Aaron H. Swartz (November 8, 1986 – January 11, 2013) was an American computer programmer, writer, archivist, political organizer, and Internet activist.
Swartz was a member of the RSS-DEV Working Group that co-authored the "RSS 1.0" specification of RSS, and built the Web site framework web.py and the architecture for the Open Library. He also built Infogami, a company that merged with Reddit in its early days, through which he became an equal owner of the merged company.[i] Swartz also focused on sociology, civic awareness and activism. In 2010 he was a member of the Harvard University Center for Ethics. He cofounded the online group Demand Progress (known for its campaign against SOPA) and later worked with US and international activist groups Rootstrikers and Avaaz.
On January 6, 2011, Swartz was arrested in connection with systematic downloading of academic journal articles from JSTOR, which became the subject of a federal investigation. Swartz disliked the fact that JSTOR charged to access articles but, rather than compensating the authors, JSTOR compensated publishers instead. JSTOR's fees limited access to works produced by America's colleges and universities.