finally reading e.warren's proposal to break up big tech and
> [...] requires large tech platforms to be designated as “Platform Utilities” and broken apart from any participant on that platform.
> Platform utilities would not be allowed to transfer or share data with third parties.
so, no ads? by law? great! deprive the bastards of their only real profit mechanism, why not
i think you're going to have a hard time getting tech companies to meaningfully compete when so many of them were never profitable
as much as i want to see naive legislation kill surveillance capitalism dead by accident, it seems to miss the nuance of the industry: that monetizing social infrastructure is actually really hard, and the major ways businesses have been able to do so have been really slimy. so what do you do instead? nationalize facebook?
@garbados it's also easily shoutable in the "one more song" cadence ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
@garbados I would argue that social infrastructure should be run by social organizations, not by profit-seeking corporations. I would like to see libraries, universities, municipalities and the like provide email & other social collaboration software just like they do roads, public forums and other utilities and social spaces.
@basus i agree, that'd be pretty cool
I agree but I would underline the fact that just because social networks should be maintained as community resources doesn't mean that they need be centrally controlled by the government.
The problem isn't just in monetizing human communities, it is in believing that human communities can be represented by one hierarchy, one moderation policy and one medium.
The fediverse model of little communities sprouting up is slow, but the only actual solution
@Alonealastalovedalongthe @garbados I agree. I think email is already the mostly optimal model. You have multiple domains, with multiple users, and anyone can have one or multiple such accounts for whatever purposes. You can also layer on additional functionality at the end points, while keeping to core protocol simple.
@garbados facebook has actually been caught selling bulk access on the side
but yeah, the pattern is collect => exploit
@garbados "let's nationalize this massive private surveillance industry" seems.... Bad. Like you say, these companies shouldn't actually exist and be profitable.
@garbados I'm worried this is the direction things are going. Tech platforms are natural monopolies. Also, governments increasingly see social media as an issue of national security. And as Cory Doctorow has said, they may be "deputized" to fight misinformation campaigns from foreign governments, censor content the government doesn't like, "secure the integrity of elections," etc. But I don't know if I want the government to crown a winner, or for each country to have their own social network.
@garbados It sorta feels like our options are:
- break 'em up
- nationalize 'em
- wait for the tech bubble to pop and realize that the whole thing was unsustainable from the start 🙃
@garbados @nolan Things that I don't think we already have solved.
- identity recovery (new phone, etc) but dark crystal / paper keys might be able to help
- easy multidevice setup (qr codes?, "bump" tech?)
- moderation, ssb's propagation method seems to be working but I bet some sort of web of trust could be really powerful if we want global feeds
AFAIK the only country that has had anything like a "nationalised facebook" (which turned out to be surprisingly successful) was France with the Minitel network, maybe more a "lucky accident" as other neighbouring countries tried the same (NL, UK, DE) but their Viewdata based services never took off, and plans to allow these services to integrate them across borders were resisted by national governments. Early 90s Internet in Europe was "soft geoblocked" too (at least from UK)
its not too far off, but AFAIK Tencent isn't directly owned by the Chinese government, unlike the situation in 1980s when in Europe the govt either directly funded the national telecom company (usually a monopoly) and/or had a significant shareholding in it (even today the German govt owns about 30% of Die Telekom)
@nolan i feel like i've been waiting my whole career for the bubble to pop
@nolan a part of me worries we're hurtling toward nation-specific webs, and that any state-driven efforts to provide this desperately needed regulation will only bring us closer to it.
a valid concern, I grew up in the pre-web era where this was the case in my country.
I notice 90% of USA news websites that block Europeans because of GDPR still do so; which suggests they simply do not consider the traffic/bandwidth costs to be worth it without whatever gain they were getting from tracking/advertising stuff (presumably working alongside European companies as it would make no sense to advertise things you could only get in USA?)
Really good points! Is it even possible to kill the surveillance without making them not-capitalist-businesses?
@bhaugen not that i can think of 🤷♀️ but i really wouldn't mind if social media became primarily a municipal or cooperative effort
We didn't nationalize cigarette companies so I'd like to think we can find an alternative solution here.
Facebook sells access to their data tho. I feel like somehow holding that to a different standard than selling bulk data is somehow a semantic game Facebook will want to play.
@garbados clearly a move that would satisfy all parties
@csravens cant wait for facebook dot gov
The social network of the future: No ads, no corporate surveillance, ethical design, and decentralization! Own your data with Mastodon!