[Noisebridge-discuss] anti-anonymity proposals

Leif Ryge leif at synthesize.us
Fri Nov 15 19:43:57 UTC 2013

On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 09:00:59AM -0800, bfb wrote:
> Coming from some who has been present at the last 4 or so noise bridge weekly
> meetings.. I opposed making noise bridge a member only space. I was the one
> of the few who did at the meeting that was consensed.

When I saw that you were at the meeting where the members-only policy was
decided, I assumed you must have been convinced to stand aside - but strangely
that wasn't indicated in the meeting notes!

> As a result I have been around strictly to offer constructive ways off moving
> forward with a flawed decision to restrict access to noisebridge.

Thank you for continuing to try to make the best of this situation.

> For instance, if only members, associate members, and their guests can be at
> noisebridge, then we must have a 'on the dirt road' way of verification. We
> know eachother by digital alias, and that is sufficient.

It's easy to see the argument that having member benefits (like being allowed
in the space) which must be evaluated on-the-fly necessarily requires having a
reliable means for anyone to discern who is and isn't a member.

Systems of control tend to be incompatible with privacy.

I'm somewhat surprised that jake (@spaz) is against this, given that he has
been pushing for the members-only idea for a long time...  but not too
surprised, as his defenses of it have always hinged on the notion that the
policy will only be selectively enforced against "bad" people.

> Finally, in practice, and I understand this will change, I often arrive to a
> noisebridge that does not align with the current rule set. There are many
> hard and soft copies of key that have been issued to make the current
> decisions untenable.

I'm also surprised nobody has tried to change the lock yet, to lock out the
thousands (yes, thousands) of hackers around the world who've received keys
over the years. (If that happens, I suggest quickly restoring it!)

> I strongly encourage anyone with a sense of WTF to come to a meeting and
> resurrect Leif's proposal to revoke all member only consenssies. Two folks
> two meetings prior did just this but their proposal was blocked. Something
> similar but different could be brought back at some point. 

I also strongly encourage people to do this, and to perhaps suggest alternate
ideas which could achieve some of the well-meaning goals of the misguided
selectively-enforced-members-only policy... such as:

    Codify the custom which has evolved over the last couple of years that says
    anyone (preferably more than one person) may ask someone to leave and not
    return until a meeting (or some mediation process) has discussed their
    (mis)use of Noisebridge, and the person being asked to leave should do so.

My impression is that one of jake's primary intentions with this policy was to
make it easier to ask "bad" people to leave. I think that has always been
possible, but I understand some people feel it would be much easier to ask
people to leave if they had an official policy to refer to when doing so.
Unfortunately, the policy recently adopted says "No other person shall be
permitted at Noisebridge" which (obviously to some, but apparently not obvious
to jake) inevitably leads to people enforcing the rule just for the sake of the

If the members of Noisebridge insist on making policies I implore them to make
policies which are more MAY and SHOULD than MUST and SHALL.


> -------- Original message --------
> From: Jake <jake at spaz.org> 
> Date:11/14/2013  10:16 PM  (GMT-08:00) 
> To: noisebridge-discuss at lists.noisebridge.net,Jacob Appelbaum <jacob at appelbaum.net> 
> Subject: Re: [Noisebridge-discuss] anti-anonymity proposals 
> I agree with you that members of noisebridge should not have to identify 
> themselves online in this way, and I am willing to proxy-block on your 
> behalf and on my own volition as well.  Although i suspect there will be 
> plenty of other people to block it without me.
> I haven't been to the last few meetings and I think people are going a 
> little bit off-track, although i appreciate that they are trying to 
> improve the situation at the space.
> My last proposal (which improves the language of the members and their 
> guests policy) was made to clarify the intent of the recent changes, but 
> it seems that it didn't get talked about since I wasn't there.
> I think it is helpful to improve public awareness of who is a member of 
> noisebridge, but I think that obviously if people want to reduce awareness 
> of that (by requiring that the treasurer be asked specifically) that 
> should be their right.
> -jake
> Jacob Appelbaum wrote:
> With that said - the above is rather sad but the following for next week
> is really sad:
> > A. "As a result of our prior conversation, we collectively propose: If a
> > member has not identified themself as such by adding the Category:Members
> > to their wiki user page by $DATE, they shall no longer be a member of
> > Noisebridge."
> I object and request a proxy at the next meeting to block this in the
> consensus process.
> Members of Noisebridge have a right to privacy and they should have a
> right to decide if they disclose their affiliation with Noisebridge.
> This robs them of that ability in a time when we face massive
> persecution from both corporate and state actors.
> Sincerely,
> Jacob
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