On February 25th, the Center for Copyright Information, in cooperation with America's five largest internet service providers, launched a new "six-strike" alert system they hope will change illegal downloading for good.
Every day, the internet is inundated with more information, and more data to be to be categorized, organized, scrubbed, and filed away in a timely manner. Millions of miniscule tasks need to be performed each day to keep things running smoothly. Computers can do some of this mind-numbing work; other tasks are done piecemeal by hundreds of thousands of people for almost no money; Amazon Mechanical Turk is a marketplace for this kind of work. Ellen Cushing is staff writer for The East Bay Express, she wrote about the work called “micro-tasking,” which pays a pittance, drawing comparisons to working in a sweatshop.
Jonathan Harris is working to make the internet, or at least his corner of it, a more human experience by giving regular people the tools to become storytellers. As creator of Cowbird, he has built an online haven for vulnerable human thoughts, ideas, emotions, and stories.
The 1995 film “Hackers”, a young Angelina Jolie and baby-faced Johnny Lee Miller star as digital rebels dressed in a punk aesthetic with the power to takeover anything that dares to exist on the internet. Nearly two decades later, it’s clear that that hackers can’t be identified by dress, ethnicity, or any other one specific trait, but evidence of their presence and power in our increasingly digital world is everywhere.