Do you believe Aaron Swartz was justified in his actions?

Asked by: JuliaD
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  • No, it was not his property.

    No, Aaron Swartz was not justified in his actions, because he essentially took things that did not belong to him. There was no reason for Aaron Swartz to do what he did which interfered with the copyright and creative work of others. Swartz intruded, and greatly damaged society by his actions.

  • He Knew His Crime

    Aaron Swartz hanged himself after a plea bargain fell through with prosecutors in his case. Swartz was an Internet activist who was caught breaking into an MIT lab and was illegally downloading articles in a digital repository. He knew what he was doing was illegal and did it anyway. He was caught by the U.S. Secret Service. He knew what he was doing and faced 35 years in prison. Instead, Swartz killed himself. His actions against MIT were not justified since they were illegal.

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AnonyFeline says2013-08-15T07:55:04.087
Justified in the manner? Not entirely. He could, and probably should, have informed at least one faculty member, IT system administrator, graduate student, or even a janitor/custodian to serve as a witness that he would be doing a non-harmful high volume/quantity download in case any future charges were brought against him.

Justified in principle of obtaining free academic research data, definitely.