Aaron H. Swartz founder of Demand Progress, co-owner of Reddit and co-mastermind behind the rain and thunder that defeated the Internet censorship bills SOPA/PIPA was found dead in his apartment in Brooklyn on Friday, Jan. 11, 2013 an apparent suicide by hanging, he was 26 years old.
Aaron spent his life pursuing and fulfilling his dreams and his destiny. Unlike most people today who can’t begin to imagine what direction to take he knew from a very young age and he gave himself over to it, heart, mind and soul. His creative genius had a humble and kind spirit and he shared his creations and what he believed in freely with the world. When it comes to all things technical most people simply shut off but Aaron accelerated like none other. Even though like most brilliant programmers he enjoyed being at home with his laptop and code he always had time for his family and friends and fighting the good fight. Aaron will not be forgotten nor will his incredible contribution for the right to freedom of information and freedom to connect. He made it his plight to bring us together to protect the internet from being taken over by our government and for it I believe that he paid the ultimate price. As paranoid as this may sound to most of you I know how our government works and after SOPA/PIPA was defeated congress didn’t just go home to their cookies and milk. Those that be and have the power to do it made sure that every step and move that Aaron made was scrutinized to one point or another. Then when the opportunity presented itself they lunged down like vultures to destroy him. He posed a threat not to the security of this country that he loved but to the undermining, self serving political agendas that thrive in darkness. Aaron was a light that made that darkness feel threatened, a technical prodigy, an artisan of a new most pure fire, code. It came to sight that he could assemble and motivate people with Gods speed and bring a force to the landscape that could incinerate anything that stood in front of it. He stood up and the world stood with him and the voice of the people, hundreds of thousands echoed alongside him and it shook the very heart of all those who would have shut down the oxygen valve to the internet. Until another day when someone finds a way around all that was accomplished we have surety that this day and all those that follow we will be able to continue to enjoy the liberty of free voice and information online.
The erosion and decay that is taking place in this country is a direct result of tampering by our government. We must put a stop to the midnight harvesting of resources from the fields of 'We The People' by corruption at the hands and minds of politicians, elected officials and corporate America. We must demand that those people who represent us be distinguished by more than greed and evil deeds. We must not allow them to fly above us under cover of dark clouds dusting its citizens and guests like crops with toxic fear. When is the time, now! Now when they least expect it we must unveil and reveal the face behind all that leads to evil such as drove Aaron to his last breath. No one person or group should have this kind of power to believe that they are sanctioned to use the judicial process to break a person and their spirit to the point that they would come to believe that death by suicide is their only answer. Aaron's absence is of great and immeasurable loss not just to his family and friends and the internet but
to the technical and humanitarian future of our country and the world as well. Among the many gifts of technical knowledge and advancement that Aaron left us he also left this for the world;
|There's an old joke among programmers about who will maintain the code when its author gets hit by a truck. This page is here so that if for some reason I'm no longer able to keep my web services running, people will know what to do.
I designate Sean B. Palmer as my virtual executor to organize such things. (And if you delete anything, Sean, I will haunt you from the grave!) I ask that the contents of all my hard drives be made publicly available from aaronsw.com.
Sean (or someone he designates) should become the new curator/webmaster. Please continue updating the site and mirror list and ensuring the persistence of its URIs. (This means that nothing controvertial or illegal should be included. Save those for cryptome.)
Copyright for my GPLed source code should revert to the Free Software Foundation. They seem to have a reasonable policy about letting people use the code.
Please keep the websites operational where possible, with content written by me kept untouched where appropriate. Appropriate pages (e.g. on aaronsw.com) may contain a notice about what happened with a link to more info. The front page of aaronsw.com should be redone as appropriate with a link to the old page.
I'd like to rest someplace that won't kill me. That means access to oxygen (although direct access would probably be bad) and not having to climb through six feet of dirt.
For other stuff, email Sean. I'm sure he'll do something reasonable.
If something does happen to me, please update the footer of this page with a link. Also email the relevant lists and set up an autoresponder for my email address to email people who write to me. Feel free to publish things people say about me on the site. These are probably all obvious and I'm sure you'll figure it out. Oh, and BTW, I'll miss you all.
[based on ESR's page]
I'm not dead yet!
Aaron Swartz (email@example.com)