back to article Ukraine war a sorting hat for cyber-governance loyalties: Black Hat founder Jeff Moss

The war in Ukraine, and the Declaration for the Future of the Internet signed by 60 nations in late April, should be understood in the context of a global effort to recruit the nations of the world into blocs with different attitudes to internet governance. That's the opinion of Jeff Moss, founder of the Black Hat and DEF CON …

  1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Team Rule Of Law ?

    Oh, you mean except where Russia is concerned.

    Because Team Rule Of Law has gleefully cut Russia off of everything they could that should have been guaranteed by the rule of law.

    Trust the US to invent lofty terms to cover their actions under a veneer of respectability.

    I'm not saying that Russia's invasion should have just been ignored, something had to be done (like respect a certain treaty some decades ago), but it's a bit rich to come in now spouting Team Rule Of Law.

    If your Rule Of Law has whatever exception you want, it's no longer the Rule Of Law.

    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Re: Team Rule Of Law ?

      T-RoL has also formalised Minitrue with the creation of the DHS's official disinformation unit-

      https://www.zerohedge.com/political/biden-disinformation-czar-demands-power-edit-other-peoples-tweets

      Asserting that she was “eligible for it because I’m verified,” Jankowicz then bemoaned the fact there are people on Twitter with different opinions to her who also have the blue tick but “shouldn’t be verified” because they’re “not trustworthy.”

      “So verified people can essentially start to edit Twitter the same sort of way that Wikipedia is so they can add context to certain tweets,” said Jankowicz.

      What could possibly go wrong?

    2. Peter2 Silver badge

      Re: Team Rule Of Law ?

      The rule of law guarantees fair process, not continued business as usual for a nutcase wishing to use our own systems to destroy us.

      In this case, if there is a sanctions list which explains whom is sanctioned by Her Majesties Government, and why this is the case.

      If people on that list are added for a legitimate purpose then sanctioning them is fully compliant with the rule of law.

      1. Blazde

        Re: Team Rule Of Law ?

        Nevertheless the names really need some work. 'Team Authoritarian' would also point to the careful underpinning of everything they do by laws, enacted by a legislature (*).

        Meanwhile many in 'Team Rule Of Law' point to their authoritarian internet censorship increasingly being rolled out, and with dubiously minimal electorate collaboration in some key areas.

        (*) Or at least everything that would be done that way in a modern liberal democracy. Starting wars, and okaying diplomatically sensitive black ops of the kind Russia is frequently accused of, aren't typical legislature fare anywhere.

      2. Jellied Eel Silver badge

        Re: Team Rule Of Law ?

        If people on that list are added for a legitimate purpose then sanctioning them is fully compliant with the rule of law.

        Perhaps. Or the 'rule of law' contains laws around things like fair trials, property rights and laws against collective punishment.

        Rule of Law2.0 means someone can be added to a sanctions list for simply being allegedly assosciated with a person and their property seized. This is lawful, not collective punishment. One can try to appeal the decision, but being sanctioned means you can't hire a lawyer because sanctions, or you can't afford a lawyer because your assets have been frozen.

        And like pretty much all laws, or creative application of lawfare, it's only 'legal' once the process has been challenged through the courts. But the 'fair process' sidesteps that by denying traditional due process because sanctioned individuals and entities are denied legal rights.

        A handy way to legally(ish) obtain billions in cash and assets though.

    3. Cav

      Re: Team Rule Of Law ?

      Says the Russian sympathiser who does not understand the law.

  2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Some Things are Way Beyond Selective Collective Regulatory Command and Control

    Moss cited MongoDB's decision to quit Russia and terminate SaaS customers' services as an example of a private entity deciding to become an actor.

    Some who may be many would agree that would be a decision which recognises and renders them as a supporting actor as opposed to them being hailed and lauded as a leading blockbuster star.

    He also mentioned UK domain name registry Nominet's decision to suspend Russian registrars operating in the dot-uk namespace.

    That too much resembles a Team Authoritarian move to be thought anything different methinks, and quite naturally would there certainly be valid worries of such an action having unintended consequences revealing novel opportunities.

    If super-empowered individuals' activities becomes problematic for a state, Moss thinks they could invite regulation.

    An action which could and therefore most definitely would deliver resistant opposition as a very likely certain consequence. Such is only natural and part and parcel of what it is to be human.

  3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    I don't think it's that simple. Just about every government includes its authoritarian-inclined element and the outcome is the balance between those and the liberally-inclined element. It's best to place all of them in the undecided camp and just note the current balance.

    1. ThatOne Silver badge

      Yes, "Team Authoritarian" and "Team Rule of Law" is just marketing BS. In reality it's just "Team Openly Authoritarian" and "Team Discreetly Authoritarian".

      All governments want the same thing (a docile and easy to exploit population), the only difference is in how they go about it. Some are more subtle than others.

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      2. Cav

        That is bizarre and leads to the conclusion that you are a privileged Westerner that has no idea of what living under a truly authoritarian regime is like. It is ludicous to assert that there is any comparison between living in a Western country and, say, China or Iran. "Marketing BS" and "subtle" implies they are really the same. You don't have a clue what the reality is.

        1. ThatOne Silver badge

          You (all) missed that I'm talking about intent here. The difference is obviously in the execution (no pun intended).

          (For the record, yes, I'm a "privileged Westerner", and I've been in countries with openly authoritarian (as in "we shoot you if we feel like it") regimes.)

  4. Jan K.

    "His preferred model is for civil society institutions – the likes of ICANN or the IETF – to drive discussion on how tech policy can meet the moment."

    Like ICANN?

    After the .org debacle, I'm not so sure they should drive anything anywhere...

    https://www.theregister.com/2020/05/01/icann_stops_dot_org_sale/

    https://www.theregister.com/2020/07/21/chehade_ceo_ethos/

    "Your government could be on one team, but you as an individual or company could be on another."

    Ah. Yes. That can happen... https://www.theregister.com/2020/04/17/icann_california_org_sale_delay/

    Sorry. Still wounded here...

  5. HildyJ Silver badge
    FAIL

    Article is simplistic, World is complex

    Trying to divide the internet into two categories (with the undecided in the middle) is a fools game.

    Plus, Rule of Law is an absurd concept. Russia, China, and even Iran have elected parliament equivalents who make laws.

    The categories are, effectively, Rule of Law We Like and Rule of Law We Don't Like.

    1. LDS Silver badge
      Facepalm

      "have elected parliament"

      Just they decide who could be elected and who can't even participate to elections. Opposition is routinely neutered, jailed, killed.

      China election system moreover is far different - people don't vote directly for the parliament - and there's a single party.

      Sure. It an authoritarian "rule of law" which we don't like. Many dictatorship killed a huge number people under self-made laws.

  6. Muppet Boss

    >"Team Rule Of Law" comprises the USA and like-minded democracies that believe in free and open online environments and collaborative governance. ... without Russia, China, Iran and the likes because we banned these evil crooks and their evil scientists can no longer abuse our free and open online environments. Same old Land of the Free and We'll Bomb Authoritarianism Out of You song. Where's Team Humanity on this list?

  7. Cav

    I get that many Register followers are disillusioned youngsters who have no clue of history or the realities of living under truly authoritarian regimes but the anti-Western diatribes and false equivalence with the likes of China and Iran is laughable. You have no idea of what it is like to live under truly authoritarian regimes. Is the West perfect? Far from it. But China and the like are far worse. There is no equivalence between the two. If the West was truly are tightly controlled, authoritarian region, you simply wouldn't be commenting here.

    1. Claptrap314 Silver badge

      You're half way there. In truth, we would be free to make posts like "Four legs good, two legs better."

  8. sianag

    Companies harming themselves to harm Russia? Oh they know. It's naive to suggest that they had no idea. I would like to thank them.

    1. sten2012

      Is it that, a moral position?

      Or is it just too difficult to keep on top of sanctions or their processes lack the ability so they don't bear that risk of screwing and expense of implementing these policies?

      I hope the former. I suspect its closer the latter but somewhere in the middle.

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