You can't solve problems by breaking the net

Cory Doctorow

Thursday 5 December 2013 17:00 - 18:30

Ship Street Lecture Theatre, Jesus College

Please email your name and affiliation to events@oii.ox.ac.uk or telephone +44 (0)1865 287210.

This event is part of OII Politics and the Internet Seminar Series

Abstract

The Internet is the nervous system of the 21st century. Everything we do today involves the Internet and everything we do tomorrow will require it. As a result, every problem we experience will have some intersection with the Internet, and will invite the same solution we’ve gotten in the fights over obscenity and copyright infringement: can’t you just break the Internet a little, so that it fixes my problem? In every case, the cure is worse than the disease, and the bad news is, this is only getting worse. What do we tell the government and the general population when they ask us to solve their (real) problems with our network configuration? As stewards of the Internet, and as citizens of the world, we must demand real solutions, not the security syllogism that goes, "Something must be done! I have done something. Therefore, something has been done."

Please note that seminars will be conducted ‘off-the-record’ under Chatham House rules.

Each of these seminars will be followed by a short drinks reception.

About the speaker

Cory Doctorow

Cory Doctorow is a science fiction novelist, blogger and technology activist. He is the co-editor of the popular weblog Boing Boing (boingboing.net), and a contributor to The Guardian, the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, Wired, and many other newspapers, magazines and websites. He was formerly Director of European Affairs for the Electronic Frontier Foundation (eff.org), a non-profit civil liberties group that defends freedom in technology law, policy, standards and treaties. He holds an honorary doctorate in computer science from the Open University (UK), where he is a Visiting Professor; in 2007, he served as the Fulbright Chair at the Annenberg Center for Public Diplomacy at the University of Southern California. His novels have been translated into dozens of languages and are published by Tor Books, Titan Books (UK) and HarperCollins (UK) and simultaneously released on the Internet under Creative Commons licenses that encourage their re-use and sharing, a move that increases his sales by enlisting his readers to help promote his work. He has won the Locus and Sunburst Awards, and been nominated for the Hugo, Nebula and British Science Fiction Awards. His latest young adult novel is HOMELAND, the bestselling sequel to 2008's LITTLE BROTHER. His latest novel for adults is RAPTURE OF THE NERDS, written with Charles Stross and published in 2012. His New York Times Bestseller LITTLE BROTHER was published in 2008. His latest short story collection is WITH A LITTLE HELP, available in paperback, ebook, audiobook and limited edition hardcover. In 2011, Tachyon Books published a collection of his essays, called CONTEXT: FURTHER SELECTED ESSAYS ON PRODUCTIVITY, CREATIVITY, PARENTING, AND POLITICS IN THE 21ST CENTURY (with an introduction by Tim O'Reilly) and IDW published a collection of comic books inspired by his short fiction called CORY DOCTOROW'S FUTURISTIC TALES OF THE HERE AND NOW. THE GREAT BIG BEAUTIFUL TOMORROW, a PM Press Outspoken Authors chapbook, was also published in 2011.

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