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[liberationtech] Many VPNs and Psiphon are currently blocked in Iran right now

Adam Fisk afisk at getlantern.org
Wed Feb 26 15:27:19 PST 2014


I just wanted to quickly add my strong support for the notion that
having a variety of tools is essential to this fight. Lantern's up and
running in Iran and China right now, for example, but that could
change at any moment, and users need alternatives. China dropped the
hammer on us on Dec 12th I believe it was, and while it only took a
few days to implement a fix, it took about a month to have that ready
to deploy at scale. Planning for those inevitable events as tool
developers and swapping more notes about what we're seeing in the
field and what's unblocked when would likely be beneficial.

The need for a variety of tools was abundantly clear to me in
conversations with Manoto1, the most popular satellite TV station in
Iran, in the past few days. They talked about how they had helped
spread circumvention tech (Psiphon) to everyday Iranians who otherwise
would just be cut off from vital information sources. These are
distinctly users who are not technically savvy and who are
particularly low risk -- users for which Psiphon is extremely
appropriate. Providing for these users is incredibly important and
that importance should not be lost in these debates, as Collin and
others have alluded to. Psiphon has clearly done an amazing public
service for millions of Iranians.

I must say that I only just learned of this thread, and I started
reading fully expecting far more of a bloodbath. I'm impressed with
the overall collaborative tone (albeit with some hiccups =), and to me
both that spirit as well as actual collaboration at the
information-exchange and code levels are vitally important to our
success. I think that's happening naturally as we all get to know each
other better over time, and I just wanted to re-iterate that at
Lantern we're strong proponents of taking that further.

See some of you at RightsCon!

-Adam


On Tue, Feb 25, 2014 at 4:49 PM, Nathan of Guardian
<nathan at guardianproject.info> wrote:
> On 02/25/2014 03:41 PM, Adam Pritchard wrote:
>>  One
>> might not want to suggest that one is unblockable.
>
> "One does not simply suggest, that one is unblockable..."
>
> I was more referring to my own personal experience working within the
> Tor community, and their human+organizational response to increased
> throttling and filtering by Iran in the past, than a specific technical
> capability. I do also feel the work that Tor has been helping push,
> promote and fund on obfuscated transports is extremely important, as is
> their community/volunteer approach to building a sustainable bridge and
> obfuscated bridge hosting capacity.
>
> Again, these are not specific technical features, but more the process
> by which I have seen Tor respond to adversity.
>
> Obviously, with the numbers you are sharing for Psiphon (3 million users
> is outstanding!), you know what you are doing, and have a great system
> to respond to these events, as well. Keep doing what you are doing!!
>
> +n
> --
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-- 
--
Adam
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