You can trust @aral — he's shown long-term consistency, addressed his own issues (moved toward fully-FLO away from Apple).
But the rage-machine concerns are valid. It's one way to reinforce tribalism and manipulate activists. Purism is a witch-hunt style eat-your-own approach. The whole idea of badge-beliefs and of checking whether someone is "one of us" leads to all sorts fo dysfunctions.
That tribalism is exploitable by actual bad actors.
So, I've begun to think about what you might call the "freedom curve", plotted on an axes labelled "freedom" (y) and "reach" (x). I suspect it looks something like an exponential decay, with high freedom plotted at the far left, but with very little reach (let's just say for sake of argument that's where RMS and TdR and a Gideon's Band of others sit). As you move to the right, freedom falls away, but you cover more people.
Assuming one can influence the shape of the curve, what do you do?
Do you try to increase the overall limits of freedom for the few on the left? I think someone should.
Do you try to increase the integrated freedom, under the curve, by lifting the broad but imperfect freedoms of people further to the right? Yes, that too.
I haven't used this model so much to think about privacy but it might be useful there too.
I like the approach but you definitely need more dimensions to describe the system.
Yet if @aral is a saint or not is totally unrelevant here.
Is he right about #SurveillanceCapitalism?
I think so.
Yet for sure NOT for a conference on #Copyleft!
Be careful not to allow the ability to avoid conflict-of-interest to become an exclusive privilege.
A great deal of such conflict can be ameliorated with disclosure of the relationship. There's no question about this here, it's been disclosed.
After 20 years of Berlusconi, we are still paying for the demage he did to Italy (on every level, cultural, ethical, legal, economical...) and we will pay the fee for a long time more.
Hell, I'm afraid it will take centuries to resort.
There is only a way to cope with conflicts of interest: to forbid them, to prevent them to occurs at any cost with no exception.
"I appreciate SDF but it's a general-purpose server and the name doesn't make it obvious that it's about art." - Eugen Rochko