1994-06-13 - How big is Cypherpunks?

Header Data

From: tcmay@netcom.com (Timothy C. May)
To: Ben.Goren@asu.edu
Message Hash: 5065f2e616af3a8940ce177f2375620ead61d9f8b0cccb08e3b12eb0adf0b557
Message ID: <199406132235.PAA29975@netcom.com>
Reply To: <9406132205.AA02556@Tux.Music.ASU.Edu>
UTC Datetime: 1994-06-13 23:00:37 UTC
Raw Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 16:00:37 PDT

Raw message

From: tcmay@netcom.com (Timothy C. May)
Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 16:00:37 PDT
To: Ben.Goren@asu.edu
Subject: How big is Cypherpunks?
In-Reply-To: <9406132205.AA02556@Tux.Music.ASU.Edu>
Message-ID: <199406132235.PAA29975@netcom.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

Ben Goren wrote:

> Just out of curiousity, how large *is* Cypherpunks?

It was at about 700 subscribers for several months, then the first big
"outage" a month or so ago caused the number to drop way off. Last I
checked (send the message "who cypherpunks" to majordomo@toad.com),
there were about 400 subscribers. (It is likely that many of the
original "700 Club" were casual subscriber, dormant accounts,
gateways, whatever.)

And the list just suffered a second wipe-out of the subscriber list,
so I don't know right now how many are even seeing this.

> I've been subscribed just about a week now, but I've been quite pleasantly
> shocked by the S/N ratio, after getting completely turned off by the
> Sternlight wars on Usenet. Ironic that a group calling themselves "punks"
> should be civilized, intelligent, scholarly, altruistic, and basic good
> 'net citizens, while sci.crypt is often little more than a bunch of people
> playing "did so!" games. And the PGP group!

Well, you missed the Detweiler War here in October-January! Be glad
you did.

Many of the leading lights of crypto are here on Cypherpunks. To name
a few: Ellison, Bellovin, Blaze, Stewart, Gilmore, Karn, Hughes,
Finney, Atkins, Toal, Metzger, Wayner, Johnson, and lots of others. A
perusal of the most insightful posts to sci.crypt usually shows that
most of the insightful folks are Cypherpunks.

(I shouldn't even try to list names, as I've probably forgotten a few
obvious names and have doubtless hurt someone's feelings. Me culpa if
I left your name off here.)

And sometimes others, such as Zimmermann, Plumb, etc. There are also
several digital pseudonyms, such as Pr0duct Cypher and Lady Ada, who
appear to be crypto experts of some talent....we might be surprised to
learn who they are.

Though flames do crop up here, there is more of a _commitment_ to get
on the list, and hence more of a reputation-based sense of community.
Part of what we think is important for the crypto anarchic world of
strong crypto, untraceable communications, etc.

Usenet suffers from casual posters making clueless comments and
shooting from the hip. A mailing list, despite certain logistical and
other problems, has some advantages....even if the screening of new
members is nonexistent. 

Glad you are enjoying the list.

--Tim May

Timothy C. May         | Crypto Anarchy: encryption, digital money,  
tcmay@netcom.com       | anonymous networks, digital pseudonyms, zero
408-688-5409           | knowledge, reputations, information markets, 
W.A.S.T.E.: Aptos, CA  | black markets, collapse of governments.
Higher Power: 2^859433 | Public Key: PGP and MailSafe available.
"National borders are just speed bumps on the information superhighway."