CFP2000 WFPD: Lenny Foner's raw notes

These notes are raw and not post-processed. They were all taken while the workshop was going on, and hence are not polished and not guaranteed complete or necessarily even balanced -- many scribes took extensive notes on only parts of the entire discussion.

These notes were projected on the video system and used, in part, to keep track of the discussion for those in the room.

Morning Session

   Rebecca Wright
   Alma Whitten

Replacing the Domain Name System

o Distributed Searching:  overlay on DNS?
  Availability and Anon Speech:  via Freenet?
o Route around DNS
o Is it too late b/c of multinationals?
o System must be a superset of DNS
o Hierarchy?  Dist DB?  Goals vs means?
o How to init a comp w/your context? [Biz cards?]
o Deployment & wide distribution?
o Bookmarks/aliases for IP addrs?  Share alists?
o Caches vs crowds
o Chokepoints vs govt coordination
o Expectations
    usually right vs always right
    common nameproblems
    how do you know when -wrong- site?
    diameter dichotomy (needs experimental data!)
o Attacks
o Lots of glTLD's?
o Land grabs vs price to grab them all?
o Can we make a simple prototype to start with?
o Do we need different disamb. proto's for diff. types?
o Tension between the big guys and the little guys
o Focus on better system, -not- current DNS politics!
o Browser infrastructure lock-in vs naming
o -Hundreds- of glTLD's? Can we do it?
o -Findable- names vs -good- names
o Ontological solutions?
o Are multinationals the most important entity?
o Do web YP's solve the small -co- problem now?
o What is the killer app?
o DNS -was- meant to be used by individuals originally
o Throw away DNS and -not- replace it? :)
o Search -up- and -around- in DNS, not just -down-
o DNS queries don't nec. req. -static- server lookup
o Even thousands of glTLD's don't solve TM issue
o Can we separate tech and intprop issues?
o Naming vs finding (also well-known biz vs individuals)
o Solve the -naming- problem, -not- the -finding- problem!
o How to concretize discussion?
o Multiplicity of naming & finding systems
o DNS is already being used as a -dynamic- database
o The killer app might be for the ISP's, not the users
o DNS as a hinting system?
o How do you prevent the biggies from smashing soln?
o Unique domains for each person or not?
o New namespaces, e.g., Napster
o In some parts of world, many people per machine
o Do we have data about how users use the DNS?
  (and how do we get some?)
o SN as a finding engine only?
o How do we -change- things once we know what to do?
o How do we prevent capture by the biggies?
o Name freehold w/o interference to use in the appropriate
o Should/could we punt some of this back into the courts?
o Separate tm and non-tm spaces?
o How do we continue after the WS?
o What are the new services that might start?
o Ambiguity is a good thing! (also enables anon speech)
o Don't combine too many things or we'll get brown
o Don't conflate net and web!
o Progress comes from small isolated coding groups...
o How do we give incentives to unsophisticated users?
o Can we use our influence w/our respective companies?
o Geography may be a red herring
  ...but maybe it's useful after all...
o Language issues!  The UI is a problem...
Afternoon Session

   David Phillips
   John Gilmore

Business Methodology

Anti-nuke activism:
o Narrow focus
o Social movement
How do we create a cognitively-prepared
 and socially-resourceful populace?
Possible privacy threats: intimacy, autonomy, discrimination
Demographic maintenance of schisms
Coalition poss: WTO, World Bank, etc; biotech

Free Software:
Giving SW away doesn't break your business!
You can't screw up any of 1000 different things
Go make some news
FS reduces transaction costs of cooperation
$1M compiler contracts didn't work...
Cross-compilation and embedded systems worked
Cross/embed 50x PC market
Must minimize the barrier to entry for improvements
Egalitarian control over the direction of the product
Cygnus may be the only -profitable- FSW co


o What resonates w/the public?
o Groups of people fall into a legal hole
o Libertarian social autonomy vs coalition-building?
o Chernobyl may not be appropriate analogy
o Privacy implications when tech works -as designed-
o Chernobyl opportunities?
o Secure fn eval, blinding as tech solns
o A privacy disaster causes -loss of trust in priv advocates!-
o Homework: legal, interest groups, reg groups
o Expectations: confidentiality, lack of surveillance
o Privacy problems are highly situational (specific measures)
o Biz comm helpful in defeating key escrow
o It's not just biz that gains from data mining!
  People get a lot, too, 'cause biz pays them off
o What are the biz models in which there is an inherent
  incentive to build in and profit from trust?
o What might a Chernobyl get us?
o 30+ privacy bills in Calif, but often not well thought out
o How do we get biz to think about privacy at design stage?
o Tort law?
o Theories of economics: liability, labor, price
o Feature creep -> privacy disaster... (ontological assumps)
o There are other legis models than EU: think NZ!
o Biz motivators: fear, greed
o Privacy is not just an Internet problem
o Privacy problem 'cause you can't move money on the net
o A fair question can motivate biz (PIII SN)
Afternoon Session

   Deirdre Mulligan



_Toxic Sludge is Good For You_

o SpendCash: but clearing is a problem
o Netherlands: barcoded cash
o Prepaid cellular cards outside US can help leverage
  the distribution of plain prepaid cash cards---but
  must move fast before credit cards eat this!
o Critical mass (where's the knee in the curve?)
  Payment systems should interoperate
  PayPal:  > 250K active users (eBay drove this)
o Prepaid cards are too heavily regulated to escape from
  severe govt interference
o CC history: _The Credit Card Catastrophe_ (Matty Simmons)
o Demand side: anonymity (your favorite sins)
o Economics
o We routinely engage in anon transactions (buying a paper)
o "Cash through the mail" analogies
o CC vs DC liability differences
o Prepaid card float is good for card vendor
o Anonymity? Liability? 
o Who underwrites? What are their motivations?
  (French Telecarte system and lack of anonymity)
o The headache of CC fraud for -merchants-
  ...but merchant misuse is the dominant fraud!
o RocketCash (mostly for teenagers)---take cash from all over
o Will float tighten up?
o Disincentives: float, incentive programs, [3% charges...]
o Porn vs -lack- of anon -> proof of adulthood
o Calling pattern-matching vs supposed anonymity
o Can we use CC infrastructure as a scaffold for cash?
  Anon CC's at -any- price? Bootstrapping via market?
o -Any- system can bootstrap the whole thing!
o Are we talking about cash on the net, or just replacing
  or augmenting CC's w/an anon system irrespective of net?
o Merchants are hypersensitive about CC chargebacks, rates...
o Many CC's want to do the right thing:  Visa doesn't
  data mine, but their member banks -do-
o Dealing w/govt interference makes CC's eager to -not-
  know where the money's going!
o It's the clearing system that we have to pay attention to
o Individually noncontestable payments (for when you want
  the anonymity)---an incremental approach!
o Smartcard interoperability still a big problem
o Prepaid cards might expand the informal economy
o (fora for tech discussions, consumers, govt, ...)
  going up this week (permission tracker, owned by
o cash is a fundamentally social construction
o Privacy International, EPIC, EFF, CDT, CPSR, ...
o Pierce (clearinghouse) in Dublin
o We have no marketing/demographics/advertising people here!
o _Blown to Bits_, p.167:
  "Privacy is the Achilles heel of ecommerce."
o Simultaneous needs for autonomy and community
o We don't need another Chernobyl---we need another Silent

Lenny Foner
Last modified: Sun Apr 23 15:54:35 EDT 2000