[Hpr] Hpr Digest, Vol 54, Issue 17

lostnbronx lostnbronx at gmail.com
Wed Mar 20 10:31:07 PDT 2013

pokey wrote:

> I'd like to see epicanus and lostnbronx collaborate and do a podcast
> episode on the topic of "what is a hacker?"

Personally, I don't care how a person self-identifies.  I have no idea
what a "real" hacker is, and I don't care to define it.  The act of
labeling is, by its very nature, destructive, because it MUST exclude
all those things not perceived as being part of the group.  Amazing
stuff gets lost this way, no matter how inclusive a group wishes to

There are almost certainly listeners of HPR (likely a lot of them) who
never contribute because they do not think they have anything
interesting to say.  Certainly, the people on this list will
understand how tragic that is, but some listeners simply don't see
themselves as "hackers", and therefore think their own experiences and
interests don't count as potential HPR content.  Never mind the fact
that they are fans of the show, which means THEY have an interest in
this stuff -- somehow they're still on the outside, looking in.  Is
this a function of the labels we use?  Is it the nature of content
consumption?  Is it simply human nature?

Qualifying what a "hacker" is...well, that's a VERY "hacky" thing to
do, actually, and, on the one hand, I really applaud the effort.  On
the other, all labels come at a cost.  The cost of exclusion --
unintentional and undesired though it is -- will always be IMPOSSIBLE
to assess, since we will never know who we lost, and who we could have
heard from, save for their fear of rejection or the self-censoring
aspect of labeled expression.

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