Viewsdesk - chasing the global public sphere

September 2005

Censorship and Free Speech03:34, September 15, 2005

Reporters sans frontiéres (RSF), or Reporters Without Borders, have released a publication they call a Handbook for bloggers and cyber-dissidents. No less than 88 pages thick, the report offer an excellent introduction to blogging, personal accounts from people all over the world and a guide to be anonymous on the internet.

It’s most definitely an interesting read, and probably something I would recommend to anyone who wants to know more about grassroot journalism and internet in countries where speech is not quite-so-free.

However, I ask myself whom RSF identify as their proposed readers: while it is indeed an interesting read for me, will it ever get in the hands of those who really need it? If someone were clever enough to outsmart the Great Firewall of China and access the PDF – would you really need the step-by-step guides on setting up a blog? Perhaps it doesn’t matter. Even if it’s just about raising awareness in the western world, it’s justified I my book.

Digital Culture15:42, September 4, 2005

My dear friend and mentor Jonas Söderström (of Blind Höna-fame), noticed that excerpts from a mail conversation I had back in 2000 with the customer support at Boxman, a now dead Swedish e-commerce site, was quoted in the book 404 by Lars Ilshammar and Ola Larsmo Dansen kring guldkalven by Björn Elmbrant.

(Jonas also wrote a piece (in swedish) a while ago, where he included the same mail.)

It was years since I last read the mails, but going back to it now, I still find it highly amusing. And, well, I’m not surprised that Boxman didn’t survive for very long. I decided to release the whole thing unedited here, for it to be archived for future generations.

And sorry all you non-swedish people: it’s in Swedish and too long to translate.