Why OpenPGP is not wanted - stupid is in vogue right now

Mark H. Wood mwood at IUPUI.Edu
Mon Jun 10 16:00:31 CEST 2013

On Mon, Jun 10, 2013 at 12:40:07PM +0200, Johan Wevers wrote:
> On 10-06-2013 10:46, Henry Hertz Hobbit wrote:
> > Nobody but me uses my signatures on the stuff I
> > deliver.  It isn't because my keys aren't part of the WOT.  It
> > is because for what ever reason they want to complain like mad
> > about Prism but then go to Facebook and broadcast their personal
> > lives to the entire world.
> Privacy has much more to do with encryption than with signing. On the
> contrary, when I sign a message it is much easier to prove, or at the
> very least make it probable, that I wrote it, thus reducing my privacy.

Hmmm.  I begin to think that "privacy" is another one of those words
we should avoid because it is so vague.  Encryption is about secrecy,
which is a bit easier to define.  I could argue that someone
pretending to be me on email is an attack on my privacy and that
signing my emails thus increases my privacy (if my correspondents
accept my assertion that I don't send unsigned emails; if not, I might
argue that it at worst doesn't change anything).

Yes, let's get rid of "privacy" (the word).  We can have secrecy, we
can have verification of authorship, we can have several other
properties I've forgotten just now, and they are all aspects of this
misty thing called "privacy".  Privacy itself is a set of social
conventions:  there are aspects of my life which it is right and
proper for me to control, and it is wrong and improper for others to
attempt to control them, because my society generally agrees that
this is so and my government is (generally) willing to enforce laws
codifying these norms.

Mark H. Wood, Lead System Programmer   mwood at IUPUI.Edu
Machines should not be friendly.  Machines should be obedient.
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