PinePhone vs Librem 5


Why no one mentioning the Chinese CPU in Pinephone? For people like us who concern about security/privacy that much, I don’t think that product is even a choice.


Because a lot of people don’t trust any government?
Because the standard edition L5 is assembled in China? and the USA edition L5 is significantly expensive?

Sure, though, you can consider how individual factors influence your personal decision.


This, plus, given the choice, I’d rather give China the possibility to spy on me than US/EU as I think they don’t care that much.
In the same way I’d rather forget my diary in an Arabic hotel than finding out my mean big brother read it.
By definition, the big brother is not only watching, but also exerts control over your life. And my current impression is that western governments do that in a more direct way. Not because the Chinese govt is friendlier. But I guess they are busy enough with their own people :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
Of course that can only be true for “ordinary” western people without much impact on society. Those who have official roles are always potential targets of any secret service.
And yet, I have a feeling I’d rather be spied by a foreign govt than the one that’s supposed to protect me :thinking:


Listen I don’t want to insult or belittle someone else’s opinion or belief. None of us have all of the facts, but when I see people say stuff like I’d trust the Chinese government over my own western government, I got to say something.

I’ve lived in Germany for almost 11 years now (off and on) and am from the US. I would still prefer the US government be in my business than the Chinese. Why? Because even though the laws are often ignored, there are laws meant to protect an individual, and you at least have a chance of defending yourself.

What happens in China if the government doesn’t like you? Anything. You don’t have a recourse, even if there is facsimile of one made to appease crowds.

Can you just go missing in the US or Germany? Sure, but this is an extreme and not an established norm.

This unease of the west is fueled by ignorance and by conflating the actions of corrupt individuals with the entire country. It is also just blindly ignoring all of the prosperity that the west has created for the world at large. It is throwing the baby out with the bath water.

I’ve lived all around the world, and I’d still rather live in the US than anywhere else.

Bringing this back to this specific thread, I prefer the Librem 5, because Purism is doing the heavy lifting. Pinephone simply selected some hardware and slapped somebody else’s OS on it. They might be first out of the gate in a lot of ways, but will they win the race?


Didn’t say that. Read carefully. I’d never move to the US, and even less so to China. But here in Germany, the Chinese have the least (perceived) influence on my life (*). It’s almost funny how the US govt tries to “protect” us EU citizens from being spied by Huawei 5G hardware - like they’d give a damn about our human rights, just a few years after Snowden let us know how much they care about the rights of their own citizens :slight_smile:

(*) and I’m no fool. I’m very aware that this can change more quickly than anyone could wish for. China increases their influence around the globe, and in many occasions the western governments are to blame for this. For decades, Africa was exploited instead of really supported. This, as example, gives China a lot of opportunity to gain influence. And I don’t think I prefer that over the US influence over the world.


Your post shows up as a reply to my post but … I actually implied: I don’t trust any government.

That definitely includes the Chinese government. I wouldn’t choose to trust the Chinese government if I had a realistic choice. That doesn’t mean I trust the US government either.

They are all doing bad things and I don’t want to get bogged down in enumerating and comparing all the bad things. Two wrongs don’t make a right. As you say, we don’t know all the bad things anyway - and they work to keep it that way.


When the US government spies on its citizens, it becomes a public scandal; whereas the Chinese just assume that their government has the right to spy on them.

As a US citizen, I worry far more about the US government spying on me than the Chinese government, because the spying of the US government potentially has greater consequences for me. I also worry about what Little Brother does with my data. I get suckered into using the services of Facebook, Google, Amazon, Dropbox and Yahoo, whereas I haven’t even heard of the services of Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu, so they have no power to tempt me into giving my personal data to the devil.

I can’t change the Chinese surveillance of the Uyghurs, but as a US citizen, I can write indignant letters to my congressperson and vote for politicians who promise to change the NSA’s bulk collection of my data without a warrant. Then, I have the privilege to be disgusted when nothing changes and write angry diatribes online about how we have lost our constitutional rights to privacy in “the land of the free.”

On the other hand, I currently live in Bolivia, and that changes my perspective. I do worry about the US overthrowing the government of Bolivia, but I also worry about how the Chinese are killing tigers in Bolivia, building mines that will contaminate my water, and financing hydroelectric dams that will destroy the Amazonian rainforest. The funny thing is that my activist friends in Bolivia are very scared of how the Bolivian government watches their Facebook accounts.


so far i have observed that you use this arrangement of words in various contexts … my question is this - if Snowden had remained in the US would “they” have kept “the baby” and ONLY thrown the “bath water” ?

US, China etc. whatever … i don’t like bringing David Icke into this mess but “what have i been writting for 30 years ?” and by the way this is going to make things interesting indeed >


whereas the Chinese just assume that their government spies on them

Fixed that for you.


If you observe Snowden only by what he revealed then he is deserving of the respect and revere that people, especially the paranoid, give him. However, if you look into his character, listen to him talk, etc. then you can see that all he did was for personal fame. It was all to stroke his ego. Before he was a lowly IT security employee, and now he is a hacker god and security expert. And the naïve and easily entreated continue to stroke that ego.

The answer is between a rock and a hard place. What he did was important, the way he did it was careless and selfish. He deserves to be prosecuted but only for that carelessness. While people like Hillary Clinton can get away with security incidents, nobody else can. A lowly grunt in the military accidentally places a classified document where it doesn’t belong, and they are nailed to the wall.

Let me ask you this:
Do you think all actions are justified by the end. How you think about that, will be your answer to your own question.

I do not think they are justified. Peace accomplished by killing all means nothing.


I did watch a few of his interviews and read a lot of what he wrote. I never noticed any piece of fame or pride, only selfless wish to help the community and willingness to sacrifice. Do you have any particular links indicating your view?


Me neither.
Also, he had a good paying job in Hawaii. Giving that up for a chance to gain some personal fame and a certain life in prison/exile.


No these are my personal assumptions. When I read his story, and how he chose to do certain things, it was clear to me. I might have read him wrong, but I don’t think so. My impressions are all things that the international community might not pick up.

I speak German, but a lot of times when people joke, I don’t get that right away and think they are serious. It takes time to learn those sorts of things, and so maybe to the international community, the things which are obvious to me, are not quite as evident to them.

Now before we go done this rabbit hole together, let me just say, this is my impression of him. His character and intentions don’t matter against the rational and logic of his actions.

All I’m really saying is that the ends don’t justify the means.


Ironically, then you have something in common with him. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: SCNR


Yeah, just to be clear I’m not saying that what he revealed wasn’t important. I don’t think doing something wrong to try to do something right is normally justified, and so it was important that he revealed what he did. I just think there could have been a better way to do it that would have kept the baby in the tub, so to speak.


Whistleblowing is an area where you intentionally and knowingly do something technically wrong but it could be justified.

How this has anything to do with PinePhone v. Librem 5 is beyond me though. LOL.


I don’t considered exposing the truth as something that is wrong. If only the scenarios where this is necessary were so plain and clear cut. They aren’t.

Regarding the relevance to this thread: You might want to alert the authorities. :rofl:


Regardless of his personal motivations, Edward Snowden’s actions were necessary, because the system failed. He tried to report the massive spying and bulk collection of data without a warrant up the chain of command, but the NSA lawyers told him that it was legal. Anyone with an ounce of legal knowledge knows that the NSA spying program was unconstitutional, but the NSA lawyers were willing to lie to protect their own careers.

2 government employees and 3 ex-employees who knew about the NSA spying program reported it through official channels in 2002 and 2003 and congress passed a bill in 2006 to defund it. The Bush administration decided to respond by continuing the NSA spying under other programs with different names and in 2007 prosecuted the 5 whistleblowers who had reported it. John Crane, the assistant inspector general at the Pentagon, who handled the complaints of 4 whistleblowers about the NSA warrantless spying, says that the Bush administration broke the law when it revealed the identity of the 5 whistleblowers to the Justice Dept, which then prosecuted them in 2007, and the Inspector General’s office destroyed evidence that would have cleared Thomas Drake. When Crane kept raised objections about how Drake’s case had been handled, he was eventually fired in 2013.

Edward Snowden says that it was reading about what happened to Thomas Drake that convinced him that he should give up trying to report up the chain of command and go to the press.

8 congresspeople were informed that the NSA’s illegal warrantless spying had continued despite the congress having explicitly defunded it, and not a single one was willing to inform the American public. Senators Ron Wyden and Tom Udall raised the objection that the NSA’s actions were not constitutional, but it happened behind closed doors, and the Bush and Obama administrations ignored them. Anyone of those 8 congresspeople could have held a press conference and announced that the US government was conducting illegal warrant-less spying on a massive scale, but they valued their positions on intelligence committees over the constitutional rights of American citizens.


We are in agreement. I guess the illegal and wrong things that were going on are way bigger than his personal fallings.


Thanks you everyone for the info and replies.

I would much prefer a Librem 5 for a number of reasons, I see PinePhone is not selling their phone with UBports as the OS, but as others have said, this is just their hardware, good hardware, but just using someone elses software, Purism has created everything from the gound up, hardware, software etc…

As for CPU’S being made in China, lots of hardware is made in China, I am not sure how the Chinese GOV would be able to see your traffic or anything you are doing, through the hardware of the CPU?

Just because the parts are Chinese I would’nt imagine “they” can see what you’re doing, also the guys and girls at Purims seem like pretty smart, switched on folk, I’m sure they have thought about this?