BUG: IPFS community using Non-Free Software for Video Conferencing

It looks like the IPFS community was about to start using non-Free software, namely Zoom, to run a series of video-conference sessions.

The video has been removed, but you can see here:

IPFS Zoom #1’s Personal Meeting Room

IPFS is a Free Software project and should ensure that Free software is used for its communication platforms. There are excellent, Free Software alternatives to Zoom, for example:


Jami, previously GNU Ring, is also worth considering:

Apart from being non-Free, Zoom is controlled by China. Its so-called ‘end-to-end encryption’ a) is broken in the middle by a Chinese server and b) uses outdated, weak encryption.

When people heedlessly start using non-Free software in projects like IPFS, it is a bad sign. Our community ought to be more vigilant.

I hope that any such video conferences use Free Software in future. Ideally, a Jitsi instance ought to be setup on one of the IPFS servers, and not use Google STUN or Amazon AWS to better support anonymity and Freedom.


Not to mention zoom abuses root level permissions on mac osx, and I think other linux distros to install modifications and stuff like that. IPFS also uses google docs for everything nowadays, and blocks access to the docs unless you have a google account and request access to it.

While I personally dont have qualms with google docs and use it for many internal company stuff, using it as the public documentation medium for a public, decentralized, and peer-to-peer protocol is pretty amusing.

Top tier irony :laughing:


@postables is right about the irony of using Non-Free, centralized, Google Docs for hosting documentation for the IPFS project. What are people thinking?!

The IPFS project should establish its own gateway for pinning IPFS project content, like its own documentation. Nextcloud might be one possibility for hosting in the meanwhile.


If we really wanted to dogfood IPFS, I think it would be interesting to see increased adoption of Peerpad for collaborative documents.

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We use zoom, and have been using zoom for years, because it’s reliable even on crappy airport WiFis (I can use zoom when I can’t even access GMail). I would absolutely love to switch to something open source but we’ve yet to find anything close to Zoom in terms of reliability (my team tried Jitsi and gave up after a single meeting). At the end of the day, we optimize for whatever enables us to do our work.

With respect to documentation, where is the IPFS project using Google Docs for external documentation? We use it for internal work and planning, but nearly all of our documentation is either:

  • Hosted on IPFS: docs.ipfs.io.
  • Hosted on GitHub in git repos.

Public meeting notes are all taken using HackMD and/or cryptpad then moved to GitHub. I’d love to try peerpad but it would probably need to be re-implemented on top of something like textile threads first.


Thanks for replying, stebalien.

How long ago did your team try Jitsi? It works very well these days. Perhaps you picked the default server to connect everybody and it was a highly busy time or something like that. If you pick one from this list (ideally without Google STUN or Amazon AWS) it might help, and choosing one which is geographically located in the same area could be a benefit too. Once you have tried it a couple of times, it is so easy and great quality.

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I visited the Jitsi site a while ago but never saw a link to download their source code. I always get suspicious of companies who say they are “Open Source” but never provide easily accessible links to get the source code on their site. Open Source folks should avoid these products like the plague.


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Brave Browser offers a E2E video conferencing which uses Jitsi:


Jitsi Source on github


nboeger, if you remember Jitsi from a few years back, it has made huge improvements. (These are particularly noticeable in the usability.)

You can inspect the jitsi-meet source here (lots of java script):

I know most people here, yourself too I am sure, would prefer to use Free Software when there is a viable alternative.

I think that the IPFS project ought to setup a Jitsi instance, to facilitate videoconferencing for IPFS participants.

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Don’t make mistake, Zoom is never a Chinese company,
Zoom is a US company controlled by US citizen and only part of the development team is in China.

Well, the fact that is a US company can be a problem too.

Thanks for commenting. It says here three Chinese own near 50% of Zoom, though it is a publicly listed company:

Here is a Register article on the security:

In response to the completely broken prior security architecture… Zoom recently put together a new whitepaper on a redesigned E2E system:

So, some of the problems may either be fixed or on the way to getting fixed.

i would have done the same, but got the opposite experience myself. it worked wonderfully on my first try (about a year ago, perhaps?).

jitsi free server indeed still isn’t as reliable as zoom, for meetings with over 20 people. in fact i hear it can go as big as 50, which is still not as big as zoom 150 or whatever.

but this shouldn’t matter.

if you really need more, you can host yourself (i never tried it) or i’m sure there are paid options somewhere.

above all, you should reconsider. meetings with that many people are never really productive.

just stream, instead and let others comment on chat, if that much. or in parallel meetings.

or make smaller meetings when needed with people who will benefit from being there.

if still jitsi doesn’t work for you, by all means, keep with zoom. it could be a matter of servers worldwide. jitsi is indeed not there yet.

finally there are still 2 interesting alternatives nevertheless: telegram and whereby. none are fully decentralised or open source, but they’re closer to it than zoom.

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PeerTube V3 now has live streaming.


LBRY is currently beta testing its live streaming on the Odysee frontend: