re:publica 2016 – Opening Keynote: The last kilometer, the last chance

It’s really great pleasure to announce the opening keynote
of this year’s re:publica. In the program team when we were thinking about
how to open our tenth anniversary. We thought it’s a good idea
to have somebody who’s spoken in the past
and can help us with the motto and reflect on the last years,
but also look ahead. So we started
going through all the speakers, that we had on this amazing stage and on of course the Friedrichstadtpalast
in the last ten years. We stopped at 2012 what was
a really important year for re:publica. It was a year when we transitioned
into this location and made a jump from having a location
that had a campus feeling to come together as a community It was also a very,
very important opening keynote for us. We decided that we wanted to have
a very strong political keynote after having ventured out
into other topic areas in the past years. So we invited Eben Moglen
the inventor of the freedom box. We thought he was the perfect choice
for this opening keynote and he was. His keynote included
such legendary sentences as „The day Steve Jobs died was a good day” at which point at least half the room
dropped their iPhones. Eben has been fighting for free
and open software for over 20 years. For instance by defending
free software developers such as Stallman and Zimmermann
the inventor of PGP. Eben Moglen is also the founder
of the Software Freedom Law Center, that offers licensing and legal support
for free and open source projects. When we were thinking about this keynote
we thought ok but you shouldn’t be alone and we feel that this
is the absolute perfect combination. He will be joined today
of the veteran by a republican noob, somebody who has never spoken
on our stage before. The most wonderful Mishi Choudhary. She’s a technology lawyer
and an online civil-liberty activists who is also working
at the Software Freedom Law Center. Mishi she’s originally from India. The country that managed to take
a really strong stand for net neutrality and shove
against the wall last year. Together they are here to examine
the state of Internet freedom. Please give a really warm welcome
and huge applause to Eben Moglen and Mishi Choudhary „The last kilometer, the last chance“. (Applause) Good morning. It’s a great pleasure
to be back at re:publica. I can’t thank the organizers enough for the honor of starting out
this tenth anniversary conference. I want also to thank
the German Foreign Ministry, for agreeing to give my law partner
a 4-day visa to enter Germany after demanding real-time access
to her bank accounts in order to allow us
to be here together today. So thanks to the government of this
very democratic republic of Germany. (Applause) By 2025 we will have wired up
or wireless up the remaining half of the human race. This should be the greatest moment
of educational liberation the greatest moment of social justice
making the greatest economic opportunity in the history of humankind. But it won’t be. Because the net we are making
is a net that we don’t want. A net of surveillance,
data mining and despairtism. When you grow up in India,
there are a few things you cannot avoid: cricket, Bollywood
and some very good poetry. Growing up I read those palm: Where the mind is without fear
and the head is held high. Where knowledge is free and the world
has not been broken into fragments by narrow domestic walls. Where words from the depths of truth. Where tireless driving
stretches its arms towards perfection where the clear stream of reason
has not lost its way. Into the dreary desert of dead habit, where the mind is led forward by thee
into ever widening part and action into that heaven of freedom. My father, let my country awake. For the inventors of internet
reading Gore is what I thought, but I was only a naive and young
and to find a cure, I just started hanging out
with smarter people like these. The net that we are building now the one that the rest of the human race
will soon be caught in is a net which watches us more than we watch it. Everything we do, everything we say,
everything we buy, everything we search for,
is remembered forever. And we are becoming
the object of experimentation. We are becoming the subject of the net,
to which we are joined. Our net now
experiments with human behavior, giving new way of thinking
about the human race, adjunct to a machine
which experiments with us. Stimulus and response,
stimulus and response. Billions of times a day
an experiment is conducted on us. Show us something:
swipe left, swipe right, Click, don’t click,
buy, don’t buy. The machine is a behaviorist. Like B.F. Skinner and the
psychologists who followed him the machine has no need
for a concept of human mind. Only the correlation, only mathematics,
prediction of our behavior, everything we do teaches the machine. In 2025 it won’t be Scarlett Johansson
taking your orders. But your favorite voice in your language your personal customized chat bot
which learns by crunching data. Balloons playing loony tunes
would hover alongside drones beaming the greatest opportunity
for humankind, the net. Unparalleled troves of data
will be collected and studied to make farming more productive,
control temperature in your living room. While your fridge refuses to put in
an order for a pizza and sugar ice cream. Siri or Cortana will ensure,
that you never have to look up and engage in that awkward activity: Talk to another human being. Who runs the world they say?
Apps. My augmented reality will have marketers, I have a “developed country passport”
that’s why. Swipe right, swipe left. Click or think. Someone will anticipate all our needs
and also be our shrink. By 2025 everything back that is
deemed basic by Silicon Valley would have been offered for free. My retina and fingerprints will ensure
that cashless will also make cost less. And my uberpool can have
more people bent over screens as the driver’s seat is empty. Political economy of networking dictates
that it is cheap for platform companies to move your packet for you
in return for the ability to surveil. Therefore suddenly it is in the interest
of the machine to give access. Which really means
to have access to every mind. Building out to embrace
the other half of the human race poses itself as charity. But it’s actually
the perfection of spying. Access to the net belongs to everyone
means we belong to everyone’s mind and we are calculating everybody. To add another billion minds
to experiment with for Facebook is cheaper than leaving them alone. And so the net we do not want
is the net we are supposed to wish on the other half of the world. A poor net for poor people. The World Bank thinks that
70% of the bottom fifth of the population and developing countries
has a feature phone. That feature phone is soon
going to become the smartphone, because right now it is very profitable
to get those packets. We will create an enormous system
of consumption where we all will be turned into nodes
for further consumption. In exchange of my boring data
I’m gonna get to security convenience and tons of services. Bad hair, good hair, don’t care,
but perfect filters, prime time delivery and also the fun to ask Siri
what does she think of Google. Or is an oola commitment enough
that I don’t need a partner in my life. All this fun brought to you next door
in your developing country. Free basics all basics all that are free. So the network we are building
the network we don’t want the network we struggled against
that deprives us of freedom of thought by operating on us while giving
the impression we operate on it that network now controls
the pace of the human mind. Our space is small, our room is little
and our time is non-existent. The greatest word of importance
to the platform companies nowadays as one executives told me last year
is „latency“. But the latency they’re talking about
is not the time it takes for a human being to learn
after the presentation of an idea. The latency they’re talking about
it’s not the years we spend growing up becoming something we’ve invented out of the machinery of freedom
and the opportunity to learn. The latency they’re talking about
is the milliseconds it takes for a smartphone
to display an advertisement. Stimulus and response, calculation of human possibility
not by humans but by the machine. The calculating our computers do
is not our thinking. That calculating our computers do
is the prediction of us. This network talking about this network is getting and giving
what Silicon Valley designs it for. But it isn’t delivering the promise
because it isn’t promising honestly. And the great problem
with all this altruistic dock to get the next billion online
is an honesty problem. There hasn’t been
anything about it anywhere. But the states show up and you cannot
expect any counter from them. This network
is not delivering what it promises and it could just get lost by greed,
nationalism, ill temper or just laziness. It doesn’t mean that fishermen’s
incomes coop just because it exists it does not mean that rural healthcare
is better delivered or developed just because it’s there. That’s not a guarantee. What is guaranteed to occur
is the rendering of ads on smartphones. Quicker, swifter, smarter
and we’re all being tied to this network, which we don’t understand the purpose
or the behavior of. What is happening with us is not the promise to be delivered to us imitate this machine or it imitates us. Remember the Tay AI bot by Microsoft. It recently got a crash course
in racial Holocaust denial, sexism, courtesy of the Twitter users. And that’s what we are getting
from the network. Four years ago, that freedom of the mind
depended on freedom of the media, which depends on free technology, which depends on free hardware,
free software and free bandwidth. Here today ten years into re:publica
I tell you: Before we get to 20,
time will have run out. We are no longer
capable of building the net we want: We are only capable
of resisting the net we do not want now. We lost our chance
to do it right the first time. Now we are in the place
where we must decide instead to hold off, to resist, to fight against the machine
on behalf of the machine we need. To struggle against the system
that predicts us, to become unpredictable enough
that we can relieve freedom of the mind or we lose our struggle for ever. In at least 38 countries
Facebook wants to provide free internet. How do they want to provide it
is by buying the packet movements from the telecom service providers and put them through
their own proxy servers. They can offer this way
poor internet to the world’s poor. They have actually acquired
quite an odd case of white man’s burden as they tell us this in their own words. We stopped them in India. We stopped them
by telling the telecom regulator of India that breaking the security off the web,
eliminating authentication for the poor turning untrusted dangerous net
into “Trust us!”, because we know it
and we are only here to help, who could be against it? It’s not the way to universal connection
to the Indian society. Nobody’s receding from here,
neither is Facebook or other companies. Some of it is only a desire by a CEO
who wants to do this, but most of it
is just this raw energy of the business. Right now
let’s get all of these people online, because their data is what works for us. And what happens to it
once they’ve gathered it? One Google AI has data of tens of millions of people
from the UK National Health Service. What happens to it? Once we have taken our system of money
and turned it into bit streams, what happens to it? The mystery of the back end
is becoming the mystery of human freedom. Have we lost it,
where is it, where does it go? Instead of storing it ourselves
we’re allowing other people to store it for us. And to whom do they give it? Everyone is struck
with the convenience of the front with the beauty of the top
with what lies above the waterline and of course there’s nothing to see
below the waterline. Nothing to see,
nothing to know, nothing to guess. Because below the waterline
it’s all guessing about you. Did we all get told
that this is going to increase democracy? But we have also discovered
that democratization of technology does not necessarily means
democratizing of the society itself. The net has democratized the ability
to self-promote through Twitter, or any other new big App
because the world is run by Apps. What has happened
is that democratization of the ability
to be surveilled or surveil. But at the end of it
what we have delivered is the advertisements to eyeballs
but not autonomy to the society. The promises of
free speech and expression have also now met with an outpouring
of the harassment and coercion. Of which the platform companies
themselves are scared. They are now rushing to study this
to find out about this online harassment and also find a solution. A technical solution. Which means that we’ve empowered people
to be ill tempered who are constantly engaging in making
an opposition to the way things are. So what we find is a lot of sentiment
in the net, a lot of opposition. People are using
this form of social mobilization, which is harassment of the net,
mostly for reactionary purposes. Look what the Turkish mafia did
to the university professor or the religious fanatics who are
rewriting or trying to rewrite and say…„
I’m talking about my country. You have everybody beating against women whether they are video game players
or writers or feminist activists. Everywhere there is men blaming. Everyone is talking about rape,
murder, doxing all the time. That’s not exactly
an increase in democracy, this is just unleashing offered tool
that enables many ways of communication. As a way of course talked and opinion
this is democratizing totalitarianism. What we call social media these days
has a single emotion. It’s designed to elicit
that emotion and that is envy. Post the segment of your life,
the best part, make people enjoy your vacations,
your children, your accomplishments, leave out all the struggle,
all the doubt, all the negative, all the pain and hurt. Let other people envy you. And the social media that build envy
in order to increase desire, in order to make an advertisement
suitable for you to receive. I want that life here:
Click, swipe, done. That envy breeds resentment,
which breeds anger, which breeds that
resentment of the street which is now in everybody’s eyeballs
and your ears all the time. So as we build this net
that we do not want, as we summon people to the platforms, offering the poor a discount
“Come and be measured. We will help you to have access
to what we get from you.” As we do that
everyone gets interested in privacy. Because they must. So let us think a moment
about what we mean by the privacy we want to have
in this net we do not want. Privacy is three things: Its secrecy. That is our ability to speak and think
only with those we actually trust. Its anonymity. Our ability to use the public space
to think and act and experiment and try out without these association
to identity with what we try. And its autonomy. The ability to make our decisions
and effectuate our lives without the interference
with our secrecy and our anonymity. And this our autonomy,
this root of our democracy, is what is attacked by the net that constantly measures,
tracks and experiments with us. All this and we will not add
another three and a half billion people to this surveillance organism. And then? And then the states show up. When we moved to this net, we do not want this monitored net,
this surveillance system, we empower social control in the state,
like never ever before. I stood here four years ago
and spoke about the possibility of the end of
freedom of the mind in 2012. Somewhere in Fort Meade Maryland
there is an intelligence analyst asking at which date and time
a young man in Hawaii named Edward Snowden watched my speech. Because of course by the summer of 2013
what I had said here had gained some news
thanks to Mr. Snowden. What he told us was
what we all feared. He said that the state had moved
inside this data surveilling net we do not want. Of course they did, how could they not. From the middle of the century
the most powerful societies on earth assumed that signals intelligence
was secret of social power in the world. They spied on every one another’s
militaries and every government and eventually they began spying
on all commerce that they could reach. Because what they knew,
the Soviet Union, the United States, the Republic of China
with all their satellites, what they knew was: Access to information is power. But when they have a net
that measures everybody and big piles of everybody’s behavior
taken from the machine which is experimenting with everyone what they gain is power
to run totalitarianism on the cheap. 20st century totalitarianism
didn’t scale very well. It needed lots and lots of people
and it needed lots and lots of fear which could only be produced
by episodes of serious violence. People had to disappear,
they had to be broken, to be afraid. The 21st century totalitarianism
solves those problems. You don’t need so many people anymore
because the platforms work for you. You don’t need to create so much fear
because envy works so much better. Because everybody informs on everybody,
so they can watch everybody else. And the next thing you know
power has leapt higher, than power could ever leap before. With an increasing power
truly comes an increasing ambition. The state decides that what it needs… As a guy working in the white house
told me only a few weeks after the last time
I was here in the summer of 2012, “You know we’ve decided that we need a robust sociograph
of the United States.” That meant the United States government wishes to keep a list of everybody,
every American knows. The robust sociograph
of the society you govern has now become the first level
of ambition of the states. And you can get it
if you deal with the platform companies, particularly if you help them
wire up the rest of all your society. Bring the poor to the poor people’s net, thus generating
the robust sociograph of everywhere. And don’t expect the largest states
to be content to leave that information in the hands of the smallest states. No no it’s a robust sociograph
of the human race. Now what does one do with such a graph? What does one make of the power
to have enter every subject’s mind? Of course it will depend upon the nature
of the political ideology of the state. Each forming the net to suit itself. Each using the information provided
by the surveillance of everyone, everytime, everywhere
for its own purposes. Of course as we were shown
by Steven Spielberg’s Minority Report. A beautifully imaginative evocation
of how this works. Commercial surveillance is the basis
upon which this new state power rests. We accept the commercial surveillance because it is fundamentally
being carried out for profit. Which is such a thin motive
so lacking in malevolence that we can accept
that we should go along with it. After all they’re like us.
They were only trying to make a living Of course Mr. Zuckerberg
spends thirty million dollars buying all the houses around his own
because he needs more privacy. Of course he says he’s not
going to allow his precious child to use Facebook in childhood. Of course Mr. Jobs
didn’t allow iPads in his family. But we think that that motive of profit
is a sufficient reason to allow what we would never have allowed
the states if they had come and said: “In the first place
we wish to build these things”. We would have said
it is without any question the evil that we fought
in the 21st century. That for which we died or suffered
or sent millions of others to die, to prevent that from happening. But to piggyback that
on top of an advertising business? What a beautiful form of camouflage
that is. So now we have the states in the position
to benefit from business intelligence. From the data warehouses
assembled by the platform companies. Facebook contains information
about the human race, a sixth wide or maybe a third. Facebook contains experiments
with everyone’s behavior. It could generate a sociograph of who everyone knows
and why they know them. Then from there,
the state begins to put some code in. Those terms of service
that you signed without reading, they say of course that Facebook
or any similar company may run any code it wants
to improve the experience. It isn’t the data
that comes out of those businesses, it’s the code goes in. And when that code goes in,
you have no idea what it is, what it does, that’s the whole point. You’re not supposed to. What Mr. Snowden showed us
was that the most powerful governments my own first among equals,
will push their way into those platforms. Buy, steal, hack, tab, it doesn’t matter. In they’ll go and once they’re there
how will you get them out? What will you do? I don’t need to explain to anyone here
that there are people around the world under pressure for insulting
the little sultan. I don’t need to explain that it is
a disposition to insult the little Sultan can get you in great trouble. The Turkish don’t have to use its police,
they can use yours. Turkey doesn’t have to predict
that Professor Chomsky or I might say something bad
about the little Sultan. They can just wait and then reach out. Preemptively or not as local law permits. We are building perfect despotism. And we think we’re only improving
the efficiency of advertising. Regimes all over,
Democratic or authoritarian want a kind of legislated history
manufactured image of the past glorifying aspects which appeal to them,
while hiding others. While all this is going on,
Europeans have not forgotten their absurd demand
for their right to be forgotten paving the way for others
to rewrite history. I thought that the only forgetting
that happens on internet is like perpetually going into a room
and forgetting what you came for. But again I was naive about all of this. Surveilling and predicting human behavior is the net of the economy
or economy of the new net. Some states support local data miners
to regulate the net. Others try to regulate intermediaries
or other people to express their values. Everyone spies, predicts
and resists radicalization. States get there pushing around now
by the eggheads on twitter and not people in uniform. They can turn civil society
against itself with help from
telecommunications service providers. They’re awarded for scrutinizing
and memorizing the behavior of customers. Governments are building
these robust sociographs everywhere. This is for the purpose
of perfect social control. It can mean better subsidy,
better payment, better social welfare programs,
no corruption. It also means more effective tyranny and increasing inescapable prison
for the human race. Look at Blufdale Utah, there big love and Big Brother
have become uneasy neighbors. Or this perfect storm of the terrible
created by Alibaba and consent in China. There is the universal reputations score. It’s tied to the national ID
of each person in the country. And is based on factors
like political compliance, hobbies, shopping, whether you play video games. It’s also generated
not just by your activities, but by the activities
of the friends in your social graph. So you can imagine the negative points
for mentioning Tiananmen Square. Or speculating on official corruption. Or participating in activities, from which state wants to not you avail
like playing video games. The digital identity, this biometric
identification number in my country, provides public distribution services
and building a centralized database of over a billion human beings. What could go wrong there? Apple vs. FBI is far from over. All policy makers
and the governments around the world are watching
what’s going to come out of it. Because everybody wants to find a way
to magically break mathematics so that math works differently
for good guys and the bad guy. All this solves the problem,
which we had in earlier centuries. Despotism was hard, difficult to scale,
now there is a solution for all of it. Now it tells us everything
that the net can give, the states can just take away. From our connectivity itself
to freedom of the market. When cashless arrives. When we go cashless,
we make the free market obsolete. Everything we buy, everything we sell,
everything that moves, becomes subject
to bit streams signed by trust. Which can be blocked at the point
of transactions in real time. Do you want to buy a train ticket? That’s very nice,
but we might not let you buy one. There’s no cash under the mattress,
because there is no cash. There’s no money in a safe deposit box
because there is no money. Everything has become a transaction
at the will of a third party, who can withhold approval any time. When we go cashless
the day after tomorrow, as society’s race to eliminate
the money that makes freedom. In my neighborhood
the best grocer and the best baker no longer take money. You have to use your pin card. In the US it’s a little harder,
because we have legal tender laws, that say
that money is good for buying things. India is rushing for cashlessness,
faster than any society on earth. When cashlessness arrives,
the free market has disappeared. What happens to all of us
and this is happening around us. What we do is
we internalize this totalitarianism. We organize our internal self,
so that we can fit into the score. Hunger Games actually becomes a reality. We internalize the hypnotic sayings “War is peace, freedom is slavery”,
“Ignorance is strength”. The governments have also caught up
with the social media platforms. They know how effective
usage of this can change their own fate. They invest very heavily in their
web based propaganda infrastructure. The bots are created by the minute. Spamming weapons,
including armies of tools now drown out genuine online discourse. Comment section, or twitter news feed where you go if you want
to lose your faith in humanity, now are crowded by propagandas. Some people
are more sophisticated than the others. As Chinese political weatherman comments,
as this Harvard research study shows which are critical of the leadership,
are allowed. What is not tolerated are our posts,
that may spur collective action. Those are blocked. Complete black-out is becoming
a common practice during elections. Many African Union member governments
have recently adopted. Look at Burundi, look at Egypt. In February of this year as many people
in Uganda were headed to the
polls of presidential election government cut off internet services. No Facebook, or Twitter. But this is because there is a threat
to public order and safety. (Unintelligible) In January this year access to
internet services in Egypt were shut down before in Morocco
they blocked void services. In 2016 since its beginning
five states in India have seen a mobile internet shut down. Everywhere on earth the governments are destroying
all forms of privacy. Today unfortunately most of them believe
that followers of the Islam have no rights to keep secrets anymore. Quite honestly that’s disgusting. Whatever they’re trying to prohibit
by prohibiting secrecy that in the end prohibiting freedom
for all of us. And there is no government on earth
that considers itself bound by principle to respect the secrecy
of its own citizens. All that is left
is our ability to encrypt. If we lose that, we will no longer live in a free society
anywhere on earth. What should we do?
How do we deal with it? We are no longer in a place
where we can construct the net we want, we can only resist the net
that we don’t want. We can no longer
accept network neutrality. We are compelled
to resist network hostility. In such a world
we must concentrate ourselves on the peace
of the network closest to us. In that last kilometers,
that last mile, that last hope, lies the barricade that we must erect, if we mean to keep a zone of freedom
around ourselves. The telecommunication service providers
of the world are the entry point for all
the tracking surveillances spying. In that anonymous beige cube
at the corner of your street is deep packet inspection,
running its way for the maximization of telecommunication
service provider profit. A little supercomputer on a street corner
measuring everything you’re doing in order to figure out
how the town TSP could make more profit. Slowing down what isn’t profitable
and speeding up the services that are. But that cube on the corner
that piece of the wedge of surveillance, that business of retailing by
the telecommunication service provider, is where our barricade must go. So what do you want us to do? Cut our cells off from the internet,
just not use any of these services and sit in a small corner
never using the internet? No, we’re going to have to build a net
that begins in privacy for us. Imagine at the top of a pole
in every village, every farmstead, every world community,
every neighborhood, a little box whose job is to route
for everyone with privacy. You could call it a freedom box,
but you don’t have to. It should make sure
everybody’s packets are up, masquerading our routers
so that all packets in the village are indistinguishable and crypted,
made private, linked only the places they need to go. If we route in common everywhere,
if we encrypt everything all the time, if we carry for one another
and keep them from seeing anything, we make the
telecommunication service providers mere wholesalers of transport services. They just move our packets
and that’s all. But if we do that
how do we actually get any security? Terrorism is the real thing, so is ISIS. You don’t want us to be secure
and only talk about privacy? Everywhere we fear things
of which we ought to be afraid. But everywhere we fear we fail
to fear things we should fear most, which are the things we cannot see. When we have made
our technology strong enough to defend us from the strongest, then we can start to worry about how to defend ourselves
against weaker criminals. But if we leave
the largest powers uncontrolled, their effort to protect us against the smallest evils
will do us little good. Well it’s all great to say this. What is it really going to do? Snowden told us much,
but what has really changed? Everything has become legal. Now the governments know
how to go around this. Nothing really changes,
everything goes on. And even if we do all of this,
what are we going to get out of the net? Those candies
are not going to crush themselves and who will keep up
with the Kardashians? We don’t need all this thing
about education and everything. Let us use the net. And go on doing our business
the way we do. It’s true of course. What Mr. Snowden did
was to bring us knowledge and the organized parties in response
were the secret world in every country. And it’s true that what they did
was they went to their legislators and said “Please immunize us
for everything we did wrong in the past and let us move directly
to what we really want”. Mr. Snowden proved
that the strongest governments on earth were scraping everything,
listening to everything, analyzing it. What the governments did,
whether the military platforms or snooper charter in the United Kingdom,
they said: “Ok let’s go to the real-time
monitoring of everybody, which is what we really want”. And every act of public violence
reinforces them in their certainly. This is true. On the other hand
while we were on our way over here thanks to the German Foreign Ministry’s willingness to give her a visa,
if she gave them access to her bank. While we were on our way here the USA House of Representatives
voted unanimously to strengthen privacy of email
in the United States. Politic is working two ways now. But we can’t wait for politics and law
we need technology first. It’s time for us
to create facts on the ground. Marshawn Powell it’s the young people
of the planet who must save us now. They have to write free code. They have to use cheap free hardware. They have to make
the routing of privacy work. We can do it. We’ve spent 30 years
making the code we need. We’ve spent decades
pushing for free or hardware. We have unlicensed spectrum we can use. The internet of things,
should be the internet of people first. And we can do that. The choices that we make
in the technology we use will affect the politics. Is anybody going to
keep up with the Kardashians? Well I don’t know, I don’t. I don’t have a Google ID,
Facebook account and never used Twitter. I live a life in the net. It works pretty well, you can do it too. We have to get off the platforms. But I still want to share
my pictures with everyone, and also want to talk to my friends. It’s funny you don’t share them with me. I think you mean you want to share
your pictures with your friends. And what that means is we need sharing, that works without
a super friend in the middle. We can do that, surely we can do that. In fact we’ve done it many times. We just haven’t promoted it
in the way they promote it. And we want to make a net
free and accessible to everybody, too. But we want to do it in a different way. I wouldn’t push you about this, I wouldn’t be confronting
your desire for convenience and your need for security,
if there were time. But there isn’t time.
By 2025 it will be over. Technology is path dependent,
we can’t reverse it later. We made a great mistake when we made
the tcp/ip stack in the 1970s. We didn’t engineer anonymity in then. And to engineer anonymity in afterwards
meant making TOR which is terrific, but it’s cumbersome and awkward
and it’s vulnerable, and it can fail. We need to architect the net we want and lay it on top of the net
we do not want, so that there is a choice. If we don’t give people a choice,
we will run out of choices. One of the most important engineers
in the making of the internet in that 1970s period
of immense scientific optimism, a man who now works at the fringes
of the secret world in the United States, he says and I agree with him: “This is the last generation
in which the human race gets a choice”. Most of the human race
doesn’t know what the choice is and if we here who do know
don’t help them to understand, if we don’t give them concept and code,
the revolution becomes impossible. Time is running out.
I’m glad you’re here. Thank you very much. (Applause) Before you all leave: If this the last generation,
that gets to make the choice, than this is the decade
that choice has to be made. The competence
of our technological freedom. Whether it’s free software,
free hardware or free bandwidth, they are differently concentrated
and constituted. People pushing for them
have to get together. One single, concerted effort. The free software movement,
the free hardware, the maker power, the people outside,
inside bedrooms, everywhere. The ones who are individuals
actually empower technology, or improve. The ones who campaign
for the unlicensed spectrum to stay fully free. These are corners of the world,
but we all have to come together in a single movement quickly
for the net we want. For a system of technological relations,
that does not study us, does not surveil us, data mine us. Prohibiting secrecy and our anonymity,
thus eliminating our autonomy. We are all separate strands
of this technical and social thoughts. All come from different geographies,
have different colors of skin, different fields, different worlds. Software makers, lawyers,
telecom engineers, hardware engineers. All of you, if you are my age or younger, you all understand this technology
and you know what you’re talking about. You cannot afford to spend your youth
any other way. The world your children will live in
will otherwise be an unfree world. It’s easy to mobilize citizens
if it’s war. You put a propaganda machine,
you put up a recruiting center and go. But what we do need
is a moral equivalent of war. But a moral movement not an immoral one. It’s not about violence,
it is about technologies of freedom. And we need to enlist everyone,
everybody. So I hope you are all with us here. Thank you. (Applause) Thank you so much Mishi. Thank you so much Eben for this opening
and this call to action. We have time for questions
and that’s a hand going up right there. There is a microphone coming to you. Thank you for your wonderful talk.
I have a question for Mister Moglen. Besides encryption
what other solution is there, to move packets freely across the infrastructure
of the telecommunication providers? Is encryption the only possibility? Do you think there’s like a convention,
or something else that could impose the free movement
of masqueraded packets across the infrastructure
that is being owned and dominated according to the surveillance dynamics
that you just sketched? What is there besides encryption? We are dependent upon encryption, the way we are
dependent upon electricity. We are not talking in this case about
the final product of our technology. But a component
which is indispensable to it. Everything is made of packets
in our network. Those packets can be taken by anyone
with infinite money and all the computing power they need. And there are enough such parties
that we cannot assume, that any legal regulation
or any form of technological design, which leaves packets open to be read
is safe for humans thought. Encryption is simply part of the way
that we make it possible to hear ourselves think
without being overheard. Encryption is what creates the space, within which we arranged to do
our own thinking and save our own souls. Encryption is to the 21st century,
what literacy was that the 16th. Without the written word no reformation, without reformation no freedom
of thought in the European world, without encryption
no human autonomy by century 22. And we have one more question
up here in the front row. Thank you the two of you
for this wonderful speech. I have a question. Is there something else but encryption
like legal possibilities for example that you must not depend on predictive technologies
when you get health insurance? Do you have laws that these
predictive technologies must not be used to get a certain government service
which is life necessary? International covenant
of political and social rights does say something
about a right to privacy. But each national jurisdiction
is now using it to existing rights. Some of the jurisdictions… I’m not certain whether they want
to give privacy to their citizens. But yes a lot of lawyers are sensitive
to the fact that legal instruments will have to work in tandem
with technology, to get those civil liberties back
and to enforce such rights. So various efforts are going on. The UN has appointed repertoire
to study a right to privacy, but they’re much slower,
they move so many components along and national security
or other people always want to give us
or present it into binary forms. You either get your privacy
or you get security. But nuanced conversation
is definitely happening, where legal people
are the legal forces sit. But I do not say
that it’s gonna be that fast until people actually get together
and make it a public movement. It is happening,
but it’s at a much slower pace. Meantime in India you cannot get
a propane cylinder to heat your house without a number which is referenced
to your retinal pattern. There may be legal restriction against
the use of predictive technology for one government benefit, but all other government benefits
and most of the operation of economic life will soon be subject the predictive activity
in the sociograph to which you object. The kinds of legal regulations
you’re talking about are more exceptions than the rule
and always will be. Once we’ve made a change
we cannot readily undo. Thank you so much to both of you. Can we have another round of applause
for Evan and Michi? (Applause) So and now we are going to kick off
the program at the rest of our stages. We spent many hours putting it together
so we really hope you enjoy the program. Many of you will also be
in an active role in that. I see many faces in hold on here. Who are gonna be speaking throughout
the courses the three days, so thanks for handing in sessions
to the call for papers. Thank you so much for coming here
and being a part of the show. Just to highlight a couple of things
that are happening today. The track re:learn that focuses on
education and educational initiatives is going to be happening
on stage eight today. We’re about to kick off on music day
on stage L in the laboratory. You heard Andreas
introduce it in the opening. A new location that we’ve expanded
to this year re:publica. And today’s focus is on music, but there’s going to be a focus
on a creative industry every day. Tomorrow’s focus is on immersive arts
and on Wednesday on fashion tech. We have one of our annual highlights
the sketch note session, happening after the break. So if you want to learn
how to draw along to conferences and develop your practical skills
I recommend you visit that. We also have the media convention program
starting in a couple of minutes. I really look forward
to seeing you back here at 12:15. Our next speaker is going to be
our very own Markus Beckedal. Thank you.

4 thoughts on “re:publica 2016 – Opening Keynote: The last kilometer, the last chance

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