World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Smári McCarthy

Article Id: WHEBN0023780387
Reproduction Date:

Title: Smári McCarthy  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Pirate Party, Icelandic Digital Freedom Society, Stefan Flod, Pirate Party of Chile, Jerry Weyer
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Smári McCarthy

Smári McCarthy in 2012

Smári McCarthy (born 7 February 1984) is an Icelandic/Irish innovator and information activist. He is known for his work relating to direct democracy, transparency, privacy, and other subjects.

Early life

McCarthy was born in Reykjavík, Iceland, the son of Kolbrún Óskarsdóttir and Eugene McCarthy. At age one his family moved to England. At age 9, the family returned to Iceland, settling in Vestmannaeyjar.[1] He studied mathematics at the University of Iceland, but quit after two years to get involved with the digital fabrication movement.


McCarthy got involved in the digital fabrication movement in 2007, and was involved in the creation of the first Icelandic fab lab in Vestmannaeyjar, Iceland,.[2] He has worked with Fab Labs elsewhere, including Jalalabad, Afghanistan.[3]

The same year, McCarthy proposed the Shadow Parliament Project,[4][5] a project intending to "crowdsource democracy". In an essay outlining the project, he described what is now known as Liquid Democracy. The project launched Skuggaþing (Icelandic for "shadow parliament") in early 2010.[6] In 2012 he started the wasa2il software project[7] in order to address shortcomings with existing impementations of Liquid Democracy.[8]

In 2008 he co-founded of the Icelandic Digital Freedom Society (FSFÍ),[9] a free software, privacy and digital rights organization in Iceland.

In 2009 he organizeed the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative along with various other media freedom and free speech activists, including Birgitta Jónsdóttir, Julian Assange and Rop Gonggrijp.[10] In 2011 the International Modern Media Institute (IMMI) was formed around the initiative, with McCarthy serving as executive director. In 2013 he left that role, but currently serves as a board member of IMMI.[11]

In 2012, he co-founded the Icelandic Pirate Party,[12][13] along with Birgitta Jónsdóttir, Helgi Hrafn Gunnarsson, and various others. He stood as their lead candidate in Iceland's South Constituency in the 2013 parliamentary elections,[14] but did not win a seat.

In the summer of 2013, McCarthy co-founded the Free software project Mailpile along with Bjarni Rúnar Einarsson and Brennan Novak. The team successfully crowdfunded $163,192. Smári's role in the company is privacy & security.

In 2014, McCarthy joined the editorial board of Scottish pro-independence newspaper Bella Caledonia.[15]

Public speaking and activism

McCarthy has spoken at numerous conferences, such as Oekonux, FSCONS, Internet at Liberty and SHARE,[16] as well as having lectured at various universities and summer schools.[17] Common themes include direct or electronic democracy, press freedoms,[18][19] a critique of industrialization as a centralizing force,[20][21] and the culture of the Internet. More recently he has spoken about privacy in the context of state surveillance.[22][23]

In 2012, WikiLeaks has alleged that McCarthy was approached by agents of the FBI in Washington, D.C..[24]

McCarthy has made appearances in We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks,[25] SVT's documentary Wikirebels and VPRO's de Wikileaks Code, as well as numerous television interviews.

Selected Writing

  • Passing over Eisenhower[26]
  • Where States Go To Die: Military Artifacts, International Espionage And The End Of Liberal Democracy[27]
  • Cloud Computing: Centralization and Data Sovereignty, with Primavera de Filippi
  • Mediating Democracy, in Redvolution: El poder del ciudadano conectado.
  • Bergeron's Children, in Despatches from the Invisible Revolution, edited by Keith Kahn-Harris and Dougald Hine.[28]
  • Cloud Computing: Legal Issues in Centralized Architectures, with Primavera de Filippi, in Net Neutrality and other challenges for the future of the Internet
  • The Future of Information Freedom, in The Future we Deserve, edited by Vinay Gupta
  • The End of (artificial) Scarcity, in Free Beer, edited by Stian Rødven Eide
  • Islands of Resilience, with Eleanor Saitta[29]


  1. ^ Smári McCarthy, on Heimaslóð
  2. ^ Fab Lab Vestmannaeyjar
  3. ^ Fab Lab Jalalabad Annual Report
  4. ^ "The Social Web and Civil Life". Searcher Magazine, 17.3, March 2009
  5. ^ The Shadow Parliament Project (blog entry)
  6. ^ Skuggaþing
  7. ^ Wasa2il on Github
  8. ^ Mediando la Democracia, article by Smári McCarthy on
  9. ^ FSFÍ
  10. ^ New York Times: A Vision of Iceland as a Haven for Journalists
  11. ^ IMMI Staff
  12. ^ Grapevine: MP To Form Pirate Party
  13. ^ Grapevine: You Have it All Wrong
  14. ^ Píratakafteinar í suðurkjördæmi
  15. ^ Bella Caledonia á Twitter
  16. ^
  17. ^ Personal Web Page - Travel and Events
  18. ^ McCarthy at Re:Publica
  19. ^ McCarthy at SKUB with Kristinn Hrafnsson and Annie Machon
  20. ^ McCarthy at Me Craft/You Industry Symposium
  21. ^ McCarthy at GoOpen
  22. ^ Engineering Our Way Out of Fascism
  23. ^ Where States Go To Die
  24. ^ Assange 'The World Tomorrow' — guests targeted by the FBI
  25. ^ Smári McCarthy at the Internet Movie Database
  26. ^ Passing over Eisenhower
  27. ^ Where States Go To Die
  28. ^ Despatches from the Invisible Revolution
  29. ^ Islands of resilience
  • Fellowship of Free Software Foundation of Europe interview

External links

  • Smári McCarthy on Twitter
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.