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Re: The "self-sovereign" problem (was: The SSI protocols challenge)

From: Drummond Reed <drummond.reed@evernym.com>
Date: Tue, 30 Mar 2021 08:26:13 -0700
Message-ID: <CAAjunnZ5gux8fxhm2sN-CgvyWHhUz4UWTt5wPUH0PkNBUdTnww@mail.gmail.com>
To: Daniel Burnett <daniel.burnett@entethalliance.org>
Cc: "Michael Herman (Trusted Digital Web)" <mwherman@parallelspace.net>, Pindar Wong <pindar.wong@gmail.com>, "Phillip D. Long" <phil@rhzconsulting.com>, Taylor Kendal <taylor@learningeconomy.io>, Steve Capell <steve.capell@gmail.com>, Heather Vescent <heathervescent@gmail.com>, "W3C Credentials CG (Public List)" <public-credentials@w3.org>
What Daniel said. (very nicely)

On Tue, Mar 30, 2021 at 8:22 AM Daniel Burnett <
daniel.burnett@entethalliance.org> wrote:

> Interestingly, this is one of the reasons VCs were created:  to avoid
> defining an 'identity' and instead to allow a collection of
> simultaneously-verifiable claims to be presented.  In my mind this makes
> 'identity' an emergent, and perhaps ephemeral, property that varies based
> on the specific collection of claims provided.
>
> -- dan
>
> ------------------------------
> *From:* Michael Herman (Trusted Digital Web) <mwherman@parallelspace.net>
> *Sent:* Tuesday, March 30, 2021 10:27 AM
> *To:* Pindar Wong <pindar.wong@gmail.com>; Phillip D. Long <
> phil@rhzconsulting.com>
> *Cc:* Taylor Kendal <taylor@learningeconomy.io>; Steve Capell <
> steve.capell@gmail.com>; Heather Vescent <heathervescent@gmail.com>; W3C
> Credentials CG (Public List) <public-credentials@w3.org>
> *Subject:* RE: The "self-sovereign" problem (was: The SSI protocols
> challenge)
>
>
> So the “unique combination of garments” each of us chooses to clothe
> ourselves in each day, in effect, becomes one of our Self-Sovereign
> Identifiers?
>
>
>
> …a truly personal decentralized identifier?
>
>
>
> *From:* Pindar Wong <pindar.wong@gmail.com>
> *Sent:* March 30, 2021 1:35 AM
> *To:* Phillip D. Long <phil@rhzconsulting.com>
> *Cc:* Taylor Kendal <taylor@learningeconomy.io>; Steve Capell <
> steve.capell@gmail.com>; Heather Vescent <heathervescent@gmail.com>; W3C
> Credentials CG (Public List) <public-credentials@w3.org>
> *Subject:* Re: The "self-sovereign" problem (was: The SSI protocols
> challenge)
>
>
>
> Thank you all for this very rich, thought provoking thread.
>
>
>
> From  my end of the pond, in Hong Kong, I use a 'clothing' metaphor to
> start policy level discussions.
>
>
>
> Typically the pitch starts around the notion of human dignity, leads to a
> notion of 'nakedness' and observes that we are  'naked on the internet'.
>
>
>
> This moves to a discussion about how we  wish to make the loom, for others
> to weave the cloth that we digitally wear to clothe ourselves ( Hong Kong
> has a long history in the 'rag trade') -- so that we can shape the
> narrative around how we wish to be perceived by society.
>
>
>
> Should we lose this ability to shape the  societal narrative around how we
> wish to be perceived (i.e. naked), then this can be considered as a loss of
> privacy and the associated happiness.
>
>
>
> While society will say will say whatever it likes about you, it should be
> unequivocal what I said about myself.
>
>
>
> This, to cut a long story short,  eventually leads to 'SAIDs' --
> Self-Administered Indexed Data'
>
>
>
> I leave it open what data is indexed -- particularly as I note that many
> policy makers still  unfortunately equate unique identifiers as a means to
> index or access data about you.
>
>
>
> So to my eye, we are merely making tools for developers to ultimately
> weave together our digital clothes  -- so that we can choose when and  what
> we want to wear as we present ourselves to society.
>
>
>
> In doing so, I've tried to incorporate some beautiful ideas explained to
> me by Nat Sakimura ... many years ago -- albeit fueled by too much  'saké'
> taken late in the evening in a lovely soba-bar in Tokyo.
>
>
>
> I hope this imagery appeals to the poet programmers in all of us.
>
>
>
> Best,
>
>
>
> p.
>
>
>
>
>
> Regards,
>
>
>
> p.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> On Mon, Mar 29, 2021 at 10:44 PM Phillip D. Long <phil@rhzconsulting.com>
> wrote:
>
> +1 to Taylor’s note below. This is very useful and offers some
> opportunities to approach the goals of individual control of personal data,
> even if steps along the way toward it are improvements but still fall short
> of desired end point. As long as the risks are a stated clearly
> improvements may fall short of perfection, but the reference point is
> current practice. Advancing beyond that toward the goal is improvement.
>
>
>
> Cheers,
>
>  Phil
>
>
>
> *Phillip Long, Ph.D.*
>
> *RHz Consulting, LLC.*
> Inquire-Listen-Design-Prototype-Analyze-Repeat
> e:phil@rhzconsulting.com
> LinkedIn:http://www.linkedin.com/in/longpd/
>
> —
>
> *T3 Innovation Network, LER Pilot Projects Community Manager*
> e: phil@rhzconsulting.com,
> SNS: Twitter/Telegram @RadHertz
> LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/longpd
>
>
>
> On Mar 23, 2021, at 12:57 PM, Taylor Kendal <taylor@learningeconomy.io>
> wrote:
>
>
>
> Sending appreciation for this thoughtful and probing thread --
> without question, it takes engineers *and* poets to create a world worth
> living in. I too have been wrestling with SSI
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/taykendesign.medium.com/identity-and-agency-2020-and-beyond-ee804a7e35c6__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rE8yQb6cc$> for
> the past few years, and this thread has added a useful new neural node to
> my often foggy mental map :)
>
>
>
> w/ gratitude,
>
>
>
> -Taylor
>
> https://www.learningeconomy.io
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/www.learningeconomy.io__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEAPsroPA$>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> On Mon, Mar 22, 2021 at 2:32 PM Steve Capell <steve.capell@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> +1
>
>
>
> The identity bit is challenging.  On the other hand, I’ve never had a
> problem selling the idea of verifiable credentials
>
> Steven Capell
>
> Mob: 0410 437854
>
>
>
> On 23 Mar 2021, at 5:37 am, Heather Vescent <heathervescent@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> 
>
> I know folks on this list love to be precise in their language... ah,
> gotta love the engineer's mind. But I want to provide a futurist/poet's
> perspective.
>
>
>
> As Manu wrote, and many of us know first-hand, there are socio-cultural
> issues with the term "self-sovereign." It has baggage specifically from a
> western individualist libertarian perspective. Some people use
> "self-sovereign" with these assumptions attached, others fight against
> those assumptions. The general business consensus is that that term
> (self-sovereign) is too charged, and the interpretations people bring to
> it, get in the way of communicating the benefits. (See Microsoft's first
> whitepaper using Decentralized Identity & aside: I would have changed the
> title of the Comprehensive Guide to SSI but it was already out there in the
> world.)
>
>
>
> "Decentralized identity" is a *better* choice. Others use "self-asserted,"
> I think this has some of the same socio-cultural issues that
> "Self-sovereign" has. (I did a survey asking specifically this question
> about a year ago, but I have not done a detailed data analysis, so these
> are off the cuff comments.) IMHO, the term that will describe the
> technology we are creating (SSI/DI/SA/DIDs/VCs) hasn't been coined yet. And
> even more controversial, I doubt it will be coined by anyone in this
> community or an early adopter.
>
>
>
> Why? Because we are swimming in a world of biases - biases because we are
> co-creators of the vision and technology of SSI. And we are hyper technical
> in this community, which is not reflective of society at large.
>
>
>
> I don't think this is really a big deal. Use whichever term you like with
> the appropriate caveats until the defining term comes along. Maybe take a
> moment to get real with yourself on why you like that particular term. A
> lot of people like the unconscious/challenging authority attributions of
> "self sovereign."
>
>
>
> IMHO, making what we are doing/creating in this community more accessible
> to outsiders, with their fresh view unadulterated by our years of
> philosophical discussion is what will give us clarity on the potential
> impact of our work here - which may lead to a better socio-cultural verbal
> identifier.
>
>
>
> -H
>
>
>
>
>
> On Mon, Mar 22, 2021 at 9:22 AM victorsyntez <victorsyntez@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> +100  to this perspective, especially #3. Many Asian countries and a
> number of European countries consider community stability more important
> than individual freedoms. We can't expect them to agree with the notion
> that privacy and self-sovereignity of the digital identity is more
> important that government oversight of the digital identity.
>
>
>
> Victor.
>
>
>
> Sent from my Galaxy
>
>
>
>
>
> -------- Original message --------
>
> From: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
>
> Date: 2021-03-22 6:32 a.m. (GMT-08:00)
>
> To: public-credentials@w3.org
>
> Subject: The "self-sovereign" problem (was: The SSI protocols challenge)
>
>
>
> On 3/21/21 11:57 PM, Adrian Gropper wrote:
> > Are we, as a community, being shy in using self-sovereign to describe
> our
> > perspective?
>
> My response below is for people that feel like the question above has an
> easy
> answer. I expect the following to be misconstrued or quoted out of context,
> which is sad, but here goes; everything below is said without any value
> judgements.
>
> Remember that not all nations and people of the world view
> "self-sovereign" as
> a purely positive thing. I'm not shy about using it, just very careful, and
> tend to avoid it as it tends to distract focused conversations.
>
> To speak to at least three overly-broad categories, self-sovereign is not
> viewed as an entirely positive thing among:
>
> 1. Authoritarian-leaning groups.
> 2. Non-authoritarian sovereign governments.
> 3. Non-western societies where the importance of the
>    individual is not placed above the importance
>    of the community.
>
> I don't think that anyone is here to support #1 above. #2 and #3 are why I
> tend to be careful about using the word "self-sovereign". It's useful when
> speaking to others that understand the nuance. It can be thoroughly
> confusing
> or shut down conversations with those that don't... and even when educated
> about the nuances, the message doesn't land well with the latter two
> groups.
>
> I end up doing far more damage control when the word "self-sovereign" is
> included than if I just stick to "verifiable credentials and decentralized
> identifiers".
>
> -- manu
>
> --
> Manu Sporny - https://www.linkedin.com/in/manusporny/
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/www.linkedin.com/in/manusporny/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEa0kyzDM$>
> Founder/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
> blog: Veres One Decentralized Identifier Blockchain Launches
> https://tinyurl.com/veres-one-launches
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/tinyurl.com/veres-one-launches__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rES6vJb9w$>
>
>
>
>
> --
>
> Heather Vescent
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__http:/www.heathervescent.com/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEtgLIz3g$>
>
> Co-Chair, Credentials Community Group @W3C
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/www.w3.org/community/credentials/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEzabYLFw$>
>
> President, The Purple Tornado, Inc
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/thepurpletornado.com/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEHAXil4E$>
>
> Author, The Secret of Spies
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/amzn.to/2GfJpXH__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rE6Cw2Vlg$> (Available
> Oct 2020)
>
> Author, The Cyber Attack Survival Manual
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/www.amazon.com/Cyber-Attack-Survival-Manual-Apocalypse/dp/1681886545/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEi-E7rJA$> (revised,
> Dec 2020)
>
> Author, A Comprehensive Guide to Self Sovereign Identity
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/ssiscoop.com/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rESmABU9Y$>
>
>
>
> @heathervescent
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/twitter.com/heathervescent__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEFN02kpM$> |
> Film Futures
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/vimeo.com/heathervescent__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEedNteGI$>
> | Medium
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/medium.com/@heathervescent/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEIwjJ9Es$>
> | LinkedIn
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/www.linkedin.com/in/heathervescent/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEsUFj1SU$> |
> Future of Security Updates
> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/app.convertkit.com/landing_pages/325779/__;!!IKRxdwAv5BmarQ!KB0Xnw6Trzx_kTTkM_SfV4gpjpR_zBp6w394cA15VDY4vw-fjiruve9ggsu455rEmFYgnDE$>
>
>
>
>
Received on Tuesday, 30 March 2021 15:26:39 UTC

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