Simon Columbus was born in Coburg / Franconia on June 7th, 1990. In 2009 he graduated from Rudolf-Steiner-Schule in Siegen.
Simon has a keen interest in community media, politics, language, literature and philosophy. He has been a blogger since the age of 16, starting this blog in February 2007.
Besides having learned English and French at school, Simon takes additional courses to become savvy of the Arabic language. He aspires to spend some time the Middle East after graduating in 2009.
Since joining the Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung in April 2007, Simon has become more and more involved with several kinds of political and cultural activism.
With his key issues being freedom, surveillance and privacy issues in the digital age Simon commits himself to events of the regional group of the Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung. These include among others Privacy Workshops to enable students to deal responsibly with their personal data.
Another major interest of Simon is researching, documenting and using digital activism tools. He has been one of the organizers of the international Free Burma! campaign in October 2007. Simon subsequently founded the now closed down project Blogger for Freedom to document political blog campaigns. He has since moved on to work with the newly founded group DigiActive, documenting and researching digital activism. Simon’s key issue is the oppression of dissident bloggers in the Near and Middle East as well as worldwide.
Simon has also been a two-times elected member of his school’s student council, where in 2008 he co-organized a citywide inter-school event addressing poverty, “Über Armut Siegen”.
A full list of Simon’s projects can be seen here.
Simon is a part time freelance writer concentrating on issues like web 2.0, net politics, digital rights, free culture, data security and surveillance.
Since April 2008, he has been a staff writer at gulli:news, a German news service known for its focus on “underground” topics including file sharing, hacking, surveillance, data security and free culture. Gulli.com according to Alexa is one of the 50 most clicked German web services at the time.
Simon has also been writing for some of Germany’s most prominent blogs, including Dr. Web Weblog and netzpolitik.org, as well as the online youth site of German weekly Die Zeit, Zuender.
A list of all articles Simon wrote for other sites than this blog and the Blogger for Freedom project can be seen here.
If you want to hire Simon, you can contact him.