15. Reputations and Credentials


THE CYPHERNOMICON: Cypherpunks FAQ and More, Version 0.666, 1994-09-10, Copyright Timothy C. May. All rights reserved. See the detailed disclaimer. Use short sections under "fair use" provisions, with appropriate credit, but don't put your name on my words.

15.2. SUMMARY: Reputations and Credentials

15.2.1. Main Points

15.2.2. Connections to Other Sections

15.2.3. Where to Find Additional Information

15.2.4. Miscellaneous Comments

15.3. The Nature of Reputations

15.3.1. The claim by many of us that "reputations" will take care of many problems in crypto anarchic markets is disputed by some (notably Eric Hughes). To be sure, it will not be a trivial issue. Institutions take years or decades to evolve.

15.3.2. However, think of how often we use reputations: friends, books, movies, restaurants, etc

15.3.3. Reputations and other institutions will take time to evolve. Saying "the market will talke care of things" may be true, but this may take time. The "invisible hand" doesn't necessarily move swiftly.

15.3.4. "What are 'reputations' and why are they so important?"

15.3.5. "How are reputations acquired, ruined, transferred, etc.?"

15.3.6. "Are they foolproof? Are all the questions answered?"

15.3.7. Reputations have many aspects

15.4. Reputations, Institutions

15.5. Reputation-Based Systems and Agoric Open Systems

15.5.1. Evolutionary systems and markets

15.5.2. shell games...who knows what?

15.5.3. key is that would-be "burners" must never know when they are actually being tested

15.5.4. another key: repeat business...when the gains from burning

someone are greater than the expected future business...

15.5.5. reputations are what keep CA systems from degenerating into flamefests

15.5.6. "brilliant pennies" scam

15.5.7. "reputation float" is how money can be pulled out of the future value of a reputation

15.5.8. Reputation-based systems and repeat business

15.6. Reputations and Evolutionary Game Theory

15.6.1. game of "chicken," where gaining a rep as tough guy, or king of the hill, can head off many future challenges (and hence aid in survival, differential reproduction)

15.7. Positive Reputations

15.7.1. better than negative reputations, because neg reps can be discarded by pseudonym holdes (neg reps are like allowing a credit card to be used then abandoned with a debt on it)

15.7.2. "reputation capital"

15.8. Practical Examples

15.8.1. "Are there any actual examples of software-mediated reputation systems?"

15.8.2. Absent laws which ban strong crypto (and such laws are themselves nearly unenforceable), it will be essentially impossible to stop anonymous transactions and purely reputation-based systems.

15.8.3. Part of the "phase change": people opt out of the permissionslip society via strong crypto, making their own decisions on who to trust, who to deal with, who to make financial arrangements with

15.9. Credentials and Reputations

15.9.1. debate about credentials vs. reputations

15.9.2. Credentials are not as important as many people seem to think

15.9.3. Proving possession of some credential

15.10. Fraud and False Accusations

15.10.1. "What if someone makes a false accusation?"

15.10.2. Scams, Ponzi Schemes, and Oceania

15.11. Loose Ends

15.11.1. Selective disclosure of truth

15.11.2. Crytography allows virtual networks to arrange by cryptographic collusion certain goals. Beyond just the standard "cell" system, it allows arrrangements, plans, and execution.


Revision #1
Created 23 June 2022 03:59:37 by c0mmando
Updated 23 June 2022 03:59:55 by c0mmando