[Freedombox-discuss] Rouge Freedomboxes and government intervention

Neophyte Representative neophyte.rep at gmail.com
Wed Jun 22 23:23:11 UTC 2011

On Wed, Jun 22, 2011 at 3:43 PM, Jonas Smedegaard - dr at jones.dk wrote:
> On 11-06-22 at 02:28pm, Neophyte Representative wrote:
>> On Wed, Jun 22, 2011 at 2:34 AM, Jonas Smedegaard - dr at jones.dk wrote:
>> >
>> > We should continuously have all possible use cases in mind, but
>> > prioritize those easy to provide rather than those with most direct
>> > benefit for users involved in most obvious freedom-enabling
>> > activities.
>> >
>> > Both segments care, else they don't buy FreedomBox at all.
>> >
>> > Example: Karla is increasingly frustrated with her government, is
>> > politically active, and may start an uprising in 3 months.  Joanna
>> > is supportive of political activism but is more into partying and
>> > chasing guys, not willing to get up on the barricades.  Joanna and
>> > Karla both want a FreedomBox.  FreedomBox-dating already exist in
>> > Debian testing, but FreedomBox-stealth is still so flaky it is not
>> > even packaged for Debian yet.
>> >
>> > Do we then...
>> >
>> >  a) release FreedomBox 1.0 in 6 months with -dating only,
>> >    and FreedomBox 2.0 in maybe 1 year with -stealth added,
>> >    prioritizing all parts being reliable and maintainable.
>> >  b) release FreedomBox 1.0 in 6 months with -dating and -stealth,
>> >    prioritizing urgent features for urgent matters (even if flaky
>> >    and perhaps even dangerous for Karla to use).
>> >  c) release FreedomBox 1.0 in 1 month with -dating and -stealth,
>> >    prioritizing urgent features for urgent matters (even if flaky
>> >    and perhaps even dangerous for both Karla and Joanna to use).
>> >
>> You don't have any idea what quality or quantity of reliably available
>> developmental labor units you will have available to even try to push
>> the schedule around in this manner.
> Yes, I do have an idea: Get stuff packaged for Debian so that it can be
> qualified/quantified a.k.a. get some eyeballs to make all bugs shallow.
> Stuff in Debian unstable is sensible to consider "unstable", and stuff
> so thoroughly "starred at" that it has trickled down into Debian stable
> is sensible to consider as "stable".
>> The last thing I think you would want to do is put Karla in any
>> serious danger of over-estimating the utility of FreedomBox in
>> protecting her anonymity while facilitating her quest for governmental
>> improvement, regardless of Joanna's uses.  Joanna can probably be
>> fully satisfied with reasonable use of today's spyware infected
>> commercial offerings.  Karla, in the most dangerous case, can't.
> In my opinion only option a) makes sense (among above three options).
> I agree that Joanna would be ok waiting a couple of years for a Facebook
> replacement, but she is supportive of political activism so given the
> option of FreedomBox 1.0 (a.k.a. "silly" edition without -stealth) she
> would favor that, because it could help Karla slightly: Karla would lack
> stealth (and a bunch of other features quite helpful for overthrowing a
> regime) but would at least not be sold out by Zuckerberg - while we
> reliably extended FreedomBox with more radical features.

Hmmm, I'm beginning to understand where I'm really having trouble with
your plans.

For a committed, deeply involved (willing to make the ultimate
sacrifice) political activist like Karla, anything that gives the
opposition a chance to find the activist represents too high a risk.
S/he must not be lulled into relying upon our product naively.

It is, indeed, a legitimate, interim goal to reduce the reliance of
folks like Joanna upon products like the other FB.  That does further
the goal of Freedom.  Perhaps we should coin another name for that
project to avoid the high risk represented to the naive by the full
name of this FB.

We've already had deaths of many naive folks in Libya who thought all
they needed was enthusiasm and numbers against modern weapons only
slightly countered by International intervention.  The International
response in Libya in 2011 may be an improvement over the response in
Hungary in 1956, but I don't think we need to set up such a mismatch
in another arena.  We need Freedom Fighters, not Dead Freedom
Fighters.  Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., and
Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela were all opposed to and by relatively
civilized governments.  Libya and Syria indicate that may not always
be the case.

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