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Has there been discussions about handling private data in Private content? Yes - and there have been efforts in making that possible in OStatus, but since OStatus itself is just made up of other specifications it currently awaits those other specifications to get extended in a way that supports this - not sure what the current status really is.

I personally though would prefer to have the main use case - the one with just public data - work first and learn from that and get that rolling before moving to the more complex stuff.

Sure, but you have to be careful of the gradual lockdown effect as more people get involved. The handling of non-public information is a cross-cutting concern. If everyone builds their software and security models around the assumption that all posts are visible to everyone (because it's the common case, and they decided, just as you're saying, that supporting the common case was the most important thing), then going back later after everyone's gotten attached to the software and trying to add private multicast without any leaks can be a nightmare. No one will be able to use it because their friends won't be able to use it unless every piece of software in between makes it work.

I'm tempted to compare to how deploying new transport protocols over IP is nearly impossible for consumer clients now, because everyone's built NATs that assume TCP and UDP, because those were the common cases and therefore the important ones and now anything else is instantly hosed. It's a bit of a bad example, though, because in the case of transports there are other reasons as well.

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