[tor-project] The Tor Project Social Contract

Griffin Boyce griffin at cryptolab.net
Sat Jul 30 05:58:29 UTC 2016

Kate wrote:
> Lots of awful people hate human rights and so do the secret police.
> Tor must be an organization that doesn't accommodate them, but instead
> finds ways to side with and support the people they would like to 
> oppress.
> Virgil Griffith:
>> ** Would people support Tor Project aligning itself with explicit 
>> human
>> rights advocacy even if that alignment is likely to obstruct the 
>> most-needy
>> users' capacity to use Tor software? **

   I take Virgil's point, but offer a couple of counterpoints.  There are 
countries which broadly object to encryption software like Tor because 
people use it to organize against human rights abuses or corruption.  
There are also countries which go out of their way to hassle people 
working explicitly on corruption and human rights abuses.

   But in a real practical sense, Tor crossed this bridge a long time 
ago.  People use it for human rights work IRL, and countries that don't 
want people to organize on these issues already know that Tor exists 
(Ethiopia being an example of this).  There's nothing to be gained from 
shying away from the issues in play -- in fact, that would probably 
drive users away IMO.

   \|      I heartily endorse the social contract and hope that
   ยด \     it will be a comfort to contributors and users alike
   / /     -saint
   ` `

Accept what you cannot change, and change what you cannot accept.
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