Interpersonal communication: what we know as “email” and chat

[This project is still in the design phase]


This is an indispensable yet seriously dysfunctional everyday infrastructure both in terms of users’ digital rights and in terms of practical and economic efficiency.
Institutions must not back down in their defence of the right to inviolability of communications, a right won in Europe back in the 1700s.

Email, offered free of charge despite being an expensive service to maintain, is Big Tech’s entry point into the mass digitalisation of people, institutions and public services. Institutions accept free Gmail or Outlook and then purchase the entire suite with everything else.

And why not? Mail should be a free service for the people, but not like this: a de facto private monopoly on the essential infrastructure that is interpersonal communication.

Moreover, these services are currently configured by design as centralised services, posing now notorious problems for the right to secrecy of correspondence and sustainability. And most of all it is absurd: in the age of networks, it is simply absurd and anachronistic that in order to write to each other we still have to go through a centralised mediator. It is certainly not for any logical reason, but for reasons of domination.

The report therefore proposes that the institutions take on the design of decentralised, sovereign interpersonal communication infrastructure to replace the current email system.