Archival Documents   »The “Hack”

Material related to the “hacking” of the self-encrypting diskette containing William Gibson’s poem and the release of its text onto the MindVox BBS on Dec. 10, 1992 (and subsequently into the wilds of the Internet). See Matthew G. Kirschenbaum’s discussion of the competing explanations of the “hack” and whether it was a code hack at all or instead a low-tech hack accomplished by transcribing from video footage shot at the screening of the poem at one of the “transmission” events of Dec. 9, 1992. Subsequent evidence, including the discovery of the original bootleg video recorded Dec. 9, 1992, at the Americas Society in New York City and correspondence with one of the video makers confirms that it was the low-tech hack that occurred. (See Kirschenbaum’s follow-up discussion.)