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[Freedombox-discuss] blogging in the FB (was Re: Roadmap Brainstorming)

On 3/18/11 6:01 PM, Yannick wrote:
> All this is just hurting my feelings; and with much more deep
> consequences defeating the whole project. Do you guys remember it is
> about freedom? It is not just another marketing buzz around "freedom",
> or "green", or [feel with your own concern] you can use to cover another
> business operation.

Personally, I don't have a business operation, and my day job is as a 
web developer at the Mozilla Corporation. I truly want to see freedom 
increased for everyone.

> Do you remember Elben's talks? Have you only listen him?

I sure did listen to him. It's the whole reason I joined the list.

> I'm getting tired of arguing about technical issues after reading this
> thread; the goal is quite clear: fine grained control of datas and
> communication, all in the hand of the user. It is not about the ease of
> use of services which can and do change their policies without one
> approval.

This is what I want to see, too.

> To put it clearly: the freedombox should take facebook and twitter down.


> And no, it wont do it because it provide more/better features, it will
> do it because it is a tool which design goal is to give people the
> *respect* it deserves.

This is where I disagree. If we want to take down Facebook and Twitter, 
we need to understand why they're successful and address that.

The reason services like Facebook and Twitter have won so many users is 
because many people can use them and they don't generally cost money to 
use. And, because all their friends are there - which is a network 
effect promoted by the ease-of-use and lack of a monetary fee.

The FreedomBox could have the most solid technical foundations - but if 
it will gain few converts if it doesn't have an answer to the concerns 
of usability, cost, and network effects.

For cost, well, we're talking about a free OS on relatively cheap plug 
computer that can get cheaper.

For usability, I think we'll get there if it's a priority.

For network effects, that's what I mean when I say that a FreedomBox 
should talk to things like Twitter and Facebook. If you give me a box 
that can talk to almost no one, I'll never use it. Give me a box that 
lets me talk to my friends on existing services, yet gain more control 
over my life online, and I'll start using it every day.

Consider it support for legacy networks while people are eased onto 
better paths. It can be a bridge - and someday, the bridge can be 
burned. But, if there is no bridge at all, I don't think many people 
will make the required leap.

But, I could be wrong, and maybe concerns of privacy and 
self-determination will override usability / cost / network effects, 
once a respectable alternative is available. I'm rather pessimistic 
about that, though.

l.m.orchard at pobox.com
{web,mad,computer} scientist

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