UK's New "Think of the Children" PR Campaign

The post in question was

a) wildly off-topic, and
b) had many of the red flags.

If you make factual claims (like “The UK government is only doing this because <insert conspiracy theory target> directed them to”) then, yes, you need to back that up with reputable sources.

But pleeeeeeeeeeeease let’s not derail the topic with metadiscussion.




I’m getting an impression though, that this is precisely what they are aiming at. If not after the software makers, then they can go after server hosters. This has happened before with DNS, and torrent trackers. I’m not seeing a reason why the attack on encryption would go any different.


The problem isn’t proof, is prosecution.

“The UK government is only doing this because directed them to”

Sounds like opinion to me. Opinions that are essentially non-commercial click bait are easily ignored. In my experience, bans and knee jerk reactions are worse that the unwanted opinions. Maybe a twit filter would be more helpful.

Opinions are subjective and generally in the form of “I think” “I like it”, “they should”. “They want”, “they did” is an objective, positive statement.

Regardless of what that is, it’s something that causes threads to go off-topic, as also briefly happened here.

I would also suggest to move the discussion about the moderation to another thread to keep this one focused.

On the face of it

a) they are not trying to force anyone to do anything - they are trying to shame / harass Facebook into doing something “voluntarily”, and
b) they are only interested in mainstream social media platforms.

They aren’t at this time looking to ban E2EE. It is entirely possible that if their campaign to harass Facebook into doing something “voluntarily” fails in its goal then legislation could be forthcoming that forces Facebook to abandon E2EE. That still wouldn’t be a blanket ban on E2EE.

Assuming that you are not a user of Facebook, whether you are sanguine about Facebook’s being forced to abandon E2EE could depend on how much the “first they came for the …” / “slippery slope” argument resonates for you.

If it were me, I would not be sanguine - because putting the majority of “private” messaging under surveillance is to the detriment of the whole society. So it is to my detriment even if not directly affecting me personally.

From what I understand of current UK legislation, you are …ed anyway. :wink:


…putting the majority of “private” messaging under surveillance is to the detriment of the whole society.

Sounds suspiciously like an objective, positive statement. Please state your sources. No, you may not use reason or logic, only external sources.

My source is Schneier, a person with recognised expertise in these matters. You can find him making comments along the lines of what I said in any number of places on the internet but I will pick this one: because it cites actual underlying research [Penney], in addition to quoting Schneier.

Penney’s work is the sort of evidence for negative social effects that scholars (and courts of law and @Photon) demand.

OK, it’s possible that I edited that quote and that you weren’t referred to in the article. :slight_smile:

In truth, I was really expressing an opinion “if it were me, I would not be sanguine”. That should make it clear that I am expressing how I feel about something i.e. “not sanguine”.

I don’t see a major problem in challenging someone who is only expressing an opinion or feelings. Opinions and feelings can still have a factual basis, or not.

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Opinion piece from The Register:

It depends whether you are focussing on

  • the technical
  • the legal
  • the political.

Right now this is a political campaign. It’s simple. They want to persuade Facebook not to offer E2EE. Noone is under any illusion whatsoever that that means that E2EE will not be available. People who insist on using E2EE will just go elsewhere (to other platforms).

Attacking E2EE politically is not easy … because of apathy and because it’s a technical area and because there is a massive amount of cynicism about anything “government”. Even half-decent government ad campaigns will be memed mercilessly. :rofl:

There will nearly always be a substantial majority of negative comment (which may or may not be representative). I mean: people who see the ad and think “that’s fair” are less likely to comment than those who see the ad and think “that’s BS”.

Yep. Even worse than the UK, in part because there is such limited protection of human rights and protection from government overreach. Developers, servers, etc., particularly for product areas likely to attract government attention, should stay well away from Australia.

But maybe that’s another topic.

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OK, that was pretty funny.

I’m disappointed though that my signal wasn’t clear enough. I was really hoping for you to call me out for frivolously calling for sources! The truth is that while I’ve worked as an engineer most of my long life and strongly value the scientific method, I have very little interest in “sources” in discussions online as they are almost invariably blatant appeals to authority and almost never reference actual controlled experimental data. I am much more interested in what the discussion participants think – original thinking and reasoning. Sure, that often comes with a low signal to noise ratio, but I am tolerant and can easily filter what I read. It involves some effort, but the payoff is usually worth it.

Bottom line: I value what you (and the others here) think, not who you cite.

The signal was clear. However since I was just quoting Schneier, more or less, I answered as asked.

Indeed. People can make all sorts of wild claims, without ever having to provide sources.

It depends on whether one is actively debating or not. And the nature if the claim, to some extent. I’m sure if I were to start a thread saying E2EE is broken, you’d want to know why.

Also, please cite this.

I think we’re getting really close to a line where further discussion doesn’t bring the topic forward.

I think establishing a mutual understanding is worth a brief sidetrack.

I was hoping EFF would comment:

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[quote=“Gavaudan, post:27, topic:16044, full:true”]

And of course, I just did. It was a first-person claim. Since I view the forum more like a bunch of friends/acquaintances having a bull session than like a team debate between rival schools, I feel no pressure to issue further citation, nor would I expect it of others. My default position is that we are all individual humans, fully-capable of assessing whether other individuals in a conversation are brilliant, full of shit, or somewhere in between. I’m not likely to get bent out of shape, even some consider me to be FoS.

Me, too. They gave been amazingly consistent advocates for online privacy from the beginning.

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