negative campaigning?

Paul Boddie paul at
Sun Jul 30 13:35:44 UTC 2017

On Sunday 30. July 2017 12.22.04 Federico Bruni wrote:
> Take online privacy or security in general (against viruses and
> malware). Recent history should have taught something to the masses,
> but did they change their behaviour? Probably just a very tiny tiny
> percentage.
> When I happen to talk about these issues to friends, because something
> gives me the chance to, I find a wall of
> indifference most of the times.

Right. So in order to give this discussion some focus, as opposed to people 
not bothering to quote the things they are referring to and having a 
discussion about arbitrary definitions of "negative campaigning", let us 
consider an example of something we might not like and how we might respond:

Here, the author presents a classic "how to deal with the symptoms" article. 
The average technology consumer, having joined every online service and 
installed every fashionable "app" known to mankind, now finds their "digital 
life" cluttered.

What might we say that not only communicates that the way of dealing with the 
symptoms is inadequate, even harmful (as the reader asks some other service to 
trawl the messages in their webmail account to "fix" their problem), but that 
Free Software (and services that respect their privacy) would have prevented 
many of these things in the first place?

Merely saying that Free Software is "great" will probably not be enough. The 
uninformed reader probably thinks that their favourite exploitative online 
service is "great", but just not as shiny and fun as it once was.


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