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Open, Closed, and Privacy – Stratechery by Ben Thompson

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I do have to agree with this argument.

In short, encryption is viable for the public at scale precisely because Apple controls everything: clients on both ends, and the server in the middle. It’s the same story with WhatsApp or any of the other encrypted messaging services: being closed makes end-to-end encryption actually usable at scale.

Nobody has successfully implemented solid encryption with an open standard.

By the way, I don’t use Google or Facebook products and I have a very effective engagement with the web and other humans. These solutions are optional.

Google, of course, knows one’s every search, for many people their every email, and thanks to the company’s ad network, control of Chrome and Google analytics, and, of course Android, pretty much everything else one does online. Facebook’s knowledge is slightly less broad but arguably deeper: your friends, your interests — both stated and revealed — and thanks to its Like’ button, your web activity as well.

I hadn’t considered this last point.

Specifically, if an emphasis on privacy and the non-leakage of data is a priority, it follows that the platforms that already exist will be increasingly entrenched. And, if those platforms will be increasingly entrenched, then the more valuable might regulation be that ensures an equal playing field on top of those platforms. The reality is that an emphasis on privacy will only increase the walls on those gardens; it may be fruitful to rule out the possibility of unfair expansion.

Essentially those that hoarded as much data as possible early on gain a permanent advantage. Yuck. 🤮

📌 Posted on April 26, 2018

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