[tor-dev] [Tor2web] Proposal for improving social incentives for relay operators

Karsten Loesing karsten at torproject.org
Wed Jun 11 11:47:36 UTC 2014

On 10/06/14 22:42, Virgil Griffith wrote:
> General remarks:
>     * I agree 100% with your Dec 2013 post.
>     * All data I seek to make available in "Torati" is available from
> Onionoo.
> The proposal is to interface to Torati is like ATLAS but keyed by Tor
> nickname.
>     * However, where Atlas intends primarily to be a reference, Torati aims
> to be social reputation
>       incentivization for operators.  So you'd want Torati to be seen by
> search engines using the user's
>       nickname, e.g.,
>   -- https://torati.torproject.org/TORTverLover
>     * A given nickname's contributions would be the sum across the relays
> with that nickname.
> Which in for "TORTverLover" would sum the stats across:
>    *
> https://atlas.torproject.org/#details/F2D3093388925780441433897F497797C5062B0B
>    *
> https://atlas.torproject.org/#details/A8541EA02D2BBE97086BC7EF44A67E8FDA0C75A9

I like the idea of having a combined page for all relays run by a single
person or organization.

I'm less convinced that requiring all relays to use the same nickname
for this to work is a good idea.  Consider the three relays run by Nos
Oignons: marcuse1, marcuse2, ekumen [0].  They wouldn't want to rename
their relays only to have a common page on your new service.  Also, the
concept of naming authorities is about to be phased out [1], so better
not build new services that rely on nicknames.

[0] https://nos-oignons.net/Services/index.en.html

As an alternative, how about accepting a relay fingerprint and showing
combined statistics for all relays in the same relay family?  (A
positive side-effect would be that people have an incentive to configure
relay family settings, which the guy running the two TORTverLover relays
did not.)  The URL would be:


Of course, you could allow people to register at your service and pick a
better name for their family of relays.  You'd simply keep a
name-to-fingerprint mapping and use the fingerprint to query Onionoo.
And assuming the TORTverLover is the first to register that name, the
URL could indeed be:


So, it seems you can already build this with Onionoo's current
interface.  But if you're missing something, please open a ticket!

> To answer your questions:
>> (The last link is a 404.)
>     Try: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3308162/Iajya%202013.pdf
>     But the most important papers are the first two I linked.
>> Why not make it entirely opt-in?  We could include a subscription
> link in Weather's welcome messages that relay operators receive when
> their relay first receives the Stable flag.
>     I greatly prefer opt-out over opt-in.  Even if a Torati operator is in
> fact reputation-hungry, I don't want
>     the opt-in mechanic to encourage him/her to be seen as reputation
> hungry.  Moreover, as ATLAS isn't
>     opt-in so I see no reason to deviate from that precedent as this is
> really just a "reverse-lookup" version
>     of ATLAS.

True.  Maybe drop the idea of opt-out then.  The data that relays
publish about themselves are public, and relay operators should be aware
of that [2].


>> Where does the name "Torati" originate from?
>      The name "Torati" is a Tor-ified version of "digerati" or
> "illuminati".  It's meant to convey something
>      along the lines of "Tor Ninja".  It's a positive term that one is
> proud to call oneself.  The name was
>      chosen as a component of the reputation social incentive.

Okay.  See Andrew's concerns about avoiding words having "Tor" in them.

All the best,

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