privacy, open source, efficiency, prism and P2P social networks

since the 'sudden discovery' that government/military computer systems are seeking to monitor and record every online activity, many have sought services that they hope can mitigate this intrusive approach to 'society'.
*the previous sentance was heavily censored for political correctness - a translated version is at the end of this message*.

this page provides many free/open source services which make privacy, anonymity, free-ness and transparency their focus and can be used to replace corporate services -

i notice on that list that there are several social network options that i was not previously aware of and that some of them are P2P based and thus ensure that no heavy centralised server tech is needed to run the site. this is a dramaticly different approach to elgg and others designs, though i have yet to see the benefits in full detail. if anyone has any plan to convert elgg to a P2P format, i would like to know it!

translation of initial sentance follows:

since a small amount of individuals broke their mind control programming and started sharing with the greater population some of the truth that they hold back in fear of their own death at the hands of the criminal gangs identified as 'governments', the larger populous has sought to find ways to free themselves from the threat of tyrannical psychopaths presenting themselves as honest, caring & morally correct.

since the fuller truth of just what has been occurring behind closed doors has yet to filter into the controlled media and into the wider human perception field, many are not yet aware that the technology being used in deep bunkers is vastly more capable than that which has been palmed off to everyone else and thus are not only uncertain about what is the best approach to take, they also are often unaware if their approaches are actually successful. for this and other reasons, if we are to continue to use technology, we may benefit greatly from unification in place of fragmentation (as we always do) and use the models of equanimity and balance that have hither-to been denied and attacked (by the ones who wish dominion over the rest) - such as P2P.

  • Ura, to my understanding all those social networks work as federations, rather than P2P. I worked on a P2P social network once (it was 11 years ago!) and it's a complex topic. It would work only for a very specific purpose (the one we were building was for people who worked as a help to old people, and for those elderly people) and it would have vast limitations (eg. that solution required hardware, also if not enought people were online, you can't access all data). I suspect Facebook-like website could never have a successfull P2P architecture (but then again, I know of a few inventions that had the same prognosis)

    I know of a few people who would like to see Elgg as a federation, however I haven't heard of anyone who would take it to a serious implementation phase.

    Our team is working on a SaaS-centered federation architecture as well, however it's in a concept phase and will be quite different from a standard federation. I should have more info about this in comming months.

  • thanks for responding.

    i can see the potentialy for a 'best of both worlds' model where shared files would be held with P2P format and profiles can be 'federated' and hosted locally.. so that is essentially not so different to having an email account and using bit-torrent except that there is a software layer on top that ties it all together and provides, profiles, a community and forms through which interactions can be created and data presented.
    i have no experience of federated sites presently in practise... so perhaps i will explore them more soon.
    presently i am not clear on how a federated site works in terms of hardware in comparison to P2P - since they both need to constantly share data among amounts of individuals for any sense of 'community' to be created and the data has no central server.

    i think the P2P idea works as long as there are sufficient 'seed' machines in the network available to hold the core community data. when we consider that many file sharers share TBs of data, sharing community forum posts and blogs etc. would most likely be considerably smaller and thus not an issue for many.. i see that for many, the greater challenge is participating in a community in place of hiding behind their 'screen'. ;)

  • I don't think you should worry about the NSA. If you don't have anything to hide, you should be fine. They target people, they don't randomly pick users.

  • "If you don't have anything to hide, you should be fine"
    oh so the nsa group will be happy to be totally transparent then? or does that logic only apply to those unfortunate enough to have been deemed 'citizens'?

  • this is, unpleasantly, only the tip of the tip of the iceberg here.

  • NSA surveylance is number one to be used as intimidation, as Orwell well defined. No one will be "fine" as humanity degrades into completely intimidated existence, except braindead idiots and there are plenty of these on planet earth. 

    This is an interesting and needed discussion I will be following. I have my own idea for an Elgg network, though it is the opposite of "secure". PM me if you have any interest.

  • i am aware that digital security is probably impossible and also aware that we are all one!
    those two awarenesses lead me on to have little motivation to increase security and to instead seek to ensure that every (seemingly) individual being knows how to be empowered and free enough to replace the external technology with internal awareness and an open heart. technology is mostly a replacement for internal abilities we have temporarily lost or which is disabled (such as telepathy/ telekenesis).

    an open heart and true feelings ensures there is intent to not overpower others as there is awareness that this is truly self defeating. the systems that overpower in the name of ensuring safety (ensuring that others are not overpowering) are by definition not going to succeed. just as you cannot drug someone out of addiction, you cannot free someone through control and surveillance. those who disagree are holding broken logic and denial.

    the concept of 'if you don't have anything to hide, you should be fine' is in some sense valid. yet also in some ways requires that the 'watchers' are also transparent and needs to apply to all - which equates to zero imalance and zero 'government surveillance' where that monitoring abiity is not available to all.

    so the non-secure network is a valid approach, yes.. though the basic technical functions of a technology network require some form of 'security' just to be able to function with individual identities, even if only to ensure that the identities do not accidentally get over-written by others.. though perhaps that might also be an interesting experience that would would break up some limiting behavioural patterns.. lol.. an identity-less social network.. would be.. erm.. perhaps somewhat 'borg' like .. or perhaps an enlightening experience.. depending on the intent, integrity, heart and love presence in those involved.