Request: Privacy Issues

Discussion in 'Windows Live Messenger' started by Guest, Mar 5, 2006.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Windows Live Messenger has some severe privacy bugs and it needs to be
    addressed ASAP.

    Today, if you've blocked someone, that person will know that you've
    blocked him, if he was talking to someone else who invited you to their

    Now that's a serious issue, because you've blown your cover. To balance
    ease with privacy, we need a solution.


    We'll have three people just to keep things simple:

    John is you, and you blocked Sally
    Kevin didn't block anyone
    Sally didn't block anyone

    Here's what should happen:

    1. Kevin and Sally are having a convo, Kevin invites you. At this time,
    *no one else* will know about that

    2. You are notified - "Kevin is inviting you to join a convo with Sally.
    If you join, your status for Sally will be Online for the duration of
    the conversation."

    3. If you say no, Kevin won't receive any response from you (I'll
    explain later why)

    4. If you say yes, Kevin will now have to ask Sally if you are invited.
    So Sally in the group convo will see "Kevin is invitng John to this
    convo, do you agree?"

    5. If Sally votes "no" she'll stay on the same convo. If Sally votes
    "yes" she'll start a new, blank group conversation with you and Kevin.

    Note for all this to work, a new privacy feature *must* be implemented:
    "Appear Offline for contacts who are having a conversation with my
    contacts that I have Appear Offline with". I know it sounds so complex
    but I'll break it down. This option means:

    - Anyone who talks to a contact on your block list *WILL AUTOMATICALLY
    MAKE YOU APPEAR OFFLINE TO THEM*, so they can't blow your cover and tell
    them that you're online for them and not for those you've blocked.

    - And if someone else talks to a contact you've appeared offline to
    because of the previous reason, they also *WILL AUTOMATICALLY MAKE YOU
    APPEAR OFFLINE TO THEM* as well. So it's a chain effect. All designed to

    Remember in number 3, if that option is not ticked, Kevin can just go
    ahead and tell Sally "oh John (you) is online for me, why he's offline
    for you? Did he block you?". If that option is ticked, You've already
    Appear Offline to Kevin and he will have no idea whether you've blocked
    Sally or not.

    Now for you to easily see who's seeing you Appear Offline because of
    this feature, their status should be "Online (Restricted)" of whatever
    other status like "Out to Lunch (Restricted)", etc. WLM should still
    allow you to talk to them if you don't mind risking yourself blowing
    your cover.

    Also, another privacy feature that *must* be included for the first one
    to work properly: "Notify me if contacts is starting a conversation with
    someone I've Appear Offline with".

    Why? Because if you boldly Appear Offline *RIGHT AWAY* when Kevin starts
    a convo with Sally when Kevin and you are already having a convo. He'll
    notice that: whenever I start talking to Sally, John (you) Appear
    Offline straight away, ah, so that means you blocked Sally.

    With the second privacy feature I mentioned, you're given a warning for
    what's happening, and it's time for you to say "I gtg" to Kevin *IN THE
    CONVO WITH KEVIN* so that it looks like as if you're offlining
    *naturally*, and not because you're trying to cover up anything.

    Now you might ask: what if both Sally and I blocked each other? Well, if
    both used the privacy features I've mentioned, Kevin *won't* be talking
    to you in the first place, because the privacy features would have made
    you Appear Offline to Kevin, so he won't know any of the blocking things
    between you and Sally.

    And since he can't invite you or Sally, *YOU AND SALLY* won't see any of
    the messages in 2 and 4 (look back up). So you see... 200% privacy!

    [[[[Now if you understand everything that I've said, you might ask:
    "Wouldn't the messages in 2 and 4 breach Sally's status privacy?". Well,
    yes and no. As you see, *IT'S YOU WHO'S BLOCKING SALLY, NOT SALLY
    BLOCKING YOU". So if Sally isn't blocking you, she's got nothing to
    hide, but *you do*. That's why you're given first priority to be asked
    whether you want to even talk to a blocked contact, as opposed to asking
    Sally "Kevin is about to invite someone who's blocked you, do you

    And, no.... the message in 2 doesn't explicitly state that Kevin is
    already talking to Sally, but that Kevin is going to talk to you and
    Sally from a fresh start.

    Sounds extremely complex doesn't it? I know, and I wish I could've made
    it simpler. But I think that's about as perfect anything private in WLM
    can go.

    P.S. Ironically, while I support this idea, I, for one, also don't
    really care about this feature. Because anyone that I've blocked and
    deleted from my contacts list, I don't really care if they know I've
    blocked them, simply because: "If I delete them, I don't care what they
    think of me blocking them".
    Guest, Mar 5, 2006
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  2. Guest

    Oscar Guest

    Or you could just get a new account, block everybody, always Appear
    Offline, disconnect from the Internet, turn off your computer, turn off
    the lights and hide under the bed.

    Just kidding but when I read things like this I'm just so very glad I
    don't ever have had to block anyone.
    This must surely be a joke?
    Perhaps this is how most users feel?

    // Oscar
    Oscar, Mar 5, 2006
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    " warning, very funny =D

    On a more serious note, I have had this happen to me and the blocked party
    was wondering why he couldnt see my messages - not so funny. It shouldnt be
    possible for users to invite people without their acceptance, it would be
    great if this was changed (at last)


    Paul Anderson, Mar 5, 2006
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