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[liberationtech] Drones are not storytellers or why Syrians need better storytelling was Re: Pirate Bay turns to drones

Isaac Wilder isaac_lists at freenetworkmovement.org
Fri Mar 23 10:51:42 PDT 2012


>From a strategic standpoint, near-space dirigible platforms seem much
more promising than powered-flight drones.

FAA regs allow for two 6-lbs payloads per craft.

At 30km up, not much good for recon, but definitely able to support
communications. LOS to a 400+ km radius. Oil companies and the Air Force
have been deploying this stuff for years.


Just a thought.


Isaac Wilder
Director, The Free Network Foundation
www.thefnf.org


On 03/23/2012 12:37 PM, Brian Conley wrote:
> And this is exactly the piece that so many are missing:
>
> "At the end of the day," according to the first expert I consulted, "a
> drone is a tool, and the strategic advantage it may provide will also
> depend on the funda-mental unity, planning, and discipline that a
> movement has or does not have.  For example, if a movement is lacking
> a fundamentally good and unifying message, no amount of technology
> will substitute for that, and thus the strategic value of that
> technology is diminished in the context of that movement.  On the
> other hand if a movement has a good and unifying message and levers
> technology to reinforce that message, then the technology can act as a
> multiplier and provide substantially more strategic value."
>
> my corollary is that you also have to focus on telling that message,
> telling your story, not just exposing crimes and heinous acts, those
> encourage pity, not solidarity.
>
> On Fri, Mar 23, 2012 at 10:13 AM, Andrew Lewis <andrew at pdqvpn.com
> <mailto:andrew at pdqvpn.com>> wrote:
>
>     I sent that draft before I finished it. I meant to add/say that
>     drones can provide a view that on the ground can't, as well as be
>     utilized as a communication platform for a wide area without
>     resorting to sending satellites up or the associated costs with
>     space programs. Amongst other advantages. 
>
>     Andrew 
>
>     Sent from my iPhone
>
>     On Mar 23, 2012, at 5:05 PM, "Patrick Meier (Ushahidi)"
>     <patrick at ushahidi.com <mailto:patrick at ushahidi.com>> wrote:
>
>>     Some thoughts on The Use of Drones for Nonviolent Civil
>>     Resistance
>>     <http://irevolution.net/2012/02/18/drones-for-civil-resistance/>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>     On Fri, Mar 23, 2012 at 1:01 PM, Andrew Lewis <andrew at pdqvpn.com
>>     <mailto:andrew at pdqvpn.com>> wrote:
>>
>>         I never indicated it would, but it would defiantly be
>>         complementary, as well as useful for things outside Syria. 
>>
>>         It is not an either or situation as you are portraying it,
>>         and as videos from drones in Russia/Poland illustrate not
>>         only are video resolution getting better, but they can
>>         provide an overview that on the ground coverage. 
>>
>>         Andrew
>>
>>         On Mar 23, 2012, at 4:49 PM, Brian Conley
>>         <brianc at smallworldnews.tv <mailto:brianc at smallworldnews.tv>>
>>         wrote:
>>
>>>         Not only the development costs, but the litigation/jail time
>>>         costs as well are a huge issue with more innovative
>>>         applications of drone tech.
>>>
>>>         Further, the idea of implementing drones in Syria first of
>>>         all is a huge safety risk, and could fundamentally change
>>>         the perception of an already hostile regime to encourage
>>>         increasingly worse actions.< /div>
>>>
>>>         Secondly, the drones for human rights stuff all forgets a
>>>         fundamental issue, people care about stories, not grainy
>>>         footage, unless the crimes are so enormous, and even then
>>>         they don't encourage action nor do they help inform
>>>         outsiders what exactly Syrians want or need.
>>>
>>>         For example, there is a fundamental difference between
>>>         videos like these that Iraqis we worked with in Baghdad were
>>>         producing years ago:
>>>
>>>         http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVib2fMtP1w
>>>
>>>         http://www.aliveinbaghdad.org/2008/07/28/al-sahwa-mistakes-in-adhamiya/
>>>
>>>         http://www.aliveinbaghdad.org/2007/10/08/us-military-destroys-iraqi-homes-by-mistake/
>>>
>>>         ...and shaky content and long range images of what often may
>>>         or may not be the "heinous crimes" individuals claim.
>>>
>>>         see this video for example:
>>>
>>>         http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kQMSkdo_jc&feature=player_embedded
>>>         <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kQMSkdo_jc&feature=player_embedded>
>>>
>>>         I think its pretty clear why more efforts are not being made
>>>         to more effectively and repeatedly tell the stories of
>>>         individual refugees and people who have lost homes and loved
>>>         ones. The people documenting are most often men, and as a
>>>         man who has had the same problem myself when documenting
>>>         police violence, war, etc, we too often resort to
>>>         documenting horrible events, both because we are shocked and
>>>         because that involves an adrenaline rush and provides its
>>>         own sort of benefit to us as individuals, and leaves beside
>>>         the wayside any review of whether this content is really
>>>         moving minds or pushing forward a liberation agenda.
>>>
>>>         As a trainer who has worked with individuals all over the
>>>         world in conflict areas and the developing world, I have
>>>         found that women are the best trainees, followed closely by
>>>         older men. Young people are often too caught up in the
>>>         moment and the injustice of it all to more effectively
>>>         document or listen to recommendations about composition,
>>>         pacing, etc. I guess this is a bit off-topic, but after
>>>         spending a long time in a fairly pointless discussion with a
>>>         man from Hama about this subject last night, I felt the need
>>>         to mention it here.
>>>
>>>         I'm still trying to sort out exactly why I think the idea of
>>>         drones as human rights documentation may make sense, but it
>>>         certainly cannot replace storytelling or investigative
>>>         reporting.
>>>
>>>         On Fri, Mar 23, 2012 at 9:32 AM, Andrew Lewis
>>>         <andrew at pdqvpn.com <mailto:andrew at pdqvpn.com>> wrote:
>>>
>>>             Yes, telecomix is looking at drones, and really the
>>>             proposal by TPB is outlandish to current drone
>>>             builders/operators, but most of the limitations seem to
>>>             be artificially limited technical issues that no one has
>>>             thought past due to limitations by US/UK/EU regulations.
>>>             If you disregard these rules, long range drones are well
>>>             within the realm of possibility. I think an open source
>>>             drone program is possible, if people are willing to
>>>             commit the resources and accept the overall development
>>>             costs.
>>>
>>>             Andrew Lewis
>>>             Twitter: ThePunkbob
>>>
>>>             Sent from my iPhone
>>>
>>>             On Mar 23, 2012, at 4:53 PM, KheOps <kheops at ceops.eu
>>>             <mailto:kheops at ceops.eu>> wrote:
>>>
>>>             > Indeed, we're working on drones to film and livestream
>>>             stuff in hostile
>>>             > environment such as Syria :) Will keep you posted if
>>>             something concrete
>>>             > is somehow produced :)
>>>             >
>>>             > On 03/23/2012 04:57 PM, David Johnson wrote:
>>>             >> It sounded ridiculous, but ideas can come from jokes.
>>>             >>
>>>             >> On Fri, Mar 23, 2012 at 9:48 AM, KheOps
>>>             <kheops at ceops.eu <mailto:kheops at ceops.eu>
>>>             >> <mailto:kheops at ceops.eu <mailto:kheops at ceops.eu>>> wrote:
>>>             >>
>>>             >>    This is a joke - at least according to tetsu0, one
>>>             of the TPB folks :)
>>>             >>
>>>             >>    On 03/23/2012 04:44 PM, David Johnson wrote:
>>>             >>> http://thepiratebay.se/blog/210
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>>      /TPB LOSS/
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> /We were down a few hours earlier today. There's no
>>>             need to worry, we
>>>             >>> haven't been raided this time. We're only upgrading
>>>             stuff since we're
>>>             >>> still growing./
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> /One of the technical things we always optimize is
>>>             where to put our
>>>             >>> front machines. They are the ones that re-direct
>>>             your traffic to a
>>>             >>> secret location. We have now decided to try to build
>>>             something
>>>             >>> extraordinary./
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> /With the development of GPS controlled drones,
>>>             far-reaching cheap
>>>             >>    radio
>>>             >>> equipment and tiny new computers like the Raspberry Pi
>>>             >>> <http://www.raspberrypi.org/>, we're going to
>>>             experiment with sending
>>>             >>> out some small drones that will float some
>>>             kilometers up in the air.
>>>             >>> This way our machines will have to be shut down with
>>>             aeroplanes in
>>>             >>    order
>>>             >>> to shut down the system. A real act of war./
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> /We're just starting so we haven't figured
>>>             everything out yet. But we
>>>             >>> can't limit ourselves to hosting things just on land
>>>             anymore.
>>>             >>    These Low
>>>             >>> Orbit Server Stations (LOSS) are just the first
>>>             attempt. With modern
>>>             >>> radio transmitters we can get over 100Mbps per node
>>>             up to 50km
>>>             >>    away. For
>>>             >>> the proxy system we're building, that's more than
>>>             enough./
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> /But when time comes we will host in all parts of
>>>             the galaxy,
>>>             >>    being true
>>>             >>> to our slogan of being the galaxy's most resilient
>>>             system. And all of
>>>             >>> the parts we'll use to build //that system on will
>>>             be downloadable./
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> --
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> David V. Johnson
>>>             >>> Web Editor
>>>             >>> Boston Review
>>>             >>> Website: http://www.bostonreview.net
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> Twitter: http://twitter.com/BostonReview
>>>             >>> Tumblr: http://bostonreview.tumblr.com
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> Mailing Address:
>>>             >>> San Francisco Writers' Grotto
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> 490 2nd Street, 2nd Fl.
>>>             >>> San Francisco, CA 94107
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> Cell: (917)903-3706 <tel:%28917%29903-3706>
>>>             <tel:%28917%29903-3706>
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>>
>>>             >>> _______________________________________________
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>>>             >>    <mailto:liberationtech at lists.stanford.edu
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>>>             >>
>>>             >> --
>>>             >>
>>>             >> David V. Johnson
>>>             >>
>>>             >> Web Editor
>>>             >> Boston Review
>>>             >> Website: http://www.bostonreview.net
>>>             >> Twitter: http://twitter.com/BostonReview
>>>             >>
>>>             >> Tumblr: http://bostonreview.tumblr.com
>>>             >>
>>>             >>
>>>             >> Mailing Address:
>>>             >> San Francisco Writers' Grotto
>>>             >>
>>>             >> 490 2nd Street, 2nd Fl.
>>>             >> San Francisco, CA 94107
>>>             >>
>>>             >>
>>>             >> Cell: (917)903-3706 <tel:%28917%29903-3706>
>>>             >>
>>>             >>
>>>             >
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>>>
>>>         -- 
>>>
>>>          
>>>
>>>         Brian Conley
>>>
>>>         Director, Small World News
>>>
>>>         http://smallworldnews.tv <http://smallworldnews.tv/>
>>>
>>>         m: 646.285.2046 <tel:646.285.2046>
>>>
>>>         Skype: brianjoelconley
>>>
>>>         public
>>>         key: http://pgp.mit.edu:11371/pks/lookup?op=get&search=0xCEEF938A1DBDD587
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>>>
>>>
>>
>>         _______________________________________________
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>
>
>
> -- 
>
>  
>
> Brian Conley
>
> Director, Small World News
>
> http://smallworldnews.tv <http://smallworldnews.tv/>
>
> m: 646.285.2046
>
> Skype: brianjoelconley
>
> public
> key: http://pgp.mit.edu:11371/pks/lookup?op=get&search=0xCEEF938A1DBDD587
> <http://pgp.mit.edu:11371/pks/lookup?op=get&search=0xE827FACCB139C9F0>
>
>
>
>
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