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posted by janrinok on Sunday March 16 2014, @03:52PM   Printer-friendly
from the we-want-our-data-back dept.

Anonymous Coward writes:

""MediaGoblin is a free software media publishing platform that anyone can install and run. Decentralization, (...) is the main goal of the project, one that is backed and connected to the GNU project.

So far, MediaGoblin has raised only $3,000 of its $60,000 goal, with the campaign set to end April 14th, (...) that is a date that is soon approaching. The first crowd-sourcing initiative was in October of 2012, so this is not the first crowd-funding initiative the project has launched. This second campaign was clearly spurred on by the PRISM revelations of recent past. Having not noticed any failures to meet 2012's funding campaign, it's very possible the team may reach their goal again, given the intensity of the subject matter."

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Originally designed as a decentralized network, the Web has undergone a significant centralization in recent years. In order to regain freedom and control over the digital aspects of our lives, we should understand how we arrived at this point and how we can get back on track. This chapter explains the history of decentralization in a Web context, and details Tim Berners-Lee’s role in the continued battle for a free and open Web. The challenges and solutions are not purely technical in nature, but rather fit into a larger socio-economic puzzle, to which all of us are invited to contribute. Let us take back the Web for good, and leverage its full potential as envisioned by its creator.

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Mike Masnick, usually editor for Techdirt, has written an essay on a technological approach to preserving free speech online in spite of the direction things have been heading in regards to locked-in platforms. He proposes moving back to an Internet where protocols dominate.

This article proposes an entirely different approach—one that might seem counterintuitive but might actually provide for a workable plan that enables more free speech, while minimizing the impact of trolling, hateful speech, and large-scale disinformation efforts. As a bonus, it also might help the users of these platforms regain control of their privacy. And to top it all off, it could even provide an entirely new revenue stream for these platforms.

That approach: build protocols, not platforms.

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OpenBSD developer, Gilles Chehade, debunks multiple myths regarding deployment of e-mail services. While it is some work to deploy and operate a mail service, it is not as hard as the large corporations would like people to believe. Gilles derives his knowledge from having built and worked with both proprietary and free and open source mail systems. He covers why it is feasible to consider running one.

I work on an opensource SMTP server. I build both opensource and proprietary solutions related to mail. I will likely open a commercial mail service next year.

In this article, I will voluntarily use the term mail because it is vague enough to encompass protocols and software. This is not a very technical article and I don't want to dive into protocols, I want people who have never worked with mail to understand all of it.

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  • (Score: 4, Informative) by The Mighty Buzzard on Sunday March 16 2014, @04:10PM

    So, it's a decentralized cloud service that decided the thing to do was implement yet another tedious media player because the thousand methods already on every platform there is were obviously one too few? I'll pass and use something that just does syncing and linking.
    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Hairyfeet on Sunday March 16 2014, @08:01PM

      by Hairyfeet (75) <{bassbeast1968} {at} {}> on Sunday March 16 2014, @08:01PM (#17249) Journal

      Frankly the future is NOT downloading or decentralized sharing and I'm sure I'll get hate from the HTML V5/H.26x lovers (it sucks monkey balls and was built to protect Apple's iStore but that is another rant) but I have seen the future of media...its flash video sites hosted in Bumfuckistan. the fact that you are watching and not downloading blows their "6 strikes" bullshit away, the sites are hosted in countries that don't give a rat's ass about American copyrights, and they often have movies up before they have left the theater.

      More and more I'm seeing folks use these sites (along with redbox and Netflicks but the latter two seem to be going down in my area) and frankly I can understand why, its "push button, get bacon" levels of simple without the hassle of stopping at a redbox and without the limited selection of netflicks. the only risk is that they aren't picky about ads so you see plenty of malware laden adverts (and that frankly is easy enough to avoid, a combo of Comodo dragon with ABP and Comodo AV allowing the browser to run in virtual mode makes a system damned near malware proof) but people love simple and it honestly don't get simpler.

      What the media companies REALLY need to do if they want to survive is 1.- Quit being douchebags when it comes to DRM (which has never and will never work) and 2.- More importantly embrace the Steam model, make it simple, make it easy, and make it cheap. I'm sure I'll get hate from the "ZOMFG Steam has teh DRMs!" crowd but honestly? Folks DO NOT CARE because the advantages of ease of use, dirt cheap prices, and extra features like mods, autoupdating, and chat make it so damned simple and easy and the DRM doesn't fuck with you or get in the way so folks just don't care. what media needs is to make it THAT simple, where a person can just pay a buck for any 5+ year old movie and "own it" through their service which like Steam will run for a month+ without connecting, it should run on just about anything (or even better offer an option of say paying another buck to get a DRM free MP4 or ISO file so you can play it on older players) and should be as simple to use as "push button, watch movie".

      I think what all these big corps fail to grasp is...the world has really REALLY changed in the past generation, its never gonna be like the old days again. I talk to folks under 30 all the time, know how many watch appointment (tune in at 9/8 central) television? NONE, in fact the TV has become a really big monitor where they play games and after shopping with me having a PC hooked up. When it comes time to watch a movie they want it fast, easy, and most importantly NOW and if you don't give it to them at a reasonable price? Well some website in bumfuckistan will. I've said it a million times, piracy is the market telling you "ur doin it wrong" because while there will always be those that will pirate, be it because they are broke or because they are cheap, the vast majority will happily pay for simple and easy. But instead of being smart the studios will keep jacking prices, end up turning Netflicks into another HBO simply because they won't be able to make a dime with all the license fees, and when folks can't find the content they want at a price they are willing to pay? Well hello Bumfuckistan, nice to meet you.

      ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by edIII on Sunday March 16 2014, @09:11PM

        by edIII (791) on Sunday March 16 2014, @09:11PM (#17279)

        I agree with most of your points except the DRM. Strongly opposed on principle alone.

        Steam, which is not something I will support because of DRM, still seems to control you over your purchases .

        Netflix DRM doesn't bother me since I have not made a purchase. My licensing rights to the media are not permanent, which they most certainly are if I shell out for a "purchase". The delivery medium is irrelevant and Big Content can suck a fat one if they think they can try to convince me that my payment was for anything less than absolute full ownership of my own viewing rights. When I pay something as high as $14.99 I will watch that movie till the end of my life, in whatever flavor I want (SD/HD), and in whatever language I want, on whatever device I want, at whatever time I want, whatever way I want. That's not entitlement, that's the inherent benefits of peaceful enjoyment of one's property.

        Netflix is the deal of the century because they have made the agreement with me that for $7.99 per month they can somehow let me view their own entire catalogue of online movies. That's a damn good deal. I don't mind buying a cheap $90 device that has their DRM in it and hooking it up my TV. It doesn't prevent me from doing anything else, and I have no interests at all in pirating what is on Netflix and storing it locally, or distributing it. It's $7.99. I saw fucking string cheese at the store for that price . I could pay more for beer.

        Steam OTOH does prevent me from peaceful enjoyment of my property. When I purchase a game, it also a permanent transaction. I will be able to play that game till the end of my life.

        Additionally, while the First Sale Doctrine is anathema to Big Content, it's also sacrosanct. Part of enjoying freedom is to be able to take anything you own and transfer it to another via donation or transaction. They can't take that away. There is no social contract, no EULA, NOTHING that makes that abhorrent removal of my freedom correct.

        Steam does not allow transferring of game ownership in accordance with the values of freedom and the First Sale doctrine. You are not purchasing games on Steam. You are renting them.

        I'm not interested in paying such exorbitant prices to rent the games. If Steam really wants that then they need to come up with a different pricing model. Something like Netflix where for $24.99 a month I get to play everything. They do that, and I will purchase another box with the full understanding that I don't really own anything and it's just a gateway.

        You're correct that people will just settle for cheap and simple, but that doesn't mean cheap and simple is better for them, ethically correct in the first place, and the better choice in the long run.

        Something else you are really missing about the big picture here...

        The tides are finally starting to turn

        We've all talked about it for years like Linux On The Desktop, but the average person really is starting to get more concerned about the levels of control being put on them. It took time for the average level of sophistication *and* the understanding of just what those levels of control implies on a social level and the nature of our future freedoms.

        It's happening. Ideas like this get started based on the premise of a demand for a supply. Whether this idea is not well thought out or viable in the long run is immaterial when compared against the simple recognition that the demand is appearing.

        So while Steam is very popular due to cheapness and simplicity, darknets and decentralized file sharing methods that obfuscate identities and frustrate tracking are on the rise.

        The NSA and the Five Eyes are single handedly the best thing to have ever happened for our freedoms. They're like a vaccination shot. It's making us a little less secure and free at the moment, but our immune response is fighting back with technology and will that they cannot defeat without destroying the very thing they purport to protect.

        It's a very exciting time right now and you will be seeing far more of these disruptive technologies in many different sectors... including currency.

        The rise of the Darknet has begun.

        Technically, lunchtime is at any moment. It's just a wave function.
        • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Sunday March 16 2014, @11:33PM

          by Hairyfeet (75) <{bassbeast1968} {at} {}> on Sunday March 16 2014, @11:33PM (#17318) Journal

          Do you have ANY idea how crazy your post sounds? because from the way you are talking all it would take is valve changing a single word, from sale to rental, and you would be fine with it, yes? Well I hate to break the news to ya friend but you haven't "bought" a video game since the days of cartridges, what you have bought is a LICENSE, that's it. Read the EULA on any boxed game and you will see there is NO difference between it and Steam, you have the same terms, actually worse terms because instead of simply having one company you end up with a bunch of different DRMs turning your system into a crashy mess, you end up with SecuROM and Starfuck and Tages and GFWL (although that will soon be dead, yay) and so on and so forth.

          And I wouldn't go near the so called "darknets" if I were you, not unless you have a couple of million to waste in court or don't mind spending the rest of your life dodging assrape in PMITA prison. When the whole buzz over Freenet started I talked to a friend in the state crime lab about it and he says in many jurisdictions in the USA there is the real chance you could spend the rest of your life in prison if you run that shit, same with Tor or any of the other distributed designs. the reason is the child porn distribution laws were written when distribution was physical copies and nobody ever changed the laws. imagine I hand you a box to take to someone but don't hand you the key, cops pull you over and break into the box and find CP, you will get distribution and treated as an accomplice to the crime...the same goes for running Tor or any other darknet style software that uses caching or distributed file systems. Cops look for CP, the trace goes back to your house, case closed, enjoy PMITA prison. So I really don't see your system getting any more popular than silk road or any other obviously risky and illegal endeavor on the Internet simply because the CP laws are very vague and very nasty.

          So if all you want to play is very old games? enjoy GOG. Want to risk getting full of malware and taking a trip to jail? Go Darknet. As for first sale? Honestly who gives a crap? I'm sorry but first sale matters on consoles, where you pay assrape prices months after a game has been released. when a game costs $10 on PC why would I give a rat's ass that I can't sell it? What, I'm gonna miss out on that 50c I could get on ebay? PC games drop in price too quickly to give a crap about first sale, no point when your "property" isn't even worth the price of a movie ticket a year from now. Know how many triple A titles I have in Steam? 107, know how much I paid? MAYBE $140 for the whole thing. Which means if I sold that I own I MAYBE, just maybe, get the price of the latest shooter...why xactly should I care again? Especially when the alternative is assrape by consoles?

          ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
          • (Score: 4, Insightful) by edIII on Monday March 17 2014, @12:36AM

            by edIII (791) on Monday March 17 2014, @12:36AM (#17328)

            Ahhhh, so your answer, if I'm reading you right...

            A) I don't care about ownership or licensing of anything, what it was really intended for, etc. The ethics behind First Sale are meaningless to me. Fuck ethics.
            B) I won't go near Darknets, that offer true freedom guaranteed by our Constitution out of fear . I'm scared of losing something, so I will give away everything and hope they don't come and hurt me. Please don't hurt me.

            I would be proud to go to court and be at risk for life in prison because I participated in a network that delivered anonymous and private speech, something the founding fathers wholly supported.

            It's the best possible thing I could do for this country, and better than any solider will ever do, save fighting during an actual invasion. If there was an actual invasion, my own disability would be right out the window. I'd grab a sniper rifle and start picking soldiers off.

            You can be scared and let them abuse you. I'll stand up for you, since you lack the will to do it yourself.

            P.S - You're wrong about the craziness part. Yes, if they changed sale to rental it would make all the difference because I would have *not* been delivered a copy for my own purposes. The rental part is merely Steam allowing me to play it utilizing THEIR rights as agreed upon the copyright holder.

            Yes. It makes *ALL* the difference. It's a different kind of license, and one I don't have a problem paying for if it's noticeably cheaper than what it costs for actual ownership. Hence my support of Netflix.

            When you purchase a book or movie, the physical medium is irrelevant. What you purchased was a transferable right granted to you by the copyright holder during the transaction. That's what copyrights are. The copyright holder has limited temporary entitlements granted to them by the state, and one of them is to grant me usage rights in exchange for compensation.

            First Sale is about the sacrosanct legal interpretation, long held, that if I paid for the book I have the right to sell the book and transfer my license. The transferring of the physical medium, is once again, only relevant in that it tangibly removes my usage rights.

            Technically, lunchtime is at any moment. It's just a wave function.
            • (Score: 1) by Hairyfeet on Monday March 17 2014, @05:57AM

              by Hairyfeet (75) <{bassbeast1968} {at} {}> on Monday March 17 2014, @05:57AM (#17417) Journal

              Brave talk, lets see you back it up? Start running a Tor exit node, go ahead, put your ass where your mouth is. I bet like most here you have never even been arrested and have NO idea what court even costs....hint... a lawyer worth having will run you a mid 5 figures and you better not actually need a job or anything since the press will have you labeled "suspected child pornographer" before the mugshot has even entered the DB. Go right ahead, publish your exit node stats for us?

              And considering that Valve has doubled their revenues SEVEN YEARS IN A ROW I'd say YOU sir are in the minority, the majority really doesn't care. Do you scream that you don't have the "right" to first sale at GOG? Or do you just ignore the EULA like you do with the content you pirate? I do think it funny the pirates cheer the darknets....have yet to see any of them have the balls to actually participate...will you be the first? Kinda doubt it.

              ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @10:58PM

                by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @10:58PM (#17825)

                have yet to see any of them have the balls to actually participate...

                Probably your attitude drives away any of those who might give you an invite. These things are out there, and the selection varies widely. I have an account at one but do not participate in it because I don't have time to play with ratios and such; I have better things to do these days. The thing is, though, it's very much on the down-low (not like Demonoid) and that is how they survive. You think the "scene" hackers release their work direct to TPB? You talk tough, but your street cred is a little slim here.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @02:46AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @02:46AM (#17354)

          We've all talked about it for years like Linux On The Desktop, but the average person really is starting to get more concerned about the levels of control being put on them. It took time for the average level of sophistication *and* the understanding of just what those levels of control implies on a social level and the nature of our future freedoms.

          The "average person" is very much for the surveillance because they buy into the government line. You live in a nerd bubble thinking otherwise.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Sunday March 16 2014, @05:42PM

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Sunday March 16 2014, @05:42PM (#17217) Journal

    I understand that we want to keep our stuff away from the NSA. And, we no longer trust any corporate entities to keep our stuff secret. But - putting my stuff up on servers that I have no real control over simply DOES NOT increase my security!

    Besides - with the recent disclosures about the NSA being able to take over almost any device out there, what makes the cloud immune to any of that? Supposing the NSA takes over my computer with a firmware "update" - doesn't that automagically hand over the keys to all of my stuff in the cloud?

    Call me a stubborn old fool, but I think the most secure place to document my plans to rule the world is right here, on my own encrypted hard drive. At least, if the NSA uses a five dollar wrench to extract my encryption scheme from my weak knees, I will know about it. They can't use that five dollar wrench in secret on a voodoo doll and hope to thwart my plans for world domination!

    We've finally beat Medicare! - Houseplant in Chief
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by twistedcubic on Sunday March 16 2014, @06:07PM

      by twistedcubic (929) on Sunday March 16 2014, @06:07PM (#17225)

      MediaGoblin solves the problem of being forced to give a free license to Facebook to use your copyrighted works for their own profit. Nobody wants to put their sensitive data on a web server for all to see, so I don't think MediaGoblin intends to help you hide your "plans to rule the world". If you must serve your world domination plans over the internet, just run an OpenVPN server at home, and use a "cloud" server to forward encrypted data to your VPN clients. It works for me, as I finally foiled Papa Smurf and his little blue kittens, MWAHAHAHAAAAA!

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @12:42AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @12:42AM (#17329)

      Call me a stubborn old fool, but I think the most secure place to document my plans to rule the world is right here, on my own non-electric typewriter.

      fixed that for you.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by stormwyrm on Monday March 17 2014, @01:03AM

      by stormwyrm (717) on Monday March 17 2014, @01:03AM (#17333) Journal

      What part of the term 'decentralised sharing' is unclear? From the website:

      MediaGoblin is a free software media publishing platform that anyone can run. You can think of it as a decentralized alternative to Flickr, YouTube, SoundCloud, etc.

      Obviously you don't want to publish your plans for taking over the world to the whole world at large. They might, you know, try to stop you then. :) MediaGoblin is supposed to be a publishing platform that is supposed to be resistant to censorship. Maybe if you wanted to publish a manifesto to light a fire in the minds of men, the government should have a harder time trying to censor you than if you simply uploaded a video of it to YouTube. They could shake down Google to get it pulled off, but they can play a game of Whack-a-Mole if it were hosted on MediaGoblin.

      Numquam ponenda est pluralitas sine necessitate.
  • (Score: 4, Funny) by Appalbarry on Sunday March 16 2014, @05:53PM

    by Appalbarry (66) on Sunday March 16 2014, @05:53PM (#17221) Journal

    MediaGoblin also supports audio files, videos, books and presentations or even 3D-models and ACSII-art.

    Apple must be shaking in their boots!

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Ethanol-fueled on Sunday March 16 2014, @06:01PM

      by Ethanol-fueled (2792) on Sunday March 16 2014, @06:01PM (#17223) Homepage

      What MediaGoblin will do is not be nearly as bloated, bug-ridden, and annoying as the cancer that is iTunes; on any platform. So yeah, in that regard, it is impossible to outdo Apple, especially when you take into account Safari (again, on any platform).

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Sunday March 16 2014, @06:23PM

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Sunday March 16 2014, @06:23PM (#17229) Journal

        Well, if the Goblin gets on with Tux, then he will have beaten iTunes and Safari. The last time that I thought I had a reason to mess with iTunes, it was necessary to install a Windows VM. Ditto with Safari. I have since deleted both VM's.

        We've finally beat Medicare! - Houseplant in Chief
  • (Score: 1) by hybristic on Monday March 17 2014, @03:13AM

    by hybristic (10) on Monday March 17 2014, @03:13AM (#17361) Journal

    So I admit that I just skimmed TFA, but how is this better than something like RetroShare?

  • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @04:03AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @04:03AM (#17379)

    I compared it pretty extensively against its competition in the open source space as an all-in-one self-hosted media server, and it talks a BIG game, but there's really nothing great about MediaGoblin. Its interface is kind of ugly, its features are barebones, and despite a lot of talk about development and cutting edge technology integration and future features and freeing the web masses, there's nothing very impressive about the software. They just love to talk about it more than actually produce anything good.

    For photo galleries and (to a lesser extent) video, Piwigo BLOWS AWAY MediaGoblin and most everything else. (ZenPhoto is better too, but nowhere near as good as Piwigo.) For video it's outclassed by stuff like Kaltura and PHPMotion.

    MediaGoblin is a great example of bloviating software. All talk. If it hadn't latched on to GNU nobody would have given it a second glance. Frankly it acts more like an FTP site than a modern media server. In my opinion they do not deserve your money.

    (not affiliated with any of the above or any similar software)

    • (Score: 1) by Mr. Slippery on Monday March 17 2014, @02:37PM

      by Mr. Slippery (2812) on Monday March 17 2014, @02:37PM (#17616) Homepage

      Frankly it acts more like an FTP site than a modern media server.

      Serious question: can someone explain to me what a "media server" is supposed to be beyond an FTP site? I have media I want to share, I sftp the file over to my web server and post the URL wherever is appropriate, and I'm done. What am I missing that I need a whole new piece of server software for? Thanks.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @03:05PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 17 2014, @03:05PM (#17630)

        Mostly: web player, tags, and prettiness. Sure, you can do all that without a dedicated solution, or with a few CMS plugins. (And I find tags more or less useless.)

        But personally I found that the limits of WordPress AND of PHP (particularly upload limits) led me to look for something a little bit easier for ordinary Joes to use, something that acted more like Flickr or Picasa or Youtube. Piwigo came closest. MediaGoblin wasn't even in the running; it's primitive stuff.

        There are other niceties to a dedicated solution, like a flexible organizational structure, javascript uploaders, slide sorters, etc. Personally I find it kind of a pain to hand craft every photo or video embed when I can have a Gallery program handle it for me.

        But yeah, your point is my point -- if MediaGoblin isn't going to act much differently from embedding my own links in the HTML to a file I uploaded via ftp, then what's the point?