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I agree about the dangers of cloud computing, but not with the elite knowing how to use the tools (or build them).

Few of the elite understand coding. It is done for them often by people who, in my experience in Finland, are rather anarchic and their non-coding peers and friends are in the group most threatened by elitist machinations. The coders may have a foot in the corporate world, but by night....

There are plenty of online equivalents to hiding a book under your bed.

In the long run what matters is speed. If we can organize protest - of whatever kind - FASTER than 'they' can plan to contain it, then we will win. OR we create and manage businesses that are far more efficient and fair than theirs à la Chris Cook.

Perhaps my and Chris's optimism comes from our Nordic experience, but imo we are only at the very beginning of online democracy.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Jan 10th, 2011 at 09:46:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Maybe, but the "anonymous" crowd has not been very impressive, for example...
by asdf on Mon Jan 10th, 2011 at 10:26:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]
They are using only the most obvious 'tools' for headline effect. Effective warning shots. They are capable of much nastier interventions.

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Jan 10th, 2011 at 11:54:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The other factor is that elements of the elite have, or could easily have, totally isolated equivalents of the web for their own institutional use, whether virtual private networks or physically separate networks. I do agree that individuals, such as PFC Manning of recent Wikileaks notoriety, can expose much of this, but at very considerable personal cost to that individual. For that degree of personal sacrifice to be sufficiently justified to inspire many more there needs to be much greater impact from such instances. Taking down BOA would constitute "greater impact".

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Jan 10th, 2011 at 11:51:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Private networks already exist. All banks use them. But unless they're physically isolated or physically secured, they're open to infiltration.

And they're also open to social engineering attacks. From experience, many low and mid level people who work for banks are incredibly stupid and inefficient, and someone ruthless might not find them difficult to manipulate.

But inherent openness is the best antidote for all toxic social systems.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Mon Jan 10th, 2011 at 12:30:06 PM EST
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