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Re: [Social-discuss] Control own privacy, posted by _others_

From: Matija Šuklje
Subject: Re: [Social-discuss] Control own privacy, posted by _others_
Date: Sat, 10 Apr 2010 20:34:05 +0200
User-agent: KMail/1.12.4 (Linux/2.6.31-gentoo-r10; KDE/4.3.5; x86_64; ; )

Dne sobota 10. aprila 2010 ob 19:32:48 je Story Henry napisal(a):
> > Hellekin O. Wolf wrote:
> > *** Putting privacy and free speech in the same pot sounds to me like
> > a counter-revolutionary attack on both privacy and free speech.  It
> > seems to say: you cannot have privacy if you have free speech, and you
> > cannot have free speech if you have privacy.  I wonder when this
> > dichotomy appeared, but I relate it to the general trends in warfare
> > speech that says "Either you're with us, or against us" and the
> > marketing-fascist trend of pushing transparency at all price, "because
> > you don't have anything to hide."

I'm _very_ sorry if sounded like that. As I stated before, initially I 
wrote the post to provoke a debate on that matter.

Personally I think both extremes that you mention are to be avoided and 
one of the goals of this project should be exactly to enable a platform to 
make the user in charge of their privacy — but to do that, we have to 
define what his/her privacy *is*! 

> One way I think one can better defend the issue is by looking at the 
>  in terms of meaning. Free speech and privacy are in important respects
>  issues of language and meaning. So if I get some time to develop this 
>  more detail, I would start from the theory of speech acts [0].  The
>  meaning of what you say (and what you publish) is not determined just 
>  the content, but also by the attitude of the sayer, and who that
>  sayer/publisher is.
> So you can say something seriously, or you can joke about it, or you can
>  doubt it, .... Those are just a few of the very many different 
>  one can have when saying something. Confusing them leads to stupid 
>  like the man who was recently arrested for a twitter joke [1].
> When people listen in to conversations not intended for them, they are 
>  listening in on a conversation they can necessarily understand. Or the
>  other way around: if everyone has to have a conversation as if one 
>  huge and not necessarily very intelligent agent were listening, many
>  speech acts that could take place, won't take place. At the very least
>  this slows down the ability to think critically, and so the ability of 
>  society to respond intelligently to problems. Imagine for example that 
>  are developing a game to help people work through the consequences of
>  social policies on drug handle, war, poverty, etc... Many things will 
>  said very realistically in such situations which a listener may not
>  understand as being hypothetical. But furthermore it won't be at all
>  effective, as those who really do have a destructive mission will use
>  language that will seem innocuous.
> As a result a paranoid listener will end up suspecting everybody: there 
>  nothing else he can do. And very soon we are in the same situation as 
>  described by the film "The life of Others" [2] which described the
>  situation in East Germany before the wall came down. What the film 
>  very well, is how this type of setup is of course easy to corrupt, and 
>  fact ends up creating the resistance it was trying to stop. The problem
>  now is that we have a lot more powerful tools to do the spying than the
>  east germans had.
> Inversely if you say something in public you are then opening yourself 
>  the very rich criticism you can get for what you say, but also from the
>  very great work by others you can build upon. This can be both painful,
>  and of course very enriching, as we know in the free software movement.

I very much agree with you here!

> > Do you have a good example of a positive conceptual framework for
> > thinking about social software?
> It is not that difficult to get things going. What you need is at its 
>  basic:
>   1- ownership of your publishing infrastructure
>   2- ability to access control who sees what
>   On that you can then build a lot more, such as rules perhaps on how 
>  allow people to distribute content, and what they have to do when
>  distributing it (eg: cite your name, if they don't change it, ...)

That would solve many problems, yeah.

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