If you’re a developer and you cannot make an app without riddling it with surveillance-based components and APIs by Google, Facebook, etc., you’re a really bad developer.
Stop being so careless, lazy, and thoughtless and learn how to make apps that respect people’s rights.
@aral either that or your job depends on doing it.
@zensaiyuki In which case, find a different job. “Just following orders” didn’t fly at Nuremberg and it doesn’t fly here. We are highly skilled and highly privileged people. Our only choices aren’t a six figure salary and stock options or starvation.
@aral maybe that’s true for you and if so, good job. not all of us do have choices. or six figure salaries for that matter.
@zensaiyuki If your only other option to making surveillance-based software is being homeless or starving then this doesn’t apply to you. You’re not being criticised here. And I hope your situation improves so you are no longer forced to make unethical software to survive. Until then, no one can blame you for doing what you have to in order to eek out an existence.
I left a 23k€ salary in a city where houses are more than 300k€. I was paying 750€ rent.
I wasn't rich.
I thought at that time, and I think about it still, that if my life was in risk I would work in a different job rather than coding for surveillance capitalism, and there are few reasons for that:
1) I don't like to see my passion and being perverted and used to make this world a worse place.
2) Being a programmer (or an engineer, like my case) sometimes makes us have a larger ego than we should: other jobs are also important and can be even more fulfilling than ours.
3) If you can code, I'm sure you can do many other things that don't hurt anyone
Mostly I was just answering a question: If I just can avoid hurting people, would I let my ego prevent me from doing it?
@ekaitz_zarraga @aral @zensaiyuki I like the sentiment, but of course there's always complications. I work for a company that has some very principled privacy advocates working for it, that is, due to recent changes to legislation, required to implement processes that are really hostile to customer privacy.
I do not want to build this. My colleagues don't. But the choice for us is to build it in a minimally-compliant way or to let a competitor build it in a much more harmful way.
@kameleonidas @ekaitz_zarraga @aral exactly, at the end of the day if market pressures or the law want something to be built, it will be built by someone and shaming devs will do jack squat about that. if, as an individual you conscientiously object to say, building software that ICE uses, refusing to do work for them is admirable. but it won’t stop ICE from doing what they do.
If *all* developers say they won't do that, that will never be done or they would have less resources to do it, or problems to hire people at least. Doing it just because others will do it if you don't *is* what makes you feel better in the short term while you are harming people.
Fighting against the reasons is not incompatible with telling developers to choose who they work for.
@zensaiyuki @kameleonidas @aral Doing both things at the same time is the most efficient way to change. Changing politics is a slow process, but if we can push them from the basis, everything will go faster.
There's also another battle to fight: as customers, demand only software that respects human rights. That's a really powerful vector for change too.
It's a nonsense.
First because your are not considering the fact that people has the individual responsibility to be good.
Second because hammers build much more things in human history than people they killed.
Even using your argument here: If bad is less than good, any technology you make than amplifies both will make good even more than bad.
bad < good
n · bad << n · good
I think they are, but they don't have the same responsibility than the boss had.
Other thing is if they were forced to work on those things like being extorted (if you don't do it you won't eat this month) or whatever.
> […] la plus grande #noblesse de l'homme est dans la #connaissance, le #savoir, et qu'il a, de par sa propre nature, vocation à tout connaître […] Une de mes consolations en m'engageant dans l'#étude sans fin, ardue, assommante, […] c'était la conviction que ce que j'allais apprendre ne serait jamais ni utile ni utilisable à rien qu'à m'enrichir l'esprit, et tirerait précisément de là son mérite.
You have a valid point. But taking it this far, phrasing it like this, takes away any persuasive power you might have, and makes you honestly look deranged.
@WAHa_06x36 @aral honestly i have seen what’s possible and “deanonymizing” doesn’t seem like that huge a barrier to a tyrant. it’s not like accuracy in targeting your scapegoats is all that important.
and okay sure as a dev you can be a conscientious objector but personally i object to putting the responsibility for this shit onto dev’s shoulders, when they’re just the builders not the architect. worse actually because builders have guilds, laws and codes to back them up.
@aral Darn tootin’!
I was just planning to tell exactly the same 🙂
Also, the bad code of some selfish coders waste a lot of resources (bandwidth, electricity, etc.)
Perhaps you should consider that some people don't have that kind of courage, and also don't have back support.
@aral Problem is that surveillance-based apps makes plenty of money. So salaries are high and attractives. So developpers close eyes on the true conditions and sit down on their convictions. Once in place, it is difficult to come back to it. Comfort and money erase convictions especially if dev have a family to feed. I am not a dev but I think this way of seeing jobs are available in many of professions.
@aral I think the problem goes even deeper. It's barely possible to write an app and get paid without using any of the services of Apple or Google. Because they built the OS the apps run on. What we need in the first place, I believe, is phones with true libre operating systems and independent app markets for them
@aral Are you talking about closed-source or open-source APIs?
#OpenSource code can be audited.
Let's not just outright blindly, blanket reject everything that a #SurvellienceCapitalism company builds.
@aral I don’t like blaming people for being unaware of something they were never taught. Especially when the opposite is indoctrinated from the start through advertisements and college assignments. What can we do to educate new developers?
Always suggest foss, when someone does software/stack selection for work or pleasure.
And when someone wants to connect with you on #surveillancetechnology you say "Gee, I only have Jitsi / Jami / Matrix / or-what-have-you. And I have issues with your suggestions, because.. [#privacy, #ethics plea follows]" and the you talk about the advantages of foss
@moonman It’s a false dichotomy.
@aral Whilst I agree with this in spirit, the practical result of being *this* principled a dev is that you can't work for most employers. The issue's MUCH bigger than an individual dev and you hurt your message by calling so many of your peers "careless and lazy" like this. Would *love* to unpack this issue: e.g. what to do when your product management/marketing/CEO insists on using GA.
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