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Do something boring

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Jeff O'Brien | Twitter | Email

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Preliminary shelling.

Preliminary shelling.

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A Response to Lawrence and Wishart

historyisaweapon:

For those just catching up, Marxists.org began hosting a statement that read Lawrence & Wishart, who hold the copyright for the Marx Engels Collected Works, have directed Marxists Internet Archive to delete all texts originating from MECW. Accordingly, from 30th April 2014, no material from MECW is available from marxists.org. English translations of Marx and Engels from other sources will continue to be available.” A number of people have responded and now Lawrence & Wishart has issued a statement. And we’re responding to that.

In posting your "Lawrence & Wishart statement on the Collected Works of Marx and Engels," you stated that you were the subject of a “campaign of online abuse.” Let’s keep this civil: we strongly believe that every politically engaged person should do what they can to keep the Collected Works online and accessible, but we don’t think you’re jerks who deserve to be  abused online.

The model of commons you promote is one in which people have access to the collected works if they are part of an academic community that subscribes to your licensing. We, and many people, respectively disagree with that model of the commons. And we’re not just picking on you.  There are many resources, such as the NACLA newsletter, that contain  veritable treasure troves of research and analysis that are essentially off limits to 99% of the population. On behalf of another kind of 99%, it doesn’t feel like the commons to any of us. 

You point out that there are a lot of translations, such as the communist manifesto, available elsewhere online. This is true, but the trajectory should be about more access, not less. With the rest of the intellectual internet receding behind paywalls and surrendering to the free content of corporate machine, now is the time to create and build more resources for people to share radical resources and we should defend what is already out there. 

This reaction isn’t infantile consumerism, but intellectual solidarity. We view these works as part of the commons: both as people working to change the world, we entirely see them as part of an “ancient birthright of the radical left” and as radicals today, we argue for, defend, and push for the online commons that has only become possible in the last twenty years. 

And we firmly believe that, in solidarity with Marxists Internet Archive, every leftist who has the opportunity should host a mirror of the archive until you agree to allow Marxists.org to retain their hosting. It shouldn’t have to be a situation of bit torrent and zipped files sent around between the online vanguard; every teacher and student, activist and revolutionary should be able to access the full body of work as easy as typing it into google. 

This isn’t the part where we respond with heated recitals of Marx’s concept of the capitalist mode of production. We can entirely see you existing on a shoe string budget and we don’t want you to commit institutional suicide. There’s an opportunity here, probably not as immediately lucrative as locking the entire work in an academic tower, but better overall.

Our proposal: You should, along with Marxists.org,  craft a series of image sizes (skyscraper, banner, square) for images that you host. Along with hosting the image files themselves, you should be responsible for a static page that they all go to (something like “http://www.lwbooks.co.uk/fresh”). These would be placed on every page that you grant permission for, all of them. New book? New conference? New journal comes out? You have ten thousand marxists webpages that you have graciously left in the commons, each with a helpful link informing readers where they can find your most recent publication and supporting a long-standing honorable institution of the British left.

And to everyone else, we have made two proposal in this. If Lawrence and Wishart want to lock everything up and have the lawyer sort it out, you know what we think. Everyone hosts. If a bunch of online radicals can’t organize to keep some books online, how the hell are we going to make a revolution?

An Addendum:

"Grey Tuesday was a day of coordinated electronic civil disobedience on February 24, 2004. Led by Downhill Battle, an activist group seeking to restructure the music industry, participating websites posted copies of Danger Mouse’sThe Grey Album for free download on its sites for 24 hours in protest of EMI’s attempts to prevent any distribution of this unlicensed work. This protest was provoked by the opinion that the sampling is fair use and that a statutory license should be provided in the same manner as if a song had been covered.

Hundreds of web sites participated and roughly 170 hosted the album for download. Over 100,000 copies were downloaded on that day alone.[1]

The legal repercussions of the protest were minimal; a number of the participants received cease and desist letters from EMI, but no charges were filed in connection with the event.”

Our question becomes what if instead of a Grey Tuesday about Jay-Z and the Beatles, we had a Red May Day about Marx and Engels?

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secondgradefresh:


Une femme est une femme (1961) 

This applies to three separate blogs I “run”. 

secondgradefresh:

Une femme est une femme (1961) 

This applies to three separate blogs I “run”. 

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teenage-hoodlum:

Paolo Fusco - Fiori 24h

Artist’s statement:

"Hardly anything is open 24h in Rome: a few bars, a few stores, self service gas stations and flower kiosks, a lot of flower kiosks. You can find them everywhere in the city and they never close. They never close. Their presence has always fascinated me, they seem like sentinels in the quiet roman night, small lighthouses populated by half-asleep immigrant workers. The photos were taken while wondering through the city in search of these islands of light and flowers."

(Source: arpeggia, via thrillpacked)

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tanacetum-vulgare:

towerofsleep:

bwall05:

Dogememberment Plan

This is hilarious for a very small number of people.

Saelan, I can hear you laughing at this in my mind and that alone is hilarious. 

tanacetum-vulgare:

towerofsleep:

bwall05:

Dogememberment Plan

This is hilarious for a very small number of people.

Saelan, I can hear you laughing at this in my mind and that alone is hilarious. 

(Source: keithmcknight)

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Francis Picabia, Réveil Matin (Alarm Clock), 1919
possibly marking the beginning of the dismantling of orderly, 19C archival systems: a starting point for the collapse and dismantling of the (ordered) archive in the 20c, a temporal breakdown marked by a continual “return to zero” (badiou, in godard’s film socialisme)…recall that three standard stoppages appears nearly six years prior. duchamp: “If a straight horizontal thread one meter long falls from a height of one meter onto a horizontal plane twisting as it pleases[it] creates a new image of the unit of length.” as a joke about the metre (spatiality); what we find here in picabia is an insistence on an a-temporal conceptualization of “order”, only be be exemplified by contemporaneous dada practices.

Francis Picabia, Réveil Matin (Alarm Clock), 1919

possibly marking the beginning of the dismantling of orderly, 19C archival systems: a starting point for the collapse and dismantling of the (ordered) archive in the 20c, a temporal breakdown marked by a continual “return to zero” (badiou, in godard’s film socialisme)…recall that three standard stoppages appears nearly six years prior. duchamp: “If a straight horizontal thread one meter long falls from a height of one meter onto a horizontal plane twisting as it pleases[it] creates a new image of the unit of length.” as a joke about the metre (spatiality); what we find here in picabia is an insistence on an a-temporal conceptualization of “order”, only be be exemplified by contemporaneous dada practices.

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mythologyofblue:

John Heartfield, “I Only Know Legal Paragraphs,” Montage for Kurt Tucholsky, Deutschland, Deutschland über alles“, 1929 (via archives-dada)

mythologyofblue:

John Heartfield, “I Only Know Legal Paragraphs,” Montage for Kurt Tucholsky, Deutschland, Deutschland über alles“, 1929 (via archives-dada)

(via gluestick)

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Public Lecture by Franco "€œBifo"€ Berardi | Facebook

megasloth:

The Italian philosopher and critic Franco “Bifo” Berardi will give a free public lecture on the intersections of media, economics, and poetry at SFU Woodward’s on September 14 at 7pm. 

A member of the Autonomia political movement in Italy in the 1970s, Berardi has for decades maintained an active engagement with the concept of work under global capitalism, and will offer a perspective on contemporary modes of resistance. His recent books include The Uprising: On Poetry and Finance (Semiotext(e) 2012), After The Future (AK Press, 2011), and The Soul at Work: From Alienation to Autonomy (Semiotext(e) 2009). 

His visit is in conjunction with Brady Cranfield and Jamie Hilder’s exhibition Due To Injuries… at 221A. For more information about the exhibition, please visit: 221a.ca/due-to-injuries.

In the weeks following Berardi’s lecture, four respondents will deliver talks at 221A in two sessions, on October 1st and 8rd:

7pm, October 1: Respondents Jaleh Mansoor and Enda Brophy.

7pm, October 8: Respondents Steve Collis and Cecily Nicholson

Berardi’s lecture is co-sponsored by SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement and the SFU Institute for the Humanities.

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hungryghoast:

archatlas:

Fake Skyline Alex Hofford

Tourists visiting Hong Kong during hazy days can now take a picture of the skyline with the help of banner photographs of the skyline during a sunny day. Does that make sense? Guess it does by the amount of tourists using the backdrop photographs! Be sure not to let the seam show…

simulacra simulacrum sim city

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