Thursday, November 29, 2018

The false path of ReIntermediation

Salsa Shark. . . 

I sent a recent paper on information operations over Twitter to some people for feedback and one of the comments was the following:
I also think there’s a meta question that needs to be answered. 
You say that censoring inauthentic accounts is not the way to go for various reasons...but you still have an info ops problem given that inauthentic accounts are still publishing garbage getting likes, retweets, shares, and driving online activity/conversations. How does your Jiu Jitsu solution remedy that?
And here's the larger picture: I never think re-intermediation is a valid policy solution, but it's the most common reflex in government and policy bodies. The internet was a tidal wave of disintermediation - in technology, in society, in geopolitics. It's hard to explain that yes the Russian Government gets to talk to all your people directly without you being able to do anything about it or that people can talk to each other in encrypted format now without you being able to listen or that money or music is going to transfer around without any real mediation by governments.

The instinct is always to try to force social media companies to just get REALLY good at banning Russian propaganda networks, or legally enforce impossible encryption regulations, or somehow enforce a global copyright regime. To re-intermediate, in other words. It's always the wrong direction. You can't roll back the tide.

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