[Air-L] CFP: Expanding the frontiers of hacking (Nathaniel Poor)

Tim Jordan timothy.jordan at kcl.ac.uk
Wed Jun 15 01:39:54 PDT 2011

Doesn't hacking mean all of the things people mention? Including the 
bleeding into organised crime that the last 10 years seems to have seen? 
Whereas that connection would have been pretty much false for the 
1980s-early1990s hacking (as in illicit computer intrusion) groups, it 
certainly doesn't seem so false nowadays. And I'll even add something 
not really mentioned hacktivism, which seems interestingly absent.

All of these terms are contestable but we should have some awareness of 
the changing history of the term, the sources of that history (Levy's 
Hacker Ethic has a lot to answer for), the difficulty of data and so on. 
Which are some of the points already made. Trying to claim the title of 
'hacker' for one component of what is a wider community which is also in 
conflict with itself, doesn't seem a useful way to develop greater 
understanding. The point is hacking means nearly all the things or is 
part of the things listed in these arguments; so what does that make 
hacking? I'd argue it's a particular attitude to technology and society 
which can be seen in Electronic Disturbance Theatre's Floodnet and in 
Stuxnet, and Anonymous' use of ddos software, and in Free Softwares 
rewriting of code. Maybe we should think about the 'and'.

Oh, and hackers who break laws do get caught, have always gotten caught 
and will continue to get caught. Not all of them, but not all bank 
robbers get caught either.

Dr Tim Jordan,
Senior Lecturer,
Culture, Media and Creative Industries,
Digital Humanities,
Creative Arts Administrative Centre,
Room 5D, D Floor,
Chesham Building,
King's College London,
London WC2R 2LS,

Phone: +44 (0)20 78481100

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