Stopping spam and spreading democracy
More widespread use of encryption
by email users could eventually
contribute to both of these goals.
- More people start encrypting email. This makes email
private (like a letter rather than a postcard), unless the FBI, your
boss, or your ex-husband has installed a keystroke
logger on your computer (perhaps by emailing it as a computer
- Email encryption becomes nearly universal in democracies.
(In fact, that's one way to recognize a democracy.) Spam is never
encrypted, because each recipient has a different public key, so it
would take too much computer time. People start sending
all unencrypted mail to the trash. No more spam.
- Countries that presently ban cryptography either drop out of the
information economy or start allowing it. Instant freedom of the
press. They may still have the guns, but if they no longer have a
monopoly on information, then greater political freedom is just a