I am in the middle of reading Kim Stanley Robinson’s new SciFi Novel “The Ministry for the Future” (October 2020) and found what he calls “YourLock”, which seems to parallel many of the ideas behind PonyXPS/PonyUPS so thought I would share those paragraphs.
Chapt 54, Page 241:
“What have you got for me, Janus Athena?”
“The AI group is making open source instruments that mimic the functions of all the big social media sites.”
“So people can shift over to this new set?”
“Yes. And it will protect their data for them using quantum encryption.”
“Then China probably won’t let their people use them.”
"Maybe not. China is under huge pressure to change, so, unclear how that will play out. For everyone else, using these sites means they’ll control their data, rather than it being used and mined. That privacy can then be a resource to them. They can sell their personal data if they want. That plus the security of encryption, and the public ownership of these sites a commons, should be enough to entice every user on the planet to shift. Publicize it, make it easy, set a date, be ready to handle the influx, boom„:,
“How many do you think will shift?”
“Maybe half. After a few years, everybody.” "
So, the decapitation of Facebook."
“And all the rest like it.”
“Replaced by a system owned by its users, in effect.”
“Yes. Open source. A distributed ledger. The Global Internet Cooperative Union. GICU.”
“Is that a good name?”
“Is Facebook a good name?”
“Better than GICU.”
“Okay, think of a better one. Then if it works, it will serve as the operating platform for ICU.” “Which means,” Mary prompted, playing along.
“International Credit Union. A people’s bank. The team has set that up too. Lots of bank mirroring, and credit unions are already a thing. This won’t be quite like a credit union, because it would be an open net-work of people who make a distributed issuance of credit, issuing carbon coin fractions to each other on proof of good action on carbon. People deposit their savings and create new value in a customer- and employee-owned distributed ledger. Their bank, as one function of their YourLock account. It invests mindfully as a group mind, a kind of planetary mind, that has to always be funding biosphere-friendly activities. Also, a place to go if everyone removes their deposits from current private banks at the same time. Those banks are so over-leveraged that they will immediately crash. Then individuals have to have a safe harbor. For-profit banks will go running to central banks to ask for bail-out, and legislatures will panic and agree to let central banks create however many trillions the central banks recommend. That’s been the template so far. So, for any planned attack on private banks, best to have a safe harbor ready. Then you can tell the legislatures to approve central banks’ bail-out QE, but only on condition of buying equity in them.”
in Chapter 60: page 281:
Spring came and Mary began to swim again from the Utoquai schwimmbad, first once or twice a week, then every day. Then tram back up to the office. She gave the final nod to Janus Athena’s YourLock, and J-A posted the website address to the internet and they watched it go through its unobtrusive birth, a slow week as it turned out, as it was just one spike in the endless interference patterns of discourse. Then people began to share the news that you could transfer everything going on in the rest of your internet life into a single account on YourLock, which was organized as a co-op owned by its users, after which you had secured your data in a quantum-encrypted cage and could use it as a negotiable asset in the global data economy, agreeing to sell your data or not to data-mining operations out there who quickly saw the new lay of the land and began to offer people micro-payments for their data, mainly health information, consumption patterns, and finance. The royalties for being oneself in the world machine were not insignificant, a kind of lifetime annuity, small but useful. And so people began to make the shift, and one day that tip-ping point arrived where a non-linear shear occurred, like an earthquake, and suddenly everyone had a YourLock account and would henceforth be conducting their internet life by way of it. A whole new internet ecology, the much-hyped but previously vaporwaresque Internet 3.0. This was news, of course, remarked on everywhere. But on the other hand, when Mary went down to the lake in the mornings to swim, every-thing looked the same; and this was true everywhere. Global revolutions these days were strange, Mary thought, being as virtual as everything else. And of course in the virtual world it had indeed caused an uproar. What did it mean? Who owned this new system? It was open source, some said, 0 one owned it. People working in the gift economy had made it, which meant maybe just people playing around.”