Thompsonism

Attended a talk at the ICA (Institute of Contemporary Art) with Stewart
Morris.

The talk was given by Bill Thompson, former Guardian journalist and
somehow associated with CB1, the Cambridge cybercafe.

Basically, he’d read the first Lessig book and correctly concluded that
Lessig is a dangerously naïve optimist. The Thompson thesis is
that the total lockdown Internet doomsayers such as me have been
predicting is actually inevitable and will have the beneficial property that
justice will become possible on the Internet as it’ll be possible to
control things. Thompson seems to believe that foreign firms are going
to put up with pesky European social democratic governments telling
them what they can do with their (actually, your) property.

Apart from disputing the probabilities – it isn’t going to happen as quickly
or as completely as Bill fears – I had very little to disagree with in what
was said. The sideswipes at Raymondism/Slashdotism were particularly
welcome.

If you could bear reading this far, you should follow me on Twitter:

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