In which the Encrypted State discover the ban is worse than they thought.

[webmaster] Welcome back to the Encrypted State, citizens. This is our daily meeting.

[fishmonger] Hello again, Webb.

[ph] So what's on the agenda for today? We gonna DDoS someone? Hack the planet?

[webmaster] We are going to be organising a protest.

[ph] Well, that’s exciting.

[webmaster] Or trying to, at least. I want to test something.

[spiderman] I can’t wait. Where is this protest gonna be, Mr. Webb?

[webmaster] Facebook.

[spiderman] Seriously?

[webmaster] We want the protest to be big, right? Facebook is the biggest social network in the world.

[webmaster] I’ll send over the link. Share this wherever you can, but not all at once or they’ll know we’re connected.

[fishmonger] Is it worth making a fake group on Facebook so if they do investigate us, we’ll look innocent?

[webmaster] No, if they’re looking into it they’ll know something’s up anyway. It’s not worth it.

I actually thought it was quite a good idea, but whatever. Webb (which seemed to be “webmaster”’s real name) sent the link as promised, and I copied it over to the regular browser.

  1. Page not found.
[ph] Uh, mate, your link’s dead. Did you put the wrong one?

[spiderman] Is it private? It might be private. Have you tried making it public?

[ph] Also, I don’t actually have a Facebook account, so make sure I don’t need that.

Silence for a bit. I guess Webb was sorting it out.

[webmaster] Uh... try now? It’s still showing for me.

Once again, the link was broken.

I had an idea. I loaded up another social media site, reddit, and made a random post with the title “UK ENCRYPTION BAN PROTEST”. Then I copied the link, logged out of my account, and went to the post again.

The post wasn’t there. The same 404 page came up, in fact.

[ph] Oh God. They're censoring the post.

[spiderman] What? That’s crazy!

[ph] I made a reddit post with the same title and it doesn’t show up for anyone but me.

[ph] The same 404 page, even. The gov must be forcing internet providers to censor any posts mentioning encryption. News articles are probably hand picked...

[webmaster] As I feared.

[fishmonger] I suppose that explains why there haven’t been any other major protests.

[ph] Can they even do that?

[webmaster] We lost net neutrality, too, remember, so they can technically do whatever they want.

[spiderman] Looks like we’re staying down here in the underground, then.

[ph] They can’t stop physical protests.

[fishmonger] How would we organise them, though? I imagine private messages will also be blocked.

[webmaster] The real solution, of course, is to simply expand the Encrypted State.

[spiderman] Oh yeah, that’s way easier.

[fishmonger] Who can we trust, Webb?

[webmaster] We trusted Stephen, and he’s been fine.

[fishmonger] We took a week to decide to add him. We carefully chose him as he had the widest reach and most interest.

[ph] Aww, you guys! Thank you!

[fishmonger] What I'm saying is we either have to speed up and risk something going wrong or not bother with this.

[webmaster] We can take the risk. We haven’t committed any crimes other than using encryption.

[spiderman] Yeah, I guess.

[fishmonger] If you’re sure.

[ph] Let’s get some new recruits, then!

[webmaster] Sounds good. Meeting adjourned.

I just remembered that I wanted to go back to a normal life. Ha.