Re: Mozilla: "We’re taking a break from Facebook"

Jonke Suhr suhrj at
Sun Mar 25 08:54:31 UTC 2018

Thank you for your thoughtful replay, Florian :) I agree with your
assessment of Mozilla's motives. Under the premises you described, I
guess personally I'm fine with FSFE keeping the profile. I guess my
point was, if FSFE wanted to delete (or "pause") their profile, now
would have been a good opportunity (because we just found out about a
massive data breach).

Am 23.03.2018 um 17:48 schrieb Florian Snow:
> Hi Jonke,
> I can't help but feel this is a PR stunt from Mozilla.  Facebook
> recently had a privacy scandal, but Facebook is the same it has always
> been.  Asking them to reform their business is pointless because they
> make money tracking users, so they can't stop tracking them.  Also, at
> the end of the message, Mozilla asks people to use Twitter instead and
> while Twitter does not ask for photos of users and names and such, it is
> still able to track users through the web.  So in my opinion, Mozilla is
> not all that serious here.
> On a sidenote, I think Facebook is a symptom of a privacy issue we as a
> society have, but one that is currently starting to fail.  Not because
> people realized it tracks them, but because they are choosing to be
> tracked by someone else.  A lot of young people do not use Facebook
> anymore, they use Snapchat and the likes and that is why Facebook had to
> buy Whatsapp - to stay relevant.
> Regarding your implied question of whether the FSFE should have a
> Facebook account, my answer is still yes, under certain conditions.
> First of all, the FSFE is an organization, not a person (and no,
> corporations are also not people!), so being tracked has completely
> different implications.  The FSFE as a legal entity is not entitled to
> privacy or any other human rights so our information is mostly public
> anyway (and should be).  What we should not do is tell other people to
> sign up for Facebook.  That is why it is important for us to always
> clearly state (on Facebook or whichever privacy-troubled platform) that
> we do not support the platform and that people should not sign up for
> it.  That way, we make clear that our presence on the platform is not a
> stamp of approval.  We also need to make sure there is never any content
> from us on those platforms before it is also on other platforms so
> people always have a privacy respecting source available.
> If we meet those conditions, I think we can gain from being on platforms
> like Facebook because we can reach people that we would not reach
> otherwise and hopefully, in the process, they will become more aware of
> Facebook's privacy issues.  I think we should have a voice of dissent on
> a platform we find problematic instead of leaving it to voices of
> approval.  Or to put it another way:  If you want to warn people about
> the dangers of X, you need to talk to people who use X (and X can be
> anything: non-free software, drugs, Facebook, Twitter, etc.).
> I didn't arrive at this position lightly:  I want the FSFE to be a
> beacon of freedom and privacy.  I want the FSFE to always bahave in
> accordance with its principles.  For a long time, that made me think we
> should not be on platforms like Facebook, but then I realized the
> different implications if we as an organization are on Facebook or we as
> a community:  I think the former can be done in accordance with our
> principles, but not the latter.
> Happy hacking!
> Florian

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