[ExI] All speech is sacred or why Warcraftification of real life is a solution to various ills

Adrian Tymes atymes at gmail.com
Sat Dec 10 08:06:44 UTC 2022

On Fri, Dec 9, 2022 at 11:22 PM Rafal Smigrodzki via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> Appending an easily accessible record of prior judgments by trusted
> authorities to a person's identifying profile

...appears to be generally not possible, at least not in a context where
most people will see it.

Sex offender lists are a current attempt to do just this.  They are
generally publicly accessible - and yet, most people remain unaware of
them.  Only those specifically interested will look them up.  Most people,
even close associates and business partners, will never think to check to
see if someone is on such a list, unless and until informed that a certain
person is - and even then, most people will accept being told that someone
is as they lack knowledge that they can independently verify this, let
alone knowledge of how to do so.  Thus, claims of whether someone is or is
not on the sex offender list default to trusting other people who say that
person is or is not, rather than the authorities who should theoretically
be the sole source of this information.

Appending an easily accessible record of prior judgments by trusted
authorities to a person's identifying profile seems likely to suffer the
same fate.

> It would be great to have an augmented reality app to create labels
> floating above all the people you see, just like in Warcraft.

Similar efforts - with online labels, no augmented reality involved - have
resulted in organized efforts to strike down the platforms enabling it.
See the EU's "right to be forgotten" and American "right to privacy" laws,
enacted by popular demand.  Granted, these came about in part because of
the persistence of false information in too many cases, but generally the
public seems unwilling to accept anyone having this ability over them, and
quite willing to pay the price of not having this ability over others.

It is usually a very bad idea to let a single entity take over control of
> an aspect of social organisation. It is bad to have Vijaya Gadde decide
> that nobody in the country may hear about the infamous laptop. It would be
> bad to have a central labeling authority in charge of giving people a bad
> name, like "slanderer" or "racist". There *must* be freely competing
> authorities that collate information and make judgments.

The free market is impeded from ensuring fair competition in this case.
One authority is encouraged to post information leading to the shutdown of
its competitors, winding up with a single entity taking control.

By default this will be the government, which already tries to maintain a
monopoly on violence precisely so it can be the single entity for things
like this.  As we already have a government, and likely will in any path
leading from where we are to implementation of this idea, there would need
to be a way to keep the government from simply assuming control regardless
of the intentions - and even attempted use of force - of whoever implements
this idea.

> In the example above, I might be called a slanderer - and you might wind
>> up dead.
> ### I don't follow your logic here. Please explain a *plausible* chain of
> events and mechanism of things happening.

A simple extrapolation similar to events that have happened to others.
1) I call you a predatory child rapist, and post made up evidence.
2) Some armed vigilante believes it, hunts you down (I may have posted your
address too), and kills you without considering whether I might be lying.
3) It comes out that I was lying.  The vigilante regrets killing you.
You're still dead.

> You are comparing two systems:
> 1) Where saying the wrong thing, be it slander or something else that's
> disapproved by authorities, puts you in the crosshairs of a state security
> apparatus that can fine you, jail you, put you in a concentration camp or
> make you "disappear" (in ascending degree of single-authority control over
> speech)
> 2) Where saying the wrong thing, be it slander or insulting the prophet,
> might result in reputational damage to you, which in turn could lead to
> various repercussions, up to being killed by random crazies
> Ok, crazies exist. In reality however the danger to life and liberty comes
> not from crazies but from relentless, ambitious, power-hungry, cooperating
> psychopaths who organize themselves into the speech-suppressing moloch.

Said psychopaths are making more use of crazies these days, in particular
the ones who gain temporary control of pieces of the state security
apparatus and hunger for more.

> The brain is a neural democracy

I am reminded of the Mars hive mind from A Miracle Of Science.  You might
want to skim that Webcomic - the hive mind appears in the middle and near
the end, as I recall - for inspiration.  You have the beginnings of a good
idea here; I'm just poking holes in the details, in particular as it
applies to our current real world environment.
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