Shared experiences, thoughts and discussions, as well as meet-ups with a wide diversity of people and recent interrogations about wether or not being affiliated by brand, led me to this thought : “How is it possible, in an age of massively surrounding available information, that we stick at claiming paternity of and enclosing it ?”. Even being a bit more pushy, as Klint Finley wrote in its Wired article : “Open Source Won. So, Now What ?”.
It might be time to go further, beyond Open-Source and towards Common. And an intuition, as many other before, now and in the future, is that a necessary prerequisite is the autonomy of Information-Space. But “Can we afford such thing as autonomy of Information-Space ?”
[This is an open-to-contribution attempt for a Declaration of the Autonomy of Information-Space. I bet Xavier Coadic and Yann Heurtaux as well as Nicolas Loubet amongst many others would take the pen/keyboard to enrich and augment this reflexion]
« I address you with no greater authority than that with which liberty itself always speaks. I declare the global social space we are building to be naturally independent of the tyrannies you seek to impose on us. You have no moral right to rule us » John Perry Barlow, A Cyberspace Independence Declaration
To organisations, companies and governments, to the people and entities who think that information is owned based and belongs to the framework that makes it possible to emerge and to grow;
To those who consciously or unconsciously fight for revendication about any kind of structure attachment, appropriation and spoliation;
We ask to let us build the Common that you are not yet able to build.
We do agree to be associated or referenced as offsprings of ways of thinking, making, doing and acting.
We do agree with kinship based on philosophical and values principles.
But those are multiple, diverse and rich from a variety of influences that goes far beyond our physical and legal organizations and entities. Not that affiliation should not be mentioned, but always positioned in the context in which they emerged if consistant with the current state. Considering that you would have not understood such a posture might show no more than a lack of understanding of the complexness of our current and coming world.
The Information-Space does not live by your breath: this is the XXIst century witnessing the transition from the Information Age to the Intelligence Age.
It’s no more about power (« pouvoir » in French*) but more about Power (« puissance » in French*): “Information” is “power” where “Intelligence” is “Power”, and Power needs autonomy to spread, while power requires monopoly to grow.
« 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. » […] « Your legal concepts of property, expression, identity, movement, and context do not apply to us. They are based on matter, There is no matter here. » John Perry Barlow, A Cyberspace Independence Declaration
If Cyber-Space is not from matter, Information-Space is made of sensible and non-sensible matter. From the little bits of atoms you aggregate in the physical world to the non-palpable world of data and ideas. They are all part of the Information-Space belonging to the very individual or collective entities who shape them with no more than their energy, talent, personality and environment for a given moment in time. Once it’s out there it’s not yours anymore, regardless of the means of protection you have built.
In an age of growing complexity and intelligence necessity, the Information-Space cannot be appropriable in any ways but through open, collaborative and anti-disciplinary ecosystems and processes.
« These increasingly hostile and colonial measures place us in the same position as those previous lovers of freedom and self-determination who had to reject the authorities of distant, uninformed powers. We must declare our virtual selves immune to your sovereignty, even as we continue to consent to your rule over our bodies. » John Perry Barlow, A Cyberspace Independence Declaration
Sovereignty cannot be about power, domination, omnipotence and supremacy anymore but about Power, cooperation, autonomy and resilience.
We do love places, structures and organizations as long as they bring openness and comply with the rules of the Information-Space.
We do recognize the legitimate and timeless contribution that you bring to the Information-Space.
We do clame our affiliation and kinship to part or all of your principles and values, as well as your philosophy and ways of making, doing, learning and acting — amongst other ones. However, we might definitely agree on values while being completely opposed in our practices.
As a few, we do embed in our DNA the hacking principle and hacker ethic… and so do we trust the fork principle.
The Information-Space is about the autonomy of the information: one of the most massive fork of the way society has been teaching us to behave for more than two centuries.
We are creating a civilization of the Common.