Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

The Forum is the place to go for more serious non-computer-related discussions. The rules of conduct here are more strict than they are elsewhere on X-bit labs. Adult language should be kept to a bare minimum. All posts must be related to the topic thread.

Moderators: CPUagnostic, MTX, Celt, Hammer_Time, Sauron_Daz, Tacitus, Anna

Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Sat Jan 12, 2013 9:07 pm

http://boingboing.net/2013/01/12/rip-aaron-swartz.html

Very sad news...

now take a grain of salt and read this:

http://www.naturalnews.com/038650_Aaron ... ation.html

While it is entirely possible that he was "assassinated" and made to look like a suicide, Cory Doctorow ( his friend ) states this in his tribute in the first link:

Somewhere in there, Aaron's recklessness put him right in harm's way. Aaron snuck into MIT and planted a laptop in a utility closet, used it to download a lot of journal articles (many in the public domain), and then snuck in and retrieved it. This sort of thing is pretty par for the course around MIT, and though Aaron wasn't an MIT student, he was a fixture in the Cambridge hacker scene, and associated with Harvard, and generally part of that gang, and Aaron hadn't done anything with the articles (yet), so it seemed likely that it would just fizzle out.

Instead, they threw the book at him. Even though MIT and JSTOR (the journal publisher) backed down, the prosecution kept on. I heard lots of theories: the feds who'd tried unsuccessfully to nail him for the PACER/RECAP stunt had a serious hate-on for him; the feds were chasing down all the Cambridge hackers who had any connection to Bradley Manning in the hopes of turning one of them, and other, less credible theories. A couple of lawyers close to the case told me that they thought Aaron would go to jail.

This morning, a lot of people are speculating that Aaron killed himself because he was worried about doing time. That might be so. Imprisonment is one of my most visceral terrors, and it's at least credible that fear of losing his liberty, of being subjected to violence (and perhaps sexual violence) in prison, was what drove Aaron to take this step.


But Aaron was also a person who'd had problems with depression for many years. He'd written about the subject publicly, and talked about it with his friends.


http://ca.news.yahoo.com/internet-activ ... 11279.html

But Swartz faced trouble in July 2011, when he was indicted by a federal grand jury of wire fraud, computer fraud and other charges related to allegedly stealing millions of academic articles and journals from a digital archive at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
According to the federal indictment, Swartz - who was a fellow at Harvard University's Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics - used MIT's computer networks to steal more than 4 million articles from JSTOR, an online archive and journal distribution service.
JSTOR did not press charges against Swartz after the digitized copies of the articles were returned, according to media reports at the time.
Swartz, who pleaded not guilty to all counts, faced 35 years in prison and a $1 million fine if convicted. He was released on bond. His trial was scheduled to start later this year.


Swartz also played a role in building the news-sharing website Reddit, but left the company after it was acquired by Wired magazine owner Conde Nast. Recalling that time of his life, Swartz described his struggles with dark feelings.
In an online account of his life and work, Swartz said he became "miserable" after going to work at the San Francisco offices of Wired after Reddit was acquired.
"I took a long Christmas vacation," he wrote. "I got sick. I thought of suicide. I ran from the police. And when I got back on Monday morning, I was asked to resign."
Swartz also had been a fellow at a Harvard University research lab on institutional corruption, according to his website.
Tim Berners-Lee, who is credited as the most important figure in the creation of the World Wide Web, commemorated Swartz in a Twitter post on Saturday.
"Aaron dead," he wrote. "World wanderers, we have lost a wise elder. Hackers for right, we are one down. Parents all, we have lost a child. Let us weep."


http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2013/01/aaron-swartz/

Update: Aaron’s parents, Robert and Susan Swartz, his two brothers and his partner, Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman, have established a memorial website for him, and released this statement.

Our beloved brother, son, friend, and partner Aaron Swartz hanged himself on Friday in his Brooklyn apartment. We are in shock, and have not yet come to terms with his passing.

Aaron’s insatiable curiosity, creativity, and brilliance; his reflexive empathy and capacity for selfless, boundless love; his refusal to accept injustice as inevitable—these gifts made the world, and our lives, far brighter. We’re grateful for our time with him, to those who loved him and stood with him, and to all of those who continue his work for a better world.

Aaron’s commitment to social justice was profound, and defined his life. He was instrumental to the defeat of an Internet censorship bill; he fought for a more democratic, open, and accountable political system; and he helped to create, build, and preserve a dizzying range of scholarly projects that extended the scope and accessibility of human knowledge. He used his prodigious skills as a programmer and technologist not to enrich himself but to make the Internet and the world a fairer, better place. His deeply humane writing touched minds and hearts across generations and continents. He earned the friendship of thousands and the respect and support of millions more.

Aaron’s death is not simply a personal tragedy. It is the product of a criminal justice system rife with intimidation and prosecutorial overreach. Decisions made by officials in the Massachusetts U.S. Attorney’s office and at MIT contributed to his death. The US Attorney’s office pursued an exceptionally harsh array of charges, carrying potentially over 30 years in prison, to punish an alleged crime that had no victims. Meanwhile, unlike JSTOR, MIT refused to stand up for Aaron and its own community’s most cherished principles.

Today, we grieve for the extraordinary and irreplaceable man that we have lost.


Having battled depression for many years myself, I can understand that the threat of "35 years of jail time" ( or any jail time for that matter ) and a $1 million fine ( for copyright infringement of JSTOR's articles stolen from the MIT network - such a HEINOUS crime of simply wanting to share information - pedophiles and murderers get less time in jail these days ) was an unbearable thought to somebody already prone to depression. Having been at the brink myself I understand why Aaron took his own life ( if this is indeed the truth ). The second link tells a different story, it implies the Feds and/or MPAA/RIAA hired a hitman to take him out and make it look like a suicide. Indeed they stood to gain from the demise of this internet freedom champion that stopped SOPA/PIPA etc. However, given the fact that Aaron was already prone to depression for many years, and that fact that he was now facing the real possibility of "jail time" soon, I do not believe he was assassinated, I think it all got to be too much to bear for him and he took his own life.

In any event, no matter how he died, the world is much worse off without him, and he will be sorely missed, especially when it comes to an open and uncensored internet in the future.... RIP Aaron and thank you for what you did while you were here...
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Sauron_Daz » Sun Jan 13, 2013 2:03 am

RIP
We never think of us as being one of Them. We are always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things.
User avatar
Sauron_Daz
Evil OverLord Mod
 
Posts: 34519
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Sun Jan 13, 2013 1:37 pm

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2013 ... on-swartz/

Alex Stamos, the CTO of Artemis Internet and an expert witness who was working with Swartz's attorneys to testify in the the April US vs. Swartz trial, also wrote a long post detailing what he knew of the case. The Feds accused Swartz of logging on to MIT's network illegally and using that access, “to download a major portion of JSTOR's archive onto his computers.” The Department of Justice officially accused him of wire fraud, computer fraud, recklessly damaging a protected computer, among other charges.

But for all those grandiose claims, expert witness Stamos wrote “I know a criminal hack when I see it, and Aaron’s downloading of journal articles from an unlocked closet is not an offense worth 35 years in jail.”

Stamos goes on to write that MIT runs an “open, unmonitored and unrestricted network on purpose. Their head of network security admitted as much in an interview Aaron’s attorneys and I conducted in December. MIT is aware of the controls they could put in place to prevent what they consider abuse, such as downloading too many PDFs from one website or utilizing too much bandwidth, but they choose not to.” In addition, he wrote, MIT did not require users of its network to agree to any terms of use, nor did JSTOR take any steps to prevent large-scale downloads of its PDFs.

“Aaron did not 'hack' the JSTOR website for all reasonable definitions of 'hack,'” wrote Stamos. “Aaron wrote a handful of basic python scripts that first discovered the URLs of journal articles and then used curl to request them.” Stamos wrote that Swartz also did nothing to cover his tracks either. (The complaint issued by the US Grand Jury alleges that Swartz covered his face with a bicycle helmet while entering and exiting the closet in which he downloaded the JSTOR files from MIT's network.)

Stamos concluded, “If I had taken the stand as planned and had been asked by the prosecutor whether Aaron’s actions were 'wrong,' I would probably have replied that what Aaron did would better be described as 'inconsiderate.' In the same way it is inconsiderate to write a check at the supermarket while a dozen people queue up behind you or to check out every book at the library needed for a History 101 paper.” Sadly, Stamos will not have the chance to make his testimony.


http://yro.slashdot.org/story/13/01/13/ ... of-suicide

US Attorney Chided Swartz On Day of Suicide

theodp writes:

"The e-mail that Defendant Swartz's supplemental memorandum (pdf) cites as paramount to his fifth motion to suppress [evidence against him] is relevant, but not nearly as important as he tries to make it out to be,' quipped United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz (pdf) in a court filing made on the same day Aaron Swartz committed suicide. In the 1-7-2011 e-mail Ortiz refers to, which was not produced for Swartz until Dec. 14th — almost two years after his 1-6-2011 arrest — a Secret Service agent reported to the Assistant U.S. Attorney that he was 'prepared to take custody anytime' of Swartz's laptop, although no one had yet sought a warrant to search the computer. In Prosecutor as Bully, Larry Lessig laments, 'They [JSTOR] declined to pursue their own action against Aaron, and they asked the government to drop its. MIT, to its great shame, was not as clear, and so the prosecutor had the excuse he needed to continue his war against the "criminal" who we who loved him knew as Aaron.' Swartz's family also had harsh words for MIT and prosecutors: 'Decisions made by officials in the Massachusetts U.S. Attorney's office and at MIT contributed to his death. The US Attorney's office pursued an exceptionally harsh array of charges, carrying potentially over 30 years in prison, to punish an alleged crime that had no victims. Meanwhile, unlike JSTOR, MIT refused to stand up for Aaron.' With MIT President Emeritus Charles M. Vest currently serving as a Trustee of JSTOR parent Ithaka as well as a Trustee of The MIT Corporation, one might have expected MIT to issue a statement similar to the let's-put-this-behind-us one JSTOR made on the Swartz case back in 2011."


A tragedy in every sense of the word...what Aaron did was "inconsiderate" , he did abuse MIT's bandwidth but MIT runs an open unrestricted network...and he did return the digital copies to JSTOR... JSTOR did NOT press any charges.. but MIT and the US Gov't sure did, with a vengeance...nobody was really "harmed" ( in the physical sense of the word ) by Aaron's actions, yet the US Govt wanted to make an example of him ( like the torture of Bradley Manning for releasing information about war crimes that he felt the world should be made aware of, a hero in my books ) and "throw the full weight of the law at him" even though that meant a longer sentence than some murderers , rapists and pedophiles get...what a screwed up world we live in... ( punishments are completely out of line with the severity of the crime these days ). The US Attorney responsible for harassing Aaron in this fashion should be fired or quit his job immediately...

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2013 ... ed-decade/

Aaron Swartz and me, over a loosely intertwined decade

Remembering the talented activist who lived in our Internet neighborhood.

by Cyrus Farivar - Jan 12 2013

I don’t remember the first time I heard about Aaron Swartz. It probably was from reading Dave Winer’s blog, more than 10 years ago, when I was an undergraduate at UC Berkeley. The guy effused glowingly about Swartz as a young teenager.

“Aaron is the brightest 13 year old I've ever met on the Internet,” Winer wrote in February 2001. “It's not just bit smarts, he marshals power very well and is persistent. Eventually you come around to his way of thinking, or he comes around to yours. These are the essential ingredients in good technology. We're looking for the right answer, not to be proven right, or to prove the other guy wrong.”

There’s a slew of early mentions on Winer’s blog about Swartz. By the fall of 2002, Swartz may have been the youngest speaker at Comdex, ever. I remember reading about this guy, who was hobnobbing with some of my tech heroes and was actively getting involved in the RSS 1.0 specification. I identified with Swartz—I saw him as a magnified, younger, nerdier, more-articulate, more-talented version of myself.

“In terms of my personal history, I learned how to program myself through reading programs others had written, and asking questions about them on the Web,” Swartz wrote in early 2001.

“Responses to my naive questions were generally courteous and almost always helpful. I got back responses extremely quickly—rarely longer than a day. And through this method I eventually learned to program. I took no pre-set course, and had no usual instruction. However, while I was able to learn to program through this method, there is no similar system to learn to program well, which is usually something altogether different.”

Sure, I fancied myself a geek, but I never learned to program (beyond rudimentary HTML)—and I occasionally tinkered in games on my TI-85—but really, I was a poseur, an observer. I spent many nights in high school staying up late, trolling IRC warez channels, and listening to Art Bell on the radio. But rather than (like me) being on the periphery of the geek crowd (and beginning my career as a tech journalist), Swartz was deep in the center of it.

"Show your hack"

Many people forget that Swartz also helped popularize the short-lived tech meme known as warchalking, where people would mark Wi-Fi networks in chalk on the sidewalk. Swartz was an inspiration to me, and I helped propagate the meme via Warchalking Berkeley. That faded away and by 2003, Swartz was making nifty web apps and was warning us about Google. In other words, he was unstoppable—and I kept an admiring eye on him.

By summer 2004, when I went to journalism school in New York, I penned my first-ever article for Wired magazine. It was a short “front-of-the-book” profile of Aaron Swartz. Sometime later, when I was living in Oakland, I gave him a ride from the Rockridge BART station to a conference he was attending at the Claremont Hotel in Berkeley.

"Four years ago I probably would have said I'd be some kind of startup guy," Swartz told me in the summer of 2004, as he was about to enter his freshman year of college, "but the law seems really interesting to me. It's a system of rules, like computers are and you can hack it by finding the implications of those rules. Go to a judge, show your hack, and the judge has the power to change the world based on your conclusions."

And that sort of set the tone for what he would do later in life, as I followed him from a distance. Swartz dropped out of Stanford. Founded two startups. Made boatloads of money when one of those (reddit) sold to Condé Nast (Ars’ parent company). Founded an organization, Demand Progress. Spent his next few years trying to better the intersections of technology, politics, and law and stood up for his beliefs.

By 2009, Swartz had decided to liberate loads of articles off of PACER, and published his own FBI file stemming from that escapade. (My colleague Tim Lee chronicled Swartz’ later years on Ars.)

I last saw Swartz in person in September 2010, on the sidelines of the “Internet at Liberty” conference in Budapest—he, Evgeny Morozov, and I joked on the street for a few minutes between sessions. (Less than a year later, Swartz popped up again, getting himself arrested for accessing JSTOR.)

"Oh, and BTW, I'll miss you all."

I found out on Saturday that Swartz—chillingly—had the foresight back in 2002 to give away his most valuable possessions in the event of his death.

“I ask that the contents of all my hard drives be made publicly available from aaronsw.com,” he wrote.

Source Code:  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.

Websites: 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.

Grave
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.
and, appropriately, he concluded: “Oh, and BTW, I'll miss you all.”


We miss you too, Aaron—your number is still in my phone. May you find the peace you always sought.


So sad...

"Warchalking" - I had never even heard of that before...makes me smile a little even though I am crying over the loss of this great mind...
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Sun Jan 13, 2013 11:56 pm

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-575637 ... s-suicide/

Anonymous hacks MIT after Aaron Swartz's suicide

Hacktivist group defaces university pages after the school promises a full investigation into MIT's role in events leading up to the Internet activist taking his life.


by Steven Musil January 13, 2013

Image

Just hours after the Massachusetts Institute of Technology pledged an investigation into its role in events leading up to the suicide of Aaron Swartz, online hacktivist group Anonymous defaced the school's Web site.
Swartz, a Reddit cofounder who championed open access to documents on the Internet, committed suicide on Friday. The 26-year-old was arrested in July 2011 and accused of stealing 4 million documents from MIT and Jstor, an archive of scientific journals and academic papers. He faced $4 million in fines and more than 50 years in prison if convicted.


After MIT President L. Rafael Reif issued a statement this afternoon promising a "thorough analysis of MIT's involvement from the time that we first perceived unusual activity on our network in fall 2010 up to the present," Anonymous targeted at least two MIT Web sites. Lacking the loose-knit group's usual feisty language, the message posted on the Web site was a call for reform in the memory of the late Internet activist.
After calling the prosecution of Swartz "a grotesque miscarriage of justice" and "a distorted and perverse shadow of the justice that Aaron died fighting for," Anonymous outlined its list of goals under a section reservedly labeled "Our wishes:"
We call for this tragedy to be a basis for reform of computer crime laws, and the overzealous prosecutors who use them.
We call for this tragedy to be a basis for reform of copyright and intellectual property law, returning it to the proper principles of common good to the many, rather than private gain to the few.
We call for this tragedy to be a basis for greater recognition of the oppression and injustices heaped daily by certain persons and institutions of authority upon anyone who dares to stand up and be counted for their beliefs, and for greater solidarity and mutual aid in response.
We call for this tragedy to be a basis for a renewed and unwavering commitment to a free and unfettered internet, spared from censorship with equality of access and franchise for all.

CNET has contacted MIT for comment on the apparent hacking and will update this report when we learn more.
Critics of the prosecutors in the case say the feds were unfairly trying to make an example out of Swartz. "Aaron's death is not simply a personal tragedy," Swartz's family said in a statement released yesterday. "It is the product of a criminal justice system rife with intimidation and prosecutorial overreach. Decisions made by officials in the Massachusetts U.S. Attorney's office and at MIT contributed to his death."
CNET has also contacted the U.S. Attorney's office and will update this report when we hear back.


Aaron Swartz enters 16-004T on Jan. 4, 2011, face exposed.

See Article: Swartz hid behind helmet, but only after he was already photographed


Image

http://www.aaronsw.com/

Some thoughts on Reddit:

http://mikeomatic.net/?p=112

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image
Creative Commons’ Lawrence Lessig with Aaron, some years ago.

Image

Image

http://www.historybuff.com/library/refbfranklin.html

On the last page of certain issues of the Pennsylvania Gazette, you will find an imprint which reads: "Printed by B. Franklin, Post-Master." Postmaster Franklin. Today Benjamin Franklin is referred to as the Father of the United States Postal System which brings us to the subject of this article: Philately & B. Franklin, The Man.

On July 26, 1775, at the age of 68, the Continental Congress appointed Franklin the first Postmaster General of the ever expanding and soon to be independent American Colonies. In July of 1847 the United States issued its first postage stamp. Fittingly it features Benjamin Franklin. This five-cent stamp was valid for a letter carried under 300 miles. Known as an imperforate (without perforations) issue, it was produced by the gravure printing method on wove paper by Rawdon, Wright, Hatch & Edson. Since that first issue in 1847, Benjamin Franklin's likeness has appeared on numerous United States regular issue or definitive stamps and on several U.S. and foreign commemorative stamps. Only President George Washington has appeared on more postage stamps.

It is interesting to note that as Postmaster of the American Colonies, Benjamin Franklin had use of what is known as a "franking privilege." This privilege allowed him to mail letters free of charge like Congressmen. What is unique about Franklin's frank is that he signed his franking signature on out going mail as "B. Free Franklin." Historians believe that this alludes to his commitment to gaining freedom and independence from the English government.

In Philadelphia on July 26, 1975, the United States Postal Service celebrated its 200th anniversary with the opening of the B. FREE FRANKLIN Post Office and Museum. The post office and museum occupy a house once owned by Franklin at 316 Market Street. If you are ever in Philadelphia, make a side trip to the post office and museum and the area walked by Benjamin Franklin.


http://www.savethepostoffice.com/ben-ro ... ping-block

Image

This open library website is powered by Infogami, which was written by Aaron Swartz:

http://openlibrary.org/

http://infogami.org/

Image
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Sauron_Daz » Mon Jan 14, 2013 2:22 am

Image
We never think of us as being one of Them. We are always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things.
User avatar
Sauron_Daz
Evil OverLord Mod
 
Posts: 34519
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Celt » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:46 am

I was a warchalker - this man is a martyr . . .
You don't have to be a megalomaniac to moderate this forum . . . but it helps!
Image
1123.6536.5321 - More than a number, it's our home!
User avatar
Celt
SpamCrusher Mod
 
Posts: 9708
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: The Land of Concrete Cows

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Mon Jan 14, 2013 4:58 pm

Agreed.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Sauron_Daz » Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:28 am

:lol:
We never think of us as being one of Them. We are always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things.
User avatar
Sauron_Daz
Evil OverLord Mod
 
Posts: 34519
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Wed Jan 16, 2013 7:58 pm

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/1 ... 79458.html

Petition To Remove Carmen Ortiz, Aaron Swartz Prosecutor, Reaches Threshold For White House Response


Good!!

https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petiti ... z/RQNrG1Ck

Please sign, only Americans can sign this petition though - I tried and found out only American citizens can sign a White House petition of course.
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby DIREWOLF75 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 4:34 am

Please sign, only Americans can sign this petition though - I tried and found out only American citizens can sign a White House petition of course.

Bah, prejudice! :fist:




:mrgreen:
This has been an objective and completely impartial message from the propaganda bureau of DIREWOLF75. Thank you for reading. Have a nice day.
Image
User avatar
DIREWOLF75
X-bit Goon
 
Posts: 15144
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Isthmus of Baldur (modernly known as Bollnäs), Sweden

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Thu Jan 17, 2013 8:31 am

:lol:

back on topic ( serious ) :

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/he_l ... 617hKRq8YK

Lawyer: I warned feds that Reddit founder Aaron Swartz was suicidal

By JEANE MACINTOSH
From AP

Last Updated: 3:12 AM, January 15, 2013
Posted: 12:50 AM, January 15, 2013

A former lawyer for Reddit co-founder Aaron Swartz, who hanged himself in his Brooklyn apartment Friday, says he told federal prosecutors nearly a year ago that the fragile Internet genius might kill himself.

“Their response was, ‘Put him in jail. He’ll be safe there,’ ” said Boston attorney Andrew Good, who represented Swartz in a federal hacking case last year before a new legal team took over.


The revelation comes as Swartz’s shattered family prepares for his funeral today in Highland Park, Ill. — and as friends and mentors slammed US prosecutors for their aggressive pursuit of the Internet activist in the case.

Swartz, 26, faced up to 50 years and millions in fines after Boston prosecutors, led by US Attorney Carmen Ortiz, charged in 2011 that he illegally downloaded millions of articles from JSTOR, a free database of academic papers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Swartz had been in on-and-off talks for a plea deal, but prosecutors insisted he plead guilty to all 13 charges against him, said his new lawyer, Elliot Peters.

Peters said he asked the feds last Wednesday to “find a way to resolve the case that didn’t destroy Aaron’s life.”

Prosecutors wouldn’t budge. Swartz, his bank account nearly drained from the fight, was facing an April trial.

“He couldn’t bear to be labeled a felon,” Lawrence Lessig, who runs Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, where Swartz was once a fellow, wrote on his blog yesterday.

“For 18 months of negotiations, that was what he was not willing to accept,” Lessig blogged.

Swartz, Lessig said, was “driven to the edge by what a decent society would only call bullying.”


Lessig’s wife, activist lawyer Bettina Neuefeind, had been raising funds for Swartz’s defense.

California-based Internet expert Alex Stamos had planned to testify as Swartz’s expert witness.

“I know a criminal hack when I see it, and Aaron did not hack into that system,” Stamos told The Post. “He accessed a system that MIT, by its own admission, intentionally made available to those connected with the school. You could download as much as you wanted.”

The day he died, Swartz’s lawyers filed court papers claiming prosecutors withheld a “critical document” from them.

The document is an e-mail in which a Secret Service agent notes that the feds had no search warrant for a computer, drives and other items seized as evidence by local police. Prosecutors countered in papers of their own on Friday that the e-mail “is not nearly as important at [Swartz] makes it out to be.”


An online petition asking President Obama to fire US Attorney Ortiz had nearly 20,000 signatures late yesterday.

A spokeswoman for Ortiz yesterday declined comment, saying, “We would like to respect the family’s privacy.”

jeane.macintosh@nypost.com


The bastards drove him to it...

FREE BRADLEY MANNING
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Thu Jan 17, 2013 5:40 pm

song for Aaron:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ObiEQdh72Us

and:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6lInOUcUkqk

If the world had any real justice in it, George. W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Rumsfeld, and their crew would be taking dirt naps right now instead of Champions of our Constitutional Rights and Freedoms in North America that Aaron fought hard for...just sayin...

Bradley Manning is a hero of the people, yet he still suffers in jail for simply exposing the truth of the heinous war crimes of the American War Machine...thus he must pay the ultimate price for this just like Aaron did in the end...

In case you can't tell, yes, I am very pissed about this whole situation...
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Thu Jan 17, 2013 6:59 pm

Sure wish there was a "Zero Dark Thirty" for Shrubby/George. W. Bush

and no, I will not apologize for that statement...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uwXjnVICb3I

We will never forget you Aaron, or what you sacrificed for all of us...

I love you man...goodbye with many tears in my eye for what they did to you.. :cry:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNZru4JG_Uo
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Sauron_Daz » Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:04 am

Maybe rename this thread to: Hammer_Time's rant corner......? :twisted:
We never think of us as being one of Them. We are always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things.
User avatar
Sauron_Daz
Evil OverLord Mod
 
Posts: 34519
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:20 am

This needs to be ranted about! :P
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Sauron_Daz » Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:27 am

Then we need to edit the description for the Flame zone to include ranting..?
We never think of us as being one of Them. We are always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things.
User avatar
Sauron_Daz
Evil OverLord Mod
 
Posts: 34519
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Hammer_Time » Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:45 am

This is not the Flame Zone, it needs to be ranted about! :scout:
The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. No good deed goes unpunished...

Image
User avatar
Hammer_Time
Rantmeister Mod
 
Posts: 33636
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Mordor

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Sauron_Daz » Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:46 am

A new section?
We never think of us as being one of Them. We are always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things.
User avatar
Sauron_Daz
Evil OverLord Mod
 
Posts: 34519
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Celt » Fri Jan 18, 2013 4:55 am

I have a more evil idea . . .
You don't have to be a megalomaniac to moderate this forum . . . but it helps!
Image
1123.6536.5321 - More than a number, it's our home!
User avatar
Celt
SpamCrusher Mod
 
Posts: 9708
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm
Location: The Land of Concrete Cows

Re: Aaron Swartz "commits suicide"

Postby Sauron_Daz » Sat Jan 19, 2013 1:54 am

I'm interested! :D
We never think of us as being one of Them. We are always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things.
User avatar
Sauron_Daz
Evil OverLord Mod
 
Posts: 34519
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 4:00 pm

Next

Return to The Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests