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Re: Crypto's Role in Evil?
> > We mustn't forget that, until very recently, strong, widespread
> > privacy has been humanity's "default" condition.
> Not much privacy in village or tribal life. Even neighborhoods of
> earlier cities weren't very private. Neighbors always knew your business.
I now realize that my first response to this point was stupid. I was
focused exclusively on what one might call "transient" privacy -- the
ability to wander out of general earshot for the occassional private
conversation. I now see that there is another kind of privacy, which
one might call "steady-state" privacy -- that is, the ability to live
large portions of one's life out of the light of public scrutiny.
In traditional small village or tribal life, transient privacy is
rarely threatened, but steady-state privacy may be nonexistent. This
is an important point which I didn't get the first time around, and I
apologize for giving it short shrift.
The various GAK strategies, on the other hand, represent a nearly
opposite strategy, preserving (at least in theory) general
steady-state privacy (thereby perhaps satisfying the letter, if not
the spirit, of most human rights law) while making it impossible to
reliably ensure the privacy of any specific thing (Bentham's concealed
random observer model for cost-efficient control of a population).
These two types of privacy, of course, are not truly distinct, but are
ends of a continuous spectrum. Yet they raise different challenges.
This is all very interesting; it seems to imply the possibility of
some sort of analytic system.
But it's late and I'm not particularly brilliant, so I'll end here.