back to article 90+ orgs tell Slack to stop slacking when it comes to full encryption

A coalition of 90-plus groups, including Fight for the Future and Mozilla, will descend upon Slack's offices in San Francisco and Denver on Wednesday to ask on the collaboration app to protect users' conversations via end-to-end encryption (E2EE). The groups include digital and racial justice organizations, pro-abortion …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's an enterprise chat app

    Have the protestors considered that perhaps they've chosen the wrong platform? There are dozens of others that provide the things they want.

    It's an enterprise chat app, designed and marketed to be used internally within enterprises. There's no ability to block users to prevent harassment, because that's what the HR department is meant to be for.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's an enterprise chat app

      Doesn't numpty allowing a trojan in could be all it takes to sniff that unencrypted internal traffic.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: It's an enterprise chat app

        I think you're missing the point. The protesters seem to have use cases it wasn't intended for instead of applications that were intended for their use cases.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: It's an enterprise chat app

          It's a collaboration tool at it's's to allow groups to collaborate.

          Using tech for things that it wasn't originally designed for is old as the hills.

          Sometimes, things get built that were envisioned to be used by certain groups, but go on to be used by others...that's just how tech goes sometimes.

          Facebook was designed to be used by students and young people to it's used by your nan and aunties to organise their local bridge club. The original audience is leaving, if it hasn't already gone.

          Slack has an opportunity to pivot here, stay relevant and cater to a potentially massive new that might care about it.

          Personally, I've never really got into using's always seemed redundant and derivative and the amount of "haunting" a manager can do can be's one of those tools I use because I have to, not because I want to and it has always made me uneasy with it's lack of encryption and that massive amount of visibility certain people can give themselves. The visibility is what management types want, but ironically in giving themselves greater visibility they reduce the desire for people to stay "on platform"...which ultimately reduces the visibility.

          If I want a private conversation with a colleague to discuss some code or something, I'm going off platform...I'll probably be having the back and forth over WhatsApp or something...because intertwined with the work there may be some casual banter that doesn't need to leave the conversation.

          "Dave is being a bit of a twat today, oh well let's look his bug and get it fixed".

          That harmless, flippant bit of banter can get you into some deep shit if Dave is a bit sensitive...hopefully he has a thick skin and can take it in his stride...being able to take things private and make them E2EE encrypted in itself is a protection against Dave having a mental breakdown...because he doesn't need to know that people think he is a twat...and they may only occasionally think of him as a twat. He otherwise might be well respected...but seeing one flippant comment might make him think otherwise. Privacy is important.

          In the absence of privacy like this, if we could all see exactly what everyone is saying about everyone...we might find out that most people think you're a twat and that is the case for everyone...if everyone found out that at least 70% of the people around them thought they were a twat, society would break down...because I guarantee that almost everyone has more people that dislike them than like them in a professional setting.

          Banter is important, because it allows people to create a rappor...even if it is temporary...which makes privacy important because banter out of context, somehow, becomes really offensive to some people.

          I personally don't care how many people hate me in a professional setting...I am "the fucking IT guy" after all...but at the other end of the spectrum there are people that do genuinely care...and these people, rightly or wrongly, are easily upset...having a certainly level of privacy on your internal platforms prevents these people turning into a blubbing mess in HR and a potentially insane court settlement for hurt feelings.

    2. YetAnotherXyzzy Bronze badge

      Re: It's an enterprise chat app

      I agree with all you say, but your final sentence deserves a beer.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And Once Again People Flock To A Single Point Of Failure......

    Yup......we want to use Signal or Telegram or WhatsApp........or Slack............

    ......all interweb services which have most likely had their E2EE broken by the man in Fort Meade (or Cheltenham)!!

    So let's channel all our private (!) messaging straight into............a single point of failure for privacy!!

    No thought about citizens doing something for themselves.....say, private encryption on a citizen controlled peer-to-peer application........

    Oh no.......all these wealthy huge interweb companies will come to the rescue...........


    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: And Once Again People Flock To A Single Point Of Failure......

      It's getting crowded in here.

      I don't know about the rest but Signal is peer to peer. I believe the others use the same protocol. It's true there is a core, although absolutely minimal, directory function in Signal (maybe not so minimal elsewhere). But there will always be a core directory system somewhere - DNS.

      If you're advocating home grown encryption algorithms - well the Fort Meade/Cheltenham crowd will love that.

  3. YetAnotherXyzzy Bronze badge

    This is why I stopped taking Mozilla and Fight for the Future seriously. They could educate the public about more secure or private alternatives to well known services and software. But no, they'd rather make a lot of noise with their fists.

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