Here are a few reasons why open source, peer to peer software is more important than most people realize.
Technology is inherently neutral, and this is amplified with P2P software. That brings about an unprecedented level of equality. It doesn't care about your nationality, gender, race, sexuality, personal beliefs, how much money you have, or what your job is. As long as you follow the rules of the protocol, you are allowed in. It is for all of humanity, and that has some big implications.
The decentralized nature of P2P software adds incredible resilience to systems. Since there are no central servers, these networks are impossible to shut down or censor. As long as a handful of nodes are active, anywhere in the world, the network continues.
3. FREE SPEECH
P2P allows people to communicate, trade and share directly, without any gatekeepers dictating what is, and isn't allowed. This is true free spech.
Many P2P projects are open source, meaning there is a level of scrutiny and accountability that you don't see in many other parts of society. Anyone who wants to, can check for themselves that there are no hidden backdoors or vulnerabilities in the software, so if others tried to add malicious code, it would quickly be rejected.
These systems can be encrypted from end to end, making eaves-dropping much harder, if not impossible. Also, since the encryption keys that are used to access the network are controlled by each user, as opposed to central servers, things like massive data breaches and stolen credit card information cannot happen.
We're already seeing how technologies like Bitcoin and BitTorrent are changing things. That is just the start though. Soon we'll be seeing P2P projects in every area of our lives, from money, to private communications, data storage, mesh networks, file sharing, and much more.