John Perry Barlow's Call for Persuasion over Power
6 Pages Posted: 12 Aug 2019
Date Written: March 30, 2019
John Perry Barlow's insights were inseparable from his lyrical way of conveying them. Barlow's expression mates joy and canniness, and one of his talents in writing about new technologies was to flip our conception of the status quo in order to correct it. In 1994, the conventional sense was that the Internet and its champions were heedlessly upsetting a longstanding set of relationships and legal entitlements, with copyright as a signal example. And while that was superficially true, it wasn't the whole story. This brief essay examines the legacy of Barlow's work from the vantage point of today's markedly different digital world.
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