@ Yifu - I agree that it is not trivial to document our actions well. It does take commitment, and the first step is to discuss what we have to gain by doing so. This was the intention of my email. To get the ball rolling, I noticed there is a transparency working group, perhaps ill see what their MO is and try to rally support for looking at documentation as mission critical, for all the reasons I outlined earlier. I am interested in working on the wiki with people, so I would like to see how these two projects could mesh.
@Dan - my reading of nonviolence is we behave naively, with the power of the cameras to document what is happening. This means in protests acting non threateningly, handing out flowers, joining a marching band, and otherwise behaving like a responsible citizen, purposely naive about police force, tear gas, etc. Let them break the peace. Let them act as the aggressor. They lose legitimacy in the court of public opinion, and this is the strategy. Same thing w crypto - until our identities get spoofed, no preemptive action should be taken. If and when we are the recipients of sabotage, then we document the fact and take appropriate defensive action. I don't want to encourage the idea of combativeness in any way, on the streets or online. I agree that you can use PGP pretty innocuously, I wanted to draw a line in the sand WRT to the idea of implementing or encouraging crypto for point to point communications on a mass scale. The use of things like TOR, for instance, would be incompatible with the ideals I've laid out, in my opinion.
@sam - my email was sent to all, not any one person in particular. This is why I changed the subject line and forked the original thread. Absolutely not an attack in you or your opinions or anything like this. I think fundamentally, we agree in plenty more than we disagree. I'm just pushing for the elevation of the idea of transparency as an objective with equal importance of whatever tool we want to code and implement. Maybe create a designated bb type forum, where good practice is to document your process as much as possible.
Maybe Dans occupy wifi project could fit in here, I dont know. But we need a designated channel to capture the disparate chatter that is being lost, that pertains to our short term, medium term, and long term goals.
@ Josh - no, I don't think passwords should be sent in the clear. I usually call people for things like this, but I would say the best defense regardless is a robust distributed backup solution with multiple different copies. Nothing is truly secure in any event.
@ Eric - re: everything winding up in the wiki, eventually. Yes, this may be true and it's already an excellent default. My argument is that prioritizing transparency would mean building the culture & the means to archive, in an accessible, inviting format what is happening AS it is happening, or as close to this as possible. We're seeing numbers of participants levelling off, we're so far not really leveraging all of our remote participants, and this is why - you have to dig to find it. This is no way to build a movement.
@ Bailey - this google group is publicly searchable, it's public as it is. And I don't think it's OK to march with a bandana in font of your face. It shows double naivete - 1) that the state couldn't discover your identity if it wanted to, that 2) somehow a bandana is a better tool than openly revealing your face, as a properly indignant citizen of this country.
Bottom line - the main thrust of the argument seems to have fallen through the cracks in this thread. Everyone got hung up on the trigger - the discussion of the implementation of encryption - no response regarding leveraging transparency as the tool for achieving critical mass. So, ok. Wrong place. I'll keep looking for a better one. Maybe Direct Action, maybe the transparency WG. Apologies for any perceived insult, none intended.
On Oct 27, 2011 8:13 AM, "Sam Boyer" <a...@samboyer.org> wrote:
i, respectfully, completely disagree. i'm a HUGE advocate of open,
public discussion spaces. it's one of the things i treasure most about
when we create public discussion spaces, they only retain value so long
as other people are actually paying attention to what we say. and when
their volume exceeds most humans' capability to keep up, people stop
paying attention...and the value is lost. it's more than just, as you
characterize it, "a pain in the ass"; people stop reading, and all that
well-intentioned effort goes for naught.
please, re-read my original email about this. i'm pointing out a simple,
well-established principle: if you *only* encrypt the stuff that
matters, then anyone with the ability to decrypt it knows exactly where
to direct their effort. it makes encryption markedly less valuable. so
when i say i want to encrypt individual emails whenever possible, it is
specifically *because* i am trying to protect the sensitive ones. no one
knows how much computing power the NSA has, but if it takes a week of
supercomputing to brute-force one of my emails, that's a much more
worthwhile investment for them if they're *guaranteed* a server password.
i think i didn't make my note at the end of my email clear enough: i am
in no way advocating that we abandon our public spaces for narrow
communication channels. not now, not ever. but i do believe that, in the
interest of keeping those public spaces valuable, it is my
responsibility to avoid filling them unless there's something the group
really needs to hear, lest i contribute to their saturation and loss of
value. so i will document as much as i can, i will discuss in these
public spaces as much as i can. but i will not indiscriminately send
around information, as i believe it harms the public space and DETERS
movement growth. and in those circumstances where i am sending
individual emails, i will encrypt them wherever i can, to protect those
few emails that really matter.
ps - on re-reading your email, i find myself being triggered at what
feels like a suggestion that i'm making anything less than an all-out
effort to do that work of publicly documenting. if that wasn't your
intention, then ok, but otherwise, please understand that that
implication is quite hurtful.
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