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Re: [GNUnet-developers] social

From: carlo von lynX
Subject: Re: [GNUnet-developers] social
Date: Wed, 21 Jun 2017 14:19:41 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.20 (2009-06-14)

On Sat, Jun 10, 2017 at 08:10:41PM +0200, Jeff Burdges wrote:
> I donno if that article should be taken too seriously, but it suggest

Certainly not. Just because one journalist doesn't miss
any of his friends when going social, that doesn't mean
everyone is anti-social as he is.

> the many major "social" sites should be viewed more as video games, and
> less as actual communications tools. 

The sites act depending on how you use them. If you
focus on cat pics rather than what is going on in the
lives of your friends, then you don't actually need
the "social". If Facebook insists on trying to enter-
tain you rather than letting you communicate with your
networks, that's because there is a business interest
in place. Entertained people are better customers!
Therefore Facebook will try to push status updates to
you that you will react with a laugh, smile or like
while avoiding to show you those you would react with
a frown or anger. Belgian police suggests that is the
reason why the "React" buttons were introduced:

So the problem is Facebook. The problem is capitalism.
It is not, having friends and wanting to interact with

> There are definitely important compromises to make for usability, but
> this suggests that one should take inspiration from applications like
> pads or more purposeful sites like GitHub, or even StackExchange and
> Wikipedia, as opposed to Twitter or Facebook. 

Myspace was *the* place to be, then it got messy
with intrusive advertising and people ran away
into the arms of the cleaner Facebook. Time has
passed, now Facebook is the messy place, but
just so much that people don't get too organized
to move. Also, the new place will be similar,
unless we really drop the broken cloud and
federation paradigms.

> I've heard similar sentiments from various people, normally expressed
> more like "I want to build something useful, not just a privacy
> preserving facebook".  This silly android app and the ideas behind it
> looked like an interesting argument for this position.

Not very convincing to me. I am observing the
Italian political scene: Most of the political
groups have closed their forums, reduced traffic
on their mailing lists and are talking things
out over Facebook. It is a terrible development,
but there is an even bigger need for a least
common denominator for political debate. And we
all know how Facebook is among the worst places
for debate, with all the manipulation, trolling
and mind control in place - yet, this is happening.
So, keeping the Malvinas incident in mind, expect
more manipulated election outcomes as more and
more people get their opinion from the wrongest

What your friends are negative about is what
Facebook has come to be, but does that have so
much to do with a private social network that
is designed to actually serve the people? Not
much. secushare is designed to let you be in
control of what your dashboard looks like (who
is likelier to get filtered away). secushare
is designed to offer democratic debating forums
as a replacement for web forums and mailing
lists. secushare has no space for influencer
bots that manipulate your political opinion,
because there are no open forums where bot
armies can be deployed. If you're not a real
person with real friends, you don't exist.

Social networks like github are just Facebooks
with an extra twist. Why shouldn't the time come
when they will be a great place for entertainment 
and manipulation, too? It is much saner to make
a github-like plugin for secushare so that you
get to have all the comforts but do not trade in
any of your data and metadata. There's a reason
we're not on github. Nor on stackexchange. And
they're all trivial to implement on top of
secushare. But not the other way around.

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