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Linuxcare: Arne Flones: Electronic Brains II, The Geek Gap: A Call to Action

Apr 11, 2000, 17:42 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Arne W. Flones)

[ Thanks to Linuxcare for this link. ]

"In my March 21 column, Electronic Brains, I related my disgust for laws that treat digital technology as special merely because they're computer-based. While writing that column, I pondered the origin of bad technology policies. I now believe the answer is staring us right in the face. Look in a mirror! It is our obligation to educate the media and enlighten our elected officials about technological issues. If we don't do this, the results are laws like the DMCA, UCITA and the recently revised U.S. cryptography policies."

"The free software movement forms the core constituency of the larger Internet-centered technological revolution. We know this to be true because amongst our members are the very people who invented the Internet. Unfortunately, we still have to struggle to be heard outside our core. We have our own information infrastructure and even our own press. But when I listen to the radio, watch television news, or read a newspaper, the geek gap is all too apparent. What is the geek gap? That yawning chasm between fact and public opinion. Particularly when it comes to topics dear to geeks, the accuracy of information in the press is abysmal. If our message is getting out at all, it isn't very effective...."

"Apathy is definitely not the answer here. We need some of our people in the halls of government pushing our agenda. We need some of our people as major media spokespersons. We need some of our people to educate a technologically ignorant populace. We need some of our people elected to public office. We need to vote in elections. Only then will we have a voice in the very revolution we founded. It's time for geeks to actively move into the political sphere."

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