Wiki: Who will use SAFE and Why?

This topic is to help us identify the different kinds of people we want to become users and farmers on SAFE.

Anyone can edit this (once @David - makes it a wiki - please :-)) so please add to or edit what is here, and announce your change in a reply so we’re aware of your contribution.

The purpose is to help us understand who might us SAFE, what their motives are, how we might reach them, and why they will go to the trouble of becoming a user or a farmer.

I hope this will make it easier for us to decide on issues like free space and farming rewards (being discussed here: Farming Rewards, free space for new users, and processing power rewards).


  • regular farmers: users who give up some space on the regular machines they already have. These people want to earn Safecoin to pay for their normal use, or as small earner.
  • enthusiast farmers: those who buy and set up dedicated equipment for motives other than money. To learn, be involved, support SAFE etc. Earnings may matter, but are not the only aim so its hardest to characterise these.
  • commercial farmers: people who farming as a business proposition. These are the easiest to characterise, their motive is to maximise profit, though they will vary a lot in scale!

Users: Easy Wins

These are folk that will be keen to join, and their enthusiasm means that although relatively small in number they can help a lot in generating awareness - they will tend to be active within their own communities. We should consider this group and be trying to reach them, even though they are not a large percentage of our potential users.

  • early adopters: people who like to try new technology
  • freedom users: people attracted by security, anonymity, lack of censorship
  • crypto / decentralisation enthusiasts

Mainstream Users

This is the bulk of who we are are very varied so they are the hardest to characterise, but the most important to attract in large numbers. They can be fickle, either very easy to attract if you have something they want and which takes very little effort or understanding on their part (eg. joining facebook), or they can be very hard to attract if what we offer falls down even slightly in terms of their expectations or ease of adoption (cf. from facebook to diaspora).

  • home users: people using standard applications to do home administration, communications, online shopping, news, email, social networking, multimedia (music, photography, tv, video)
  • office workers: people using email, word processing, spreadsheets, company database
  • specialist workers: data analysis, graphics, design etc.
  • ordinary home users interested primarily in subsidising the cost of a machine they’ll have running anyway.
  • more please!!! I’m stopping now as its late and I have weekend plans :slight_smile:

Specialist Users

Not all of these are users in the same sense, but I think its useful to note them as people interested in SAFE or who will consume lots of SAFE resources.

  • experts: such as people with scientific applications enabled by SAFE
  • app builders: these folk may end up consuming lots of SAFE resources
  • entrepreneurs: people who see opportunities to create large business using SAFE

Skeptics / Conservatives

I discount this group. They will be the last to join and are not our concern for now, I just include them for completeness.


Censored Citizens from China, Russia and others utilizing USB storage


  • Encrypted USB stick (inconspicuous as possible)
  • Distributed via sneakernet
  • Larger capacity, better for itinerant farming


  • Big opportunity to seed the network
  • OS installed vault software, would be visible to spooks?
  • Hosted source software would be blocked


  • How would huge populations using SAFEnet from USB sticks in a itinerant manner, perform?
  • Would governments warn citizens against SAFEnet and risk inadvertently advertising it?

Activists and those seeking Freedom and Privacy
Why? Because Maidsafe allows anonymous communication and keeps the government out of your business. It also allows for a free market and anonymous transfer of funds.

  • Activists of all types
  • Survivalists
  • Anarchist/Libertarian types
  • Freedom fighters of all stripes

“Terrorists”, Protestors and other Direct action types.

  • Freedom fighters
  • Vigilantees
  • Terrorists
  • Political Vandals
  • Political Direct Action Protestors
  • Political Demonstrators
  • Religious Direct action demonstrators
  • Assassins
  • Eco-terrorists
  • Whistleblowers

Why? Because if it’s illegal and especially if it’s taking direct action against the status quo, and even more so if it’s doing it in any way an antisocial or forceful manner, then you’re likely to get arrested or shot for doing it. Therefore communication and planning needs to be done in a secure manner. If you challenge the man and aren’t sneaky as hell about it he will hit you with a giant sequoa.

People exchanging illegal information

  • Child porn
  • how to make guns/bombs/weapons
  • Censored philosophy/religion
  • Censored books (see above)
  • Stolen credit cards, debit cards, paypal accounts and all manner of economics.
  • Money laundering
  • Prostitution (both virtual and set ups for meatspace get togethers).
  • deceminating medical information that is currently restricted/surpressed by the establishment (the cures for cancer for example) and in short censored medicine
  • Political and historical information which has been restricted and censored by the state
  • People downloading movies, music and games illegally, aka PIRATES!

Do i really need to state why these things would be transmitted over maidsafe? Do I really have to state all the possible ramifications here?


The bitcoin, altcoin community. They have been trying to come up with a real anonymous coin (darkcoin, cloakcoin). The libertarian folks, I think, are a little bit sceptical about the way things are going with bitcoin. I think once the network is up and understood, they will , with passion, come in droves.


Ultimately I think maidsafe will give us freedom and change how we use and view the internet. That little boy gets his allowance by renting out his hard drive to a drug cartel in cuba without even knowing it. Little girls get over their low self esteem by taking naked selfies and getting paid to do it. Why go to a doctor and pay exorbantant fees for your perscription? On our site we can get it for you at half price! Just don’t ask us where we got it. Politicians getting you down? Crowdfund and have them put out of their misery. Maidsafe is like Tor, bittorent, bitcoin and the Web all got together and had an orgy, while all the girls are ovulating and NO ONE is even thinking about wearing protection. I hear this shit about decentralized law and bad actors and omfg have you not learned ANYTHING yet? Visit the tor network sometime and look around. Do some history. We didn’t even need the ******* internet for antisocial people. But you know what the more laws you put in place the more crime happens. Law creates crime and antisocial behavior. You leave people alone and they generally settle down. People are inherently good and generally just want to be left to their own devices. The moment ou start trying to enforce shit it all goes south and it’s a futile endevour in the first place.

Let me spell this out for you: PROHIBITION DOES NOT WORK!!! PERIOD!

Who is going to use the safe network EVERYONE! Especially those who have been oppressed, censored and shunned on the current internet.


Spies–government and otherwise.

1 Like

Wow, 007, Joker, terrorists, freeloaders, pedophiles…
Any volunteers to organize a Meetup in Miracle Village? :smile:

I am skeptical about these anti-government and major illegal uses, at least initially, because the flow of traffic will make one stick out. I can’t believe that NSA and other agencies won’t maintain a list of (suspected) MaidSafe nodes and clients if that’s technically possible.

One enterprise user can easly PUT a PB’s of data on the network if they deem it reliable, secure and sustainable (no out-of-control freebies, incentives and manipulation of the market for its own good). If SAFE delivers on those promises there will be no reason for millions of users not to put their data on the network.

(EDIT: I had forgot to type in the 2nd “not” the first time around)

Big category:

  • Private enterprises with lots of static data

It’s generic, but that’s the beauty of it. They’re in it to make money. If SAFE becomes good and cheap, they’ll be flooding the network in no time.

How? Wouldn’t that be a security risk? I thought one’s data was secure.

Data is secure/encrypted, but the flow of information (based on data flow patterns, network port used by the service, and similar externally obtainable data) may be used to identify possible users.
The first 1000 may be easy to spot (and possibly correlate against their history of access to and other sites of interest). After couple of metadata queries it may be possible to narrow that list down to 10-20 counterrevolutionaries and start monitoring them more closely.
Once there are hundreds of thousands of users, depending on how well MaidSafe privacy features work (whether it can use Tor, etc.) it may become not feasible to identity all users.

(Note that all measures uses to make the SAFE net more secure make it more likely that “bad actors” will be able to use the network without fear of detection. As I stated elsewhere, if MaidSafe intends to provide privacy and security for its users, then by extension all users get to benefit from it, which is why I personally find the ideas on “doing something about that” funny because that’s the same thing as saying “how can we destroy MaidSafe”).


@Blindsite2k @janitor and all,

Please can you all keep to the topic and if you want to make broader statements / discuss related issues take those to another topic. So many topics quickly fill with valid but obscuring discussion and opinion, that I think makes it hard for us to make best use of time and on-topic contributions. Thanks.

@hamiltino I can’t tell if your post is on or off topic. Its helpful to me if you can add context when posting links.

EDIT: I also want to acknowledge some really great contributions already! :slight_smile:



everyone who currently uses the “internet” will use (UPGRADE TO) the SAFE Network.

done :slight_smile:


Reasons to use SAFE:


Torrent users and former limewire users


@janitor I’m not asking this in a challenging way but because you seem quite keen. It sounds like someone trying to target you via ip would be very difficult but it seems you would rather have your ip all together masked (as all should) hence the use of tor or a vpn. So my question is would that slow down data speeds client side or otherwise, is it overkill, and if not why wouldn’t this be baked into maidsafe already? I just assumed because of neighbors being randomly chosen and closeness in XOR space is more limitless geographically making it difficult to be close. Thank you

@dirvine just responded to that in another post (here) and my take away would be yes, but if you want to apply extra precautions you can use 2 complementary technologies. Tor would definitively slow you down because exit nodes are few and noone wants to be one and donate their bandwidth to strangers, but for those who want to spend a bit of extra money they could buy a VPN subscription service to Sweden or Swiss and from there connect to MaidSafe - that should work pretty well for users, but for farmers it wouldn’t because it’d still slow them down and they’d probably spend more for VPN than they make from farming.

1 Like

Thank you for the answer @janitor I actually intended to post that comment in said thread :stuck_out_tongue: silly me. David answered quite nicely. I feel a little bad these folks have spent so much time at this and I feel as though they’re fighting everyone’s doubts in the code but thankfully they are understanding of everyone’s healthy skepticism when it comes to security privacy and freedom. So big thanks to maidsafe team and those who have been, are, and will become believers.


Under mainstream: users looking to subsidise the cost of their machine. It’d be awesome if one could buy a dirt cheap linux box for your own use, bring it home, plug it in, and so long as you haven’t filled your hard drive space your TCO is coming down just a touch in the form of safecoins

1 Like

Good point @dana. BTW MaidSafe are negotiating with a Chinese org/group about a packaged h/w solution. No info yet, but @dirvine mentioned it a couple of months ago.

1 Like

Wouldn’t a packaged hardware solution equate to the ASIC? I’d rather a maidSAFE system that can run in anything I have, and not some custom hardware solution that would then transfer the balance of power back to the hardware manufacturers… Decentralized applications << centralized Hardware gods.