Hackers

Roberto Simanowski interviewing David Golumbia:

I have begun some work in which I try to disambiguate the “technical” definitions of “hacker” from its actual deployment in social discourse, and my tentative conclusion is that “hacker” means something like “identified with and desirous of power, and eager to see oneself and have others see oneself as possessing more power than others do.” That isn’t what I see as a welcome political formation.

Interview at Dichtung Digitalt

2 thoughts on “Hackers

  1. Hmmm…re “hackers” it’s interesting to see how after the NSA stuff they are also becoming “whistleblowers” and how along some lines (and perhaps more suitably) they are blending in with “makers”…

    1. Agreed hackers overlap with makers in a lot of ways – and maybe maker culture is a less charged place for hacker culture?

      Re: whistleblowers, my own feeling is that Snowden is a whistleblower – he certainly seems prepared for the life of an unprotected whistleblower – but I think the “hacker” label only confuses the issue and his status (the NY Times article on this really fusses it up but ultimately reveals he used wget, a free open source tool over fifteen years old, to get the documents).

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