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Thread: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

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    Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist, programmer was 26 - chicagotribune.com

    Internet activist and computer prodigy Aaron Swartz, who helped create an early version of the Web feed system RSS and was facing federal criminal charges in a controversial fraud case, has committed suicide at age 26, authorities said on Saturday.
    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.
    The charges Swartz was facing are crazy. Hacking can be a serious crime, and should be prosecuted. But should stealing articles result in a sentence comparable with murder?

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    It's sad to see someone commit suicide, especially one so young. It is also regretable that the penalties can be so disproportionately high for what is done in damage. Nevertheless, the action he chose should not be tolerated, and many of his backers should be shunned.
    Michael J Petrilli-"Is School Choice Enough?"-A response to the recent timidity of American conservatives toward education reform. https://nationalaffairs.com/publicat...-choice-enough

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    He should've done all that after incorporating himself. Then that corporate person would've been fined rather than facing charges himself.
    Quote Originally Posted by Moderate Right View Post
    The sad fact is that having a pedophile win is better than having a Democrat in office. I'm all for a solution where a Republican gets in that isn't Moore.

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    He had a history of depression from the article and had thought of suicide before. I doubt he would have gotten the max, but I just cannot feel sympathy for his actions that lead to the charges. Even if he was not making money off it, stealing mass digital content from others to force its free availability is not permissible IMHO and should be illegal and those who do it should be punished.

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    Quote Originally Posted by Fisher View Post
    He had a history of depression from the article and had thought of suicide before. I doubt he would have gotten the max, but I just cannot feel sympathy for his actions that lead to the charges. Even if he was not making money off it, stealing mass digital content from others to force its free availability is not permissible IMHO and should be illegal and those who do it should be punished.
    meh... someone should've bought him up for billions as an administrator to secure their networks against big brains like his. Used to always hear about some kid hacking a bank, getting busted, then hired by the business they hacked.
    Quote Originally Posted by Moderate Right View Post
    The sad fact is that having a pedophile win is better than having a Democrat in office. I'm all for a solution where a Republican gets in that isn't Moore.

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    Quote Originally Posted by poweRob View Post
    meh... someone should've bought him up for billions as an administrator to secure their networks against big brains like his. Used to always hear about some kid hacking a bank, getting busted, then hired by the business they hacked.
    The FBI had tried to make overtures, but many are digital-era prophet fanatics.
    Michael J Petrilli-"Is School Choice Enough?"-A response to the recent timidity of American conservatives toward education reform. https://nationalaffairs.com/publicat...-choice-enough

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    Quote Originally Posted by poweRob View Post
    meh... someone should've bought him up for billions as an administrator to secure their networks against big brains like his. Used to always hear about some kid hacking a bank, getting busted, then hired by the business they hacked.
    I heard that was an urban legend. Either way, since he was chased out of reddit apparently, I doubt his inside the inner loop presence was desired beyond the code-writing wing of the building.

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    Quote Originally Posted by Fisher View Post
    I heard that was an urban legend.
    nah... it happens:



    iPhone hacker golden boy hired by Apple

    14 Year Old Call of Duty Hacker Hired by Microsoft

    Feds to kids: Hacking for government agencies can be cool

    All kinds of stories when I googled hacker kid hired
    Quote Originally Posted by Moderate Right View Post
    The sad fact is that having a pedophile win is better than having a Democrat in office. I'm all for a solution where a Republican gets in that isn't Moore.

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    He sounds like an introvert who loved his computers. He was probably an operational autistic, and jail would have been hell without a computer. Given the punishment he was facing and the problems it would have caused a person like that suicide was probably the best option. They might have been able to get him off on some sort of psych thing, but then he would have the problem of being labelled crazy which can be bad in itself.

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    Re: Aaron Swartz dead: Internet activist and programmer was 26

    He was facing 35 years for basically downloading academic papers. That's like sending someone to jail for taking out too many library books.
    "Idealists foolish enough to throw caution to the winds have advanced mankind and have enriched the world.

    "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue. "

    "The motto should not be: Forgive one another; rather understand one another. "
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