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[liberationtech] DecryptoCat

Kate Krauss katie at
Tue Jul 9 08:43:37 PDT 2013

On Tue, Jul 9, 2013 at 9:57 AM, Jacob Appelbaum <jacob at> wrote:

> Patrick Mylund Nielsen:
> > If it's so easy, go ahead and produce a more secure alternative that
> people
> > will use. Talking about how exceedingly easy it is in Internet forums
> > doesn't contribute much.
> >
> I'm not sure if you're away but Maxim did exactly this many years ago.
> He wrote a system called cables:
> What I hear from you is a common idea: it is the idea is that people who
> don't build those systems don't have a right to voice negative or
> critical views.
> When we degrade others for their criticisms by suggesting that they only
> get to speak if they've met some arbitrary bar for entry is
> dis-empowering. I know that we all do this but perhaps it isn't the best
> way to move forward?
> While I think Maxim is viewed as exceedingly harsh in how he writes, I
> think that your response is really the wrong way to deal with him. We
> should consider that his cultural background is different and that as
> far as I understand it, he isn't a native english speaker. Between the
> two things, perhaps we might just ask him to be nicer?
> Allow me to try a different tactic:
> Hey - Maxim - people appreciate what you have to say but when you say it
> in a way that they perceive harshly, they can't hear your pretty
> reasonable advice. I think you might care about this - albeit moderately
> - still, I think you'd reach a lot of people if they understood it in a
> different frame. Probably people don't understand that you're a one man
> powerhouse of anonymity and security projects (cables, Liberté Linux,
> etc), they probably stop thinking when they feel insulted or that you've
> insulted someone else. :(

Great, constructive idea.

I've also wanted to commend Nadim for making an honest, humble public
apology and spending a lot of time publicly talking through what happened.
(We don't see that kind of thing in the nonprofit world--I can't think of a
single example). Certainly that was the right thing to do, but he could
have been a defensive jerk about it.  He has his eye on the ball--helping
people at risk keep their communications safe in as accessible a way as
possible. Both of you know that it's not a game.

Kate Krauss
Executive Director
AIDS Policy Project

> All the best,
> Jacob
> --
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