I liked what 26 year old programmer / activist Aaron Swartz said recently about the stillborn SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and in August I wrote about his Demand Progress organization in an article titled DemandProgress.org seems to be on the right track. He’s now dead, after apparently committing suicide yesterday.
For the past year he’s been under federal indictment for the theft of 4.8 million JSTOR (Journal Storage) documents from MIT. He intended to make them freely available for download by anyone. His actions raised questions about the ownership and publication of academic papers.
Previously, he and others did a similar thing with legal case law documents — public domain material — that resided behind a paywall in a library named PACER. They downloaded from PACER, then uploaded the documents to a free library that they dubbed RECAP.
His friend Cory Doctorow wrote in a eulogy: RIP, Aaron Swartz:
we have all lost someone today who had more work to do, and who made the world a better place when he did it.
New York Times article: Aaron Swartz, Precocious Programmer and Internet Activist, Dies at 26
Lessig Blog, v2: Prosecutor as bully
Visit my website: http://russbellew.com
© Russ Bellew · Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA · phone 954 873-4695