YouHaveDownloaded is a public database of who downloads what. Click the link and it’s likely to show some of your recent downloads.
They claim that they monitor 20% of global BitTorrent transfer. In my case they showed 1 file of several that I got recently. They didn’t show the dozen of *nix distros that I seed, so I guess that they don’t monitor some kinds of trackers.
But overall, I think that the service is great. BitTorrent downloads are public and anybody can see them, but awareness of this fact is very low. Various pay-up-or-else shakedown schemes popping up around the world recently raised it significantly, but I don’t regard them as the best way of educating the public…And they aren’t used in places where P2P is legal anyway.
What if you don’t want your neighbours, kids or whoever know your favourite
porn film genres?
Use more anonymous forms of P2P.
Wikipedia lists some.
Myself I recommend BitTorrent anonymised by I2P. It’s not the easiest to set up, but probably the biggest network – and size is important both for anonymity and amount of content available.
Yesterday Rick Falkvinge posted a piece advocating free speech. Mostly, he talked the usual stuff, importance of free speech, dangers for it, chilling effects and such.
But one statement turned me on.
“the public may be just as harsh a judge (…). In such circumstances, it is the role of government to suppress those people and activities who would make people feel threatened by stating opinions that are out of line with commonly held beliefs.”
In other words, “Government should censor speech that makes people afraid of speaking”.
Actually I think that he meant something weaker like “Government should censor speech that makes people reasonably afraid of speaking”, but it’s not my main point.
It’s the “We need to protect our society from harmful forms of speech” argumentation that’s common for all forms of censorship, from China and Pakistan all the way to EU. In this regard, censorship is the same everywhere.
And it’s a funny thing to see in a post advocating for freedom.
To clarify one thing, I’m not against censorship in general. But I think it should be recognised as such and spoken clearly about. It’s the most healthy way.