On Sep 23, 2009, at 9:26 AM, Ole Jacobsen wrote:
On Wed, 23 Sep 2009, Ben Campbell wrote:
Would a presentation on how tor was used to bypass state controls on
news during the recent election protests in Iran be acceptable under
the terms of the agreement?
That would sound like a perfectly appropriate and timely plenary
presentation. And it seems to me to violate the plain language of
the agreement concerning "human rights".
I am going to assume that such a presentation would be largerly
technical, a case study with some political overtones, but technical
nonetheless. I would not expect this to get you in trouble, no.
Now, if you were to call the China Daily in advance and announce that
you intented to reveal (new) methods for circumventing state laws and
you declared this an open BOF where members of the public were invited
to come and listen to your (I am assuming) perfect Mandarin, then I
can imagine you would politely be asked to refrain from this activity.
I've seen plenary presentations mentioned in the local news before,
both before and after the fact. Our plenary agendas are usually
published in advance. And we _broadcast_ them across the entire
I am sure we can dream up other scenarioes, but at the risk of
repeating myself: in the 68 meetings of the IETF that I have attended,
I've never observed activity that would cause concern in the context
that we are discussing.
Okay, let's dream up one:
Let's assume it is largely technical, but has a section touching on
the larger human contexts that our technologies effect. Further,
assume it takes an explicit position that technological facilitation
of human rights is a Good Thing, and that freedom of speech is a
"basic human right." Heck, lets even assume it contains anecdotes of
individuals who have been punished for speech over the internet, and a
list of governments known for censoring speech over the internet, all
to reinforce the presenter's opinion that such technologies should be
high priorities for the IETF.
And for the cherry on top: Assume the presenter is a well known
international human rights advocate.
So, Do you think _that_ would get us in trouble? Would it be
appropriate at some other venue?
My biggest concern is not that the authorities or even the hotel will
shut us down. It's the chilling effect of self-censorship that others
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