Looks Like New: What happened to hacktivism?

The cultures of computer hacking have made their way from marginal subcultures to becoming driving forces in the world as we know it. Facebook’s headquarters is on a street called Hacker Way. A hack of the Democratic National Committee’s emails helped elect the current US president. Free Software produced by volunteer hackers around the world powers the internet. Hackers have been noble whistleblowers, supporters of authoritarian states, and White supremacists. Our guide to it all is anthropologist Gabriella Coleman, who has immersed herself in these cultures for many years now, the author of several books and co-founder of a new website on hacker ephemera, Hack_Curio.

 

 

MEDLab’s radio show and podcast, Looks Like New, asks old questions about new tech.

Each month, host Nathan Schneider speaks with someone who works with technology in ways that challenge conventional narratives and dominant power structures. The name comes from the phrase “a philosophy so old that it looks like new,” repeated throughout the works of Peter Maurin, the French agrarian poet and co-founder of the Catholic Worker movement.

You can hear Looks Like New the fourth Thursday of every month at 6 p.m., or online as a podcast on iTunes and Stitcher.