probablytom

A library of thoughts and things worth sharing.

John Perry Barlow

— Sourced from EFF Obituary

On Feb. 7th, John Perry Barlow died. There's an obituary on the charity he helped found, EFF — a charity I've donated to myself which does fantastic work to keep the internet a good and free place.

This reminds me that I haven't posted his Declaration of the Independance of Cyberspace here before, which I really should have. It was foundational for a young Tom learning what the internet was capable of. Barlow was a visionary of a utopian internet, and he's an influence that I know most people don't appreciate they've benefitted from.

I think his position is brilliantly summed up by this excerpt from his manifesto linked above:

Cyberspace consists of transactions, relationships, and thought itself, arrayed like a standing wave in the web of our communications. Ours is a world that is both everywhere and nowhere, but it is not where bodies live.

We are creating a world that all may enter without privilege or prejudice accorded by race, economic power, military force, or station of birth.

We are creating a world where anyone, anywhere may express his or her beliefs, no matter how singular, without fear of being coerced into silence or conformity.

You should really read the Declaration in its entirety.

RIP, John Perry Barlow.