Was talking about Mastodon with an old-school sysadmin guy. We reached the realization that defederating from instances with no/bad moderation is essentially the same thing as blocking open relays back when you ran your own email server: open relays always end up getting used for spam, you block 'em to protect your users.

Email was and still is the first federated social network, so it already faced a lot of the same problems; we should study its solutions (and its failures).

@nindokag Yes, this is why the paper that I'm writing on anti-spam on the Fediverse with @cwebber references email and email anti-spam techniques a great deal.

@emacsen @nindokag Though I also think email misinformed a lot of the future approaches to come... I do think we can do better.

But we should certainly learn from it! :)

@cwebber @nindokag @emacsen Spamhaus is deeply problematic though and I hope we can avoid replicating systems like this. The early shared blocklists we had here were already a tiny step in that direction.

@ng0 @cwebber @nindokag

There is plenty to dislike about Spamhaus, and even worse Spamcop (do you remember them?).

I'd love to hear specifically what the issue you see with them is/was so we're on the same page.

@emacsen @nindokag @cwebber I'm not good at collecting my thoughts right now on this topic. For now: it seems -- only running Email servers for less than 10 years now -- that decisions are made intransparent at the expense of not being able to get off the lists easily if some arbitrary action got you on there. Administrators (seem to) rely on them as an ultimate, unquestionable authority.
I'm a bit fuzzy on the details, but my main issue is with unquestionable trusting one source of information (even if they do publish why a decision was made by them).

@ng0 @cwebber @nindokag

What I'm hearing is "Handing over ultimate authority on what you do and don't accept to a third party is a bad idea, especially if that third party acts as a black box."

If so, then yes, good point.

If I don't get it, maybe you can help me understand better in the future?

It also opens the system up to abuse--I don't recall the names but I'm thinking of the blacklists which require payment before they will remove you. Experience dealing with email blacklists is one of the reasons why I have always opposed Dzuk's list regardless of its usefulness; I would prefer if fedi didn't turn into that.
@ng0 @cwebber @nindokag

@hushpiper @ng0 @cwebber @nindokag

The best that we can do is offer other solutions, but we can't prevent such a thing from happening. Just in the discussion of anti-spam techniques, I've seen some very upset people who want explicit whitelists- who only want to federate with nodes they feel share the same values.

I think that would be a very bad thing for the Fediverse, but I can't stop such a thing from happening.

@emacsen @hushpiper @ng0 @cwebber @nindokag

Users can block whole instances from showing in their feeds What about User Whitelists, were the user only sees posts explicitly from instances they whitelist

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Liberdon is a Mastodon instance for libertarians, ancaps, anarchists, voluntaryists, agorists, etc to sound off without fear of reprisal from jack or zuck. It was created in the wake of the Great Twitter Cullings of 2018, when a number of prominent libertarian accounts were suspended or banned.