Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Vienna Document

Some headlines from the Vienna Document by the Open Cultures Working Group hosted by "Towards a Culture of Open Networks" - a collaborative program developed by Sarai CSDS (Delhi), Waag Society (Amsterdam) and World-Information.Org (Vienna).

While global information cities increasingly resemble neo-medieval city states, market concentrations establish a dominion over knowledge. On the way to information feudalism, diversity seems to loose out.

We applaud all initiatives that reclaim the benefits of new communication technologies for the common public.

We know that the future is too precious to leave it to experts; digital human rights in everyday life are everyone's concern.

We trust nodes open of information cultures to explore the diversity of choices in the shaping of information societies based on semiotic democracy.

We recognize that street level open intelligence is of high public value and a cultural process that is highly dependent on information climate and environment conditions.

We do not accept a world where popular culture and human heritage is fenced in and IP restriction management separates us from our own thoughts.

We appreciate the fact that boundaries between users and producers become permeable in new communication environments and new practices dissolve traditional notions of authorship.

We are committed to critically observing the mindsets of possession and the creation of scarcity as processes implementing control in the information economy.

We refuse to live in an information society where nothing belongs to all of us, but everything is owned by cartels, locking human knowledge into the vaults of private interests.

We acknowledge that knowledge is for those who do, not for those who don't, because cultural progress implies that ideas emerge from exchanges, from communication, from interaction.

We do not want a world where you need a license to whistle a song or access your own memories.

We value information as a human resource of cultural expression rather than a commodity to be sold to consumers.

We anticipate a silent spring in Information Society's landscapes when even a bird's song becomes subject of copyright control.

We realize that intangible information resources raise the issue of a digital ecology, the need to understand ecosystems constituted by information flows through various media.

We urge to ask who benefits from technology that is never neutral, empowerment and participation or domination and containment.

We reaffirm that security concerns are not an excuse for pervasive surveillance and control environments linking personal profiles and producing social sorting and segregation.

Just to remind myself...

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