Story from a riseup user

Blue Footed Booby moved recently, and some of his “snail” mail continued going to the old apartment. He found out because the new inhabitant of his old place tracked him down and sent him a nasty note saying “please forward your ****ing shit”. A better world is possible, and it’s already being built: one of our riseup users (that’s to say, one of you) wrote in to let us know that she often gets email meant for another riseup user, because they have very similar email account names. When she writes back to the people about their miss-sent email, they are always sweet and kind in response. She says this makes her feel like we are all part of a movement, and our movement is filled with the best kinds of people.

Tech Tip

The heights of irony: in our struggle to smash hierarchy, we have grown the riseup mailing list system to be the worlds largest anarchist bureaucracy with over 10,000 administrators. Oops! Riseup birds are hard at work on tools to allow groups to organize without needing designated administrators. But, for the moment, we are stuck with a system where some “coordinating class” is required to administer each mailing list.

While we’re stuck with this system, some advice: for practical and ideological reasons, it’s better to have multiple list owners. Multiple email addresses for the same person don’t count as multiple list administrators! If your organization has a shared email address, you can use that address as a list owner, and then everybody who checks that email address can administer the list.

Why the fuss? Well, we often get asked for help when a group has lost access to a list. This is frequently because the one person who had been the list administrator is no longer involved with the group, or the email address used to administer the list is no longer active, or the cops have arrested key organizers. It puts us in a difficult situation—how can we be confident that the person who wants to become a list owner is a person who should become a list owner? This problem rarely arises for lists that have multiple active people as list administrators.

To summarize, if you administer a list, please check that there are multiple list owners who are currently active in your group. If not, add some… but remember, the power of a list owner is that they can remove any other list owner, so only add people whom you trust. If you are on a riseup list and you don’t know who the list owner is, you can contact them by emailing, where ‘listname’ is the list in question.

Update from the collective

Thanks to everyone who gave us money to help with our ‘getting lists up and running’ issue. It’s good to feel loved and supported. As soon as we are ready to go with accepting new lists, we’ll send out a notice. It shouldn’t be long now…

Notes from the surveillance apocalypse

In June, the Canadian federal government introduced two bills into parliament with the goal of bringing law enforcement into the 21st century [1]. One bill requires new internet, wireless, and other telecommunication equipment and software to include surveillance capability, and the other will require service providers to quickly provide identifying subscriber information to law enforcement without any judicial authorization.

Even within the narrow confines of liberalism, this is incredibly idiotic for a simple reason: due to the nature of digital networks, if you require the equipment to facilitate “lawful” intercept, you also enable the ability to conduct mass surveillance. This is akin to installing a police camera in every room in our homes, but then hoping that the police exercise self restraint and never turn the cameras on. This is not a viable strategy for the longevity of our social movements.

In Germany, they know something about the dangers of surveillance. On September 13th in Berlin, 25,000 protesters rallied against increasing monitoring and data gathering by the state and capital. Their motto: “Freedom rather than fear – stop the surveillance madness.” [2]



Money pitch

Are the servers still costing thousands dollars a month to keep running? Are we still needing new hardware to expand our lists and email capacity? Are we still dependent on money for funding things? Sadly, my fellow travelers, we are. If you can donate money, please do.