Signal (messaging), because my conversations are mine

After seeing my friends Emanuele and Luca claims, it seems far to me to say out loud that I’m too a — really satisfied!!! — user of the personal instant messaging software Signal 🔗 and Telegram 🔗 … both a better choice regarding my privacy than their opponent Whatsapp.

Today the reasons for using Whatsapp are the same as being registered on the Book of Faces, its widespread diffusion. And this record, in the panorama of messaging software on smartphones, is due to being the first ubiquitous on the various platforms (today remained a duopoly), but if you remember also ICQ at the time won for being a pioneer … and today those who do you still use? A very small minority!

Whatsapp is, in fact, together with Instagram the plan B of the Book of Faces (*) for the global profiling of users of the Net. And even if we delude ourselves that our chats are encrypted, as Emanuele rightly observes in the linked article, ” it is the metadata that kill us “. With whom I speak, for how long, how long are my messages, from where we write, at what time, after what events … all are information as juicy as – if not more – of our conversations themselves.

The alternatives are here. And starting to use them and to convey our conversations on these platforms – more respectful of our privacy – is a duty we have towards those who, less attentive to technological issues, use tools for habit and not for awareness. Like the herd immunity with vaccines (I dare to say).

Inviting our interlocutors to use these platforms will make them understand that they are not alone, they will gladly see that others have embraced their conscious choice and maybe they will contribute together with us to dismantle this business of selling people.

At 44 I still like to think that’s possible!


(*) = Orwell called “Big Brother” this mechanism of ‘global surveillance’ that today F. applies to all the traffic carried by its own channels and therefore in fact embodies – along with Amazon and Google. Alan Moore in his V for Vendetta, more darkly, separated the surveillance roles in the Eye and the Finger, giving to the surveillance a tool for acting against those who did not follow the expected behavior. I, for my part, I’m still deciding how to call them (in public).

Published by kOoLiNuS

♂, Italian, male, husband, dad of a wonder, “cazzaro”, friendly, blogger, motorcyclist, geek, avid reader, sysadmin, ICT consultant, curious. I come in peace… I'm an active social networker since 1999. I've been using WordPress sice 2004 and WordPress.com since 2006, and I'm currently involved in WordPress and WooCommerce communities in Bari, Apulia.

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8 Comments

  1. WhatsApp claims that messages are encrypted end to end and that no-one has access to the decryption key including them. If they are lying then someone has to provide proof, not conjecture, for that statement.

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    1. Yep! But, as I was saying, what about the metadata of your conversation ??? They have not declared anything about that…

      Also, have you seen how fast a new WA contat appears in the suggested connection of F. ? This october I’ve added the parents of other kids in my own kid class … F. has not access to my Address Book and still they appear non Instagram and F. as “people I may like to follow”.

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      1. Meta-data they would need in order to make the system work. I’m not certain communication is possible without someway for the provider to have assurances that they’ve made the right connection. E.g. I want to send my wife a message. I need to set up WhatsApp on my iPhone. I need to communicate with my brother in Florida. He needs WhatsApp installed and we need a way to find each other and be assured that we really are sending messages to each other. So … here’s my challenge to you. Devise a way for us to connect our accounts, send messages, and be assured that the message was delivered, etc. But …. you have to make sure the system keeps no identifiers, no time stamps, no session information of any kind.

        I think there are far too many people with too much angst about anything facebook and the angst has no justification in fact. It’s mostly conjecture.

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  2. @Khürt … https://twitter.com/jeremyburge/status/1101402001907372032

    As you can see there’s no evidence of good faith in F. behaviour !!!

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