[pp.int.general] Our ideology

Eric Priezkalns eric.priezkalns at pirateparty.org.uk
Wed Jul 29 20:51:17 CEST 2009

On 29 Jul 2009, at 19:32, Philip Hunt wrote:

> 2009/7/29 Philip Hunt <cabalamat at googlemail.com>:
>> 1. our core ideology on digital rights
>> 1.1. how computer software/hardware can facilitate this
>> 2. our ideology on other matters
>> This post is section (1).
>> [...]
>> Another way to illustrate the point might be to discuss Alice and  
>> Bob,
>> who want to communicate with each other. They use electronics to do
>> so, for convenience, but the same issues apply whatever method of
>> communication is used.
>> Alice and Bob should have privacy of communication -- the government
>> mustn't know what they're saying, or be able to stop them
>> communicating, or (preferably) even know that they're communicating.
>> The Pirate Party's polices amount to everything that allows Alice and
>> Bob to do this.
> (This is section 1.1)
> What are the implications of this? One is that the government (or any
> other organisation) can't read Alice and Bob's mail. To ensure this,
> they should be allowed to use strong encryption. This means they
> mustn't be using locked-down hardware (such as the iPhone) where only
> certain programs can run, and they've no way of knowing if there's a
> trapdoor that compromises their privacy.
> We also want to prevent the possibility of traffic analysis

You'll need to be refine this idea.  Not all traffic analysis is about  
making more money from ordinary customers.  Some of it is just about  
managing costs in running a complex network.  Some of it is about  
preventing fraudsters from abusing networks.  Neither of these  
infringe the rights or impact any normal individual.  We also need to  
consider things that people take for granted, like the ability to  
determine the originator of a call if they contact the emergency  
services - something that cannot be done with VoIP.  Anonymity can be  
a bad thing if individuals don't understand how anonymous they are.

[By the way, I know this is a relatively small point, but just wanted  
to flag it because of the inevitable strong and reasonable counter- 
arguments if not subsequently refined.]

> , which
> means that technologies such as anonymity servers and onion routers
> should be legal and available.
> Obviously if the government shuts down the internet altogether, or
> shuts down Alice or Bob's net access, they can't communicate. So
> internet use must be a basic human right (no 3-strikes laws). Nor
> should there be blocks on specific protocols (such as BitTorrent).

Treat the right to communicate like the right to get water or power.
> If the govmt (or a natural disaster) does shut down net access in a
> city, it'd be nice if the computers could use wireless ad-hoc mesh
> networking to talk to each other and the wider world.

Most governments already have obligations to ensure communication  
services are tolerant of disasters and quick to be restored when  
disasters occur.  This question is about defining which kinds of  
services fall under those conditions.
> It would be useful if political dissidents in places like Iran or
> China had computers that did all this. Of course, if only the
> dissidents had them, it would be highly incriminating to possess one.
> So everyone should have them. They way to achieve this would be to
> arrange that a typical PC sold in the west would have all these
> capabilities out of the box, which could be done by a mixutre of
> ogernmetn funding for the relevasnt hardware and software, and for
> government to choose only to purchase machines that followed the
> specification.
> I've written about this on my blog at:
> http://cabalamat.wordpress.com/2009/07/07/using-computers-to-promote-freedom/
> -- 
> Philip Hunt, <cabalamat at googlemail.com>
> Campaigns Officer / Press Officer, Pirate Party UK
> ____________________________________________________
> Pirate Parties International - General Talk
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