#GitHub is blocking users based on national origin, citing US trade controls law restrictions....
People from #Iran, #Syria, #Crimea, #Cuba, and North Korea woke up one day to lose access to all their public and private repositories. There's reporting that even people *who traveled* to any of those countries in the last 2 years are losing their data...
And #GitHub has not said ONE WORD ABOUT IT.
@vickysteeves "oh don't worry, Microsoft taking over GitHub won't make any practical difference"
@vickysteeves This isn't really a Microsoft thing. It's a US export controls thing, and blocking like this has been going on for at least two decades. It was a problem on Sourceforge when that was popular.
The lesson - which people never seem to learn - is that you shouldn't let a US based company gatekeep participation in your software project.
Also in purely legalistic terms it still makes no sense. "export" of software? It's not like exporting bananas. But in the last couple of decades nobody has challenged this in the courts, and because orgs like EFF are US based they just don't care.
Reminds me of way back, when the source code for PGP had to be printed out in toto, on actual paper so it could be 'exported' from the US, scanned back in using OCR software in Europe just so those outside of US could have access to 128bit encryption. In order to get around the ridiculous export controls that then existed. Actually, those controls probably still do exist.
@vfrmedia @PhotonQyv @skarabrae @vickysteeves one time I had my dissertation work halted for two weeks while the State Department investigated because we had foreign funding on a computer vision based positioning system with infrared cameras. Some of the hardware was actually on an EC list and the whole thing could be adapted for automated weapons targeting, so I guess they had a fair point on that one
@vfrmedia @PhotonQyv @skarabrae @vickysteeves these export controls are still in place, heavily impacts a lot of electronic commodities for export, including software and software licenses like CDs, network routers, phones, server hardware etc.
I think the US Census dept requires special export declarations before the cargo can be loaded to depart from Port/airport for intl travel
@vfrmedia @PhotonQyv @skarabrae @vickysteeves I think this falls under BIS (Bureau of Industry and Security) I'm kind of rusty on this stuff but here's a short article on some forms of export controls and types
I did some work with a company who has branches in the UK and the US. They were *extremely* careful not to allow anyone in the US branch to make any change to code that was written in the UK because that would have put it under US export law and made it crazy hard to use the updated version in the UK ...
Ils sont fou, les americains ...
@vickysteeves That's actually a little bit weird. Usually, as Snowden showed us, the US prefers to use US-based services to spy on friend and foe alike. The fact that they now just block selected countries might be ... not worse in the big picture. Might be just a random consequence of White House nonsense.
@hil @vickysteeves important to note that the sanctions list has existed for a long time. Longer than Cheeto man. Not sure why GH suddenly took action, unless some new law came to pass that source code is now a export controlled commodity and GH took sweeping action to cover their asses instead of reviewing people's projects one by one to make sure someone isn't hosting their facial recognition code for say, some kind of automated turret being developed somewhere
@vickysteeves No worries. For people in those countries (especially North Korea and Cuba) being blocked by GitHub is the tiniest of their problems.
@vickysteeves It's never been a good idea to host open source software at a proprietarty platform.I noticed that when it was bough by Micro$oft and many others are noticing it right now.Maybe it's good that this happened for that reason.If you can,you should host your own Gitea,Gogs or Gitlab instance,then you're completely independent from big US companies.Alternatively you can use public instances like https://notabug.org which is hosted in the Netherlands.
@nipos this outage doesn't effect me and I work on GitLab primarily. Just awareness-raising!
If I had a github account I would move all data and delete it.
Maybe I should create a github account, upload some code, then delete everything and my account!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
@vickysteeves People mustn't trust large platforms. Host your own infra, unite across borders, ask others for help! Just like the internet and the web, git was designed to be synced around. There is Gitea as a lighteweight, open source replacement for self-hosting. ,just take some action instead of relying on third parties. :)
@patrick GitLab gave people 10 days to get their data out and opened an issue on GitLab-CE for discussion-- way better than GH's approach of "oh yeah no more access for y'all all of a sudden."
Sourcehut is mostly self hosted for now unless you want to pay them, from what I see? It's still alpha.
@vickysteeves One of these days I'm going to face the fact that it's me who's living under harsh dictatorship(for all intents and purposes) regime.
@vickysteeves I wonder if someone is working on making a federated version of gitlab.
@vickysteeves That’s the very reason why on my end only a few Homebrew formulae are still on GitHub…
I'd like to encourage everyone not to use #github any more. We should free ourselves from #microsoft and viscous north American imperialism. #gitlab and #gittea are great alternatives. Ideally self hosted. Please move your software away from github.
This is not a political statement. This is a statement about #freedom as in FLOSS.