[Repost] Google, Amesys – même combat

So, I’ve changed things around here and I’m trying to get some writing done soon. In the meantime, I’ll repost here an oped I wrote at la quadrature du net (From which I’m currently off due to mental health issue, more on that later), so here the original text, in French and, of course, there’s more on LQDN website

Du 21 au 24 novembre dernier, à Villepinte (région parisienne), se tenait le salon Milipol (pour Militaire/Police), « l’événement mondial de la sécurité des États ».

En plus des habituels trafiquants marchands d’armes qui font la fierté de l’industrie française (ayons une pensée émue pour Michèle Alliot-Marie qui exporta en Tunisie notre savoir-faire en matière de maintien de l’ordre), il y a, depuis quelques années maintenant, des marchands de matériel informatique et de solutions de supervision des populations.

Vous avez forcément entendu parler d’Amesys, de Qosmos, de Palantir et autres Hacking Team qui se sont spécialisés dans le développement de solutions clef en main d’espionnage et de surveillance de la population. Et, les affaires étant les affaires, la plupart d’entre eux vendent à toute personne désirant acheter du matériel, qu’il s’agisse des dictatures libyenne ou syrienne, ou des démocraties sociales occidentales compatibles avec l’économie de marché (France, Allemagne, Royaume-Uni). On parle dans ces cas de capitalisme de la surveillance, c’est-à-dire de mesurer la valeur des choses grâce à la fonction de surveillance.

La surveillance se base sur la connaissance. En épidémiologie par exemple, c’est connaître le vecteur infectieux, le documenter, savoir comment il se propage et se transmet, mesurer son temps d’incubation éventuel, déterminer ses symptômes pour comprendre son fonctionnement et trouver éventuellement un remède.

Dans le cadre de la surveillance des personnes, cela se traduit par la connaissance de ces personnes, leur identification dans le temps et l’espace, connaître leurs habitudes et leurs façons de réagir, mesurer leur sensibilité à telle ou telle idée. La surveillance c’est la connaissance. Et la connaissance c’est ce qui permet de définir les choses, de les identifier. Le capitalisme de la surveillance est donc un capitalisme de la connaissance, de l’identité. Ce que vendent Amesys, Palantir ou autres à leurs clients c’est l’assignation d’une identité définie par eux ou par leur client à un groupe de personnes en fonction de mesures et d’observations, i.e. de données.

Dans le cas des États, cette assignation identitaire amène à des conséquences qui peuvent être extrêmement violentes pour certaines populations, amenant à des répressions fortes, une suppression d’un certain type de personnes d’un certain quartier, à de l’injustice prédictive basée sur des statistiques biaisées par des biais racistes – le racisme structurel – et qui donc ne peuvent que renforcer ces biais. Les smart cities, dans leur version la plus extrême, sont les étapes finales de ce processus, l’identification permanente, fixiste, en tous points de tous les individus, l’impossibilité de bénéficier des services communs et publics sans révéler son identité, sans donner aux surveillants encore plus de connaissances sur nos vies et nos identités, pour leur permettre de mieux définir nos identités, de mieux vendre aux États la détermination, l’essentialisation, la réduction des complexités de nos vies à des étiquettes : terroriste, migrant, réfugié, musulman, femme, queer, bon citoyen.

Dans cette analyse qui est faite, on parle très vite, très souvent d’algorithmes ou d’intelligence artificielle. On les accuse de tous les maux, d’être racistes, de faire l’apologie du génocide, d’être sexistes, de censurer les discours d’éducation à la sexualité, d’invisibiliser les minorités sexuelles, comme si les intelligences artificielles, les algoritmes, disposaient de conscience, émergeaient de nulle part, avaient décidé d’être néo-nazi. Pardon, alt-right. Mais, au final, personne ne dit ce que sont les algorithmes, ou les intelligences artificielles. On va commencer par la seconde. L’intelligence artificielle est un algorithme doté d’une grande complexité et utilisant de grosses quantités de données pour donner l’illusion d’une intelligence, mais d’une intelligence ne comprenant pas ce qu’est un contexte et non dotée de conscience. Reste à définir ce qu’est un algorithme donc.

Appelons le wiktionnaire à la rescousse. Un algorithme est une « méthode générale pour résoudre un ensemble de problèmes, qui, appliquée systématiquement et d’une manière automatisée à une donnée ou à un ensemble de données, et répétant un certain nombre de fois un procédé élémentaire, finit par fournir une solution, un classement, une mise en avant d’un phénomène, d’un profil, ou de détecter une fraude ». C’est donc une formule mathématique, ne prenant pas en compte les cas particuliers, et qui a pour but d’analyser des données pour trouver une solution à un problème.

Ces algorithmes ne sont pas en charge de collecter les données, de définir le problème ou de prendre des décisions. Ils analysent des données qui leur sont transmises et fournissent une classification de ces données en fonction de critères qui ont été décidés par les personnes qui les écrivent, qui les configurent et qui les utilisent. L’ensemble des problèmes sur la reconnaissance faciale qu’ont rencontrés la plupart des entreprises de la Silicon Valley résulte du jeu de données utilisé pour identifier une personne et la reconnaître, car il ne contenait que des images de personnes blanches. Le chat bot de Microsoft – Tay – s’est avéré tenir des propos négationnistes ou appelant au meurtre et à l’extermination. Non pas parce que Tay a une conscience politique qui lui permette de comprendre les propos qu’elle tient, mais parce que des personnes l’ont inondée de propos racistes ou négationnistes, fournissant un corpus de données servant de base aux interactions du chat bot, l’amenant donc à écrire des propos racistes et négationnistes. Microsoft a rapidement retiré ce chat bot de la circulation et l’entreprise a depuis promis d’être plus « attentive » .

Parallèlement, nous entendons également, et de plus en plus, parler d’économie de l’attention. De capitalisme de l’attention. Ce qui aurait de la valeur serait ce à quoi nous faisons attention, ce que nous regardons. Sous entendu, nous, utilisatrices de ce système, sommes capables de faire le choix de ce que nous voulons regarder et lire, de faire le choix de la connaissance à laquelle nous avons accès. Internet permet, en théorie, un accès non discriminé à l’intégralité des informations et des données, et donc de la connaissance, du savoir. Après tout, la connaissance est une information à laquelle j’accède pour la première fois. Et cette acquisition de connaissance me permet de comprendre le monde, de me positionner par rapport à lui, et donc de me définir et de le comprendre, exactement ce que font les systèmes de surveillance massive utilisés par les États.

Réguler l’accès à l’information et choisir quels contenus montrer à quelle personne permet donc, également, de contrôler comment vont se définir les personnes, comment elles vont comprendre le monde. L’économie de l’attention est basée sur ce principe. Pour garantir que vous interagissiez avec la connaissance qui vous est proposée, qui est la façon dont ces nouveaux capitalistes mesurent la valeur, il est important de vous surveiller, de vous mesurer, de vous analyser, de vous assigner des identités. Et donc de contrôler la connaissance à laquelle vous avez accès et celle que vous produisez.

Les gigantesques plateformes financées par les GAFAM1 servent exactement à ça. Facebook vous empêche activement d’accéder à l’ensemble de l’information présente sur leur réseau, vous demandant de vous connecter pour accéder à d’autres plateformes que la leur, ou vous pistant partout une fois que vous êtes connectés, leur permettant ainsi de récolter encore plus de connaissances à votre sujet, d’augmenter leur capacité de surveillance et donc d’identification et de contrôle. Remplissant dans ce cas exactement la même fonction que les systèmes répressifs des régimes étatiques.

Notamment car Facebook, Apple, Google, Amazon, Microsoft décident ce qu’il est moral de faire, quelles identités doivent être renforcées ou au contraire dévaluées. Par exemple, Youtube, en supprimant la possibilité pour un contenu parlant de sexualités de rapporter de l’argent aux créatrices, envoie un message assez clair aux personnes faisant de l’éducation sexuelle, ou parlant de problématique touchant les personnes queer : votre production de connaissance n’est pas bienvenue ici, nous ne voulons pas que des personnes puissent s’identifier à vous. Il en va de même avec Facebook et son rapport à la nudité ou Apple qui filtre également tout ce qui pourrait parler de sexe, quitte à censurer le contenu des musées. En dévalorisant certaines connaissances, en la supprimant de certaines plateformes, les personnes à la tête de ces entreprises permettent d’effacer totalement de l’espace public des pans entiers de la société, de supprimer les voix des minorités, d’empêcher la contradiction de leurs valeurs et permettent donc de renforcer les biais des personnes consommant la connaissance disponible, amenant à une polarisation, une simplification et à une antagonisation du monde.

Alors effectivement, Facebook en soi ne mettra personne dans les geôles de Bachar el-Assad, du moins pas dans une complicité active, mais l’entreprise fait partie d’un système disposant de deux faces. Une face violente, répressive, alimentant les délires paranoïaques des États d’une part, et une face « douce » et insidieuse, utilisant les publicitaires et la restriction de l’accès à la connaissance pour permettre aux entreprises conservatrices de nous imposer leur vision bipolaire du monde, renforcement les sentiments d’appartenance à un groupe identitaire, avec les conséquences violentes que l’on connaît.

Et pour s’en persuader, il suffit de regarder les liens entre ces deux faces. Peter Thiel, fondateur, avec Elon Musk, de PayPal et qui détient maintenant 7% de Facebook est également le fondateur de Palantir Technologies, entreprise qui a, notamment, obtenu le marché public des boîtes noires en France, tout en étant aussi l’outil officiel de la NSA. Thiel a également participé aux nombreux procès qui ont fait mettre à Gawker la clef sous la porte suite à la révélation de l’homosexualité de P. Thiel par Gawker. Thiel, enfin, est l’un des influents soutiens des républicains nord américains, il a notamment participé à la campagne de Ted Cruz avant de rejoindre l’équipe de Trump et de participer à la transition à la maison blanche. Il a de fait nécessairement discuté, échangé et parlé avec Robert Mercer, l’un des directeurs de Cambridge Analytica, une entreprise dont le but est de cibler les électeurs grâce à de nombreux points de collectes, principalement récupérés par Facebook afin de pouvoir les cibler directement et influencer leurs votes.

Alors oui, lorsque l’on pose la question de démanteler Google, la question de démanteler Palantir se pose aussi, et celle consistant à vouloir privilégier les seconds car ils représentent un danger plus important pour la sécurité des uns et des autres. Mais sans l’omniprésence des systèmes d’identification, sans les exaoctets de données récoltées sans notre consentement dans le but d’individualiser le contenu auquel nous avons accès – selon des critères sur lesquels nous n’avons aucun contrôle – la mise en place de la surveillance et de l’identité devient complexe, coûteuse et impossible.

Il faut démanteler les systèmes capitalistes identitaires si l’on veut détruire les systèmes d’oppressions basés sur l’identité ou sur l’accès biaisé à la connaissance. Il faut s’affranchir des moteurs de ce système que sont la publicité, le pistage et l’identification permanente. Il faut questionner et démanteler le racisme, le néo-colonialisme, le sexisme des entreprises de la Silicon Valley au lieu de s’étonner que leurs algorithmes soient racistes. Car ils sont devenus omniprésents et nous empêchent de nous définir, de vivre, d’exister comme nous l’entendons, avec nos cultures complexes et nos identités changeantes.

We need optimism, not fear

Fear

I plead guilty. I used to use fear as a tool to try to seed concern in people mind when I was explaining why it is needed to use cryptography on the internet (and elsewhere as well).

The thing is, fear is an extremely powerful feeling. I think it’s rooted somewhere in the evolutionary process, I don’t think there’s species who don’t know fear (and if it were they either are sharks or have since then disappeared, eaten by things they should have fear).

And it’s not one you should use to make people do things. If you use fear to try motivate people, they will be stressed, and some of them will panic (we do not answer rationally to stress and fear) and will run away, screaming in despair, spreading the fear like an arson jumps from trees to trees and finally destroying the whole forest.

By using fear, people who will do what you’re saying, won’t do it because they feel it will improve them, they will do something because they have no choice. And if they can run away from it, they will just do it and will avoid to – for instance – use the internet.

Developing fear into people, is the best way to get the worst out of them, this is exactly the mechanism developed by fascist to gain power, and you know that since Star Wars:

Fear is the path to the darknet. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering. – Yoda

And since fear is irrational, it doesn’t help people to understand how things works. That’s exactly what states (nation or corporate) are doing now with the Cyberwar, the Darknet and all the creepy stuff.

It enables the states to plant uncertainty (and doubt) in the mind of people, to make them unable to understand how things works, and then to control them (people are now afraid of opening stuff to understand how they work).

I once thought it was possible to use a little bit of fear to raise consciousness into people mind, but it’s like firing up a match in a gasoline tank, even if you’re careful, in the end, it will blow up.

Death on the internet

We were discussing the issue with @microouvert the other day – she says I’m now on the cuddle bear sides. We hear a lot of things about the NSA/GCHQ/DGSI/FSB/insert any new acronyms I might forget here, and the way they do surveillance.

We hear a lot about the surveillance (and then control, and restriction of liberties) made by GAFA members, less than the NSA thing but still. The thing is, it’s not the issue at hand.

You won’t fight spying by using fear. I’ve noted two different behaviour when trying to "warn" (and scare) people about the danger of mass surveillance. Either people go for the "Nothing to hide" stance, or they go for the "Jumping into a bunker and wait for the world’s end" stance. None of them is good.

The issue we ave to manage, and the only way we can find to dismantle the mass surveillance, is by fixing society. And you fix society by empowering people, not by giving them tool they don’t understand, and don’t know what to do with.

In most of the cases, the fact that Google, the DGSI, or your neighbour is spying on you is not a matter of life and death. Most people are not field activists, journalists, hackers, or other – sadly – risky activities to do. Most people just keep on with their life, doing the extraordinary things they doing every day. They do not need to be scared by global surveillance, they already have a lot of thing on their mind to manage.

I’m not saying that global surveillance society is not scary. It is, and it keeps me up at night. We need to fight it but we can only fight it by a social change.

I mean, I’ve looked through some toys shop recently (yeah, something about Unixmas) and there’s more and more spy tools. There’s more and more stalker apps on both Android and Apple store (while you still can’t access porn on the second). Spying your neighbors, your partners or your kids is hype, fun and cool.

This is way more worrying than the fact that NSA is spying on French citizens. The acceptance that it’s normal to invade the privacy of other is an issue. And when you protect yourself from that, you are a freak, you’re an outcast of the society.

It’s not a political change that we need. I don’t believe a political change will happen soon, and will do any good. We need a social change. We need people to empower themselves and discover that internet is a great tool to organise.

Internet isn’t about surveillance

Internet is about communication. And organisation. That’s what we need to tell to the world.

Surveillance is, basically the gathering, storage and analysis of human activities – data and metadata. This is not what internet is doing. Internet is doing one thing: packet switching, which is carrying a message from a point A to a point B.

The storage does not happens on Internet, it happens at the fringe of internet: on your computer, in some datacenters, or elsewhere. But Internet does not maintain a databases with all the packets ever created.

Internet is about communication, and organisation. It enables people to benefits of different way of organisation since it provides different way of communication, and communication is what we – social animals – are doing to thrive, live and survive.

This is the thing we need to teach to people. That they should not worry about internet because internet is not actually spying on them. It’s helping them to communicate, to organise, to reach out.

And that’s something all people are doing. Either they want to organize a family meal, a party or a riot, they are organising things. And they’re doing it using social networks, improving they’re social network. Ok it’s on facebook, twitter, Google+ or whatever spying agency tool provided to them.

What we need, is to open the eyes of the internet consumers to turn them in internet actors. What we need, is to reassure them, and guide them through the early step of understanding what is internet and how it works. What we need is disassemble the toxic memes of surveillance, cyber-insecurity and Darknet – which isn’t about encryption, but about opposing the dirty internet to the good internet.

And you can’t do that by using fear. You need to light a spark in the mind of people, not to burn them alive in fear. We don’t need "Told you so", or "Paranoiac" stance – I’m not saying that you should use some caution, just that most of people don’t need it.

So, stop saying there’s some danger on the internet. It’s a lie. There’s only IP packets on the internet. Everything else is in our society. And we need to change it.

And yes, I’m turning to the optimistic cuddle bears from the intertubes team. It will allow we to do some memetic warfare in a more efficient way.

Internet is like punks, not dead. Yet.

[UPDATE: 2012/08/23 – Barbayellow translates their posts in english]

Context

Yesterday, I wrote this piece and Barbayellow, friend of mine and who happens to works for Reporters Without Borders, replied with this post

Basically he says that internet’s not dead, it’s just the hacktivists who are tired of fighting. I recommend you to read the whole posts, it’s probably a bit subtler than that.

So, now, I’ll answer and will do a less melodaramtic post I think.

Internet as we knew it

When I’m saying that internet is dying, it’s the internet as we knew it. The ones that grants people, corporations and states to communicate freely, without the fear to be harmed for their opinion.

It’s not the internet as it’s in China (which is not Internet by the way, it’s more a different network which some limited connectivity to the intertube) or in Iran or elsewhere.

The internet is just cables, with kittens inside carrying packets between computers. Basically, there’s nothing inside of it, no content save for the kittens and the packets they’re carrying around is inside the internet, it’s just on computers connected to the cat system.

The internt, as it used to be, is a multipeer to multipeer multidirecctional communication system. It grants all things connected to the Internet to exchange freely cats and packets at no costs (besides the facts that if we give you a kitten in transit and it’s not for you, you’ll pass along until it find it’s recipient).

The internet is then a wonderfull tool for news addict, trolls, kittens lovers, citizens who needs a way to organize themselves out of the street ( because the streets are monitored and a more dangerous place than the internet), social organisations of all kinds benefits from this.

This is internet. Internet is neither Google, nor Facebook, nor any other form of government. Those are just things connected onto the internet and who produces and eats a lot of kittens (yeah, kittens are eaten when they land on your computer).

All was good, kittens were purring into the internet, and we loived them and cares for them. The only thing we forgot at this time was that any who can stare at a kitten, can see the packet he’s carrying. And then decides to shot him death or not, depending on the content of the packet.

That’s when the net neutrality was endangered.

The answer was blatantly simple: math. Using math, we can do cryptography and, cryptography is just packing every packet in a Unicron suit. All the packet then looks the same and kittens are now carrying unicorn around.

The governement, who were not able to mass murder kittens, decided that cryptography was a tool that only good people – which means them – would be able to use, letting bad people – you – using old packet system while they were going to use kittens.

Cypehrpunks – big Unicorns fan – decided that the cryptofascism was to be fighted and opposed Exportation law on cryptosystems. Phil Zimmeerman wrote PGP at this time for this specific reason: grants anyone the possibility to benefits from cryptography and to protect it’s privacy – as well as sending cats carrying unicorns which is cool.

And that was the status-quo for a time. Governement and corporations benefited from the works written by cypherpunks, and were counting on the fact that few people likes unicorns and won’t use the cryptography.

The web 2.0 bullshit and the cyberthreats meme

What really threatens the internet is the web 2.0 bullshit. The meme around that over-centralisation of each pieces of data in few places to create a big data environnment with savvy web services are dangerous.

Not because of the creation of those data (rememebre, more data, more kittens and kittens are cool), it was the centralisation of those data. It started slowly, with the homepage trand and then the blogosphere thing. Search engine and the host anything in da kloug.

A lot of money has been spent on this, not overnight but over a decade (and this is a small amountg of time for a slow moving thing that are governement). New buildings has been built, we have been sold assymetric access to the internet, to avoid citizens to hosts themselves the content, zetabytes storage systems now exists and dreamers and cypherpunks has been painted as bad people – antisocial peopl who will destroy the world just because they can.

Which is weird because cypherpunks are free software adept, they wnat to share as most as they can and this is specifically what a society is about (exchange). And that’s what internet could have been.

The other worrying meme, and a little more recent one, is the cyberwarfare one. It’s a meme stating that it’s perfectly normal that criticial systems such as nuclear power plant be connected to internet and that, given that fact, there is a riskq that someone find a flaw and exploit it to destroy the power plant (the flaw exist, each and every system have at least one).

So, everything on the web 2.0 is now centralised, authentified and must be monitored becasue, you know, someone might destroy the world using it’s knowledge.

This is where we are now. The leaks about NSA aren’t new, we knew that – and assumes that was true – for a while (Echelon, Karnivor, stuff like that already leaked in public). There’s some computers who copy every kittens they foudn and store the packet if there’s no unicorn.

And, if there’s a unicorn, they keep it for a later use, when math will advance and makes all those unicorn suits vulnerable (believe me, this day will come, have a look over here if you want).

They also tortures kittens to have access to metadata (where the kitten where born, where it would have dies, at which time, does he have siblings, stuff like that).

Some governement tooks extra steps and shots kittens who embed unicrons on sight (that’s why we can disguise unicorn as a regular packet, that’s steganography).

Governement founds that this kittens torture business is good for them, they secretly deployed it and are using it since then, trying to sorts the good citizens from the bad ones.

Cryptoanarchy in the tubes

The thing about Internet being dead is just that. The old internet, decentralized, neutral, with cryptograpohy everywhere is now dead. Transit operators works with governement who tries to protect themselves from the citizens (instead of protecting the citizens).

Yes, you can use strong cryptography. You should do it. But it will be efficient until a certain point. As long as you crave for centralised services, the strong cryptography is useless – you just need to asks Facebook your lifestream to see that.

Yes, some organisation, and some people who are aware of those issues can use the strong encryption systems but, teh governements keeps those data, waiting for a breakthrough that would makes it useless and will grant the governement way of using what you then wrote against you.

Yes, some people still maintain strong crypto aware servcies for activists, and you should try to set some up. It will takes you time and money to get it done. Also, government will prosecute and intimidates you, trying to send you in jail for a long time.

So yes, the free and neutral internet is dying. We now have a neo feudal system that looks like internet. Yes, people with special needs are still able to use internet with huge cryptosystems. Unicorn haven’t disappearred and kittens do flow, but it’s still costly. And it’s a cost that few people will pay. And the wealth and interest of Internet lies in the user, their differences, the thing they share. If there’s no one on internet, then you have no internet.

And with the social stigma of not being on Facebook (for instance), it’s harder to have people using alternatives – and there’s plenty of good and functionnal alternatives out there.

So yes Barbayellow, the Internet has we knew it is dead. And yes, activists will be able to communicate more or less freely. But that’s not the point. Internet is dead because people won’t pay the necessary costs to be free.

Yes, I agreee, it’s a political struggle. You know me, we disagree on the means to fight this struggle, especially when you have to face economics giant and security fanatics hiding in secret part of the governement.

The only way to get back a free, neutral and decentralised internet is to implement accountability and transparency. It’s by destroying the centralisation memes and the cyberthreats one. It’s by destroying Secrecy and to enforce Privacy by default. But that’s not something cypehrpunks can solve, it’s smething citizens should implement.

And yes, I’ll fight until we have that. But Internet is dead.

My lover is dying

My lover is dying

In 1997, when I was in high-school, I fell in love, like a lot of people of my age it seems. I fell in love with the internet. At that time, Google didn’t exists and I remember using altavista, coding in HTML and PHP3 (and using torch and diggers on a perpetually under construction website).

I fell in love with someone who was there to talk at all time, to exchange with, to contradict me, to teach me, to share secrets. I was more or less on my own at this time, and I really think that without Internet I wouldn’t have made it alive until now.

More than once, I’ve felt the silent but comforting presence of them, just in there, iddling quietly on IRC chans, or telling jokes about life and math, or trolling just for the sake of it. I mean, it’s not the people on the internet that I am in love with, they’re just people and there’s a lot of them around me already.

No, I fell in love with internet. I dedicated them a bigger part of my life, spending night with them, days, weeks. Most of the people I know today I wouldn’t have known them without Internet. I’ve been in wonderfull places, and in weird ones. I’ve done and dreamed of things you wouldn’t expect, and they’re the reason for what I’m vaguely balanced today.

But they’re dying. It’s a degenerative disease and it’s too late now for a cure. They’re dying. Internet is dying.

Diagnostic

For at least 20 years, cypherpunks have tried to reach out, they’ve diagnosed the disease at a time it would have been possible to cure it. Cryptography for anyone and anywhere, full decentralisation, free software and hardware. Those are the cures to stop the infection.

It worked, for a time. While my lover wasn’t everyone’s lover. I can live with that, really. I’m not exclusive, and I can fully understand that a lot of people loved Internet. What I do not accept is people hurting the ones I love. But that’s what you did.

You’ve created cancers. Degenerative and centralised amount of data for no reason. You’ve prostituted them and twisted their mind to think that they must earn their right to live. You then told us that Internet – which I loved, even at this time – has became ill and contagious and that they must be kept under quarantine for our own safety.

You protituted and severed parts of their body just because you were scared of them. You didn’t tried to understand them and you’ve done it. You’ve bought the hype, and you wouldn’t listen at the cyperpunks because they were dramatic. You’ve raped the Internet, you’ve subverted them and, really, I’m angry at you.

You’ll argue that you didn’t know. That you just wanted to be their ‑ or my ‑ friend. But you didn’t respected them. You didn’t want to learn the way they work, you just wanted to put your claws in their flesh to get wat you wanted. You wanted to not be offended, you wanted to not be insulted, you wanted to be safe.

But there’s only one way to be safe, it’s called privacy. Solitude, intimacy, anonymity are keys to privacy and you’ve destroyed it. Without privacy, you’re under constant monitoring, you must behave because someone will watch you and consider you as a threat and so will endanger you.

Without privacy, there’s no safety. I was able to be lonely with Internet back in the time, it’s getting harder because you’re raping them. I was able to have some intimacy, using mail or IRC with encryption, but you’re ruining it by stocking a pile of data in the cancers GAFA’s are. I was able to have any identity I wanted and built characters for the sake of it, imagining different life or discussing with other being without giving them any personnal details, but the social non-networks you massively use are destroying that also.

This is the end

You accepted to kill your privacy and by doing so you killed my right to it The privacy provided by SMTP is now dead, even with strong encryption ‑ which you’re still not using. Because a rogue agency in a former state decided so, because they had the opportunity of doing so, because you wanted a whore to manage your life instead of enjoying the Chaos of it.

It’s not Google, Facebook, Apple or Amazon who’s responsible. It’s not the USofA or the NSA, neither the USGC or the DGSI or any other secret services who’s spying on anyone ‑ because they are spying on you, it’s a fact. No, it’s you and you’re egotic need of control.

You couldn’t understand my love for Internet. You couldn’t understand them, and you wanted it because us ‑ Internet’s lovers ‑ were happy and enjoying ourselves and that was scaring the hell out of you.

Email is dead since Lavabit and other privacy minded email provider are closing. Riseup will follow one day, they’re fighting a lost battle. Even the traditionnal media can’t win those battle since investigative journalists are being threatened all over the world.

Private communication now relies on the nerves connected to those tumors. And you’re happy with it, you have no privacy anymore. And you have no safety.

There’s nothing to be done, this is an uncurable disease and my lover will die. I will stand by their side until the end. I will fiercely fight for them because that’s the only thing I know to do, because I can’t imagine a life without them, but in the end they’ll die.

No technical trick will do it. Encryption just grants you time. What grants you privacy is trust, decentralisation and freedom, which you destroyed. You should prepare for dark times because they’re coming.

The infocalypse is not nigh. Not anymore. It is the infocalypse right now it’s too late for avoiding it. Drug, Pedobear, Terrorism and Organised crimes have already been summonned and they now rides among us, destroying everything they can.

If you really want to save Internet, then help me ease the pain. Go work on decentralised service, provide services to friends. And prepare yourself for

Why you should refuses Premiums

What is the net neutrality?

If you’re not comfortable about the Net Neutrality, it is the defining concept of the internet. Simply put, it can be summed by this sentence:

Each packet is created equal in right and duty.

This is it. A packet is an atomic part of a communication between computers, it is a fragment of the data exchanged between you and the rest of the world. It’s like a word in a sentence.

This axiom grants the fact that all the packets will be managed independently of their content, sender and receiver, and then it removes the possibility of censorship.

However, this is not what’s important now. What is important is that ISP wants to sold you net neutrality. What they call premium. And you should opposes the idea.

What is a premium?

The premium the ISP wants to sold you is the fact that not everybody can access the internet the same way. They want to create a first class internet, which you will pay for.

The premium will gives you unlimited access at high speed to whatever you want. Music, pictures, videos, search engines. You name it. Sounds cool? Well, yeah, it sounds cool.

But it just a sound,a bit like the beautiful songs of the siren that lures sailors in the darkness of the seas. And you should not listen to them.

And here is why.

Internet is made by and for users

The internet (not only the web, but the whole interconnection of network) is made of what people put on it. From the time I started using it, back to the 56kbps connexion, to the modern age of social networks, most of the things available on the internet has been created by users of the internet.

Internet is a read/write media, not like the press or the TV. If it is so awesome, it’s only because everyone who can access the internet can also write on the internet. Even facebook, google and twitter have understand that, it is the User Generated Content.

The ISP, and most of the companies on the internet, aren’t building content. They are sometimes building tools (search engines, micro bloging platform, social network management tools, etc.) that are amazing, but they are not creating content.

http://youtube.com is not producing videos. They collect them, gives you tool to browse them and gives you tool to upload them.

So, you find internet so useful because everyone can write on it. Keep this in mind, because this is important.

Internet is a connexion of network

Another thing is that internet is only an interconnection of networks. Military and university ones at first, and now governmental or company owned network. Google and Facebook are two different networks (and they do a lot of effort to keep each other out of their network). Apple is building is own and, yes, ISP have their own network.

So, if you give ISP the possibility to prioritize traffic and content, the ISP will give a higher priority to the contents that will grants them more money (hey, they are mostly companies after all). And it means that you will access advertisements before anything else. You won’t access the content you were looking for, but the content they want you to access.

What does it mean? It mean that if, for instance, Orange earn no money from Facebook, they will build their own social network and will hinder your access to Facebook. If you have only 1kbps of bandwidth for Facebook.com, you will need several minutes to just load the home page or any pictures. And I’m not speaking about uplodaing pictures. Facebook will basically becomes unusable. But do not worry, after all Orange will build you a social network that will be usable for you.

And yes, they’re already doing it. Orange has interest in dailymotion.com, a direct concurrent to youtube.com. And Orange is an ISP (and even a Content Delivery Netowrk), so they can hinder youtube.com to favor dailymotion. See this link (in FR) for more details.

So, granting the network operator to do whatever they want will destroy the interconnection of the network (hence, the internet).

I want to be special

And then, enter the premium. You are special, operators wants you to be special. They will sell you a full access to the internet. You will be able to be over the top and access everything you want.

Except there is a problem. Not everyone will be able to do so, because only special people are premium. So, only special people will have a decent connexion to all the internet and to the tools that grants people the possibility to create.

So, all this content, all those cats videos, all the pictures of your friends, all those things that are the reasons you like the internet will disappear. You will have access to everything, but all the other people won’t. The not special enough people, the one that were, in fact, producing the petabytes of content you were accessing will be enclosed in a world of advertisement and partitioned network without the possibility of going on another network.

They will be stuck in a world where google can take dozens of seconds to load, and I’m not speaking about making a search, where the search engine powered by the ISP will starting by a page or two of results for which companies have paid a premium, not the results that could be interesting.

So, only special people will be granted with the full possibility of the internet. Only a few fraction of the users and creators will be granted the possibility to fill the internet with content.

The premium will be a special pass to the emptiness of the dead internet. You will pay more for less. This is what a premium is.

The non-premium people will have access to an enclosed, ad-powered internet without the real possibility of creating content (because the ISP will have no interest for it), while the special ones will access to the content that nobody can now upload.

A facebook without people, a youtube without cats, an internet without content.

Everybody should be special

So, the next arguments ISP will use is that everyone should take the premium. But if everyone pays for it, it’s not a premium anymore, it’ a raise of prices. And since everyone will have access to the full internet, the technical problems they claims to be the source of their need for premium will still be there. Except you’ll then pay a bonus of 10€ per month.

And they won’t work on building a bigger network, they will just continue what they’re doing until now: earning more money and doing less. And lying to you.

Those are the reason why you should refuses the premium and endorse the net neutrality. Not because it’s better for the humanity, or because respecting the net neutrality assures equals means of communication for anyone. No, you should stand