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Free Software Community of India (#FSCI) statement on banning of apps like @element and @briar

"Federated, peer-to-peer, encrypted, Free Software apps/software like #Element and #Briar, should be promoted. They are key to our national security as they provide means to enable sovereign, private and secure communication to citizens of India. Element has been embraced by Governments of France, Germany and Sweden which should be an example for #India."

Hubert Chathi reshared this.

are they really banned in India? That's a shame! @element@briar
time to check out #SafeNetwork. Good luck banning that.
Right now we can easily circumvent this specific ban, but that is not really the point. Law enforcement can easily harass people if they find these apps on their devices. This is enough for a large enough people to stop using these apps.
yes, I see the problem.

Right now apps are tied to proprietary protocols so switching is hard and there aren't many options. So easy to ban, harass and disrupt.

I think this could be eased when the app is less relevant - so many apps can perform the same function. So banning one app is like whackamole, and causes little inconvenience if a person can switch to any one of many much less popular apps, and continue without interruption: no loss of contacts, conversations.
The problem here is not just that of technology and hence it can't be entirely fixed by technology alone. This is a social and political problem of govt wanting to put entire population under surveillance. So the solution has to be political and technology design changes can only be temporary work around and only a smaller number people will be able to use such options.
Ultimately yes, but you need technology to support what you want.

If you ignore that then you can't achieve what you want because the technology doesn't exist.

One way to push the political in the direction you want is to show that alternatives are possible, by developing alternative models, levelling the playing field - or better, tipping it away from centralisation and capitalism in favour of individuals and decentralisation.
Thank you for making this statement in support of secure communication.
Govts themselves are funding and arming terrorists in other countries. If this has to work, all countries will have to come together, which is unlikely.
@internetfreedom almost all mainstream media has ended up being just PR agency of the govt - they did not even ask about transparency or contact the banned apps. We need to inform media and general public about the impact of the ban on our fundamental right to #privacy.

What a terrible thing to hear about. As an Element user myself, this is absolutely disheartening.
It's really stupid thing saying that Element or Briar doesn't have representatives in India. That's not too different from asking that Linux should have representatives in India.
@Breakfastisready@internetfreedom that is even a violation of the IT act which they have used as an excuse here. Only significant intermediaries that has 50 lakh users need to have a representative in India.