of the segment in the documentary talking about how – none of the congress ish people contacted/connected with any tech experts (the section where they were emphasizes our use of “*nerd” to trivialize things that are happening – ie: without a plan, bypassing our compulsory plan..) and thinking – the unleashment/hastening of equity that could happen – if 7 billion people were freed (from work/school hrs of the day, laws of the land ness) up/invited to the conversation.. rather than ie: only the ones invited to and/or able to afford the conference.. to present (even to present convos/panels) ideas that most often haven’t been boding us well (as well as we could do)
unjust laws exist; shall we be content to obey them, or shall we endeavor to amend them, and obey them until we have succeeded, or shall we transgress them at once? – Henry David Thoreau
1 min – govt’s have this insatiable desire to control
we need to keep reminding ourselves… that control is failure
2 min – growing up i slowly had this process of realizing that all the things around me that people had told me were just the natural way things were, the way things always would be. they weren’t natural at all they were things that could be changed, and they were things that more importantly were wrong and should change. and once i realized that, there was really kinda no going back…t
6 min – infobase – 12 yr old – pre-wikipedia
8 min – rss – 13 yr old – part of committee that drafter rss (w/o them knowing how young he was)
9 min – Peter Eckersley – Aaron was really young but he understood the tech and he saw that it was imperfect and looked for ways to make it better
10 mi – Cory Doctorow – mom would ship him to us in sf from chicago
11 min – Tim Berners Lee – Aaron was trying to make the world work – he was trying to fix it..
i don’t need to go to the teacher to learn their version of ____. then Aaron talks about him researching ed – starting questioning this whole structure
12 min – .. frustration w/school.. i started reading books about history of ed .. and alternatives to it… led me down this path of questioning things.. once i questioned the school i was in, i questioned the society that built the school, i questioned the businesses that schools were training people for… and i questioned the govt that set up this whole structure..t
one of things Aaron was most passionate about was copyright
12 min – copyright has always been something of a burden – but it wasn’t an excessive burden… Aaron’s generation experienced the collision between this antique copyright system and this amazing new thing we were building – the web – and what you got was chaos – Peter E
14 min – 14 yr old – cc – Lessig – copyright – all rights reserved, cc – some rights reserved.. Aaron’s part was the tech end of making this easily accessible/usable
16 min – he contributed through his technical abilities – but it wasn’t merely a technical matter to him – Gabriella.
his journal – – i work for ideas and learn from people – i don’t like excluding people – i don’t hold grudges, it’s not productive.. i want to make the world a better place
17 min – stanford 2004, 2005 – y combinator – graham –
18 min – reddit – Alexis Ohanian
20 min – sell reddit – 19ish –
the idea of him spending money on fancy objects just seemed so implausible – Peter E –
…what is a big deal to Swartz is how traffic flows on the internet and what commands our attention..
21 min – on net – everyone can have a channel – not a matter of who gets access, but who controls..
..the ways you find people…
..gatekeepers telling you where to go. now everyone has a license to speak – it’s a question of who gets heard..t
begs a means to undo our hierarchical listening
ie: 2 convers as infra
22 min – in and out of wired -(caged ness)
23 min – Quinn Norton – he rejected the business world
Cory Doctorow – climbing back down the hill – which was pretty cool
hope for the flowers ness
24 min – Tim Berners Lee – gives www away for free – huge influence – no interest at all in cashing out
25 min – Tim – lots of little webs aren’t going to work – ..
..it’s not going to work unless the whole planet can get onboard..t
same is true for common\ing .. that’s why we keep getting/perpetuating tragedy of the non common
none of us if one of us ness
not enough to live in world as it is.. you should always be questioning… everything is open.. once i realized there were real serious/fundamental problems that i could address – i didn’t see a way i could forget that..t
the thing you can’t not do ness
27 min – Aaron was tremendously optimistic about life- even when he didn’t feel it
28 min – open library – watchdog.net – public access ness -books are a corporate legacy
open library ness
29 min – what got Aaron into so much trouble – how to bring public access to the public domain – like having a national park with a moat around it – Brewster Kahle
30 min – Stephen Shultze – finds pacer (access to legal documents in the us is a 10 billion/year business – abomination of public services – brain dead code – policy/roadblocks to the hilt – it’s a poll tax to the access to justice) – and Carl Malamud (public resource)- pacer alone makes 120 mill a year – which is illegal – only supposed to take in what is needed to maintain/reimburse costs to run it
Tim O’reilly – the law is the operating system of our democracy – and you have to pay to see it?
32 min – this is something that has to be a collaboration between a lot of people
e govt act – showing that pacer is illegal.. so pacer puts up 17 libraries for free access… so Malamud starts this thumb drive revolution.. as a joke – link went to oz video.. but Aaron wants to join the thumb drive core – intervention on the pacer problem – Shulze shows Swarz the code – and Aaron improves on it – which then works exponentially well
34 min – Malamud – i agree that 20 million pages of text exceeds the vision of the 17 trial libraries open – via pacer – but surprising a bureaucrat isn’t illegal...
35 min – Cory Doctorow – to this day i find it remarkable that anybody… thought that a fitting use for taxpayer dollars was investigating people on the grounds of making the law public..
38 min – licensing fees (that are often a duplicate pay – as already paid with tax dollars or govt grants – ie: to be public) are blocking people out of access to this scientific legacy of history of knowledge et al – it’s a legacy that should belong to us as a commons
imagining if focus would/could have been simply (from 21 min) finding our people.. documents/laws et al all irrelevant if we could first get to the energy of 8b alive people
literacy and numeracy both elements of colonialism/control/enclosure.. we need to calculate differently and stop measuring things
39 min – people work – publishes a paper – and at the very last stage – after all the work/thinking is done – the researcher has to hand over ownership to copyright.. to this multi billion dollar company – an entire economy built off voluntary labor – then the publisher sit at the very top and scrape off the cream- Christopher Soghoian
one publisher in britain made a profit of 3 billion last year – rep zoe lofgren
jstor is a small player in that story – but for some reason – the player Aaron decided to confront
45 min – bush making it criminal to hack (paraphrase) – Heymann et al – describing that hacker mindsets like money
46 min – on criminalizing stealing..
49 min – his stuff should have been left behind for mit and jstor to deal with … in a private/professional manner. it should have never gotten the attention of the criminal system. it just didn’t belong there. – Gabriella Coleman
49 min – just looking at the courthouse – should tell us we’re overdosing on sugar. m taibbi ness
50 min – everyone pushing Aaron to plead guilty..
53 min – Aaron turned it down – and Heymann doubled his efforts
57 min – Quinn – i hadn’t done anything interesting, let alone anything wrong. …i told them they were on the wrong side of history
58 – guerilla open access manifesto
1:00 – i regret that i said what i did – but my much larger regret is that we are ok with this..
1:03 – 4 felony accounts – put in solitary confinement – up to 35 yrs in prison, fine up to 1 mill – released same day jstor says – we’re not part of this..
1:05 – Heymann said using Aaron for deterrence… Robert Swartz
1:05:30 – it would be easier to understand the obama admin’s posture of supposedly being for deterrence if this was an admin that for instance – prosecuted arguably the biggest economic crime that this country has seen in the last 100 years, the crimes that were committed that led to the financial crisis on wall street..when you start deploying the non-controversial idea of deterrence only selectively you stop making a dispassionate analysis of lawbreaking and you start deciding to deploy law enforcement resources specifically on the basis of political ideology – David Sirota – and that’s not just undemocratic.. it’s supposed to be unamerican
1:07 – mit doesn’t defend Aaron – which seems crazy – they had moral authority to stop it in their tracks – and the incubate hacktivism…
1:08 – Aaron’s dad comparing what Jobs, Gates, et al, .. breaking rules just as well, but he said difference between Aaron and them – is that he wasn’t doing anything for money
1:09 – Aaron thought he could change the world by explaining it to people.
1:10 – sopa – it’s a bill about the freedom to connect(not about copyright) – via Peter E. – now i was listening – demand progress fall 2010 -David Segal
imagining if focus would/could have been simply (from 21 min) finding our people.. *documents/laws et al all irrelevant if we could first get to the energy of 8b alive people
ie: augmenting interconnectedness with 2 convers as infra via tech as it could be
*too much ness
Trevor Timm – sopa basically took a sledge hammer to what needed a scalpel
1:11 – makes everyone who runs a website a policeman – makes no sense to destroy the structure of the internet…
1:12 – David Sirota – the ones where all the money/corps are on one side and all the people are on the other
1:14 – i’d never met anyone that was able to operate on both the technological side and the campaign side – David Segal – congress caught off guard – the *nerd section – Jon Stewart – clarifying that they must mean experts – clueless members of congress rate the bill –
1:15 -the fact that it got as far as it did w/o them talking to any type of experts reflects how bad it was.. … there used to be an office that offered science and tech advice, … gingrich killed it – said it was a waste of money – Soghoian
1:16 – godaddy switches sides.. huge
Jimmy Wales blacks out wikipedia.. reddit, craigslist.. congress changes mind about sopa support
1:17 – sopa dies
1:20 – years before snowden – swarz on it
1:21 – Matt Stoller – why are they going after whistleblowers
1:22 – David Sirota – secrecy serves those who are already in power – this was a message from obama admin – that this is a threat – so we are going to make an example out of Aaron – to scare as many people as possible to not follow suit
1:24 – **Aaron’s last interview – he was asked about how he felt the fight was going:
you know, there’s sort of these two polarizing perspectives. right. everything is great. the internet has created all this freedom and liberty. and everything is going to be fantastic. or everything is terrible. the internet has created all these tools for cracking down and spying and you know, controlling what we say. and I think it’s both are true. right. the internet has done both. and both are kind of amazing and astonishing. and which one will win out in the long run.. is up to us. it doesn’t make sense to say oh one is doing better than the other. you know. they’re both true. and it’s up to uswhich ones we emphasize and which one’s we take advantage of because they’re both there and they’re both always going to be there.
13 felony counts, 1986 – computer fraud and abuse act – inspired by movie – war games – kid gets ability to launch a nuclear attack – not possible, esp not in the 80’s – but scared congress enough to enact the law
1:26 – the idea that criminal law has anything to say about any of these things is crazy – ie: be nice to everyone (in terms of service) – i would say – all of us are accused of crime – Cindy Cohn – legal director of eff
on computer fraud and abuse law – … i would say .. we are all breaking the law
1:28 – serious? – ways to go to congress and change the law? there’s got to be a better way.. congress ness has run a muck – why are we accepting this system as the only way. this is assuming we have/know what a democracy is.. no?
a way to go through congress – “like Swartz so masterfully did with sopa” – we don’t have energy/time/resources to tackle every law.. this reminds me of policy for charter schools as it was explained to me. ie: a typical district has 500 policies. if a charter wants to join – it can’t just delete any of those 500 policies – it has to do a 1-1 replacement. like a bureaucratic move to expand the metaphorical moat.
1:29 – a decision for the american people to make – through congress
really? perhaps if it worked like it says it works. (another case of us needing to set people free to useful/happy preoccupation)
poor use of prosecutorial discretion.. the hammer that the justice dept has to scare people with just gets bigger and bigger – you know you can’t roll the dice to live your life like that – Cindy
a machine that has made america the country with the highest rate of incarceration in the world…
1:30 – Bryan Stevenson – we have allowed ourselves to be captured by the politics of fear and anger (america largest rate of incarceration in the world) – anything we’re afraid of or angry about – instinctively creates a criminal justice intervention.. we’ve used jail/imprisonment/punishment to solve a whole host of problems that were never seen that way. …. this happens a lot in other areas .. only diff – people usually targeted/victimized are minority/poor
1:33 – Taren – he was brittle in a lot of ways – that was part of his brilliance.. he wasn’t a joyful person – but that’s different than being depressed. it was just too much. he didn’t want to do it anymore
1:34 – i thought – we’ve lost one of the most creative minds of our generation – Peter Eckersley
1:36 – Tim Berners Lee – Aaron is dead. Wanderers in this crazy world, we have lost a mentor, a wise elder. Hackers for right, we are one down, we have lost one of our own. Nurturers, carers, listeners, feeders, parents all, we have lost a child. Let us all weep.
1:38 – we are standing in a moment of time when great injustice is not touched – and in the middle of that time.. the govt finds that this is what they had to prosecute.. tragic.. lawrence lessig
dad (robert swartz – https://www.impossible-objects.com/team/): only question i’ll ask.. how could we further that legacy
Bob Swartz is an inventor and businessman and began developing Impossible Objects’ technology in 2009. Concurrently, and for over ten years, Bob has been a consultant on intellectual property at the MIT Media Laboratory. He has founded and operated a number of companies, including: a software company that developed a complete version of Unix and C Compilers licensed by a number of major computer corporations including Intel and Digital Equipment Corporation; a multi-million dollar advertising display manufacturing company; a telephony company; and patent licensing companies through which he has licensed his own patents to major corporations such as AT&T, Comcast and Verizon. Mr. Swartz studied mathematics as an undergraduate and was a graduate student in mathematics at MIT and University of Chicago and in computer science at Northwestern University.
1:40 – Aaron would ask – what is the most important thing you could be working on now – and if you’re not working on it – why aren’t you –
swartz most important law:
Cory on Jack – this is why what Aaron did is so important.. we can’t block the rabbit holes
1:42 – this truth of the universe is not just something policy makers use for figuring out the speed limit – Cory
2018 from mit – paywall (doc)
on global systemic change..
june 2014 – interview w/Brian Knappenberger – director of the internet’s own boy:
preview BY DAVID SIROTA
ON JANUARY 11, 2014
“How we stopped SOPA” at F2C:Freedom to Connect 2012, Washington DC on May 21 2012.
at 7:50 – wow – one time they come together it’s on a bill that could shut down the internet.
14 – the reason we won – everyone saw it as their responsibility to help
16 – they felt they were being mocked – and this had to be brought under control
19 – people rose up
20 – so dead – hard to believe it was real, but it will happen again, there are a lot of powerful people that want to clamp down on the internet – we can’t let that happen
21:30 – we won – because everyone made themselves the hero of the story – no one asked permission
feb 2015 – bbc screening review:
This was Aaron Schwartz. aaronsw.jottit.com/howtoget
great read, great insight.
I don’t know if it’s productive to speculate about that, but here’s a thing that I do wonder about this morning, and that I hope you’ll think about, too. I don’t know for sure whether Aaron understood that any of us, any of his friends, would have taken a call from him at any hour of the day or night. I don’t know if he understood that wherever he was, there were people who cared about him, who admired him, who would get on a plane or a bus or on a video-call and talk to him. – Cory Doctorow
every person needs to know.
perhaps we spend the next 10, 20, 5, 1 year…
perhaps we spend just one year.. on just that.
in public Ed.
accusations likened to – trying to arrest someone for checking out too many library books.
lament by Larry Lessig – prosecutor as bully
That person is gone today, driven to the edge by what a decent society would only call bullying. I get wrong. But I also get proportionality. And if you don’t get both, you don’t deserve to have the power of the United States government behind you.
For remember, we live in a world where the architects of the financial crisis regularly dine at the White House — and where even those brought to “justice” never even have to admit any wrongdoing, let alone be labeled “felons.”
Somehow, we need to get beyond the “I’m right so I’m right to nuke you” ethics that dominates our time. That begins with one word: Shame.
One word, and endless tears.
and great insight from Micah Daigle.
a time for silence – via lessig
from a livestreamed memorial – via Tantek Çelik (@t):
being a hacker is at the essence of advancing humanity. curiosity is not a crime. #aaronsw http://t.co/HJ4IICkh
and from danah boyd: http://www.zephoria.org/thoughts/archives/2013/02/02/mourning-and-public-ness.html
So here we are today, the world lacking a prodigious child whose intellect scared the shit out of everyone who knew him. – danah
No Starch Press and I have decided to release this free ebook version of Hacking the Xbox in honor of Aaron Swartz. As you read this book, I hope that you’ll be reminded of how important freedom is to the hacking community and that you’ll be inclined to support the causes that Aaron believed in.
As people, as individuals, as hackers, we need to oppose this trend and continue to do what we feel deep down in our hearts is right. While Aaron’s story came to a tragic end, I hope that in this book you will find an encouraging story with a happy ending. Without the right to tinker and explore, we risk becoming enslaved by technology; and the more we exercise the right to hack, the harder it will be to take that right away.
Singapore, March 2013
jan 11 2014 – remembering aaron:
Only slowly, it seems, did he come to learn that he possessed a body. This is my favorite thing he wrote: about the day “I looked up and realized I couldn’t read the street sign. I definitely used to be able to read that sign, but there it was, big and bright and green along the highway, and all I could make out was a blur. I had gone blind.” Legally blind, it turned out; and then when he got contact lenses, he gave us an account of what it felt like to leave Plato’s cave: “I had no idea the world really looked like this, with such infinite clarity. It looks like a modernist photo or a hyperreal film, everything in focus everywhere. Everyone kept saying ‘oh, do you see the leaves now?’ but the first thing I saw was not the leaves but the people. People, individuated, each with brilliant faces and expressions at gaits, the sun streaming down upon them. I couldn’t help but smile. It’s much harder being a misanthrope when you can see people’s faces.”
I didn’t understand anything about that part of his professional world; it was only that he somehow understood everything about my professional world.
All of our minds, each of us, contain a universe, but how is it that his mind contained fourteen or fifteen of them?
He was also the first person I knew who wrote five-word e-mails, no more information, and no less, than what he needed to convey.
from feb 2013:
Swartz blogged about closing his ninth-grade year by airing his grievances at a school assembly:
I stood up in front of the entire high school, swallowed hard, and read:
Everyday, millions of innocent children are unwillingly part of a terrible dictatorship. The government takes them away from their families and brings them to cramped, crowded buildings where they are treated as slaves in terrible conditions. For seven hours a day, they are indoctrinated to love their current conditions and support their government and society. As if this was not enough, they are often held for another two hours to exert themselves almost to the point of physical exhaustion, and sometimes injury. Then, when at home, during the short few hours which they are permitted to see their families they are forced to do additional mind-numbing work which they finish and return the following day.
This isn’t some repressive government in some far-off country. It’s happening right here: we call it school.
Neither Robert Ryshke nor other NSCDS sources could remember whether this actually happened. (“It would not be unlike Aaron to have done this,” Ryshke acknowledges.) Regardless, the story reflects his belief that high school was a malevolent enemy that needed to be vanquished. No matter what anyone else thought or said, Swartz knew he was making the right decision. (“He said he had tried to convince a lot of his classmates to drop out with him, and he hadn’t succeeded with any of them,” says Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman, describing Swartz’s memories of that time. “I can only imagine what their parents were thinking.”) In the summer of 2001, at age 14, Swartz withdrew from North Shore Country Day.
Kat and Vicky want to know why I eat breakfast alone reading a book, instead of talking to them. I explain to them that however nice and interesting they are, the book is written by an intelligent expert and filled with novel facts. They explain to me that not sitting with someone you know is a major social faux pas and not having a need to talk to people is just downright abnormal.
I patiently suggest that perhaps it is they who are abnormal. After all, I can talk to people if I like but they are unable to be alone. They patiently suggest that I am being offensive and best watch myself if I don’t want to alienate the few remaining people who still talk to me.
The summer before he entered Stanford, Swartz read two books that changed his worldview. Moral Mazes, which he would later call his all-time favorite book, is an ethnographic study of American corporate managerial culture. In it, Robert Jackall examines the institutional logic of the corporate world, and explains how diffused responsibility and organizational insularity create a culture that rewards managers for doing the wrong thing. In Understanding Power, which treads similar ground, linguist and political activist Noam Chomsky expounds on how power structures lead good people to do horrible things.
Both books are indictments of bureaucracies—of how giant organizations harm outsiders who come into contact with them and those insiders who refuse to play the game. For someone like Swartz, predisposed to resist feeling like a cog in a machine, this was the intellectual justification he needed to kiss off the industrial education complex. Like North Shore Country Day School before it, Stanford never stood a chance.
The debate over Swartz’s legacy is to be expected, perhaps even celebrated. Swartz did what he believed in and pushed everyone around him to do the same. But how could anyone agree on how to continue his mission when he’d worked on such a huge, varied collection of projects?
a qr film – deep enough..
There would be more people like Aaron Swartz if our schools and corporations and governments were configured to produce people like Aaron Swartz—if they were flexible and responsive and individualized, if they encouraged collaboration and individual initiative, if they pushed everyone to pursue their passions and their principles.
But that’s not how large systems work. The idealists will always be a minority, the few who care enough to try to perfect a world that will never be perfected.
but we can do so much better
In the month after his death, Swartz’s idealism has started to spread. The Internet makes it easy for anyone to play at being an activist—it only takes a second to re-tweet a petition. Swartz demanded more, arguing that we should all structure our lives around what we believe is important rather than what’s most remunerative.
Lawrence at ted 2014:
The Open Access Debate
4 min – did this put movement back? – unless moves are made in that regard there’s not going to be any progress to begin with..
found in naked capitalism via being curious about Matt:
Aaron Swartz was my friend, and I will always miss him. I think it’s important that, as we remember him, we remember that Aaron had a much broader agenda than the information freedom fights for which he had become known. Most people have focused on Aaron’s work as an advocate for more open information systems, because that’s what the Feds went after him for, and because he’s well-understood as a technologist who founded Reddit and invented RSS. But I knew a different side of him. I knew Aaron as a political activist interested in health care, financial corruption, and the drug war (we were working on a project on that just before he died). He was a great technologist, for sure, but when we were working together that was not all I saw.
In 2009, I was working in Rep. Alan Grayson’s office as a policy advisor. We were engaged in fights around the health care bill that eventually became Obamacare, as well as a much narrower but significant fight on auditing the Federal Reserve that eventually became a provision in Dodd-Frank. Aaron came into our office to intern for a few weeks to learn about Congress and how bills were put together. He worked with me on organizing the campaign within the Financial Services Committee to pass the amendment sponsored by Ron Paul and Alan Grayson on transparency at the Fed. He helped with the website NamesOfTheDead.com, a site dedicated to publicizing the 44,000 Americans that die every year because they don’t have health insurance. Aaron learned about Congress by just spending time there, which seems like an obvious thing to do. Many activists prefer to keep their distance from policymakers, because they are afraid of the complexity of the system and believe that it is inherently corrupting. Aaron, as with much of his endeavors, simply let his curiosity, which he saw as synonymous with brilliance, drive him.
from link to curiosity:
Words of Advice
What’s the secret? How can I boil down things I do into pithy sentences that make myself sound as good as possible? Here goes:
Be curious. Read widely. Try new things. I think a lot of what people call intelligence just boils down to curiosity.
- Say yes to everything. I have a lot of trouble saying no, to an pathological degree — whether to projects or to interviews or to friends. As a result, I attempt a lot and even if most of it fails, I’ve still done something.
- Assume nobody else has any idea what they’re doing either. A lot of people refuse to try something because they feel they don’t know enough about it or they assume other people must have already tried everything they could have thought of. Well, few people really have any idea how to do things right and even fewer are to try new things, so usually if you give your best shot at something you’ll do pretty well.
jan 2015 via Ben Wikler– how to honor Aaron:
aaron day 2015 – via livestream:
Scheduled for Nov 7, 2015
Aaron Swartz Day Celebration of hackers and whistleblowers that make the world a better place.
7:30 pm – Scenes From “From DeadDrop to SecureDrop” and a “Friends of Aaron” movie.
8:00 pm Speakers:
1. Giovanni Damiola (Open Library Project)
2. Garrett Robinson (Lead Programmer, SecureDrop)
3. Alison Macrina (Founder and Director, Library Freedom Project)
4. Brewster Kahle (Digital Librarian, Internet Archive)
5. Cindy Cohn (Executive Director, Electronic Frontier Foundation)
6. Roger Dingledine (Interim Executive Director, Tor Project) – notes from him on Jacob’s page
7. Micah Lee (Co-founder, Board Member, and Technologist at “The Intercept”) – on how aaron’s insight would have made it easier to whistleblowers to talk to journalists.. ie: not 6 mos like it took glenn to learn pgp to communicate with ed
8. Jacob Appelbaum (Security Expert seen in Citizen Four, Wikileaks volunteer) (Appearing remotely via Jitsi over Tor)
9. John Perry Barlow (EFF and Freedom of the Press Foundation co-founder)
10. Special Statement by Chelsea Manning in Support of the Third Annual Aaron Swartz Day and International Hackathon – serving 35 yrs… i doubt many in here feel tech is liberating… software is only a tool, tech only a toolbox.. extra hat we have to wear – the tech moralist hat –
perhaps a nother way to leapfrog to a global do-over..
www.. ps in the open .. et al
the boy who could change the world..
review by chelsea manning:
I feel like the world abandoned Aaron in his time of need. I feel like the world — myself included — took Aaron for granted. He intelligently and thoughtfully challenged everything and everyone: software companies, corporations, multimedia conglomerates, governments, and even modern school systems! Yet, in his final challenge — we only stood on the sidelines and rooted for him, waiting for him to win again. Instead, he lost. Then, we lost.
If Aaron had lived even a few decades longer, he really have could have changed the world, far surpassing the ways in which he already has. All is not lost though. With a little faith and a little luck, we still can.
So… what are we going to do?
for (blank)’s sake…
against school – via aaron
So why does it seem so much like a conspiracy? I think it’s because, in both instances, you’re saying things don’t work the way people have always believed they worked. From a young age, we’re told that the society we live in may have its share of problems, but it’s fundamentally sensible. Schools exist to give people an education, companies exist to make things people want, elections exist to give people a voice in how the system is run, newspapers exist to tell us what’s going on. That’s just how the world works.
Now it’s reasonable to believe that all of these things have flaws—that schools, for example, could do a better job of teaching students. After all, things can always be improved, sometimes quite a lot. But when you go further and say that schools are not only bad at teaching people, but that they’re not about teaching people at all—well, that’s when things get scary.
So the bosses develop a cover story: schools are about teaching people the things they need to know to survive in the world of business. It’s not true, of course—there’s no connection between the facts memorized in school and the skills needed on the job—but the story is convincing enough.
And so the spread of schools and factories destroys the American model of freedom.
The single-minded goal of maximizing test scores has been a blessing for the textbook market, which forces schools to buy expensive “evidence-based curricula” which has been “proven” to maximize test scores. The packages include not only
“The joy of finding things out” is banished from the classroom.
the boy who could change the world (notes/highlights.. reading actual hand held book – thanks al)
…so that their citizens know that if they go out on a limb and try something risky, someone will be there to catch them if things don’t work out.
Cory Doctorow‘s walkaway dedicated to Aaron
Aaron Swartz Day (@AaronSwartzDay) tweeted at 7:33 AM – 4 Nov 2017 :
Check for the URL at noon today on https://t.co/vYjGCIk3dh for live stream.
Live stream starts at 1 PM PST w/@BiellaColeman & @lisarein (http://twitter.com/AaronSwartzDay/status/926804614812336136?s=17)
mit called the cops.. that was really strange – did jstor get mit to act out of character..? did mit change character..? aaron made to be quiet..- brewster
so much clarity that what he had done was not illegal.. yet justice system so kafkaesque – i think he was such a threat because he was so hard to demonize – he was a really respected figure – people listened gabriella
lots of us have been working in this area for a very long time..stallman working on building a bubble in an oppressive regime.. in early 80s.. a lot of these changes meet w resistance.. demo that your service works better.. aaron led an open source life.. he just decided to make everything public.. a lot of people read his stuff.. in some ways he was crushed by it.. but.. don’t always live in fear.. you have more friends than you know.. more that will help.. if your mission is pure – aaron was more an upper.. modeling this.. – brewster
Susan Swartz (@beadmomsw) tweeted at 9:44 PM on Fri, Jan 17, 2020:
I know I recommended this article after someone posted it the other day but I hadn’t read it since it came out in 2013. I read it tonight…and it has really hit me hard.
grew up in highland park il
Throughout their relationship, Norton and Swartz had a spirited debate about activism and authority. She believed the system to be inherently corrupt and beyond repair, while he believed institutions could be changed from within. In July 2008 Swartz wrote a document titled “Guerilla Open Access Manifesto,” which was, in a sense, an expression of his belief that organized action could work to keep powers in check. “Information is power,” it began. “But like all power, there are those who want to keep it for themselves. The world’s entire scientific and cultural heritage, published over centuries in books and journals, is increasingly being digitized and locked up by a handful of private corporations.” Swartz ended the manifesto with a call to arms. “We need to take information, wherever it is stored,” he wrote, “make our copies and share them with the world.”
In an online post about Franz Kafka’s The Trial, Swartz wrote, “I found it was precisely accurate – every single detail perfectly mirrored my own experience. This isn’t fiction, but documentary.” Yet in person rarely did he exhibit any indication of the dark cloud the case had become.
hello Bob.. (i hope this email reaches you)
at the end of internet’s own boy.. you say.. ‘only question i’ll ask.. how could we further that legacy’
i know Aaron’s legacy has been furthered and will continue to be..
but this time (100th?) watching the documentary.. what especially struck me was Aaron’s focus on connecting people.. and on who gets heard.. (ie: at 21 min and 1:10)
i have a ginormous gut feeling (& 10 yrs experimentation).. that if we focused on just that..
1\ every voice being heard.. everyday..
2\ and then using that data to connect people..
we could leapfrog Aaron’s vision/mission/legacy past all the suffocating bureaucracies .. to a deep change of all the things he questioned as being wrong..
i would love to have a conversation with you about how this could happen.. especially now.. with the potential and opportunity this pandemic situation could offer us.