A conference on freedom-and-human-rights-respecting technology should not have a titan of #SurveillanceCapitalism like Google as sponsor. The good people in our community shouldn’t have to choose between having a platform to meet up at and having their legitimacy usurped by association to whitewash such companies. I’m attending under protest to meet and chat to some lovely members of the community.
Google doesn’t belong there.
@jibec Being listed as a primary sponsor is a position of prestige, not punishment. (If this is really how #FOSDEM sees it, please just copy the text of your toot to the sponsors page next to Google’s logo in parenthesis (“We often want offender to pay damages”) and I won’t have a problem with the association at all at that point. Otherwise, if FOSDEM has any legitimacy in privacy/human rights it’s the equivalent of Greenpeace being sponsored by Exxon Mobil. i.e., whitewashing
@jibec @yunohost Interesting, this is the first I’m hearing that Free Software/Libré has nothing to do with human rights/privacy (pretty sure Richard would be surprised to learn this too). I know open source doesn’t but FOSDEM styles itself as more than “open source”. I guess they’re not so I was confused by the discrepancy between what they say they are and what they actually are.
@mmn @aral And some people write articles with title like « Stop trying to make Libre Software a political topic » - because they don't care : for them, libre software is just "the best way to make software" in the technical sense.
In fact the whole "ethical technology" thing is very different (though related) than just libre software and we have very few semantic tools / words to properly talk about it...
a) The Four Freedoms are vital for supporting our other human rights in the digital age.
b) And before you can trust your privacy to some software, it must respect the Four Freedoms.
c) But licensing restrictions aren't the right tool to prevent the powerful for misusing FS for surveillance, etc.
But he might not be surprised FOSS doesn't maintain these principles to the same extent.
Maybe noting is said about #privacy in the About Page, but there is at least a Decentralised Internet and Privacy devroom :
A good question is what does Google asks in return? Nothing but being visible?
And at least Facebook is not a sponsor as it was in 2010:
@aral On the one hand, Google et al belong as they benefit tremendously from free software's freedom. On the otherhand, they don't as they refuse to pass that freedom on to their "users".
Personally, like you, I prefer not.
And Amazon definitely not as ontop of everything their employees aren't allowed to upstream their work for Amazon. Terrible policy.
@ritjoe It is “the perfect is the enemy of the good” insofar as Greenpeace having Exxon Mobil as a sponsor or a lung cancer ward having Phillip Morris as a sponsor is. i.e., it’s not pragmatism but a fundamental conflict of interests; an association that results in the party with the social legitimacy effectively whitewashing the corporate entity whose business model stands in stark opposition to its social mission. It’s the equivalent of being the doctor in a tobacco ad.
@aral i totally agree with u but i just want to point out i think whitewash is when you represent people of colour as white, for example JESUS, or having Scarjo play a Japanese woman. The one with Exxon and greenpeace would be "greenwash", but i don't know the label for when google sponsors this, other than coopting ethical tech spaces.