“The time-honed tradition of politicized mischief is back … “Eli Rosenberg, The Brooklyn Paper
Ricardo Dominguez is a theorist and practitioner of electronic civil disobedience, the co-founder of Electronic Disturbance Theater (EDT), and the co-director of thing.net, an ISP for artists and activists. EDT created the FloodNet System, a participatory network for conducting “virtual sit-ins” — denial-of-service attacks in which large numbers of activists slow down or crash a target website by simultaneously and repetitively attempting to access it. Between 1998 and 1999, in over sixteen virtual sit-ins carried out in solidarity with protesting Zapatista communities, Dominguez targeted the official websites of the U.S. Border Patrol, White House, G8, and Mexican Embassy. Dominguez also deployed virtual sit-ins in solidarity with students protesting at UC San Diego, where he teaches visual art. His technology continuously reloaded the UC president’s home page as hundreds of protesters typed “transparency” into its search box. The jammed website responded with an error message: “File not found.” More recently, EDT 2.0 modified the GPS applet of low-cost mobile phones to become a compass-like “Transborder Immigrant Tool” for undocumented immigrants completing border crossings.