On my random discovery of Luther Blisset

December 9, 2012

On my random discovery of Luther Blisset

It seems to me that as many socially inspired activist tactics are abandoned by the people that engage with them. What’s is teh 21st century phenomenon of scruffy websites narrating of forgotten heroes thatone has never heard of. Doing so they sometimes blur the lines of the real and the imaginary

Who is Luther Blissett?
Birth of a Folk Hero 

“Luther Blissett” is a multi-use name, an “open reputation” informally adopted and shared by hundreds of artists and social activists all over Europe since Summer 1994.
For reasons that remain unknown, the name was borrowed from a 1980’s British soccer player of Afro-Caribbean origins.
In Italy, between 1994 and 1999, the so-called Luther Blissett Project (an organized network within the open community sharing the “Luther Blissett” identity) became an extremely popular phenomenon, managing to create a legend, the reputation of a folk hero.
This Robin Hood of the information age waged a guerrilla warfare on the cultural industry, ran unorthodox solidarity campaigns for victims of censorship and repression and – above all – played elaborate media pranks as a form of art, always claiming responsibility and explaining what bugs they had exploited to plant a fake story.
Blissett was active also in other countries, especially in Spain and Germany.
December 1999 marked the end of the LBP’s Five Year Plan. All the “veterans” committed a symbolic seppuku (samurai ritual suicide).
The end of the LBP did not entail the end of the name, which keeps re-emerging in the cultural debate and is still a popular byline on the web.

 

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