My friend Jonah Bossewitch has been involved with a fascinating ‘online direct action’ campaign targeting Eli Lilly, who had been conducting an illegal “off-label” marketing campaign around their drug Zyprexa, despite knowing about the drug’s lethal side-effects.
Jonah’s case study of the campaign weaves together simple, freely available technologies such as bittorrent file sharing, anonymous web proxies, tagging, and wikis with issues of free speech, media rights, whisteblowing, and network neturality, and
spotlights… cyberactivism… on the bleeding edge of technology and the frontier of civil liberties. The story suggests how participatory culture might give to way to participatory democracy, and especially how these kinds of technologies can play a leading role in radical actions. It also demonstrates the strong symbiotic relationship between new and traditional media, and presents new models for their future collaboration.
Good stuff, well worth a read for anyone who is working on corporate or government accountability in this digital age.