Coding, Hacking, and Digital Literacy as a Basis for an Open Internet


“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic,” says Arthur C. Clarke’s third law. Smartphones and tablets exude this kind of magic. Yet anyone who contents themselves with being amazed at these devices’ Internet capabilities will always be limited to whatever they offer. So: enough with the awe for the technology. Get those fingers on the keyboard, and start programming and hacking. This means developing digital literacy.

In all seriousness, who still looks at website source code these days? Apple actually removed this function from its Safari browser’s menu long ago. What could possibly be interesting there? In fact it’s vital in determining what happens. “Program or be programmed,” demanded Douglas Rushkoff in 2010. Programming is as important as reading and writing in helping to shape the world. For a digitally literate citizen, this also means hacking, or using technologies in unintended ways. 


Prof. Dr. Stefan Aufenanger, Professor of Education and Media Education, University of Mainz

Laura Laugwitz, Anthropologist and programmer, Rails Girls Berlin

Maria Reimer, Political Scientist and Project Director, Jugend hackt

Prof. Dr. Ira Diethelm, Professor of Didactics and Informatics, University of Oldenburg


Wolf-Christian Ulrich, Television journalist and moderator