January 14, 2013
When to reflect on decisions made that are now entangled in the suicide of Aaron Swartz.
Contrast these quotes.
MIT president L. Rafael Reif:
"Now is a time for everyone involved to reflect on their actions, and that includes all of us at MIT. I have asked Professor Hal Abelson to lead a thorough analysis of MIT’s involvement from the time that we first perceived unusual activity on our network in fall 2010 up to the present. I have asked that this analysis describe the options MIT had and the decisions MIT made, in order to understand and to learn from the actions MIT took. I will share the report with the MIT community when I receive it."
For the university, now is the time to reflect.
United States Attorney, District of Massachusetts
"We want to respect the privacy of the family and do not feel it is appropriate to comment on the case at this time," Christina DiIorio-Sterling, spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office, said in an email to the Los Angeles Times on Sunday when asked for reaction to the family’s comments.
The government: We decline to reflect. Now is not the time.
The family of Aaron Swartz, January 13.
"Aaron’s death is not simply a personal tragedy. It is the product of a criminal justice system rife with intimidation and prosecutorial overreach. Decisions made by officials in the Massachusetts U.S. Attorney’s office and at MIT contributed to his death."
The family: Our son is dead. We make public these reflections.
Photo credit: Idandersen, Creative Commons license. For my own reflections on Aaron’s death go here.

When to reflect on decisions made that are now entangled in the suicide of Aaron Swartz.

Contrast these quotes.

MIT president L. Rafael Reif:

"Now is a time for everyone involved to reflect on their actions, and that includes all of us at MIT. I have asked Professor Hal Abelson to lead a thorough analysis of MIT’s involvement from the time that we first perceived unusual activity on our network in fall 2010 up to the present. I have asked that this analysis describe the options MIT had and the decisions MIT made, in order to understand and to learn from the actions MIT took. I will share the report with the MIT community when I receive it."

For the university, now is the time to reflect.

United States Attorney, District of Massachusetts

"We want to respect the privacy of the family and do not feel it is appropriate to comment on the case at this time," Christina DiIorio-Sterling, spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office, said in an email to the Los Angeles Times on Sunday when asked for reaction to the family’s comments.

The government: We decline to reflect. Now is not the time.

The family of Aaron Swartz, January 13.

"Aaron’s death is not simply a personal tragedy. It is the product of a criminal justice system rife with intimidation and prosecutorial overreach. Decisions made by officials in the Massachusetts U.S. Attorney’s office and at MIT contributed to his death."

The family: Our son is dead. We make public these reflections.

Photo credit: Idandersen, Creative Commons license. For my own reflections on Aaron’s death go here.

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