Posted by DeusExMachina | in AskRamble

I am a redditor who has enough of reddit censure . So I planned to move on free speech socials networks like 4chan and Ramble . Ramble is actually very good , just if you could add a media viewer button next to comment button that would be great . The "media viewer" would be like in Reddit Enchancement suite , or 4chan . Its a button like, when you click on it , the picture appears bigger and you can clearly see it without needing to open the thread . That would be a great improvement to Ramble :) !

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Rambler said ()

I agree, this would be great! Although it would require javascript to function, it'd definitely be a big help.

It's on the to-do list, I'm just not 100% certain on how to do it myself. The sourcecode is public ( https://gitlab.com/postmill/Postmill ) and I'd be willing to sponsor a community dev server for anyone who is interested in helping develop features for the site.

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_____ said () (edited )

JS dev here. One of the things I really like about this site is that it is usually fast even when using the tor network.

Of course, for the best security, people should always have JavaScript disabled when using tor, but tor with JavaScript enabled is better than nothing and some people may use the site that way.

I noticed in the Reddit enhancement suite code that DeusExMachina posted, they are using typescript and lodash.

I would consider using vanilla JavaScript to minimize bloat for people who use anonymity networks. Some people who are really into privacy deliberately only use old computers too. So maybe just use the compiled JavaScript generated by the typescript. (It won't be as easy to read as the typescript though) Or use the typescript as a guide and write some similar code from scratch. Lodash isn't necessary either.

Are you still looking for help with this feature request or are you already on it?

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Rambler said ()

Are you still looking for help with this feature request or are you already on it?

Still seeking help, honestly. I've not yet begun to look into it.

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_____ said () (edited )

I'd be interested in occasionally helping with some features here and there. I'm admittedly rusty with both PHP and vanilla JavaScript though since I've mostly worked with typescript, jquery, and front-end frameworks. I've been considering contributing to some open source free speech + privacy oriented project after seeing how much censorship there is, and how even the sites that are more pro free speech are not good at protecting user privacy. I downloaded Docker + Postmill + the images but still need to get it all up and running.

There's a lot of potential for a new fork of Postmill to have features that make it better for free speech and privacy. I'm thinking stuff like

  • Option to post anonymously. Would need to figure out some way to limit this. Maybe give users with a high non-illegal non-spam post count a key.

  • Moderator elections for certain forums.

  • Automatically stop logging the ip address for users that reach a certain non-spam non-illegal post count and remove all ip logs for that user.

  • Maybe even obfuscate when people post since everyone has a unique pattern of when they like to go online.

If it has enough desirable features, then other people who are considering making a Reddit-like site would consider using the fork instead of Postmill. Anonymous posts would especially be a desired feature. You see it all the time on Reddit that people make accounts like throwaway20473632.

It could be called “Free Private Postmill” or something unconnected to Ramble. Eventually Ramble’s culture could become more like Voat as censored people migrate here and then devs won’t want the name “Ramble” on the gitlab page that potential employers see.

I think if the fork is uploaded and the vision is put out there on other pro free speech forums, a lot of developers would be interested.

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Rambler said ()

You can already create multiple accounts and throwaways, but I believe you're requesting an, "anonymous" user account where any user can opt to have their post displayed as 'anonymous' (or 'guest') or similar? I'm down for it.

Automatically stop logging the ip address for users that reach a certain non-spam non-illegal post count and remove all ip logs for that user.

I already do that via a cron job for all users. IPs get purged at a regular interval.

Maybe even obfuscate when people post since everyone has a unique pattern of when they like to go online.

I like this idea. I have no idea how to implement it and I know on Linux you could, in theory, do this (kind of) with XDoTool ( https://www.semicomplete.com/projects/xdotool/ " xdotool - fake keyboard/mouse input, window management, and more " ) but that's client site, and not server side, and kind of a pain in my limited experience with it.

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_____ said ()

You can already create multiple accounts and throwaways, but I believe you're requesting an, "anonymous" user account where any user can opt to have their post displayed as 'anonymous' (or 'guest') or similar? I'm down for it.

Yeah. Without this feature, someone who is really serious about privacy but still wants to post a lot might want to have as many as three or four accounts with different levels of privacy.

*One for non-political posts that are very connected to his identity. Such as answering that "What if you had 1 million dollars?" question or posting in hobby sub-forums.

*One for political posts that are somewhat connected to his identity because he also shared them with people he knows in real life or shared them on other social media.

*One for mostly political posts that are not connected to his identity. An account where he can post freely what he thinks about politics or any controversial subject without worrying.

*One or more accounts for posts that absolutely must not ever be connected to his identity for some reason.

That's a lot of accounts to deal with, so most people don't go that far or even think about going that far, but as long as there's a relatively easy way to anonymously post, that could improve peoples privacy a lot. If someones doing multiple things on one account, even he's good about hiding his IP, a girlfriend, friend, or family member who looks over his shoulder and sees his username could read through his posts, find some "red flags" or something and report him to the authorities while showing how the personal info posted about life experiences, hobbies, etc. connects to his real identity.

So basically, the feature should be easy enough to use that people use it regularly, but not so easy that automated spam is an easy thing to do. A simple captcha might be the way to go.

As for changing the timestamps of created posts, a “before insert” database trigger would work. The code in the first reply here could be modified.

https://dba.stackexchange.com/questions/143953/how-can-i-set-timestamps-default-to-future-date

You could generate a random value between +240 and -240 minutes. Then add that value to the current time. That way, if you’re sorting posts by timestamp, their position in the list won’t be too far off. It would still be enough to make it harder to answer questions like “What timezone is this user in? Are they employed? Do they have a regular sleep schedule? I have the ISP records for John Smith. Was John Smith using an anonymity network or hitting ramble’s IP address when this was posted?”

Actually, since there aren’t a lot of new posts per day, you even could do something like +720 and -720 minutes and it would still be fine for now but you’d need to narrow the window later once more people join and start posting more often.

Optionally, you could change the timestamps even more with replies to posts. I don’t see a sort by new option for replies in Postmill and even on sites like Reddit that have it, I’m guessing most people don’t use it much.

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Rambler said ()

Good idea. I'd really like to see this feature a reality.

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DeusExMachina OP said ()

Automatically stop logging the ip address for users that reach a certain non-spam non-illegal post count and remove all ip logs for that user.

You already can use I2P, TOR or Lokinet to hide your IP adress from Ramble

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_____ said ()

True, and I do use TOR to post and browse here, but I'm glad the IP logs get cleared regularly. I think websites and apps should help the people who aren't being careful as much as possible. For example, people were uploading pictures and videos to Parler without stripping the metadata first. They should have been stripping the metadata before uploading, but Parler also should have done that automatically for all posts.

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