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Re: <nettime> If Only Indymedia Learnt To Innovate
Brian Holmes on Sun, 16 Nov 2008 16:33:54 +0100 (CET)


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Re: <nettime> If Only Indymedia Learnt To Innovate


Naeem Mohaiemen wrote:

> People give all their data to large corporations-- you're damn right
> that's a concern, but IMC created that opportunity by not changing
> with the time.
> 
> To paraphrase the Village Voice, the left stays pure and makes street
> theater while the right (and center) takes control of the levels of
> power.

Indymedia was THE great inspiration and vector of the movement of 
movements. On Friday I was looking for pictures of the Rome demos with 
an Italian friend and I said, how about Indymedia? No, it's dead in 
Italy. At the RNC in St. Paul I still found Indymedia useful and I was 
glad to have it, along with I Witness Video streaming over Youtube and 
BlipTV. The eclipse of the IMCs as an essential communication circuit 
has been the clearest sign of the decline in the global movement. But 
the persistence of the network is still one of the big gains of the Left 
since Seattle.

The Yossarian article posted by Anna is fascinating to read, specially 
the bit about the labor newspapers in the 19th century. At that time, 
the labor movement, by its very definition, was composed of people 
working for capitalist industries. Their organizations started inside 
the factories and moved outside into the world of picket lines, press, 
politics, parties and even insurrectionalism. I'd say, fuck the purity, 
let's live in this society of ours. Marxists understood capitalism as a 
juggernaut you could ride all the way to the point where it morphs into 
something better operating on transformed principles. Too many 
anarchists seem to think that they can live outside it and keep their 
hands clean. If you got, it came by a corporation. First of all the 
network, the underlying cables and hardware and also the very machine 
you are using. I understand and respect the value of non-proprietary 
code, I run Linux and everytime I install a new application I am deeply 
impressed with the beauty and functionality of the system. But I'm a 
hardcore ideologist and I need to communicate with people who aren't. 
Unemployment is going to go shooting up over the course of this winter 
and throughout the year, while foreclosures and bankruptcies leave 
hundreds of thousands in the lurch. People are going to be asked to 
swallow political decisions far removed from their interest or any 
vision of society that could include the grassroots. Do you ask a 
first-time protester to learn a code of honor keeping her digital self 
inviolate from the world that everyone is living in? Or do you put a map 
of the day's events and the general political situation in her hands? 
That is the question on which Indymedia stands or folds. Imho.

thanks to all those who still make it happen,

Brian


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