Chekhov exhorted writers not to put a gun onstage unless a character is going to fire it. But this advice has a corollary for audiences: "If there's a pistol on the mantelpiece in Act I, it'll go off by Act III."

If only Apple had paid attention.

Apple wasn't the first company to use DRM to prevent users from installing software on devices without its approval (game consoles did this for years), but it WAS the first company to popularize the model for general purpose devices.


Ten years ago, I predicted that once Apple gave itself the power to decide which software you were allowed to use, governments would start ordering it to prevent you from using software they didn't like.


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3 years ago, Apple kicked working VPNs out of the Chinese App Store, so that the Chinese state - which was in the midst of rounding up ONE MILLION Uyghurs and putting them in concentration camps - could spy on its population more effectively


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Now, Apple's purged its Chinese App Store of RSS readers, which allow Apple customers in China to evade state censorship and surveillance, which have been used in lethal ways, including targeting dissidents for organ-harvesting.


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This is a really stark example of the failure of the "feudal security" model we have evolved as states have both failed to create protections for users (e.g. a US federal privacy law with a private right of action) and to prevent monopolization of tech.

Deprived of the legal tools to defend ourselves with, we are forced to seek protection from feudal seigneurs (e.g. tech companies) and hope that their business interests align with our human rights interests.


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@pluralistic cory! TRUTH! speak oh fair speaker, these great truths, to power, to us all.


> prevent monopolization of tech

> forced to seek protection from feudal seigneurs

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