The maintainers of the Tor Project — which provides more anonymous and private Internet use by bouncing traffic around many volunteers' computers — is considering paying $100/month to people who maintain high-speed "exit nodes." "Exit nodes" are the last hop in the Tor chain, and they sometimes attract legal threats and police attention, which makes some people reluctant to run them. As a result, there aren't enough exit nodes to provide really robust anonymity for Tor users. Tor hopes that by covering costs for organizations and individuals who are willing to provide exit nodes, they'll get more diversity in the population of exits. Darren Pauli has more in SC magazine:
"We've lined up our first funder BBG, and they're excited to have us start as soon as we can," Dingledine wrote on the Tor mailing list.
The backflip came about because exit node diversity was low: most Tor users choose one of just five of the fastest exit relays about a third of the time, from a pool of about 50 relays.
"Since extra capacity is clearly good for performance, and since we're not doing particularly well at diversity with the current approach, we're going to try [the] experiment," he said.