June 14, 2003

One More Thing–The Ethical Dance

Category: Anthropology — Biella @ 12:09 am

If you have ever wondered what it is like to do research with and on Debian developers, here is a short movie that captures, with swift detail, the joy, the wonder, that is fieldwork on and with Debian hackers.

Shot in the offices of the EFF during my goodbye party, I was speaking to a friend about ethicalization on Debian. To my right, is one Debian developer (you can immediately idenitify him via his swirly shirt which he wears with total pride) and a prospective Debian developer, who we can call “Barney” to keep his identity private.

Just as I am talking about the minutiae of embodied practices that promote ethical adoption on Debian, the two fellows on my right are doing what I shall call “the ethical dance”, the Debian developer carefully leading the prospective developer into the new dance moves that will refine his ethical skills to match those of his hacking skills. I mimic the punches as I explain to my friend the intricacies of the dance, that only take on ever more enigmatic dimensions when done online, in the so called dismebodied realm. The depth of the dance only takes on new added deepness to make up for the shallowness of bodies…

The movie ends panning out to a very tan and jolly Karl Marx (yes of Kapital fame), who nods in deep satisfaction with the realization that ethical doing (materialism) and not just ethical thinking (idealism)
is in full swing right before his eyes.

Enjoy, it has taken me a long time to figure this ritual out….

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