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Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Free as in Freedom Hosting/Cloud_Services

From: r. siddharth
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Free as in Freedom Hosting/Cloud_Services
Date: Tue, 04 Dec 2012 07:09:39 +0530
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux i686; rv:17.0) Gecko/17.0 Thunderbird/17.0

On Monday 03 December 2012 11:04 PM, Patrick Anderson wrote:

Hi Patrick Anderson,

I must make it clear that, I am pretty naive. With that in mind, here is my response.

What should users who care about freedom look for when trying to find
a cloud/hosting provider?

The host must respect the user's anonymity, privacy, and have concrete rules as to how the data of the user is handled.

For example, how does differ from ?

Their policies on how they handle user's data. is a commercial site which uses free software. While is run by folks[1] whose fundamental aim is "to provide free communication tools on a wide basis, while pushing people to choose free rather than commercial communication modes." and they[1] are doing this a decade. That seems really commendable.


How does Gmail and Facebook differ from other email providers and
'social' networking.

As for Gmail:

+ They keep track of your IP address from which you accessed you mail box. Please correct me if I am wrong on this.

+ You need reveal you sex to Google to get a Gmail account.

+ The default Non-free JavaScript web interface is another concern.

+ Is it a good idea to keep your emails on the server(s) of a "Search" giant?

I don't think the email service provided by[2] entails such things you'll face when subscribe to a Google service.


As for Facebook:

+ They are not federated. You _must_ watch/read Eben Moglen's speech, pointed out by Jason Self.

+ P. J. McDermott has written a good essay[3] on this, you may want to read it.


We cannot just be angry with them because of their size; what
*exactly* are they doing or not doing to respect user freedoms?

The Internet seems good when it is federated (or de-centralized). No harm done, when we move our mailboxes out of Google's servers.

Patrick Anderson (is BlogSpot evil?  Why or why not?)

I cannot really say whether blogspot is "evil" or "good". I think, it is a matter of "where you wished to store your data?".

Thanks for paying heed.

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