12G/ DID Tethics & Mandatory Vaccine Passports

From IIW

DID Tethics & Mandatory Vaccine Passports

Wednesday 12G

Convener: Timothy Holborn

Notes-taker(s): Amanda Jansen

Tags for the session - technology discussed/ideas considered:

In preparation for putting forward the session topic concept, I've made a few notes.

These are provided below (TCH NOTES: #NoMandatoryVaccinePassports)

The Main purpose of the session is to give space to the global issues linked to ‘vaccine passports’ exhibited world-wide. The intention is to operate the session as a round-table.

So I'll be trying to ask questions, to hear what people's views & concerns are, etc. #Humility.

Discussion notes, key understandings, outstanding questions, observations, and, if appropriate to this discussion: action items, next steps

DID Tethics & MandatoryVaccinePassports

  1. NoMandatoryVaccinePassports?

“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

― S.G. Tallentyre


This session is intended to respond and provide space for persons who do not support Mandatory Vaccination Passports, as are being rolled-out around the world, impacting the human rights of many.

The Concept of ‘Identity’ has a few different meanings; therein, this discussion looks at the effect of our work, our behaviours upon others throughout the world and provides support for people to think about what that means in relation to their identity, as ‘identity infrastructure’ is deployed as a consequence of our choices.

Below I have provided a bunch of input, relating to my thoughts on the problem domain. The group is encouraged to provide their own contributions also, as a means to catalogue dissenting views with respect to the global (mostly western world?) impacts of VaccinePassport Agendas impacting the lives of billions of members of our human family in very troubling ways.



Tethics (Silicon Valley Clip): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfRUQh_EHoQ

What does this have to do with DIDs, Verifiable Credentials, Etc.?

DIDs - First W3C Post: https://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-webpayments/2014May/0033.html

Post RE: Establishing Credentials CG: https://www.w3.org/community/credentials/2014/08/06/call-for-participation-in-credentials-community-group/

DIDs Current Issues: Formal Objections by Mozilla, Google & Apple.

Historical Suggestion re: Healthcare industry: (2015) https://soundcloud.com/ubiquitous-au/credentialscgtelecon2015-06-02medical (from: https://opencreds.org/minutes/2015-06-02/ )

Which led to: https://web.archive.org/web/20210227133444/https://w3c-ccg.github.io/meetings/2016-04-19/ (UN / ID2020 → original link taken down: https://w3c-ccg.github.io/meetings/2016-04-19/#topic-2 )

The history of how these works evolved is different to the version of history promoted by ‘DID/CREDENTIAL trust vendors”.

It appears the global Interoperable Platforms for ‘Vaccine Passports’ is built on Credentials / DIDs

IS COVID19 DANGEROUS? Most Certainly….

It is believed the majority of deaths have occurred to persons above the average life expectancy.


Are All Systems of providing access to health-care the same world-wide? No.

Australia has a Medicare system that provides a medical identifier and free access to the vast majority of health-services required to support basic needs. Pharmaceuticals generally cost ~$6 for those in poverty.

Other places (like the USA) are believed to have a very different system of healthcare with different problems.

A few Medical Information standard compatible with ‘Credentials’ has been produced


Suggestion: Get a Smart Watch and Health App stuff. Lots going on, lots of low-stakes use-cases.

Are the principals employed to support ‘privacy’, being deployed to support ‘dignity enhancing’ outcomes for human beings?

Human Rights - Have VaccinePassports (DID commercialisation) led to Crimes Against Humanity?

What is the role of technologists to support the rights ‘granted by birth’ for all mankind?

What are crimes against humanity?

Source: https://www.un.org/en/genocideprevention/crimes-against-humanity.shtml

According to Article 7 (1) of the Rome Statute, crimes against humanity do not need to be linked to an armed conflict and can also occur in peacetime, similar to the crime of genocide. That same Article provides a definition of the crime that contains the following main elements:

  1. A physical element, which includes the commission of “any of the following acts”:

    1. Murder;

    2. Extermination;

    3. Enslavement;

    4. Deportation or forcible transfer of population;

    5. Imprisonment;

    6. Torture;

    7. Grave forms of sexual violence;

    8. Persecution;

    9. Enforced disappearance of persons;

    10. The crime of apartheid;

    11. Other inhumane acts.

  2. A contextual element: “when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population”; and

  3. A mental element: “with knowledge of the attack”

3 billion people locked down


Q: how could this have been brought about before broadband & smartphones?

‘Locked Down for more than 267 days’ https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/oct/02/how-melbournes-short-sharp-covid-lockdowns-became-the-longest-in-the-world

Breaches to HealthOrders warrant Violence: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23VicPolViolence

Alleged Crimes; protesting, not wearing a mask, making social media posts that criticize measures, etc.

Censorship & manipulation.

UDHR Considered by Facebook to breach its community guidelines

LINK: https://twitter.com/DemocracyAus/status/1439649759040397319

Penalty dished-out by Facebook.


It is now safer to communicate via MEME: https://photos.app.goo.gl/gvjkAq7mTSP6oxaU8

There’s countless examples of persons being targets of ‘fact checkers’ making wrongful decisions, people who are illustrating obvious signs of mental illness being penalised online, whilst ‘locked down’.

Increasingly, it is said that persons are not allowed to participate in society without a ‘vaccine passport’. The implications include people losing their jobs (employment / income), ability to go outside, ability to go to government buildings, retailers and much more. These initiatives appear to be synchronised world-wide in their deployments, they appear to depend upon a mobile app to support policies.

Whilst the biosphere and all flora / fauna have developed over millions of years; within a decade of mobile apps, it appears we are coercively required to accept that our lives are void without carrying with us a mobile app. These policies could not have occurred earlier.

Arguably, if the infrastructure for COVID (Testing Facilities, Work related ‘health credentials’, etc.) were deployed to drug-test every person whose gainful income for work was sourced via TaxPayers Funds; there would be a significant impact on organised crime, mental health, improved decision making; and, i speculate, the lives of more children and working age adults would be ‘saved’ than the same policy deployed against COVID-19. Part of this is in-turn also, about the importance of rule of law - if the laws of the people are not suitable for the jurisdiction, then, they should be changed to be made appropriate. Where this applies to drug-affected decision making (about the lives of others); it may then become a mental health issue. Yet, the underlying reality is - even though it is illegal for public servants to illegally purchase, consume and attend work drug-affected (making decisions about the lives of others); it is entirely unlikely any meaningful action will ever take place to sort this problem out.

So, are the measures put upon society world-wide about Health, Welfare, Safety & Rule Of Law?

There are also significant implications for SiliconValley. Increasingly people are migrating away from traditional platforms in protest of the applied theology put upon the means for locked-down people to communicate. Presently, the biggest problem is a lack of alternatives, this is likely the subject of WIP.

California may have provided an opportunity to produce a Global Social Graph,.


There are many, many different potential applications for Verifiable Claims, Verifiable Credentials, Decentralised Ledger Technology Records (ie: diversification from HTTP/s).

What are HumanRights?

Some Links to UN Human Rights Documents (and a few associated to AU)

Human Rights Links:


Commonwealth Charter: https://thecommonwealth.org/about-us/charter

QLD Act: https://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/view/whole/html/asmade/act-2019-005

ACT Act: https://www.legislation.act.gov.au/a/2004-5/

VIC Act: http://www5.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/vic/consol_act/cohrara2006433/

Universal Declaration of Human Rights:


International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights:


Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment


Convention on the Rights of the Child:


Convention Relating to the Status of Stateless Persons: (cannot find link)




(Human Agency, AI Ethics & DigitalTwin Semantics of Natural Persons)

Human Centric - DID Related Applications

  • How can Credentials support the means for people to have evidence about facts relating to their activities as to support their human agency, personhood.

    • Digital Receipts

    • Digital Payslips

    • Transcripts of Interactions / Conversations

    • Minted AI Semantics (with a particular vendor who may develop ‘trustworthy’ reputation)

  • Decentralising ‘Biosphere’ ‘Commons’ information

    • Creating ledgers that decentralise the storage and distribution of key ‘commons’ artifacts, not on one ledger; but on many, with different permissions that create ‘corpus’ digital twins around subject-matter areas of expertise; and, means to form inference between different topical ledgers (ie: jurisdictional considerations in Australia having semantic relationships to similar constructors in other jurisdictions, such as the United States, UK, etc.)

    • Biosphere Information

      • Botany

  • Societal Infrastructure

Pre-session noted - Conclusionary Remarks:

Pink Floyd, Turning Away 2021 remix: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i2C8YiT_9nQ

The works produced via W3C, over about a decade, have a plurality of different, very positive applications. However, it is my position that if we decentralise ICT Power to support many different groups participating in different ways, as is required at this time when our libraries go digital; there are moral and ethical questions, burdens and common-sense requirements. Whilst i support the growth of Credentials, DIDs and related ecosystems linked to frameworks i believe can support ‘identity fabrics’ or ‘inforgs’ that have a far different type of interpretation of ‘identity’, made via w3c in ways that are already fairly-well supported technically by many major US platforms (Facebook, Google, etc.),

I do not support Mandatory Vaccine Passports. I am mortified by the choices that have been made, the functionality that has been delivered and the very significant volume of use-cases (protecting citizens, human rights, rule of law, access to justice, fair-pay-for-good-work) that has been broadly set aside.

Few links about historical (web) Concepts

Some of Manu’s Old Credentials Docs Links

AUG 2014: https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/17mfHu4EqsnZQ2eFI115qC8FUuLOX-ZSnWpCjo7q1Vlc/edit

October 2015: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1644G7jJZbUTpyEGALWj6t4m5kJc-bt90QCfRmW5IRuk/edit#slide=id.p


March 2016:


June 2016: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1mL0MsPpdxdKiYFWVIyGVOFzypBsjylxepACN2MYw-yg/edit

Sep 2016: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1pFGC1G7CbizUuvbmjECfnNRL4fZk9QLxG8d3nehgwNU/edit

OCT 2016 IIW (IIW 23)



April 2017: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/13ztihmZSl7nIBW2TuJxgkNmwFcOjOFvxSDAQ0ACiyYg/edit

Nov 2017:


Some of My Old Docs

Sep 2014: https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/1oUsSlPEh8erOdkQJCLzFHBaqp7AYOJCqDw82YrCg9f4/edit

May/June 2015: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pRtTu9EssjhyyK3qkQymZepIUkqCwvMo6imnr4fqsrg/edit

Jan 2016: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pzZJ-pb-luy0jNryY2lrfJUNntjDGNm4-2wXKt72C6k/edit


Transcript / notes


Timothy Holborn


Amanda Jansen


Jan Rietveld




Simon Nazarenko


Round table discussion.

Motivation: some of the discussions on the concept of identity: going back to the original presentations and objectives and see what happened afterwards & moderate a conversation about it

Simon: third month working on some solutions for issuing credentials; lacks possibly a deep understanding of the theory behind it.

Timothy: It is about ethics. A group makes ethical choices and an individual makes individual moral choices. People in the world are locked out of individual rights, there are protests etc. and is this the way to go about it through technology?

Simon: this can go really deep and political / philosophical really soon. It is the government trying to create a situation of health and temporarily create solutions and even perhaps try to save lives, but not necessarily acting in the line the technology was meant for.

Technology, philosophy, politics: three topics that are relevant here.

Timothy: showing a presentation.




First thing we can do is look at the original intention of the technology:

  1. Save the lives of millions of people.

  2. Banking the unbanked.

  3. Use verifiable claims.

How do vaccine passports improve the lives of people? Have the original goals been met? Are there ramifications for what is now happening?

What is our role and responsibility as technologists?


I will try to express my opinion and experience. I am based in Idaho, but am from Ukraine. Here are my thoughts about the technology. Ukraine, I don’t know how much you follow the news lately, but Ukraine was part of the Soviet Union for quite a bit. But now we are considered to be living in a free Ukraine, which is for over 20 years. We have multiple elections going on which were not very successful and led to revolutions. One time we ended up having the Soviet Union invading certain parts of Ukraine. We still fight, but officially it is not a war. Our president had to flee and a new president was democratically chosen. In the meantime we had several crashes going on amongst which an economic crash. Just recently after new elections a new digital ministry was started. The goal was to convert all of the paperwork that is circulating in our country to digital work for the general citizen to be able to get digital certificates. The transition from paper to digital: the problem with this approach done on the government level is: go digital or stay with paper. The credentials are not owned by the people, but by the government. I.e. your driver’s licence is not yours, but your government's. There are some credentials that are issued by your government and there are credentials that are owned by people. We have huge discussions about this also in the tech community.

A self sovereign approach would be to put the credentials on the ledger and have them verified on request. It will be really hard to change the minds of people to make them trust this new technology and realise the credentials are theirs.


It is not really the case that you are not forced to present those credentials. You won’t get certain information or credentials from institutions or the government. Government has not produced infrastructure to provide evidence or information and credentials to citizens. The consequences are punitive to citizens. It seems like there is an implication or gap between what is the vision or what these self sovereign credentials are doing and what they are doing in reality.

Simon: Would you like to have all the information you just mentioned handed over to citizens?

Timothy: You cannot access justice without evidence. That evidence should be accessible to citizens as well as police i.e. government institutions.

links: https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/ukrainealert/ukraines-digital-revolution-is-gaining-momentum/


Simon: Can you show how a citizen is discriminated against by the evidence that is provided? Is there a specific use case?

Timothy: showing a link.


Showing the robodebt link of a vital accident in providing proof in Australia harming about 2000 people. The answer to that was to make machine readable payslips in order to show how much you have spent of your benefit and whether or not behaviour was fraudulent.

Ability for workers to do accounting. Ability for people to comply with what is being expected of them.

Doing good & inforgs information.

An inforg as opposed to identity: representational identifier for making verifiable claims.

Continuing the presentation: citizens should have their own information about what happens and not be asymmetrically dependent on government institutions.

Short presentation on knowledge banking as a solution.

Considering the impact of vaccine passports, lockdowns, protests etc.

Simon: demonstrating the 4th amendment of the US Constitution as a solution: mandatory vaccines: it may be decided on in court.

“The Constitution, through the Fourth Amendment, protects people from unreasonable searches and seizures by the government. The Fourth Amendment, however, is not a guarantee against all searches and seizures, but only those that are deemed unreasonable under the law.”

Amanda: wonders how Simon feels the 4th amendment is being held firmly by courts right now, other effects and impacts are visible globally about constitutional rights in general in which rights are temporarily being set aside.

Tim: a digital twin should be owned by you as part of your human agency. Currently credentials are not being protected in such a way.

What happens if people cannot speak their truth and feel safe?

Life is not free.

Simon: asks Timothy’s opinion about ‘life is not free’ and Elon Musk’s strong opinion about basic income.

Timothy: I am not so much in favour of it. I will show you a page for discovering the vocabulary.

Schema.org and showing more sites. It would be better to associate work with the benefit from it, then we would need no basic income.

Timothy: Privacy also considers the right to ensure information stored about a person is correct.


Timothy also noted: https://www.oecd.org/sti/ieconomy/oecdguidelinesontheprotectionofprivacyandtransborderflowsofpersonaldata.htm