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Re: [tor-talk] CloudFlare

With respect to:

grarpamp grarpamp at gmail.com 
Sun Apr 21 13:05:11 UTC 2013

I'm sure you think you somehow speak the truth about something, But I you are very confused about what people who run servers are permitted to do. They are permitted to block by IP for any reason they see fit even if you grarpamp think their reasons are mere whim. In fact, they are permitted to block IPs even if their reasons are mere whims. This is a simple fact. Not only that: it is the only equitable situation. There are two sides of any request: Those who make requests should not be forced to accept downloads or connections they did not request; those with servers who receive requests are not required to fulfill them.  

This unwilling to change in the foreseeable future. If you are unaware of this fact, you might want to read up a bit. 

I think you are also uninformed about what sorts of requests people on servers see hitting them from Tor or other anonymous services. However, it seems like you are frustrated by their behavior and wish to persuade them to change it.  If you wish services who currently ban by  IPs in ways that often affect your ability to access using TOR  to work with you to change that, you will need to get out of your little bubble and understand things from their point of view. You need to be aware of what sort of connections people see out in the wild. You need to have data that I suspect Tor cannot collect without violating the privacy of the connections. For example: You need to collect requests and determine the fraction that are involved in brute force log in attempts, the fraction involved in spamming and so on. (That large amounts are involved in spamming is easily determined by entering IPs of mature Tor exit nodes at StopForumSpam which logs complaints.)

You need to collect this data and look at it straight on because your being unwilling to look at facts on the ground isn't going to blind other people to these facts.

Telling others what you would do (or even do do) with your server is irrelevant to them.  When I, Craigslist, YouTube, or Pinterest are  deciding whether to block by IP, we are unlikely give a hoot what *you* would do if you ran our server.   I know I don't care.

You are also inferring accusations where there are none.  *You* brought up that example of wishing to visit dating sites while at work as a reason to use Tor.  I have neither said nor implied you are violating any company rules or doing anything unethical by visiting dating sites on your companies server. I have only said that the fact that you do so but wish to keep this information concealed from your employer does not create an obligation on the part of any third party to facilitate your ability to keep the information concealed from your employer. This is a simple fact and does not insinuate any sort of unethical behavior on your or any one else's part. If you don't want people to point out that your reason for using Tor is and should be irrelevant to the operators of sites you visit, don't bring up that particular example.  Otherwise? Go ahead. Get pugnacious. Stand up on your hindlegs. Play whatever rhetorical game you want to play. But it's just silly to suggest  someo
 ne is insinuating something nefarious on your part when they merely engage the example you introduced and point out  that your example does not constitute a good reason to permit Tor connections.  

I'm mostly not going to bother with the rest.  But if anyone on the Tor project thinks you or they can convince those block by IP that they should not do so you are going to need to better inform yourselves about concerns of others.  It is a simple empirical fact that IPs  become listed at places like Project HoneyPot, StopForumSpam, various block lists and  so on; the IPs  achieve that status by permitting bad behavior over their lines.  

Tor IPs frequently get listed on those services.  When they do, those IPs get blocked by those who use them.  With respect to blocking Tor: I feel absolutely no guilt blocking a Tor exit node. Any *person* whose Tor IP is blocked can deactivate and Tor and connect normally. If their new IP is clean they can participate on exactly the same basis as anyone else. 

Complain all you want, but to the extent that Tor is used by hackers, scammers, scrapers and comment spammers, that behavior will be detected and people will block Tor either directly or after the IP is listed on a block list. VPN or service provider ranges that  do not cancel accounts that permit spamming, scraping, and hacking will be blocked by people running servers; often those blocks will be permanent.  This means that many Tor friendly ranges will be blocked permanently by some web sites. If you don't like that: too darn bad.

Those IPs will get blocked by people who have come to believe that requests from IPs listed on block lists are disproportionately not worthy of their time or resources.   I happen to think the people implementing the bans are justified. You don't? Ok. But if you are banned from Craigslist, a dating site or pretty much anywhere you get zero sympathy from me. None.   Put on your big boy pants and learn that the world doesn't need to give you want you want merely because you want it. 
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