The "Hacker Ethic"
Over many years at MIT, a "code of ethics" has evolved. This informal code is a self-enforced attitude that ensures that hacks will continue to be amusing and well-received both within and without MIT.
According to the "hacker ethic," a hack must:
- be safe
- not damage anything
- not damage anyone, either physically, mentally or emotionally
- be funny, at least to most of the people who experience it
There is no way of enforcing this code, but anything that directly contradicts it will probably not be considered a "hack" by most of the MIT community.