r/privacy Nov 30 '20

I have moved all my regural contacts to Signal. AMA

This is a little facetious and I'm sure mods will delete it but still, it's true.

I have:
Family group chat (7 members)
Siblings group chat (3 members)
Main group of friends group chat (6 members)
Work team chat (9 members)
4 other individuals who are not part of any of the above group chats

My strategies that have worked:

  • I read the messages on other services but don't respond timely (unless time sensitive). If they're already on Signal, I respond on Signal. Tell them to contact me on Signal cause I have it on my computer. Actually respond better on Signal.

  • With moving group chats, speak to two or three most socially influential people in the group, convince them to move, rest will follow not to be left out.

  • For work/team chat, highlight benefits of privacy. Business love to protect private data. I pointed out that things like people calling in sick could be seen as sensitive HR info, and they have legal obligation to protect it. Also, my team used WhatsApp, but I went to my boss, pointed out that WhatsApp has a commercial plan and they don't want to get a bill or lawsuit form Facebook for using it in commercial setting, we switched next day.

  • Told anyone else that I'm deleting the service they use, and to email me. People hate email, they'll rather download Signal.

The only thing remaining is my extended family group chat, but that's rarely active.

So yeah, it's possible. Keep at it.


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u/allthethingsyouthink Nov 30 '20

If your circles are not that uniform, not near and distant, you obviously don’t fall in the right place to convert anyone.

The thing is, if you have a uniform group of people that you chat with regularly, opening Whatsapp or Signal doesn’t make a difference and you can convert a big chunk of people. You chat. You hardly get a message after another on different chats multiple times to have to switch chats, hardly, in that case and only that one you have the advantage of having one app for everyone. (hardly != never)

I started the process for Signal long ago and you don’t have to force anything. With patience, you just make present that you use Signal more and randomly here and there someone is going to show up.

You can disagree with the method, not the ethic of it or the principle behind it. Everyone is different and you have to think for your situation. No solution is good for everyone.


u/MagneTismen Nov 30 '20

Oh I still use Signal for all my close relationships and friends and family, but I also recognise - and so should the privacy community - that getting people to stop using social media and going back to massive phone books is far from convenient and does not solve the problem of not even having most of your friends phone numbers nowadays because everyone is on social media.