Diaspora co-founder Ilya Zhitomirskiy dead at 22

Ilya Zhitomirskiy, a former New York University NYU student who co-founded the social networking site Diaspora has died from an apparent suicide at the age of 22.
Zhitomirskiy was one of four schoolmates from NYU who started Disaspora in 2010.
They billed it as a site that was less centralized, and more private than other social network giants such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
Albie Esparza of the San Francisco Police Department, said that his death was ‘a possible suicide,’ and that the case had been referred to the San Francisco Medical Examiner’s office, which would soon confirm what had happened, ABC News reports.
Diaspora was designed to not even have its own servers, the computer banks that a centralized website uses to store users’ data.
Its founders said on the site’s homepage that: ‘Diaspora makes sharing clean and easy, and this goes for privacy too.’
Today, even as word of Zhitomirskiy’s death spread, Diaspora announced it was inviting users to try a new, redesigned experimental version of the service – the report said.

Diaspora co-founder Ilya Zhitomirskiy dead at 22
Ilya Zhitomirskiy.

A former NYU student who co-founded the social networking service Diaspora died from an apparent suicide over the weekend, according to published reports.
The death of Ilya Zhitomirskiy (22) shocked the social media world. Police said he was found dead at 8:10 p.m. Saturday in San Francisco. An officer told CNNMoney that suicide may be the cause of death, although the coroner’s office said it would take several weeks to confirm.
Details surrounding his death could not be confirmed Monday.
Zhitomirskiy founded the tech startup with three other NYU students in 2010, and launched its first preview that September.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is one of the funders of Diaspora, which allows its users to have greater control over how their private information is shared online.
On his Diaspora profile, Zhitomirskiy described himself as ‘super passionate about building a world of hacker spaces, maker culture, sharing, cycling, and life satisfaction.’

Diaspora co-founder Ilya Zhitomirskiy passed away over the weekend.
The 22-year-old was one of four former NYU student developers of Diaspora, an open source social network platform that has been the basis of growing communities world-wide.
Unlike Unthink, Diaspora has so far shunned venture capital investment.
The Diaspora project was launched after three of the students attended a lecture by Eben Moglen, a Columbia University law professor who proclaimed that Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg ‘has done more harm to the human race than anybody else his age’ by ‘spying’ on users.
Diaspora is different to other social networks in that it is designed to be run as a number of inter-linked instances with different internet addresses. This allows different groups to run their own copy of Diaspora (called a ‘pod’) but have it link to all others.
In October, Diaspora adopted the Computers, Freedom and Privacy’s Social Network Users’ Bill of Rights. This represented a commitment to observe principles protecting user’s privacy, data protection and rights to freedom of speech, among other things.
It is unlikely that Diaspora will ever be a real threat to Facebook or Google+. It is currently signing up 15.000 new users a day, drawing on people disaffected by Facebook and Google+ – especially those people who left Google+ over their ‘Real Name’ policies.
But Diaspora already has a different community feel to other sites such as Google+ and Facebook. It will find followers that prefer the community-driven approach to the development of the network and the nature of the members who are already part of the network. Given the nature of the founders, who described themselves as ‘big nerds’, Diaspora has become a network of like minds.
Zhitomirskiy’s last post on Diaspora on November 7 has become a tribute, with other Diaspora members posting their thoughts and condolences.
The tragedy of someone passing at such a young age is mitigated slightly by his achievements and legacy in bringing Diaspora into being. He will be remembered by many.

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