Should digital protocols be legally enforced?


Long answer: hell, yes! For longer answer, keep reading.

Should digital protocols be legally enforced? /img/openstandards-meme.jpg

Should protocols for digital communication services be legally enforced? Here is what I just posted in a forum about this topic:

Question 1: “[do such protocols] need to be legally enforced?” At this point in history, with the current situation… Hell yes. Nothing less would force companies like the “GAFAMs”, that is Google, Facebook etc… to grant real interoperability. And without that, any effort to build new platforms and communication tools that compete with them is dead before starting, because nobody would make the switch.

Email is the exception that confirms the rule exactly because it was already an ubiquitous defacto standard decades before the GAFAMs emerged (and even self-hosted email is in danger since at least 2010, but that is another story).

Question 2: “I’m not sure that everybody always needs to be able to link with everybody all the time” (that is, to have services like exactly like e.g. Facebook Messenger, or WhatsApp): OK, but this has nothing, nothing at all to do with what I am saying, which is:

  1. what is needed is freedom to use , in ANY dgital communication SERVICE, or ACTIVITY, (i.e. instant messaging, clubhouse-like audio chat, video calls, microblogging, whatever) the digital interface or platform that you prefer, for communicating with everybody else, no matter what digital interface or platform THEY prefer, just as it happens with email.
  2. the obsession [of the Free/Open Source Software movement] with software, software source code, software licenses… has been actively harming that goal for at least a decade now (for more on this, see here or here).

For even more on the same topics, see what I have written about interoperability, Mastodon or my Percloud proposal.

Image source: QuickMeme

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