MIT Media Lab websites defaced in apparent Aaron Swartz commemoration

MIT Media Lab websites defaced in apparent Aaron Swartz commemoration

A hacker defaced 15 web sites of the MIT Media Lab in an apparent commemoration of Aaron Swartz

  • Posted on: 6 January 2015
  • By: stannenb

A hacker identified by the Twitter handle "@ulzr1z" defaced 15 subdomains of the MIT Media Lab in an apparent commemoration of activist Aaron Swartz. Swartz committed suicide almost two years ago after having been charged with 13 felonies for downloading academic papers from publisher JSTOR using the MIT network.



The Media Lab is a curious choice of a target. The Lab has long employed Swartz's father Robert as an intellectual property consultant. The Lab organized a remembrance for Swartz shortly after his death. The Center for Civic Media, a collaboration of the Media Lab and MIT's Comparative Media Studies/Writing program, has held two hackathon's in Swartz's memory. And Civic Media's faculty and staff have been at the forefront of advocating for changes in MIT policy intended to protect student innovators, most recently advocating for MIT's intervention when the New Jersey Attorney-General started an investigation into a student programming project.

"ulzr1z" did not immediately respond to a request, sent via Twitter, for comment.


Aaaron Swartz Hackathon at MTI's Center for Civic Media



"Aaron Swartz profile" by Fred Benenson - User: Mecredis - http://www.flickr.com/photos/creativecommons/3111021669/. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

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