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By Sarah Grant
$6,072 pledged of $18,000 goal
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About this project

What is Radical Networks?

Radical Networks is a conference that celebrates the free and open Internet. It fosters critical discussion on contemporary issues that include surveillance, the spread of misinformation, ownership of personal data, and the increasing opacity of "The Cloud". 

It's also an arts festival that considers networking technology as an artistic medium, featuring works that run the gamut from ethical hacks to creative experiments to live performances.

This event brings together artists, activists, community organizers, journalists, technologists, educators, and the public, to exchange ideas and look under the hood of what makes the Internet work. Radical Networks is in its third year and it's the first festival and conference of its kind in the United States. It will take place in Brooklyn, NY from October 19-22, 2017.

Radical Networks happens in three parts:

Workshops (Thursday - Sunday). Geared towards total beginners, we offer a variety of hands-on workshops where you can learn how to run your own wilderness wireless network, set up your own VPN, sniff packets, or map complex networks. Each year has a different offering of workshops depending on what kinds of proposals we receive.

Build your own portable web server in the Wilderness Wireless Workshop with Brett Ian Balogh
Build your own portable web server in the Wilderness Wireless Workshop with Brett Ian Balogh

 

Conference (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday). We provide a stage for leading researchers and practitioners from all backgrounds—including artists, lawyers, engineers, writers, policy makers, educators, scientists, journalists, and community organizers—to share the work they have been doing to address the above outlined issues.

Take your old Nintendo online with ConnectedNES by Rachel Weil
Take your old Nintendo online with ConnectedNES by Rachel Weil

 

Exhibit (Thursday evening - Sunday). We curate an exhibit from an international roster of artists, both established and emerging, using radio and networking technology as their media. Through this Kickstarter campaign, you can gain access to an exclusive preview of the exhibit and an invitation to the opening party.

Bibliotecha offline library for small communities
Bibliotecha offline library for small communities

 

Where does Radical Networks take place?

Radical Networks takes place in a large warehouse space in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY. With the help of Chemistry Creative, we take a raw warehouse and build out a beautiful gallery and speaker's stage that can accommodate up to 400 people standing or 200 seated.

 

 

Who is Radical Networks for?

Radical Networks is a community event. We invite a broad range of people to attend—from those who are thinking about setting up their own community networks, to those interested in art that addresses the hyper-connectivity of our society, to those who are just curious about how the web works and how they can protect themselves online. There is something for everyone, at all levels of experience and interest.

Radical Networks is also a social event. We offer evening programming all weekend featuring performances and even a dance party or two.

Protective Rituals for Post-humans with S. Friend and Rachel Boyce
Protective Rituals for Post-humans with S. Friend and Rachel Boyce

What's the line-up so far?

So far we have an inspiring single-track program of distinguished speakers and artists from all over the world. Confirmed participants include...

Surya Mattu [NYC] - (Pulitzer Prize finalist for Explanatory Journalism, Gizmodo Media's Special Projects Desk)
Janus Kopfstein [NYC] - (Journalist featured in Vice/Motherboard, Al Jazeera, The New Yorker, and The Village Voice)
Joana Moll [Barcelona/Berlin] - (Tactical Tech, Universität Potsdam, Escola Superior d'Art de Vic)
Josephine Bosma [Amsterdam]
Nancy Mauro-Flude [Singapore] - (miss-hack.org, National University Singapore)
Brannon Dorsey [Chicago]
Global Action Project's The C.O.R.E. [NYC]
Burak Arikan [NYC/Istanbul] - (Graph Commons)
Lauren McCarthy [LA] - (p5.js, UCLA Design Media Arts)
Nick Briz [Chicago] - (SAIC, GLI.TC/H, NO-MEDIA, Branger_Briz
Nicholas O’Brien [NYC] - (Stevens Institute of Technology)
Leonardo Aranda
[Buffalo/Mexico City] - (Medialabmx, SUNY at Buffalo)
Dawn Walker
[Toronto] - (Toronto Mesh, University of Toronto)
Daniel Tirado
[Chile] - (Primavera Hacker)
Evelyn Masso
[LA] - (Carbon Five, UCLA)

...and many more! The full program is available here.

Edwin Reed-Sanchez on Community Based Communication Networks in Nicaragua
Edwin Reed-Sanchez on Community Based Communication Networks in Nicaragua

 

Get your hands dirty with electronics in one of our workshops!
Get your hands dirty with electronics in one of our workshops!

 

Internet E.E.G. by Nicolas Maigret
Internet E.E.G. by Nicolas Maigret

   

Signal Strength and the Community Phone Booth by Amelia Marzec
Signal Strength and the Community Phone Booth by Amelia Marzec

 

Queer Red Phone Workshop
Queer Red Phone Workshop

Rewards

Radical Supporter

If you aren't able to make it to the event, but support what we are doing, then this is the level for you. Any donation helps us put on the best event possible!

Presale Passes

Reserve your Single Day or Full Conference presale passes here! You will be granted full access to the venue space, including the speaker stage, art exhibit, and refreshment bar. You will also receive our exclusive tote bag!

And every dollar you pledge over $25 or $60 (depending on the selected presale pass) will go directly into a scholarship fund to help bring people who could otherwise not attend.

VIP Conference Package and Opening Party

Backers at this level get a Full Conference pass, our exclusive tote bag, plus access to our VIP opening party for themselves plus a guest! Enjoy complimentary refreshments, get a first look at our exhibition, and meet the artists and speakers making Radical Networks happen.

VIP Conference + Workshop Package

Get a Full Conference pass, our exclusive tote bag, 2 tickets to our VIP exhibition preview party, plus one reserved seat at a workshop of your choice, including all kit materials. Workshops and kits are usually sold as a separate ticket (and usually sell out very quickly), so get it all in one package at this backer level!

VIP Patron Package

If you or your company feel passionate about the work we are doing, this level is for you. You will receive two Full Conference passes, two reserved workshop seats and kits, two Radical Networks tote bags, 4 tickets to our VIP exhibition preview party, plus shout-outs from our Twitter account, on our website, and at the event itself.

Scholarship Sponsor

Create an opportunity for 15 people to attend Radical Networks with a Full Conference Pass who would otherwise not be able come. Pledging at this level allows us to offer scholarships to those that need it most.

How will the funds be used?

For the past two years, Radical Networks has been a 100% DIY event that has happened thanks to many people donating time, materials and space. 

Production costs have largely been offset by people willing to work for very low fees in exchange for supporting a public education and community focused event. 

Speakers and artists have so far been paid a small stipend of $100, not including travel or accommodation.

However, as the festival continues to grow, so do the costs involved with producing a full-featured four-day event to the standards people expect. These include venue costs, logistic and production expenses, and paying our production crew for building out a world-class gallery, speaker's stage, and workshop studio, in addition to running sound and lights all week long. 

We also want to be able to offer our participants travel and accommodation support in addition to higher cash stipends that reflect the value of the work which is being both exhibited and presented.

And last, but far from least, we will use a portion of the funds to create a scholarship that will allow those to attend who would otherwise not be able to. Because Radical Networks is a community event, it's crucial that it's accessible to as many people as possible, regardless of their circumstances.

Because we want to remain independent of corporate sponsorship, while still keeping the cost of attendance low, we've decided to run this Kickstarter campaign in order to raise money from those most passionate about keeping the Internet a free and open place, namely–you!

Who is behind Radical Networks?

Radical Networks is organized by three women:

Sarah is a NYC + Berlin-based media artist and educator. She is a former Research Fellow at the Tow Center for Journalism at Columbia, Adjunct Professor at NYU Polytechnic in Digital Media and current Impact Resident at the Eyebeam Art and Technology Center. She makes art with computer networks and radio technology, researches and develops educational tools and holds workshops for demystifying networking technology.

Amelia Marzec is an artist focused on rebuilding local communications infrastructure to prepare for an uncertain future. She has been a resident at Eyebeam, a resident at Harvestworks, a fellow at New York Foundation of the Arts, the A.I.R. Gallery Emma Bee Bernstein Fellow, a Tow Fellow at Columbia University, a grantee of the Research Foundation of CUNY, and a nominee for the World Technology Awards for Art. Her work has been exhibited internationally including SIGGRAPH, MIT, ISEA and the NODE Biennial, and is part of the Rhizome ArtBase.

Erica Kermani is an artist, educator, and community organizer that builds public and speculative spaces, projects, and objects exploring rituals, collective care and resistance, invisibility, radical pedagogy, and technological impact. She is currently an MFA candidate in Design and Technology at the Parsons School for Design in NYC and co-founder/co-organizer of Radical Networks. Erica is the former Director of Community Engagement of Eyebeam.

Past Radical Networks

Check out some of the talks we've featured at past Radical Networks:

Radical Networks 2016

 Radical Networks 2015

 

Risks and challenges

Radical Networks is in its third year, so we have a good idea of what challenges lie ahead. With that said, we have our venue secured, a production team in place, and an excellent program comprised of both accomplished and emerging practitioners from all over the world, all ready to go!

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Radical Supporter

    If you are unable to come to Radical Networks, but would like to support what we're doing, this level is for you! To show our thanks, we'll add your name to our list of supporters on our website.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Single Day Presale Pass

    * Your choice of Friday, Saturday, or Sunday (workshops not included)
    * Entrance to the public opening party on Thursday
    * Radical Networks tote bag
    * Standard tickets will be $30
    * Any dollar amount pledged above $25 will go towards a scholarship fund that helps those attend who would otherwise not be able to.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    Full Conference Presale Pass

    * Full conference pass for all three days (workshops not included)
    * Entrance to the public opening party on Thursday
    * Radical Networks tote bag
    * Standard tickets will be $75
    * Any dollar amount pledged above $60 will go towards a scholarship fund that helps those attend who would otherwise not be able to.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    VIP Conference Package

    * Full conference pass for all three days (workshops not included)
    * Entry to the VIP opening party on Thursday for you and one guest for first look access to the exhibition with complimentary refreshments
    * Meet and greet with exhibiting artists and Radical Networks speakers
    * Radical Networks tote bag

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Your Own Radical Network

    Have a piece of Radical Networks sent to your home! At this reward tier, you will get a Raspberry Pi 3 personally configured by Sarah with a captive portal, web server, and wireless access point with a custom network name. Run your own offline web server from home, your school, the office, or out of your Radical Networks tote bag (also included)!

    Includes:

    * A Raspberry Pi 3 in a smoke grey case configured with a captive portal, wireless access point, and web server
    * Power Supply
    * 16GB microSD card
    * Bonus network monitoring software included!
    * Radical Networks tote bag

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    VIP Conference + Workshop Package

    * Reserved seat at one of our workshops, including all kit materials
    * Full conference pass for all three days (workshops not included)
    * 2x Tickets to the VIP opening party on Thursday for first look access to the exhibition with complimentary refreshments
    * Meet and greet with exhibiting artists and Radical Networks speakers
    * Radical Networks tote bag

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    Private Networking Workshop Session

    Can't make it to Radical Networks, but want an introduction to computer networking? Have a one-on-one 3 hour workshop session with Sarah Grant either by Skype or in person in Berlin, in which she will teach you networking basics, including how to set up your own web server, captive portal, and wireless access point. Included is all of the required hardware (from Your Own Radical Network) sent to you in our exclusive Radical Networks tote bag.

    Included:

    * A Raspberry Pi 3 in a smoke grey case configured with a captive portal, wireless access point, and web server
    * Power Supply
    * 16GB microSD card
    * Private 3 hour workshop session over Skype or in person in Berlin that covers networking basics
    * Radical Networks tote bag

    Sarah has taught this workshop in San Francisco, NYC, Berlin, Singapore, Barcelona, and Brussels. Take this opportunity to have her personally tutor you in networking!

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    VIP Patron Package

    * 2x Reserved seats at one of our workshops, including all kit materials
    * 2x Full conference pass for all three days (workshops not included)
    * 4x Tickets to the VIP opening party on Thursday for first look access to the exhibition with complimentary refreshments
    * Meet and greet with exhibiting artists and Radical Networks speakers
    * 2x Radical Networks tote bag
    * Shout outs on our Twitter, web site, and main stage slides in between speakers at the conference.

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    Pledge $900 or more About $900

    Scholarship Sponsor

    * Sponsor 15 Full Conference Passes to help those attend who would otherwise not be able to
    * You or your company will get a shout out on our Twitter, web site, and main stage slides in between speakers at the conference.

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