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Re: Restricted storage

From: Marcus Brinkmann
Subject: Re: Restricted storage
Date: Tue, 06 Jun 2006 00:32:34 +0200
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At Mon, 5 Jun 2006 15:21:35 -0600,
"Christopher Nelson" <address@hidden> wrote:
> My point is that the degree of trust that you can place in random people
> is inversely proportionate to the percieved benefit they obtain by
> harming you in some way.

Although it may be that some people perform sometimes such
calculation, I don't believe that it is true in general.  In addition
with what else you said, it reveals a basic mistake you are making:

> Trust, in life and in networks, must be *earned*.

Trust is something very personal.  It is something that comes from the
subject that trusts, not from the object being trusted.  The subject
may use calculations like you propose to determine trust, but this is
not necessarily so.

Trust also comes with its own reward.  I may choose to trust somebody
even if according to your proposed calculation he didn't earn it, or
even if the trust may be misplaced, and I may have very good reasons
to do so.  I may forgive[1].  Forgiveness is an act of healing,
primarily for the person who forgives.  When I was in YMCA, there was
a group of teens who came to the club and did all sort of nasty
things: I think they stole some stuff, and destroyed some other.  The
house kept the doors open for them anyway.  At that time, I couldn't
understand why.  Today, I think I know (and religion had nothing to do
with it).

Yes, it is true that the factors you mentioned are some of the factors
often considered, usually intuitively, when to decide if and how much
trust to place in somebody.  But there are many other factors.  The
traditions and expectations of the people surrounding us.  Our mood of
the day.  The circumstances of the situation.  Our will to take risks,
or our fear to avoid them.  Our irrationality.  Our determination to
not let the abuse by a few deny us from the richness of the gifts from
the many.

I still don't know if you and I actually disagree on something
specific.  What I wrote was in response to Jonathans assertion that
there is no "absolute trust", which he suggested as a discriminating
factor when choosing between two system designs.  It appears to me
that this argument is not as strong as he thinks it is, because in
many examples the differences between the system designs will vanish
in the noise of our lifes, so to speak.


[1] http://www.forgivenessweb.com/

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