Although I love and appreciate my friends who fight in the political sphere...

Part of me thinks a) we can't win and b) the censorship, the filtering, the copyright, the moral panics - all will ultimately work to our favour.

By "our", I mean us folks who care about decentralization, free software and less corporate ways to exist online.

The more constraints the law puts on Internet businesses, the more compelling the law-ignoring DIY alternatives become.

Bad laws are for breaking. โœŠ


One caveat: We have to protect cryptography.

Crypto must be protected at all costs, it will allow us to work around most everything else. If crypto is outlawed (as in, users or developers face jail-time), we're completely and utterly screwed.

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If you want to compete with Google or Facebook or other big companies, you need to understand that a) they are actually constrained by the law and b) the only computer bigger than their computer, is "everybody else's computer."

Radical decentralization + build software that has features the companies cannot offer for legal reasons.

We just have to be willing to go where the big companies can't. The more censorship there is of "normal" content, the more opportunities there are to do just that.

@HerraBRE I absolutely agree about protecting crypto, but I don't agree about not fighting the political fight. We should build tech that's as immune to bad laws as possible under the veil of crypto, but that's only so possible. These aren't mutually exclusive... fighting bad laws / fighting for good ones should happen in tandem with building good tech.

@cwebber I would never actually go so far as to discourage people from fighting these legal battles. What if I'm wrong?

I'm just pointing out a silver lining that has a strategic element to it.

If we want to effectively fight the big companies, we need to understand their weaknesses and where we are stronger.

@HerraBRE I agree with that!

BTW my next post that appeared to be a subtoot of this was well, partly in response to it, but also equally to about 20 different threads I've seen over the last month :)

@cwebber @HerraBRE

Yes I certainly agree. Diversified tactics.

There is promise and peril in the current moment.

Worst case, something like Article13 causes ISPs to block all ports, making self-hosting much harder.

On the upside the current dynamics of the technology industry are playing in our favor. Federated systems is shaping up to be the best way to manage online communities, and it looks like the automated methods of Twitter and Facebook will either fail flatly or just produce a highly sterile/boring user experience devoid of anything which might be considered controversial.

I'm much more concerned with "the state"(ยฉ) (three-letter-agencies) than big companies, therefore I completely disagree with you, because the law obviously works in the states' favor

@Maltimore I don't think we are in conflict.

If systems are built that allow users to relatively safely flout copyright law (for example), it will accidentally also raise the bar and provide cover for other types of non-state-sanctioned comms, including organized resistance.

And it will either thwart or raise significantly the cost of mass surveillance.

Elsewhere in the thread I said I would never object to or try to discourage people from fighting bad laws.

Just pondering a silver lining.

@HerraBRE It's hard to belive it will happend (again). Crypto is necessary to protect key industrial and economical inteligences from others state.

The pressure will be more ยซwhen the police ask you to unlock it, you have to do it or go to jailยป.

.@HerraBRE Also important to protect democracy (right of the people to fire their government). Fact that world empire is run by an elected leader (not Xi or Putin) is significant to the fact that we can actually experiment & bend the rules w/o jail.

@cjd Agreed. There are many fights worth fighting; rule of law (which usually depends on some form of democracy) is too often taken for granted.

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