We are starting an initiative: “Self Signal” — We want to contribute to strengthen the Signal ecosystem, and to make sure it does not rely only on one entity (currently Open Whisper Systems, or OWS).
About Signal: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Signal_(software)
Join the mailing list: https://lists.ffdn.org/wws/info/self-signal
Signal is probably one of the best solutions for privacy-cautious communications at the moment (free software client- and server-side, end-to-end encryption by default, mobile and desktop, android and iOS, etc.). The team behind Signal has also contributed to new encryption protocols. They are clearly heading things in interesting directions. We need efforts like these to succeed.
That's why we want the Signal ecosystem to be as strong as possible. We believe we can help by organising ourselves and maintaining additional Signal servers, not owned or maintained by one single entity, to avoid any kind of single point of control.
Problems to solve
- lacking technical documentation to setup and deploy a Signal server
- lacking clear understanding of what is needed to run a Signal server (i.e. need to maintain phone numbers in several areas of the world for the verification to work)
- lacking clear understanding of rules to play by in order to federate with OWS' servers
Relationship with OWS
Right now, we have no direct contact with OWS. We first want to make some tests, organise ourselves, so we can present them with a serious, viable proposition.
We know that there has been some antagonism lately between OWS and others in the free software community (F-Droid, LibreSignal, etc.). We want to find a way to make all of this work and we understand that what we're aiming at is maximum usability. This is absolutely paramount to compete with the likes of WhatsApp, Telegram and others.
How to contribute
You can join the mailing list and the IRC channel. We're just getting started.
In this wiki, we'll try to organise new sections to address the different needs and objectives. If you need any help with subscribing to this wiki, please get in touch with system-hackers at fsfeurope dot org