The revolutionary RSA shirts that helped spark a global conversation about code as protected free speech are back.
Dr. Adam Back originally introduced the RSA shirt design in 1995 in protest of the US government classifying the RSA encryption code as a munition and illegal to export to non-US citizens. The shirt featured a five-line encryption software program on the front and clauses from the US Bill of Rights on the back. By doing so, he had shown the importance of code as free speech.
“Cypherpunks write code. We know that someone has to write software to defend privacy, and since we can’t get privacy unless we all do, we’re going to write it. We publish our code so that our fellow Cypherpunks may practice and play with it. Our code is free for all to use, worldwide. We don’t much care if you don’t approve of the software we write. We know that software can’t be destroyed and that a widely dispersed system can’t be shut down.” – Eric Hughes, A Cypherpunk’s Manifesto
The design has been slightly updated from the original, with the removal of the ITAR legal text and a small color update to the text ‘void.’ The original design remains open source and available on cypherspace.org, here.