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Table of Contents
Guerrilla Open Access:
Terms Of Struggle
Memory of the World
Recursive Publics and Open Access
What if We Aren't the Only
Guerrillas Out There?
In the 1990s, the Internet offered a horizon from which to imagine what society
could become, promising autonomy and self-organi
hing had to be done about it, but none of the options
available offered any consolation. It made no sense to move
three thousand books to the other side of this continent. We
decided to emigrate, and not to take our past with us, abandon
Drip, drip, drip, my tears flow as I throw the books into this
last crate, drip, drip, drop. Sometimes I look at my partner,
working next to me, and I can see on her face that she is going
through the same emotions. I sometimes catch the sight of
w devoted eccentrics who refuse to embrace the obvious
The e-book is ephemeral. It has little past and even less chance to preserve the
fingerprints of its owners over time. It is impersonal, efficient, fast, abundant, like
fast food or plastic, it flows through the hand like sand. It lacks the embodiment, the
materiality which would give it a life in a temporal dimension. If you want to network the
dead and the unborn, as is the ambition of every book, then you n
e flat-rate, the all-you-can-eat
format of accessing books is at the moment only available to audiobooks, but rarely
for e-books. I wonder why.
Did you notice that there are no major book piracy lawsuits?
Have everything, and own a few.
Of course there is the lawsuit against Sci-Hub and Library Genesis in New York, and
there is another one in Canada against aaaaarg, causing major nuisance to those who
have been named in these cases. But this is almost negligible c
do control. But this path of
self-enlightenment is quickly waning as less and less data sources about us are freely
available to us.
Who is downloading books and articles? Everyone. Radical open access? We won,
if you like.
I strongly believe that information on the self is the foundation
of self-determination. We need to have data on how we operate,
on what we do in order to know who we are. This is what is being
privatized away from the academic community, this
nnot be stopped anymore.
No outside power can stop it and take that from us. Drip, drip,
drop, this is what I console myself with, as another handful of
books land among the waste.
But the data we lose now will not be so easy to reclaim.
My goal in this paper is to tell the story
of a grass-roots project called Data
that I helped to co-found shortly after,
and in respo
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