Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder

11 Jul 2011, 11:11 a.m.

Kyriarchy & Mr. Rogers

Hi, reader. I wrote this in 2011 and it's now more than five years old. So it may be very out of date; the world, and I, have changed a lot since I wrote it! I'm keeping this up for historical archive purposes, but the me of today may 100% disagree with what I said then. I rarely edit posts after publishing them, but if I do, I usually leave a note in italics to mark the edit and the reason. If this post is particularly offensive or breaches someone's privacy, please contact me.

In late June, Kjerstin Johnson interviewed me for Bitch Media (makers of Bitch Magazine) about Wikimedia, feminism in open source, and related topics. You can listen to the half-hour interview via download from the Internet Archive, or read the transcript (4800 words, 67KB .doc file).

So open source means that anybody can modify the code; closed source means that no one else other than the people who basically sold it to you can modify it, and therefore you are disempowered, and you are under someone else's control. And as Mr. Rogers once said, "I am against the idea of anybody being programmed by anybody else."

The actual quote is: "Very frankly, I am opposed to people being programmed by others." I'm pretty sure I first ran into it in Seth Schoen's email signature.


Kevin Mark
12 Jul 2011, 2:43 a.m.

nice interview. I love how OLPC distributes a spanish and english text-only mini version of Wikipedia. It might eventually have an indic version, who knows?