News02 SID2018

COFACE Families Europe launches reflection on peer-to-peer connections and decentralized technologies

6 February 2018 – Safer Internet Day 2018
#SID2018 #digitalfamiliesEU

Safer Internet Day is a privileged moment to raise awareness about online safety and take action to create a better Internet for all. “Create, connect and share respect: A better internet starts with you” is the theme of the Safer Internet Day 2018.

COFACE Families Europe hosted a training seminar “Analog families in a Digital World” on February 1st in Sofia, Bulgaria. COFACE is currently examining the pros and cons of decentralized technologies to help internet users take back control of their data, and the benefits they can provide in terms of inclusion, facilitated access to knowledge, to online presence, and the protection of key digital rights like anonymity, or combating censorship.

COFACE reflections included:

1. Examining alternatives to centralized online service providers
Some of the examples included: Cloudron which allows people to host their own website and run a server directly from home; Mastodon and Diaspora, both of which are decentralized alternatives to Twitter and Facebook; Open Bazaar which is a decentralized market place to sell goods directly to other people, in replacement of Amazon; Wikipedia, although it is hosted in a centralized manner (Wikimedia data centers), allows for decentralized participation and contribution from users from all over the globe.

2. Learning about Blockchain technology and its applications
Some of the examples included: Musicoin: an innovative way to compensate musicians for their work, without the need for record labels; Golem: a way to share your computer’s computing power to people that might need it; Sia: a system that allows anyone to rent unused space on their hard drives; Ethereum: a project which allows for the execution of “smart contracts” in a decentralized way.

3. Reflecting on the societal implications such technologies will bring in the future
The trade-offs between more control and direct liability for one’s actions. The impossibility for censorship which may be positive (in the case of political persecution in certain countries) or negative (the spread of child abuse material). The transfer of power back to the people and the possibility of direct democracy and direct action by citizens.

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More about the training, click here
Find out more the SID 2018:
COFACE’s profile on the SID website:

Ana Pérez, Communication manager +322 500 56 93
For more information on this topic, contact our Senior Policy and Advocacy officer Martin Schmalzried

COFACE Families Europe is network of civil society associations representing the interests of all families. COFACE Families Europe’s areas of work include social/family policy, education, disability, gender equality, migration, consumer issues, and also protection of children online, privacy, data protection and reflections on technological developments and how they may impact families. More:

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