Mark Stahlman (via RadioMail) on Tue, 27 May 1997 19:02:42 +0200 (MET DST)

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Re: <nettime> The Piran Nettime Manifesto


Great work!  Thanks for all the help, kindness and provocations in
Ljubljana.  Due to a transport strike, Ted Byfield and I couldn't attend
the final hours but, nonetheless, our dreams were with you.

On the manifesto:

-- Nettime declares Information War.

Information War is also a name used to describe an attack on traditional
war-fighting capabilities by exagerating the importance of information and
computers in real-world conflicts.  It's the name for everything from
smart-bombs to aggressive new surveilance techniques and it's like putting
Toffler et al in charge of the war machine.  Is it possible that what you
meant was to declare war on these utopian-warriors and their attempt to
virtuallize all reality through a cloud of total propaganda?

-- We denounce pan-capitalism and demand reparations. Cyberspace is where
your bankruptcy takes place.

As we've discussed, "capital" now rules globally and it, in turn, has many
aspects.  "Productive capital" is quite different from "Finance capital",
for instance.  Furthermore, real bankruptcy for this system would likely
mean a collapse of international payments settlements agreements and very
real agony of apocalytic proportions.  Is this our goal?  Burn, baby burn?

-- Nettime launches crusade against data barbarism in the virtual holyland.

Do you mean propaganda?  Why use neo-logisms when perfectly good words
already exist?  Neat metaphor but who are the "infidels" and what is
"fidelity", exactly?

-- We celebrate the re-mapping of the Ex-East/Ex-West and the return to

Yes, this is truly the reason why nettime exists, isn't it?

-- We respect the return to "alt.cultures" and pagan software structures.
("It's normal!").

So, at last a positive program we can all plug into!  Revive paganism
without the barbarism!  Yeah!  That's funny, I thought that's what the
techno-utopians were aiming for as they re-program humanity.  Hey, which
side are we on anyway?

-- Deprivatize corporate content, liberate the virtual enclosures and storm
the content castles!

Is there really anything in there that you want?  Remember, the audience is
the content.

-- Refuse the institutionalization of net processes.

I'm hearing about some amazing plans by the U.S. (Gore/Hundt) to
"take-over" the Internet.  We might have to do more than "refuse" if we are
to be effective.

-- We reject pornography on the net unless well made.

As in "Hairy Babes" or what?

-- We are still, until this day, rejecting make-work schemes and libertarian
  declarations of independence.

That's a relief.  So I guess the rumor that WIRED was funding a nettime
event in San Francisco isn't true then?

-- NGOs are the future oppressive post-governments of the world.

Yup, they should be called PGO's -- or for those of you familiar with the
philosophical cartoon about that wily possum and his friends, PoGO's.

-- We support experimental data transfer technology.

Exactly who's experimenting on whom here?

-- Participate in the Nettime retirement plan, zero work by age 40.

I highly recommend it.  I found that 10+ years of fairly commericial work
was a neccessary first step, however.

-- The critique of the image is the defense of the imagination.

And, hermetic equals hermenuetic, too.  However, imagination is not the
same as creativity.  But, you all know that.

-- Nettime could be Dreamtime.

Since only conscious humans dream, I would hope so.

So, let's see.  We are against:

(Whomever we are declaring "Information War" against), pan-capitalism,
data-barbarism, institutionalization, badly made pornography,
libertarianism and NGO's. 

And, we are for:

Reparations, bankruptcy (for our enemies), re-mapping geography, paganism,
deprivatization, well made pornography, experimental data transfer,
retirement, critique, imagination and dreamtime.

Well, I'm for Humanity, Creativity and Productivity (and having arguments
with people's mothers) which overlaps quite a lot with this manifesto, I
think.  Have a great time at the press conference; I wish I could be there.

Mark Stahlman
New Media Associates
New York City
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