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Re: Let's pay our dues!
so, like, where can we do this? what are the targets and an estimate of
a per-user donation which would satisfy comfortably the minimum costs,
and lastly, could that fund base be expanded to incorporate someone who
is, at least part time, fielding potential donors? I expect that as the
visibility grows there will be a recognition of corporations of the
utility of tor as a tool in securing their vital, strategically
important comms channels.
And law enforcement using it to find bad people without being readily
identified and thus evaded, etc etc. There is, as the tor website points
out, a lot of groups whose interests would be benefited by tor, and only
those who are benefiting from the lack of simple to configure and
operate systems of anonymisation would object to this. Unfortunately one
of these groups is part of the secret intelligence services, but let's
be real about this.
Tor is HARD to weaken, not invulnerable. As these kinds of groups mostly
have quite ample access to significant amounts of distributed network
monitoring sites, tracing traffic via these nodes, compromising nodes to
give better resolution of analytical data, etc etc. Those groups are
sufficiently well equipped that they can already perform useful
The idiocy of transparently tappable networks will soon enough be
revealed. Perhaps a clandestine operation of a hostile group in a
country, funded by another country, or something like that, will be
stumbled upon by some random network security nutter or something, and
then a flood of sensitive top secret data is quickly and widely
distributed onto the internet and the government groups whose
management is tech-ignorant will be forced, by masive public scandal, to
recognise that anonymity on the internet is not just desirable, but
critical to the defeat of data gathering attacks between countries,
corporations, consortiums, you name it.
Or perhaps we will see the obviously stone age thinking conservative
government of a few allied wealthy nations will act to fully illegalise
secure encryption and hardened anonymising systems, in the name of 'the
war on terror', and three weeks later the entire government computer
network is compromised and vast quantities of sensitive data is
extracted, because their philosophy is about 'catching the bad guys'
rather than 'making it harder to be a bad guy'.
in any case, i want to donate money right now. this dropping of EFF
funding is ominous and suggests that tor is going to be legally
untenable in the USA soon, according to the lawyer's analysis of the
soon to be instituted laws. This means two things, one, the development
should be multinational if at all possible, and provisioned wherever it
is still legal. of course, if this movement away from reason and logic
becomes entirely global, the signs are not good, but i for one would be
happy to contribute enough to pay a coder for 3 days solid work, and i'd
say there's many others with this, and if a couple of corporate
sponsorships could be found (but of course, tor must remain impartial
and open, that's in the license...) that would be good too. or some
wealthy privacy fanatic or two. maybe the money is already here amongst
tor server operators, but didn't offer because the idea hadn't been
anyways, may tor grow and evolve and prove its need to the undecided and
pessimistic. and lots of excellent minds grow it's architecture and
On Thu, 24 Nov 2005 13:05:59 -0600, clifnor@xxxxxxxxxxxx said:
> As someone who greatly appreciates the availability of the Tor network
> and associated software, I am distressed to learn that EFF financial
> support for the development effort has run out. Given the large number
> of users of this valuable resource, I find it impossible to believe that
> an announcement that subsequent availability of the network will be at
> least partially dependent on specific cash donations would fall on deaf
> ears. Indeed, I think the development team would be pleasantly surprised
> by the response.
> My suggestion, then, is that the development team determine the amount
> of money needed to continue Tor as an active project, work out a monthly
> or quarterly fee structure which would be sufficient for continuing the
> development effort, and make a request to all users to sign up with EFF
> or whatever administrator is selected to begin paying their dues for the
> use of this unique service. As a suggestion, I for one would be quite
> willing to pay 10-25 dollars per month US for the service.
> I realize that there are members of the user community who would be
> unable to make cash contributions to the support effort. I think,
> however, that a large number of those users able to pay would willingly
> do so if solicited.
> In closing, on this Thanksgiving Day, I thank the development team
> members for their fine effort in developing Tor into a functional and
> extremely valuable resource.
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