• 5 Posts
Joined 2Y ago
Cake day: Jun 02, 2020


FluffyChat is a decent alternative client (with E2EE support). If you don’t need e2ee there’s actually a healthy number of clients, and some of them do seem to have it on their roadmap


Point taken on server implementations though

Exciting! l should look at moving by blog from GitLab Pages

For browser I’d just use Firefox with the Facebook Container extension

I heartily recommend Frost too. one downside: if you want to chat with people in EU and UK, FB limits some features (not sure what) for privacy compliance and such chats don’t show up in Frost

Settings are available outside meetings – if you create and account and log in. One of those “makes sense but why can’t you save the settings locally?”.

I use tiling extensions for my desktop (either PaperWM or Material Shell, for GNOME) so thankfully the “window not maximized” is not an issue, but thanks, I did not realize Screen Sharing auto-fullscreen can be disabled!

If you’re on Fedora (maybe other distributions too) you can still start a desktop session on X, so if something doesn’t work the fix is just a logout away.

IIRC Zoom screen sharing doesn’t work on Wayland, but open source apps mostly work.

it’s been reported several times, eg


I’m still supporting Mozilla myself, for now, for lack of a batter alternative, but am increasingly on the ‘no client-side JS’ / ‘let’s try Gemini’ side; the web is getting too complex for alternative browser engines

Photo gallery with ephemeral sharing?
I am looking for a photo gallery (preferably open source) with ephemerla sharing - eg I can create links to a photo album that can only be used once, with the (not foolproof, but enough for laypeople) JS necessary to prevent the photos from being easily saved to disk. Does one exist already? I can get close to this by using Signal's ephemeral messages but would prefer a solution that doesn't require people to install apps. (Threat model: family members and friends who might not be trusted to be privacy respecting and might reshare photos on social media) Thanks!

Facebook should quit every market where it can’t demonstrate it has enough moderators with competence in local languages and cultures really.

If it’s already bad in the US, imagine how bad it is in … say, Ethiopia. https://www.iheart.com/podcast/105-behind-the-bastards-29236323/episode/part-one-mark-zuckerberg-should-71796243/

So for additional context: Facebook always claims it benefits small businesses and thus the economy (and doesn’t talk much about how its digital advertising duopoly with Google is ruining the news industry - and makes the manipulation of public discourse by news feed and its algorithmic promotion of fringe groups even harder to check)

I’m in complete agreement there. We should try pushing on both fronts - build the replacement from the ground up, but anything that makes it a bit harder for attention economy platforms to maintain the status quo would help too.

This is all great for the percentage of people who can reasonably migrate to these systems, but I have a hard time imagining the information technology platforms of society at large adopting these systems …

Agreed - I think we need more tech-savvy people to adapt these systems and gradually improve them to the point that they are more accessible to the average person.

It’s not someting that free software folks are historically good at, so this definitely would not be an easy goal to achieve…

There are claims that regulations like GDPR disadvantages smaller players and actually help Facebook and Google, but it’s early days still – and maybe it makes it harder to compete with FB and Google on their own turf, but that’s a red herring and we should incubate business models that are more privacy-friendly to begin with?

Properly-regulated capitalism can be good for small businesses, certainly (and also for their employees) - I am quite fond of Germany’s social market economy.

I call the dominant form of libertarianism “right-libertarian” since there is a historical left libertarianism (a.k.a. anarchism, but that term has too many other connotations these days). As you pointed out it leads to really nasty labor conditions – but it’s also not great at preserving competitive markets either, especially in market sectors conducive to natural monopolies (e.g. look at broadband Internet access in the US, or social media).

Sure, that’s a valid question, and I also hope we can discuss this without making it a political debate.

Soviet-style command economies have certainly been disastrous for the environment; democratic socialist and social democratic parties in the West have had a better track record.

I’m personally interested in eco-socialism myself; the Green New Deal is a good example of balancing environmental and social justice needs, while the yellow vests movement, IMHO, partly highlights what happens when politicians try to impose ostensibly environmental tax increases at the expense of the average person.

I wasn’t trying to use capitalism as an excuse for not becoming vegan – I can’t speak for other non-vegans so I don’t know if others do make this excuse, and I apologize if I give that impression, I just mean I see an alignment between trying to be more ethical in my meat consumption and trying to reform the system. Both are necessary and individual behavior changes alone will not be enough, in my opinion.

This IQ2 debate appearance by George Monbiot makes the point on how capitalist economic growth won’t bring prosperity for all without ruining the environment better than I can express myself.

For its part, Facebook said that limiting this flow of data could damage the economy and even potentially slow down recovery following COVID-19. The company also promised to remain compliant with European law.

Sure, Facebook, sure…

Report: European Regulators May Order Facebook To Stop Sending User Data To The U.S.
European governments have long taken a stronger stance against Facebook than the U.S., and that trend continued this week with reports that Irish regulators may order the social media giant to stop sending user data to the U.S. The reported ruling comes a few months after the European Court of Justice stated that this data transfer doesn’t “adequately protect” the privacy of European citizens.

Indeed. Disclaimer: I’m not (yet?) a vegan, though I am aiming to reduce my meat consumption gradually for moral/environmental reasons.

The right-libertarian everyone-for-themselves selfishness, and unregulated capitalism (some would argue, capitalism itself by its very nature) are detrimental to not just animal life (whether cattle or wild) but also to individuals and small businesses, so anything that begins to tackle it is good news. I just hope it’s not too late.

My best bet right now is for EU regulations like GDPR creating a space for service providers selling paid hosting for open-source software that replace proprietary US tech.

e.g. Nextcloud hosting to replace Dropbox / Google {Drive, Contacts, Calendar}; mailbox.org / migadu / posteo / protonmail to replace Gmail, Mastodon/Pleroma to replace Twitter; Lemmy to replace Reddit…

just gradually ramp up the friction for using privacy-invasive US tech for EU businesses and consumers (it might already be illegal for EU businesses to store their data in the US depending on how you interpret that recent ECJ ruling) … it won’t happen fast since the US sees any immediate curtailing of its tech companies as a trade war.

ah, any source for Google’s OKR? 8 bytes per user seems overly ambitious.

I guess we also have to consider how data is tied to the use cases that the user intended. e.g. Facebook misusing 2FA phone numbers for other purposes should have been fined under any decent privacy framework.

Make it progressive perhaps. Make it a multiple of userbase * data per user * number of privacy antipattern.

Facebook and Google **would*be affected if the fines amount to billions per year instead of haphazardly every decade or so

Yeah, the choice is theoretical. Agreed that the Chinese model is more dangerous, but the US needs stronger regulation to control what tech companies can do with our data. I like one of the ideas suggested in The Social Dilemma that data hoarders get taxed on how much data they collect, as an incentive for them to get by with less.

I would use Messenger (either Lite or web, so no ads) to talk to people who are only on it but I draw the line at using Facebook Pay for sending or receiving money (unless it’s to a fellow Facebook employee). If you’ve seen how bad Facebook’s customer service is it’s obvious that end users are not our real customers – so using us for financial transactions is madness.

On balance I’m fine with them being banned too, yup. Same as TikTok. The Citizen Lab has run many investigations into Internet surveillance in China that it boggles the mind how anyone outside China would want to use these apps (except for when they have to deal with people living there). Then again… most of the rest of the world use Facebook-owned apps, sigh.


Does social media bring you joy? | Pensées de Michel
I am a current Facebook employee and I would not recommend our products to anyone without a serious rethink of our business model first - which won't happen as long as people are wedded to our platform. Been meaning to write this for a while, but the release of Netflix's *The Social Dilemma* yesterday gave me the additional motivation to finally finish this post! Comments appreciated here, via the mailing list linked to the post, or [on Mastodon](https://floss.social/@michel_slm/104839270996528683)

I'm a FLOSS contributor with a Big Tech $dayjob - happy to chat to anyone interested in free software, digital autonomy, and our inevitable post-consumerist, ecologically sustainable future
Writing this as procrastination from actually finishing my presentation slides :p I am a Fedora contributor, though my $dayjob is working for Facebook (luckily my role lets me work on Fedora and other open source technologies). I am concerned with the direction both the technology sector is taking, and the wider economy in general - the predominance of large companies creating increasing monopolization of many sectors of the economy (especially true in the US), the increasing relegation of end users to be mere operators of their devices, the bloat and wastage and upgrade treadmills... My ongoing resolution is to gradually achieve what Kashmir Hill famously tried and failed at last year -- reduce the influence of proprietary technology, and non-community-owned companies, in my life, especially those funded by advertising since that is a perverse incentive (monetizing attention span) diametrically opposed to the user's best interest, whether privacy or well-being. I'm starting [#100DaysToOffload](https://100daystooffload.com/) soon on my blog, once the [Nest with Fedora](https://flocktofedora.org/) conference is over, and will be covering my digital detox among other things - switching away from Gmail - almost entirely cutting out Facebook products (except with contacts that exclusively use it) - using a Pine Phone (once mine arrives) - using Nextcloud instead of Dropbox and Google Calendar / Contacts - using Cryptpad instead of the rest of the Google Suite You can find me on Matrix at michel-slm:matrix.org and michel:michel-slm.name -- the latter is less active as I use Matrix to bridge to Freenode

Alternatives to Google's Contacts app for Android?
I'm trying to move my contacts from my Google account to my Nextcloud account, synced via DAVx5, and it's not been smooth sailing. So many dark patterns... - the option to default new contacts to my Nextcloud account is ignored, new contacts still go to the Google account unless overridden - old Google contacts can't be moved to Nextcloud, but can be moved to other Google accounts - Nextcloud contacts can be moved to Google accounts. I don't know if this is just a bug in Google's support for non-Google contacts, a bug in DAVx5, or something else. I'm moving to FairEmail for emailing, so if there's any good contacts app that's preferably open source that will work with it, I've about had it with the stock Google apps. Thanks in advance!