@fosdem Hi there, welcome to the fediverse.
Who are your sponsors this year? Will you have the world’s #1 surveillance capitalist (Google) as your primary sponsor again?
What’s FOSDEM’s official stance on surveillance capitalism? Are you ethically/morally opposed to the business model of tracking/profiling people to manipulate their behaviour for profit or do you support it (being neutral in this, as in any situation of injustice, takes the side of the oppressor).
Look forward to your answer.
@aral We are a conference and platform for and about free and open source software. As such we welcome all free and open source developers from all over the world, regardless of their affiliation. We use donations to make this event possible. We aren't selective about sponsors and sources of donations, for sponsors have no influence on the selection of the contents for the event.
@fosdem That “free” word you keep using refers to “freedom”.
”We aren’t selective about about sponsors and sources of donations” is tone-deaf, reckless, & simply not acceptable in 2018 for any group that seeks legitimacy in the ethics of what they do.
Palantir develops open source (https://palantir.github.io) and also helps ICE find & deport asylum seekers. By your (lack of) ethical standards, they would be welcome as a sponsor.
Please see https://fundingmatters.tech and review your stance on this.
@wodan @fosdem What you call a non-issue is one of the primary reasons why we cannot effectively regulate surveillance capitalists: because people who don’t/won’t understand institutional corruption keep legitimising them (because, hey, why question where the money comes from, amirite?)
I understand the word “freedom” intimately: I understand it doesn’t mean remaining neutral in situations of injustice or implying some sort of relativism between those who protect it and those who restrict it.
@aral @wodan while I agree with you on Alphabet Inc. being the largest surveillance oppressor, I don't think that @fosdem is legitimising them. Unevitably, google is very present in many open source projects and wants to sponsor large FOSS events, as part of their openwashing and to drag attention away from the petabyte of mass-survelliance secret software they produce.
All viewpoints have always been welcome at the conf: there are always talks on sovereignity, de-googlification, copyleft...
I mostly agree with @aral (maybe except on the tone: if we don't assume our intelocutors might might be right, why should they consider we could be right? I think we need to listen more carefully.. 😉 ).
NOTE that the @fosdem's position is pretty similar to that of #Stallman (see https://newleftreview.org/II/113/richard-stallman-talking-to-the-mailman ), and I think that both are naively wrong: you cannot really optimize a single dimension in a complex dynamic system: the equilibrium is too unstable and unpredictable.
Some toots ago @wodan wrote:
> Maybe you're only seeing the top of the iceberg, and the conspiracy goes way deeper.
I'd like you to elaborate.
What do you think it's happening under the hood?
I'd say that the tip of the iceberg is what most people see, free services and annoying nerds concerned with being tracked.
I think I have a pretty clear vision of the whole iceberg. But I like people challenging my vision. What's your take on these matters?
This is my personal Mastodon.