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A Digital Bill of Rights: Discussion  


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 Anonymous
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Joined: 51 years ago

Greetings fellow Decentralizers,

As we continue to witness some of the nuanced shortcomings of our infrastructure, there are increasing discussions about what rights individuals have and do not have on online platforms. One of the main arguments I have been seeing on larger networks is that they are private companies, and therefore have the right to deny you service and access to their platforms through their Terms of Service agreements. While this could potentially be remedied simply by healthy competition in a free market, recent events have indicated that can be increasingly difficult to foster organically. (As noted by a previous post from Larry, re: Parler vs Amazon).

My question to the community is an open thought, What do you think about "Digital Rights"? Do they exist? Are they necessary? These issues are handled differently in different countries, What do you think works - and does not work? In a truly decentralized network, would they be necessary at all? 

8 Replies
Larry Sanger
Posts: 29
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(@admin)
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Joined: 10 years ago

Well, you can read my answer here: Declaration of Digital Independence.

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ZenJenny
Posts: 4
(@shiroe)
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Joined: 2 weeks ago

As I've said elsewhere, the structure and business model of social media is dependent on monopolizing the market share, not promoting competition. And the Big Tech groups at the heart of these issues "compete" by buying out or ripping off their competition, anyway, if they can't outright ban then like The App Store/Google Play often teams up to do. For me, this is as though they have bought up the public square and now get to selectively prohibit who gets to gather on the green. That makes it about freedom of assembly, not just freedom of speech. Even people with opinions I think are vile and reprehensible have the right to gather and discuss their ideas, alongside the right to think them. Freedom of speech and freedom of assembly are in the First Amendment together because they rely on one another to allow people to hear ideas, learn about them, and critically analyze them. The censorious attacks of Big Tech succeed because they disrupt people's freedom to assemble online. So I would argue that freedom to assemble is a right that is vital to a thriving online discourse.

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davmc2438
Posts: 1
(@davmc2438)
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Joined: 1 week ago

We are watching our rights erode, quickly. Big Tech is going to shut down Parler. I am afraid of, and have deleted some of my co- workers, friends, and also famiy from Facebook. I have prevented automatic updates on my phone and laptop. I have unplugged cable. What the hell else can we do as conservatives?

 

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Wilburbent
Posts: 1
(@wilburbent)
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Joined: 1 week ago

1.  Enforce anti-trust laws and break Big tech up to small companies and don't allow them to buy companies in the future

2. Make it so that people own their private information. If they want to sell their information, fine, but don't allow one-sided contracts where you have no choice. 

3. Repeal section 230

4. Big tech must open their source code to verify they haven't added discriminatory code. 

5. Imediatly stop them from AI and self driving car research 

6. Require these companies pay for using public domain infrastructure or they can build their own, but not on MY property!!

7. Its one thing when users post untrue information, but when they do, like how twitter said hunters laptop was hacked, then the need to be susceptible to lawsuits. 

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2 Replies
Mutchler
(@mutchler)
Joined: 1 week ago

Eminent Member
Posts: 26

@wilburbent to point 5, how would you prevent companies from innovating?  At least without having total government control?

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Lioness77
(@lioness77)
Joined: 6 days ago

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Posts: 1

@wilburbent So encouraged to see a bunch of smart techies working on these problems! I am not technical really but value my freedom and free speech for all.

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Mutchler
Posts: 26
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Joined: 1 week ago

If I go to the public square, I am not forced to listen to the discussion of a group I hate.  I have to choose to listen, most likely after a “friend” tells me about them.  So maybe the best way is to allow people to join groups without me having to hear that group unless I decide to join!  Also, is it illegal to discuss the best way to kill the mayor in a group in my own home, versus in the public square?

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bbakermai
Posts: 1
(@bbakermai)
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Joined: 1 week ago

Revealing my age here, but when AOL came onto the internet (with yech, ads) those of us who had been on the internet since DARPA and MilNet days collectively grumbled that it would be the end of free speech, because a price could now be attached. I still look at that event as the moment the internet died.

The original concept of a free and open internet with each individual a contributor (the front porch metaphor if you will) was perverted by centralized conduits mimicking town squares, which in turn promoted self aggrandizement at the expense of rational exchange. My $0.02.

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