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Re: [tor-talk] Pissed off about Blacklists, and what to do?
On Fri, Feb 07, 2014 at 12:33:08AM -0800, Al Jigong Billings wrote:
> Or maybe people got tired of the minority of trolls and nazis that seem to
> come through Tor to infest some sites. I know people who block Tor. It is
> usually because a disproportionate amount of the abuse on their site comes
> from Tor users. Anonymity turns some people into trolls.
Well even if this pushes us over the Godwin threshold, I still think
it's worth trying to control the spread of such fallacious reasoning.
1. Trolling is a red herring for the incident that prompted this
discussion since Josh was trying to watch video not post anything.
Even if sites _do_ want to allow anonymous access while minimizing
abuse (generally for writing rather than obtaining data) there are
blacklistable anonymous credential techniques and structured incentive
techniques that can be used.
2. Claims of significantly disproportionate abuse via Tor are not
infrequent. But what is infrequent to the point of nonexistence in my
experience is anything to back that up. Most often the claim is based
on the salience of abuse rather than any actually plausible
statistics. Connections exiting the Tor network are easily
recognizable as such via IP address. This makes perception of abuse
subject to at least two potential base-rate fallacies that must be
discharged if a claim is to be given any credence.
First one must be sure that the rate of recognized abuse from Tor is
actually higher than recognized abuse from other sources rather than
just disproportianately categorizable since it effectively wears a
category on its sleave.
Second, one must be sure that the rate at which abuse is recognized as
abuse in general is not significantly affected by whether it arrives
via Tor. (If you find way more coins on the ground where the light is
better, it doesn't mean that there are actually more coins on the
ground there rather than elsewhere.)
If you make claims without considering the above, you are just making
stuff up and fooling yourself that you have evidence for it.
> On Feb 7, 2014 12:11 AM, "Andrea Shepard" <andrea@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> > On Thu, Feb 06, 2014 at 10:46:32PM -0500, grarpamp wrote:
> > > So many sites that we all use are now blacklisting Tor. It's unclear
> > > whether it is via their use of tools that blindly utilize blacklists,
> > > or if they are making a conscious choice to deny Tor users. As far
> > > as I'm concerned, we are all legitimate users of their services and
> > > quite frankly, I've had enough... exactly the same as I'm sure you
> > > have all had.
> > Given the amount people seem to rely on just a few blacklists for this
> > sort of thing, it wouldn't much surprise me if there were some behind-
> > the-scenes TLA pressure being applied to the blacklists just like they
> > try to tamper with standards processes.
> > --
> > Andrea Shepard
> > <andrea@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> > PGP fingerprint (ECC): BDF5 F867 8A52 4E4A BECF DE79 A4FF BC34 F01D D536
> > PGP fingerprint (RSA): 3611 95A4 0740 ED1B 7EA5 DF7E 4191 13D9 D0CF BDA5
> > --
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