[Freedombox-discuss] FreedomBox 'bump/hi-five' challenge

Sébastien Lerique seblerique at wanadoo.fr
Fri Jun 24 19:14:10 UTC 2011

On 24/06/11 05:25, John Gilmore wrote:
>>> The updated status of 'we met, we have noted each other's
>>> identity, we like each other' can be then transmitted [...]
>> I think it is a mistake to mix "we like each other" into the identity
>> verification process here.
>> The crucial thing is to verify *identity*.  If i meet someone who i
>> don't like, as long as i'm sure of who they are, i should be able to use
>> the same process.
> I would go further.  I wouldn't even tie the person to some kind
> of global identity, government ID, or "verification".
> In a decentralized network with cryptographic protection, each
> person's key should represent themself -- not their name, not their
> driver's license, not their address, not their passport.  They can be
> "Uncle Charlie" in one person's freedombox, and "Charles Knox, Esq."
> in another's.  In a third freedombox, the key could represent "Guy I
> met at fish dinner with JoAnn, March 2011".  Or "Chuck who I always
> see in the library on Tuesdays".
> The implication for FreedomBox design is that a user's key should be
> transmitted WITHOUT further identifying information.  Any identifiers
> for a received key should be provided by the receiving party.
> Not automatically tying a key to a self-claimed identity, nor a
> government-issued identity, nor even a photo, will help freedom
> fighters stay free when the government grabs somebody and tries to
> find all their collaborators.  And I think it simplifies the security
> model, while still providing what our applications need, which is a
> way to identify someone at a distance [over the network] as a
> particular person who we have interacted with before.
> Of course, people are free to snap a photo, with permission, when
> exchanging keys; or to photograph the other person's business card
> or vCard, or type in a full name.  Or even a driver's license number.
> But this shouldn't be required, and I don't even think it should be 
> the default.
> This concept is only a few weeks old; I could've missed some big
> reasons not to do it this way.  

Would this be kind of the same usage we have for phone numbers nowadays?
(Mobile or land-line.) We can save them, tie them -or not- to an
imaginary identity in our phone (the contact's name, if we put any),
group them under a common identity if we want to (or not), add identity
data (photo, etc.) if we want to (or not, as always). I.e. if I get this
right, a public key could become a new kind of phone number? (without
the addressing aspect present in phone numbers)

Sébastien Lerique
seblerique at wanadoo.fr | @wehlutyk on twitter/identi.ca

Experimenting a FreedomBox: http://mehho.net
Distributing home-hosted services: http://www.evomuse.org/wiki

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