This is the last rerun edition of wiseup radio. The reruns of 2018 always include a short update on the topic and this rerun is in some ways special. This show dates back to december 2012 and features the talk „maximum outreach total control“ and focuses on the gap between the utopian opportunity to communicate beyond borders with millions and the dystopian aspect of lacking protection and privacy in the digital age; it was presented at the Elevate Festival, Graz in October 2012. (Back in 2012 the moderation of wiseup radio was still in German language, but the update and talk itself are in English) Eventhough this show is concearned mainly with music it follows different aspects related to music and this involves also technology and computers which is one of the issues at stake in this show. Because of the festival at which the talk was recorded the short title of the show was „elevate christmas“.
This was even in 2012 somewhat ambivalent as the issue of the talk, which is first and foremost privacy in the internet - seemed already more scary and alarming than elevating. After 6 years this has become even more complicated as local and international laws seem to protect our privacy less and less. Privacy in the internet remains a crucial if not existancial issue and is today even harder to achive and to maintain. The talk is also about the project and software TOR- the onion router. This issue gained complexity after the incidents happening around the TOR project in 2015/2016 as one of their most popular representatives Jacob Applebaum had to face a range of allegations and he is one of the two invited speakers in this discussion. Due to this incident I deleted the show from the wiseupradio archive as rumours and discussions were reaching a peak and made it necessary for me to somehow comment the show. This is what I am doing now. I hoped that more time and information would point out a meaningful direction. But things seemed to grow more complex as this incident touches upon a lot of crucial topics – from the proposed issues of social misbeahviour to the abuse of power to sexual harrassment, down to the question when it is helpful to make private issues public, especcially if they might damage the larger issue and community – down to the question of how to deal with such issues within a community – in this case the TOR community or in a bigger perspective the tech or hacker community. Who should we believe if several truths are colliding? What are the facts, what are the fictions, what is good journalism in such a case? How can individuals and communities be protected? When do we need a code of conduct and how does it need to be enforced? These are just some of the many questions that were at stake in this debate which proceeded and followed the resignment of Applebaum from the TOR project in May 2016. Despite of Applebaum and the surfacing allegations privacy remains an important topic that is why I decided to rerun this show and add it again to the archive with an update.
I would like to encourage the listeners to research themselves and I recommend two sources I found helpful: One is to be found (in English) via the world crypto network of 10th of june 2016 with Janine Römer under the title „Jacob applebaum leaves the TOR project“. Here she presents a indepth and critical reflection on all the information which surfaced in the beginning, a sort of open source investigation. Another one is (in German) „Causa Jacob Applebaum - do we need public shaming?“ on femgeeks.de, published about the same time and offering a statement and various comments related to the issue.