free software

As a part of our (Galia Offri & mine) involvement in this year’s Transmediale Festival in Berlin we participated in a panel discussion titled “Lost in The Open”. The focus of the discussion which I moderated was to hash out some of the challenges for Free Culture beyond its epic battles against centralized institutions, record companies, major film studios, copyright regimes…

I am including here the videos for the full panel beginning with introductions by the 5 panelists and continuing with the full discussion and audience Q&A.

“We prepare every year the biggest Free Culture show ever” (Simona Levy)

 
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Cover to the 2nd Edition

"As new technologies come into play, people become less and less convinced of the importance of self expression. Teamwork succeeds private effort."

—Marshall McLuhan

Despite these words, the true nature of collaborative culture as a form of creative expression in the context of digital and network technologies has remained elusive, a buzzword often falling prey to corporate and ideological interests. This book was first created by 6 core collaborators, as an experimental five day Book Sprint in January 2010. Developed under the aegis of transmediale.10, this third publication in the festival's parcours series resulted in the initiation of a new vocabulary on the forms, media and goals of collaborative practice.

Project Created: 
September 2010
 
Projects: Collaborative Futures
People: Adam Hyde, Alan Toner, Astra Taylor, kanarinka, Marta Peirano, Michael Mandiberg, Mike Linksvayer, Mushon Zer-Aviv, Sissu Tarka
Research: Open Culture
Project Type: Activism, Design, Open Source, Web, Writing and Publishing
Tags: book, book sprint, booki, collaboration, creative-commons, flossmanuals, free culture, free software, networks
Partner Organizations:

I’ve been teaching a class on the subject for 3 years, I’ve been giving talks on the subject for almost a year. Finally I set down and wrote the essay for the second edition of the Collaborative Futures book. On Sunday (Aug 1st 2010) I gave a talk based on this essay at DebConf the Debian community conference. The title of the talk is “Beyond Sharing: Open Source Design”. The (high-pitch audio) presentation is available on the Debian site (requires Firefox or another OGV playing browser).

 
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Gabriella Coleman is an anthropologist who examines ethics and online collaboration as well as the role of the law and new media technologies in extending and critiquing liberal values and sustaining new forms of political activism. Between 2001-2003 she conducted ethnographic research on computer hackers primarily in San Francisco, the Netherlands, as well as those hackers who work on the largest free software project, Debian. She is completing a book manuscript "Coding Freedom: Hacker Pleasure and the Ethics of Free and Open Source Software" (under contract with Princeton University Press) and is starting a new project on peer to peer patient activism on the Internet.

 

What do we mean by ‘freedom’? Should Free/Libre/Open Source Software (FLOSS) necessarily be powered by radical politics of ownership and collaboration? Or is the latching of “Free Software” ideological baggage limiting the full transformative power of “Open Source”. How are these questions informed by licenses? Are some licenses more open than others? More ethical than others? This emotional debate has been in the heart of FLOSS from its early days and has created camps and animosities within the community.

Upgrade! NY continues its program series on open source as it relates to activism and creative practice. Join us for a discussion and debate on what constitutes freedom within the Open Source and Free Culture movements. We will examine the strong ideological differences through a provocative panel discussion with Gabriella Coleman and Zachary Lieberman.

 
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