By [epidemiC] crew
As it has evolved, [epidemiC] has always believed that the risk of the system ”adminstering” the aesthetics of art would be deeply harmful to the ethics fundamental to working as an artist. Indeed, Beuys has already spoken out at length against this – ”Artists are the most reactionary class. Classes don’t really exist any more but artists are so reactionary that they almost form a new class”. The question thus arises of how to continue as a ”virus” – meaning no demobilization of an ethical sort – and lay the groundwork for direct action involving widespread collective creativity. The answer is AntiMafia, a social virus which has come about as a result of previous ideas on source code aesthestics.
Within a shared area, you let me take what I want and I let you take what you want: thus is peer-to-peer philosophy so far. This technology is natural to the net and its impact on the general social and economic system has always caused trouble with matters related to copyright and property. If you let me take something which is not yours but which is in your possession, I shall do likewise: this is an inevitable process but is also considered to be outside the law. What is new about it is that more and more people can give away something which is not considered their property. In doing so, they deprive themselves of nothing, they simply allow a copy or duplication to be made. This availability produces ”wealth”. The more I give, the more opportunities I have to take. The next step in this line of thought has profoundly innovative implications for established rules concerning ”property” and ”legality”.
Castoriadis says: "For an individual, making his own laws - when and where this is possible - requires the ability and courage to stand up to all the conventions, beliefs, fashions and bigheads that continue to maintain absurd notions on the media, on public silence and so forth."
This drive towards individual independence is growing in parallel with a drive towards social independence. Individuals want their independence socially and individually.
When two people exchange audio mp3 documents on the net, they are saying in unison, ”this law preventing it is not mine”, and hence are making a political statement.
[epidemiC] is now turning its attention to how to coordinate and synchronize these emerging forms of individual independence and turn them into social independence and creativity. So far, equality has been created through the practice of file sharing. To the question of whether that could lead to a sharing of collective events – in other words action sharing – the anwer is: AntiMafia.
AntiMafia enables coordination yet has no coordinators. It enables synchronization yet has no timekeepers beating out the rhythm from on high. It thus has no place for the classic figure of the all-controlling artist.
The events which AntiMafia generates emerge from the community of participants (knots).
Each AntiMafia knot acts fully independently, does not delegate and decides personally what is right or not, what to take part in and what to dissent from. The expression of personal ”law” of each knot (auto-nomos) leads to social independence in which each individual feels – and so agrees with everyone else – that the ”laws of society” are his own ”laws” as an individual.
AntiMafia favours a democratic process which avoids the surrender of responsibility which comes when one delegates.
The more disagreement coincides with one’s “own personal law” the more powerful it is. The rules of society are the rules of the direct majority of individuals.