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[liberationtech] Cryptography super-group creates unbreakable encryption

Griffin Boyce griffinboyce at gmail.com
Thu Feb 7 07:58:45 PST 2013


On Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 10:31 AM, Nadim Kobeissi <nadim at nadim.cc> wrote:

> I've tried writing multiple blog posts about Silent Circle, contacting
> Silent Circle, asking journalists to *please* mention the importance of
> free, open source in cryptography, and so on. All of this has failed. It
> has simply become clear to me that Silent Circle enjoys a double standard
> because of the reputation of those behind it.
>
> Silent Circle may be developed by Gods, but this is just quite plainly
> unfair. If someone repeatedly claims, towards activists, to have developed
> "unbreakable encryption", markets it closed-source for money, and receives
> nothing but nods of recognition and applause from the press and even from
> *security experts* (?!) then something is seriously wrong! No one should
> be allowed to commit these wrongs, not even Silent Circle.
>

  It's definitely not for nothing. *Any* project with that amount of hype
around it should be taken skeptically by media covering it, but until very
recently, that has not been the case with Silent Circle. You and other
vocal proponents of open-source crypto have changed the dialogue. Nothing
is perfect, but it's getting there. ("There" being more even-handed media
coverage. I don't actually expect them to open source anything.)

  There are many double standards in tech and especially tech-focused
journalism. Phil Zimmerman is going to have less pushback on his
product/service than an MIT grad student would, and the MIT grad student
would have less skepticism directed their way than a graduate of the
Univeristy of Edinburgh -- on down the line.  And personal relationships
affect these structures at every level.

  Anyone who thinks class stratification doesn't exist just because we're
Internauts is mistaken.

~Griffin
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