exploring BitMessage 

I expect that we'll be seeing a sharp uptick in people's interest in privacy technology, given recent events. Humans have a basic need for privacy, closely connected with our need for intimacy, so it's important to have tools that help us preserve the privacy that we need in order to maintain healthy relationships. There are a lot of really effective tools like PGP that have been around for a long time, but due to the complexity, getting widespread buy-in has been an uphill climb.

BitMessage is still in beta, but I think it shows great potential as a private communications channel. Compared with PGP, the learning curve is actually pretty light. Download it, run it, create an address, and start sending and receiving messages -- for basic person-to-person use, that really is all there is to it. Some might find it a little off-putting that your "address" is a cryptic random-looking string of text, but in practice it's not much different from working with credit card numbers or even phone numbers. If you'd like to try it out with me, here's an address where I can be reached:


"Each individual is continually engaged in a personal adjustment process in which he balances the desire for privacy with the desire for disclosure and communication of himself to others, in light of the environmental conditions and social norms set by the society in which he lives." - Alan Westin, Privacy and Freedom, 1968


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