95 Theses of Geek Activism

In the vein of the cluetrain manfesto, Devanshu posted a great post with 95 points about geek activism. Honestly there pretty awesome, but here's my favorate…

  • Violating a license agreement is not theft.
  • All corporations are not on your side.
  • Everything will enter the public domain some day- even Mickey Mouse.
  • Trusted computers must not be trusted.
  • Proprietary data formats must never store public information.
  • Fair use is a good thing.
  • Use multiple operating systems regularly so you truly understand interoperability.
  • Data mining will not stop terror.
  • Express your opinion in public
  • Blog
  • Security is a trade-off- what are you willing to give up?
  • Use Creative Commons
  • Understand the difference between civil disobedience and breaking the law.
  • Support the free, public domain archives of information.
  • Undermine censorship by publishing information censored in oppressive countries.
  • Voicing your views in a Slashdot comment thread is good, in your own blog is better, but in places that non-geeks frequent is best.
  • Have a global perspective in ideas of geek civil liberties, intellectual property rights and so forth. Do you like your country’s policies in this respect? Can you help people from another country?
  • Read more
  • Make sure that if a vendor locks you in, you lock them out.
  • Linux is no longer a philosophy- it is a good piece of software. Use it if it fits your needs.
  • More information available to the most number of people is a good thing.
  • Vote
  • Read our modern geek philosophers- read Bruce Perens, Cory Doctorow, Bruce Sterling and even Richard Stallman. Read Schneier to find practical reasons why stupid security mechanisms are stupid. Read them even if you disagree with them- it will help frame your point of view.
  • DRM only keeps an honest user honest.
  • Be proud of being a geek, a gamer, a privacy advocate, promoter of free speech and an innovator without fear of litigation, of government or restrictions on liberties- a geek activist.

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Author: Ianforrester

Senior firestarter at BBC R&D, emergent technology expert and serial social geek event organiser.