Charlie Hebdo

An attack on the open world

JAXenter Editorial Team

The freedom that informs our open communication has come under attack. Cartoonist, journalist, developer – yesterday’s attack is a reminder of the role that openness plays in our lives.

An entire editorial team was wiped out yesterday in Paris. In the space of just five minutes, three gunmen ended a routine editorial meeting with twelve deaths.

There’s almost nothing one can say. The sheer shock and sadness make it difficult to think clearly. Should we be joining Pegida in lambasting Islam for its evils?

Only days ago, close to the JAXenter offices in Berlin, our anger was directed at the Pegida’s demonstrations against the so-called Islamisation of Europe. Today, Berlin police are surrounding the buildings of major media offices that have published Charlie Hebdo cartoons.

A critique of Islamic fundamentalism gets us nowhere. The issue is not what individuals believe, but how it is communicated. The events in Paris are an act of terror carried out by individuals fueled by a hatred of an open society, a society that allows us to communicate and create freely.

Open communication, open innovation and, in our case, open software play a central role in how we work. It takes an act like this to make abstract freedoms like this palpable, to remind us of its invisibility in our daily routines, the stories we write, the emails we send, the opinions we voice. This isn’t just about abstract ideals anymore – it’s the basis of our everyday lives and professions.

Sadly, as this openness grows around the world in the steady globalization, digitization and transformation of our lives, it brings with it a terrible, violent resistance to an increasingly open world.

This event has deeply shocked our editorial team. Our thoughts are with the families of those struck down for their outspokenness. Our solidarity remains with all those that struggle to uphold our world’s open values.

Nous sommes Charlie.

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