Concern about questionable Matrix homeservers

Hi,

In the recent months, I’ve noticed that there are tons of Matrix homeservers with questionable intents. I don’t want to go in details, but do keep in mind that they are literally questionable.

I want to know if we can discuss on whether or not we should ban them. I’m refraining myself from posting these homeservers because I don’t want to cause any problems.

What do you mean with questionable? What is the (type of) problem/risk they cause for us?

When I say questionable, I mean with malicious intent or can cause a lot of trouble. I recently chatted with people who were invited to lolicon rooms by a random user. In case you don’t know what a lolicon is, it’s sexualized fictional “young looking” girls. Where “young looking” does not exclude underage (in other words, can be –and often is– fictional child porn).

I’ve found two homeservers that heavily contain lolicons (and promote them), so I figured I should ask about it and form a little discussion.

As for the risk, I wouldn’t want to get invited by some random bot or person into a lolicon room. I don’t want those types of people near me, to be honest. I know that such thing might be inevitable, but reducing the amount of spam invites to a weird room as much as possible is something I’m fully in favor for.

I haven’t used the Fedora Matrix server, please clarify for me the extent of your your concern @theevilskeleton: is this about the general medium of Matrix, or is it a potential issue with the Fedora Matrix instance? That might help folks know to be activated by your concern. :slight_smile:

Both. Although Fedora Matrix might be able to take an extra step to block a homeserver or two.

My concern is the protection of users in Matrix. The type of people Matrix can attract can be devastating. Freedom comes at a cost, and that cost is protection because of the federation. I’ve come across two particular homeservers that made me say “okay this is really messed up. I don’t want to associate with people in that instance.” And this was just by looking at the websites. I don’t think most people would even want to come close to them either. One of the sites already gave a red flag just by looking at the domain.

Some people I discussed with checked through the homeservers’ directories because they wanted to see if it would become worse. They found a lot of sexualized fictional toddler rooms in one of the instances (from what I understood they didn’t visit the rooms, they only looked at the names of the rooms). I strongly believe banning those homeservers is something we should do. I wouldn’t mind to provide links of the homeservers in DMs.

Just an FYI, we didn’t contact anyone in these homeservers, because, well, we don’t want to at all.

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I was considering a Mastodon account the other day (fortunately the urge wore off before I conceded!), and thought, "well, if I do one day, it’ll probably be on fosstodon.org, based on the contents at fosstodon.org - Fosstodon

That URL contains a section, excerpted:

Moderated servers

Mastodon generally allows you to view content from and interact with users from any other server in the fediverse. These are the exceptions that have been made on this particular server.

They go on to list servers under the following headings:

  • Filtered media—Media files from these servers will not be processed or stored, and no thumbnails will be displayed, requiring manual click-through to the original file
  • Limited servers—Posts from these servers will be hidden in public timelines and conversations, and no notifications will be generated from their users interactions, unless you are following them
  • Suspended servers—No data from these servers will be processed, stored or exchanged, making any interaction or communication with users from these servers impossible

I offer as prior art for a medium of a similar disposition. :slight_smile:

I think it would be good to come up with a clear policy on what servers we might disconnect from. The examples @theevilskeleton is giving certainly seem like they would fall under “not appropriate for Fedora”, but I’d rather not go on “seem”.

Separately, I think that we shouldn’t go out of our way to build a disconnect list, but rather deal with problems if they happen to arise. (Plenty of bad things on the internet in general if you go looking for them.)

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