Re: Italian Net Strike Against WTO N30 - Early example of NET STRIKE

From Chuck0 <>
Date Wed, 20 Oct 1999 13:49:40 -0400
References <>

[: hacktivism :]

pj lilley wrote:
> [: hacktivism :]
> On Wed, 20 Oct 1999 wrote:
> > Philipp wrote:
> > > > [: hacktivism :] > > > > This was posted on the N30 list. Not sure
> > what they mean by a 'Net Strike'. > > i guess its something like
> > workers refuse to work and go out on the street to > demonstrate. >
> > perhaps they try to make ISPs close logins for a day or something...
>    Yes, Phillip, it would be wonderful if folks on this list were actually
> working towards organizing digital workers to refuse to work when their
> demands were not met.  That is of course the traditional meaning of the
> word "strike".   However, as Ricardo points out here, the "net strike" is
> another one of those useless media stunts which do not organize labour,
> nor even a successful technical sabotage.
>   It's "just" art, a wonderful sentiment, without any actual labour power.
> Like asking the US government nicely to please relent on its
> low-intensity war against the mayan peoples.   Without the power to
> force the US government, it will have purely moralistic and propaganda
> value, which, according to history, is very easily absorbed into US
> "freedom of speech" propaganda (see NY Times article on EDT), and will
> not effect any lasting change on US policy.
> If you are interested in organizing labour to build a real "strike"
> against capital, perhaps you might try the IWW, instead of the vaguely
> defined media whoring which this hacktivism list seems to be about.  The
> IWW, aka. the Industrial Workers of the World, is actively seeking to
> solidify section 560 of the union, which is communications workers.  You
> can find out more about this drive at    Grassroots groups aligned
> with labour in Seattle are working towards building some sort of general
> strike against the WTO, and that, with wide enough participation, may
> effectively raise the social costs enough for the bosses to pause.
>    The EDT description below, claiming to represent 'grassroots groups
> mobilizing cyberpower' does not seem to have an analysis of power that
> incorporates criticism of capital, nor does it recognize the power of
> workers "with their hands in their pockets", instead of on their mouse
> buttons.  Obviously, I disagree with this approach, and have tried
> repeatedly to open up this discussion, but the media-ego factor has
> blocked this kind of collective organizing, in favour of
> alienation-increasing push-button politics.   I think that sucks, and i
> regret allowing my labour at TAO to be seen publicly as supporting the EDT
> strategy.
> sincerely,
>   -=pj=-
>   (tao toronto / iww)

PJ is right on here. There are too many tech workers who have been
working overtime on Y2K stuff. They should take the first week of
January off and then join the IWW.

IWW IU560 has a new hacktivism project in the works, for tech workers,
which should be quite sexy and popular.

I don't care much for EDT, preferring instead to build alternatives to
the existing capitalist order. I had a small victory today, of sorts. I
discovered that CNN linked to one of my pages from a "recommended links"
section of one of their pages. It's nice to see that webmasters working
for the big guys recognize the quality of DIY Internet journalism.

But I'm not going to stand in the way of people who want to do things
like EDT. There's plenty of room to try experiments and no "correct
way." The EDT experiment has been more successful in hacking the media
than websites. The efficacy of this approach will wear off when
mainstream journalists realize that they are being manipulated in the
same fashion as traditional leftist (or whatever persuasion) street
protests. But I hope that the EDT activists can help raise some
awareness out there about the hypocrisy of the government worrying about
"cyberterrorists" and "Electronic Pearl Harbors" when it is doing the
same stuff, or worse, to people and governments around the world.

Groundzero GMB

Free Leonard Peltier!

"A society is a healthy society only to the degree 
that it exhibits anarchistic traits." 
        - Jens Bjørneboe

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