Shorter working week redux

by Chris Bertram on January 19, 2012

Last week’s nef event on shorter working week, which I blogged about a few days ago, is now available to watch via the LSE channel. Enjoy.

Not long ago, I read Daniel Ellsberg’s[1] autobiography, Secrets, and also watched the film, The Most Dangerous Man in America. A striking feature of the book was that Ellsberg’s biggest problem in leaking the Pentagon Papers was the logistical difficulty of making 20 or so copies of a 7000 page cache of documents. It took him and a couple of helpers several months, IIRC. 

Now of course, such a task is easy, as demonstrated by Ellsberg’s successor (allegedly Bradley Manning) who supplied vast quantities of classified documents to Wikileaks. On the other hand, if Ellsberg had been 20 or so years earlier, he wouldn’t even have been able to make a single copy. [2]

Our blackout yesterday as a protest against SOPA and PIPA reflects a simple fact about the Internet – it is, in essence a way of making and distributing vast numbers of copies of documents of all kinds.

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