Maybe you saw the signs.
The Internet should be regulated.
Photo via Animal New York.
Artists need to play by the rules.
And your data should belong to the NSA.
These statements represent an assault on freedom. They also, for the most part, represent attitudes Internet culture has accepted. Chips we’ve traded for convenience. Part of the allegiance we’ve sworn to the web’s big platforms and server farms. That’s what you get for going online.
We put these billboards up last week in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Because we wanted to remind the world what’s at stake on the world wide web.
As a society, we’ve chosen to accept data centralization: personal information as property of a powerful few. We’ve chosen to accept walled gardens of creativity: a lifetime of work (our life’s work) locked into digital stores that take 30% of the revenue and streaming services that pay pennies in royalties. We’ve chosen to accept surveillance culture: the right of security agencies to violate the Fourth Amendment; to see and store data as they see fit.
But these things are just that. They’re choices.
And these choices belong to us.
This is the generation that will decide whether the Internet is a tool for control, or a platform for innovation and freedom. We have an incredible opportunity. We can shape the next one and one hundred years of human connection. A free, open Internet is a force for change, creativity; the backbone of a society where citizens are stakeholders, not data sets.
BitTorrent is built to preserve that Internet.
We’re a company founded on a few simple core values. Uphold user privacy, and user control. Keep the web free, open; decentralized, and accessible to all.
BitTorrent is a people-powered protocol: the architecture of code deployment for the Internet’s dominant applications.
BitTorrent is a decentralized, artist-owned publishing platform: a zero-cost alternative for media distribution.
And BitTorrent is a secure, distributed response to the challenge of data surveillance: a way to sync and store information, free from the cloud.
In other words, BitTorrent is not what you think. But it’s how the the Internet should think: people-powered and people-owned, in principle and practice.
Your data belongs to you. You deserve options. And the Internet is above all else powered by people. Certain freedoms are hardcoded. It is up to us — it is up to all of us — to uphold them.