I'm Doing a Reddit AMA

On Thursday, September 6, starting at 10:00 am CDT, I'll be doing a Reddit "Ask Me Anything" in association with the Ford Foundation. It's about my new book, but -- of course -- you can ask me anything.

No promises that I will answer everything....

Posted on August 31, 2018 at 2:06 PM • 10 Comments


Yabba Dabba Don'tAugust 31, 2018 2:56 PM

What softball questions do you want us to lob at you so you can cut and past pre-canned answers?

echoAugust 31, 2018 3:24 PM

@Yabba Dabba Don't

Oh that's naughty! I'd like to think we've moved on from the days of "What questions would the minister like us to ask". Mind you, when the Duke of Edinburgh was clapped for walking across a hospital car park... I know people meant well but please!

I'm useless at these things. Everybody else always asks far more intelligent questions than I can.

I never heard of the Ford Foundation before. It seems very good and I like their internationalism. In my daydreams if I ever won the Euro lottery I would have liked to create something like this. I don't play lotteries or gamble so this daydream ended very fast. I would never have a clue what to spend the money on anyway. It's quite a responsibility too. Oh, well. I will settle for someone else doing the work with somebody else's money.


HmmAugust 31, 2018 9:18 PM

I don't support reddit but a Bruce Q&A is a platform validator.

Wait until they make him a meme. ;D

William LoveSeptember 1, 2018 8:17 AM

That's a great idea, and something you should do at least once a year.

But then I always thoroughly enjoy reading your blog and have for years.

Maxwell's DaemonSeptember 1, 2018 4:51 PM

@William Love: Seconded! I hardly ever drop by Reddit but, for this, I will.

Commentariat1September 2, 2018 1:00 PM

Without being an expert on anything related, I generally support unbreakable encryption for the masses. However I also see the downside as expressed by LEAs and govts and find it (potentially, depending, of course) to be pretty serious, especially when I remember that some people really do seem to be not just "evil" but also highly capable and highly motivated.

Does Bruce Schneier support the attempted forcing (by threats of incarceration, eg.) of people to reveal their passwords? What preconditions, if any, do you think would have to be in place first?

That's one question I plan to ask, in case anyone wants to critique it or add anything so I can refine it.

echoSeptember 2, 2018 4:31 PM


I suspect "rules of engagement" exist not for tactical reasons but preserving civilisation is more important than 1, 10, 10,000, or 10 million lives. I would hate to be the person responsible for the decision. Hopefully, the way the world is arranged is sufficient nobody has to make this decision.

EvanSeptember 4, 2018 11:03 AM


Rules of engagement do exist for tactical reasons, especially when it comes to interrogation. It's well understood by now that under sufficient duress - not even necessarily what we'd recognize as torture - people will say anything, confess to any crime, just to make it stop. Even if the truth is uttered at some point, it comes along with a lot of garbage and unless already you know the answer, it tells you nothing. If you do know the answer, it's also pointless. That's why the "ticking time bomb" scenario is such a fantasy: if you get the correct information from torture, you can't meaningfully differentiate it from the misinformation that came along with it.

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