Co-founder of Reddit and a warrior who championed the cause of freedom on the Internet Aaron Swartz died at a young age of 26, authorities confirmed yesterday. This caused outpour from the online community who all had much to grieve about the life and times of Aaron Swartz.
His uncle Micheal Wolf told that Aaron hanged himself and that a friend discovered the body. At a young age of 14, Aaron helped in creating the RSS the popular tool which helps in subscribing to online information. He later became an Internet hero, in which he wanted to make online legal information free to the world. He was charged with illegally downloading 4.8 million documents from JOSTR, a paid service which distributes scientific and literary documents.
If found guilty he would have faced decades in prison and US$ 1 million in fines. People close to him have said that facing years in prison in which he would lose his liberty might have prompted him to take this extreme decision. He was also battling depression, a fact which he had made public.
Harvard Law School’s Safra Center for Ethics director Lawrence Lessig had this to say “To the co-creator of RSS, of the Creative Commons architecture, of part of Reddit and of endless love and inspiration and friendships, rest. We are all incredibly sorry to have let you down”
We at the Nature Of Technology deeply mourn the loss of Aaron Swartz. RIP