76
linuxxx
68d

So, as some people here probably know, I don't use any of the mainstream, mass surveillance integrated social media and messaging services. Since I'm located in the Netherlands especially whatsapp is nearly a life requirement but Facebook and such come close as well and I don't use anything related to Facebook, Google, Apple and any of the other companies related to mass surveillance programs which often puts me in awkward positions.

Every time someone wants to stay in touch and the fact that I don't use whatsapp comes up again, it usually turns into an explaining session with much disbelief from the other party but more and more often, I'm getting rather tired of that.

Recently, I had one of those moments and instead of saying 'sorry, I don't use whatsapp', i went for 'sorry, I'm old school, i only do texting and calling!'.

No discussion, just got a "ah, fair enough!"

๐Ÿ˜ฎ

I started doing this more and more and I get the same response every time!

I find it quite astonishing how bringing something another way can get one a completely different response, especially in this context.

Comments
  • 21
    In my case i would rather accept people who come up with a vaild reason not to use the services like you, than someone saying "i am living under a rock, and i dont want to try something newer tech that is from 2000".
  • 17
    @Frederick I, myself, completely agree with you. I just don't have the energy all the goddamn time to go into the privacy flamewar again which pretty much happens every time me not using whatsapp comes up :)
  • 8
    Life Pro Tip.
  • 4
    #MeTwo
    Good old sms works well in these convos. It's easier to be old, Then it is to be a tin hat๐Ÿ˜
  • 10
    @linuxxx, by texting, do you mean actual SMS? Because I'm quite sure that these are even worse than WhatsApp, as SMS are not encrypted at all. From the Snowden documents it came up that the NSA has surveillance software at right about every bigger provider.
  • 2
    @systemctl What would be the worse between having your data stolen or having your data sold?
  • 5
    @Jilano You know, I really don't like WhatsApp either, but at least it's encryption even EXISTS. SMS is substantially just shouting some message, and everyone that followed some tutorial to build a GSM base station can read all of your received and sent messages.
  • 3
    And right now, Signal and Wire appear as viable solutions, but at one point WhatsApp did to, and I don't think that any other centralized service is a solution. If everyone could just use XMPP/Jabber, that would be quite nice.
  • 3
    @systemctl Whatsapps encryption officially exists, but you don't have any control over it, so you can treat is as non-existent.

    At least you should have control over the keys, but Whatsapp does encryption automagically, so you never know what it does, if it's save, which encryption/key info is sent to whom and if it's really end-to-end.
  • 2
    @irene You can host your own if you wanted to, or choose from 100s of free servers. When I use Signal, all of my data is on Signal servers and I cannot change that, I'm bound to that one Signal client and if it ever gets backdoored because some agency called Signal, I wouldn't even know. Maybe federated would be a better word. With the current decentralized networks, there are just to many drawbacks (thinking of the Tox network).
  • 0
    @ddephor Signal encryption officially exists, but you don't have any control over it, so you can treat is as non-existent.

    At least you should have control over the keys, but Signal does encryption automagically (that's actually a nice word), so you never know what it does, if it's safe, which encryption/key info is sent to whom and if it's really end-to-end.
  • 1
    @linuxxx I hope you know that your calls and messages are already (since long back) integrated in mass surveillance of country!
  • 2
    *cough* iMessage *cough*

    https://apple.com/business/docs/...

    *cough* Page60 *cough*
  • 3
    @C0D4 You okay there, mate? You seem to be coughing lot... You should go see a doctor.
  • 1
    @Jilano must be this cold I have ๐Ÿคง
  • 1
    @irene not implying anything.

    Just giving an alternative E2E encryption message system, but since most people dislike / distrust Apple it will be ignored.
  • 0
    @irene not this time.
  • 0
    Probably you can use telegram. It's open source. Quite widely used and I hope it isn't a part of a mass surveillance program!
  • 1
    It is also better than trying to explain to an addict that devices have an addiction component to them. Combined with a social media app it creates a draw that literally wastes hours of your day.

    Some developers I met at a meetup had a discussion about the addiction side and how to use certain win/fail combinations to literally cause someone to play a game for a very long time. I cannot remember the ratios, but I am sure you can find them online, or do testing to find these ratios. Social media uses this kind of stuff to keep you hooked.
  • 2
    @Sangat Telegrams source code is always 4-5 months older than the actual release, it's full of magic numbers for int values like "42540" which are passed as flag values. This makes the code seem obfuscated, even though that might not even be intended. If-Else statements are too long and there are really long methos (300 loc in one method). Btw, no documentation on them, ofc. It's also full of spaghetti code and pure C.

    Open source != mean audited or *auditable*.
    Some compiled applications are more auditable than this.
  • 1
    @systemctl Yes. I always refer to the application/service used to keep things clear!
  • 1
    @Jilano Depends on the context!
  • 0
    @systemctl I'm a huge Signal user! I just quit trying to explain that I use that because it just doesn't work in my case.
  • 0
    @systemctl Actually as for signal, the app is open source so you can check and compile it yourself if you'd like.
  • 0
    @Sangat It's cryptography has been developed by maths people, not cryptographer's and is widely criticized.

    Next to that, they don't do a single thing to protect metadata so nope for me :)
  • 0
    @linuxxx But Signal is still a totally centralized service and relies on Signals servers and you cannot simply change that either :(
  • 0
    @systemctl True. But its the only service I've found this far which goes really far in protecting user data which is also user friendly.
  • 1
    @linuxxx Most XMPP servers don't do a bad job at protecting user data either, and most clients (like Conversations) are very user friendly too (registering is literally two textfields, one for username and one for password), and you don't have to provide ANY actual information like phone number, e-mail address, etc... I never liked that all of my Signal contacts have my phone number :/
  • 0
    @systemctl I agree entirely but I don't have the option to manage an XMPP server and I haven't found a single app which makes everything as simple as signal does for xmpp :/
  • 1
  • 2
    @systemctl Okay, now I'm curious. I'll try that app when I can! Thanks

    PS: I'll PM you or @linuxxx if I need a test buddy :D
  • 1
    @systemctl Thanks! Sad thing still is that i wouldn't use anything than my own server for this and that's something I simply can't right now :/
  • 0
    @linuxxx If you trust the Signal servers, wouldn't you trust a good XMPP given the correct information?
  • 1
    @Jilano It's very hard to explain, I might write some blog article on it sometimes :)
  • 0
    @linuxxx aah. So you just use Netherland government's tools of mass surveillance (Sms and calls). That's fine then ๐Ÿ˜†.
  • 0
    @K4R71K Better than the most widely used mass surveillance networks imo.

    I mostly use signal but if people don't use it I am open for using other privacy respecting and open tools and otherwise I fall back to sms!
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