Tag Archives: privacy

facebook, please give brad pitt my cell number!

not that i’m complaining.

so many people are worried about the disclosure that facebook, twitter, verizon, google–all the fun stuff we play with on the computer when we’re supposed to be productive–have all been giving the government our posts, tweets, messages so that the government can determined whether we’re losers at dating, whether we are team downton abbey or team kardashian and whether we really did call our mom and try to leave a message but something happened. . . .

and it’s pretty scary to think of obama reading my facebook posts and my cell texts. . . (p.s. note to youngerstud, i

facebook “bug” has been of more than six million users for the past year.

the social network began offering a “download your information” tool, which facebook now says has also been downloading other people’s information, including other user’s email addresses and phone numbers, since at least 2012. this information was shared to people who “had a connection” to the affected users.

my relationship to brad pitt is more spiritual than a mere acceptance of a friend request.  still, is that enough that facebook would pretty please send him my cell phone number?

my relationship to brad pitt is more spiritual than a mere acceptance of a friend request. still, is that enough that facebook would pretty please send him my cell phone number?

facebook says it has fixed the bug and is in the process of notifying the affected users via the same email addresses that the company has already freely given out.  however, i have noticed that nobody named brad has been calling me.  facebook, could you please use your loose lips talent for the forces of good instead of evil???


shameless selfie fierce?

facebook, instagram, twitter, we call it social media but really it’s selfie media.  you post about what you had for dinner, you share the link to your favorite song, you opine.

the former nickelodeon actress and erstwhile fashion designer amanda bynes has been posting "selfies" -- pictures of one's self that often include one's hand holding the camera or phone.  amanda has been tracking her path of selfdestruction with twitter posts including increasingly bizarre selfies. she was recently evicted from her apartment in new york and arrested on drug charges.  there is some indication she suffers from schizophrenia.

the former nickelodeon actress and erstwhile fashion designer amanda bynes has been posting “selfies” — pictures of one’s self that often include one’s hand holding the camera or phone. amanda has been tracking her path of self-destruction with twitter posts including increasingly bizarre selfies. she was recently evicted from her apartment in new york and arrested on drug charges. there is some indication she suffers from schizophrenia.

this sharing sounds fierce, brave, and just an extension of being open and honest.  we share ourselves and, you know what?, this week we’ve been shaken to the core by disclosures that the obama administration is using over fifty companies to harvest information about everything we communicate.  if you have a verizon account, for instance, every message, every text, every phone call is potentially in play.  it’s gotta be pretty boring for government agents to sort through “whaddup?” and “r u around?” and “c u l8r!”

edward snowden, a 29 year old cia consultant, fled to hong kong with documents that outline the extent of our government's trampling of our privacy.  as he says  "I'm willing to sacrifice all of that because I can't in good conscience allow the US government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building."  he is quite aware that he has forfeited his freedom, the option to ever return home and quite possibly his life.

edward snowden, a 29 year old cia consultant, fled to hong kong with documents that outline the extent of our government’s trampling of our privacy. as he says “I’m willing to sacrifice all of that because I can’t in good conscience allow the US government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they’re secretly building.” he is quite aware that he has forfeited his freedom, the option to ever return home and quite possibly his life.

 

so while snowden does his best to highlight how the government is peeking at stuff that might be considered private, the amanda bynes of the world are tweeting and posting and updating us on all sorts of things. . . .

a lot of amanda's tweets are about ugliness.  as in courtney love is ugly, jenny mccarthy is ugly, and that rhianna was beat up by chris brown because she is ugly.  weird, because amanda was really a very beautiful girl before she started posting and tweeting her transformation.  i'm glad she doesn't know me because i'm sure she would tweet that i'm ugly too.

a lot of amanda’s tweets are about ugliness. as in courtney love is ugly, jenny mccarthy is ugly, and that rhianna was beat up by chris brown because she is ugly. weird, because amanda was really a very beautiful girl before she started posting and tweeting her transformation. i’m glad she doesn’t know me because i’m sure she would tweet that i’m ugly too.

you can’t permanent erase this stuff and it is just so easy to issue the usual “don’t post stuff that you wouldn’t want an employer to see” or “everything on the internet is forever”. . . i’m sorta wondering about all those selfies i’ve posted on facebook.  i might be pissed off the government can spy on me but what do i expect?  i’ve made it incredibly easy for them.


home sweet facebook home

i like facebook.  i like a facebook a lot.  but i’m not sure that i want to make it my home.  or carry it with me.

home is facebook’s new software.  it takes over your android phone and places pictures and messages from your facebook friends front and center.  your phone becomes an extension of your facebook page.

some analysts thought facebook might be announcing the creation of its own phone.  rather, facebook is offering optional software called "home"

some analysts thought facebook might be announcing the creation of its own phone. that spooked investors so there was a  pre-announcement to clarify what will be officially announced on april 12. got that?

 

with facebook innovations, there are always concerns about privacy.  in the case of home, facebook will be able to retrieve and store information about likes, user location, messages and comments.  the information will be stored for ninety days and will give facebook a chance to figure out whether you are so lame as to listen to duran duran or that you’re addicted to playing mafia wars.  i assume that mark and the entire facebook team, true to their word, will honor facebook/user confidentiality.  and not share them with advertisers except when absolutely necessary which is, like, all the time.

the application will come preloaded on some phones released by htc, att and others.  so now you can have your phone dedicated to facebook.  investors have responded somewhat positively with facebook shares trading at over $27 for the first time since march 14.


sharing is a good thing but . . .

i have a problem with this. when i drink, i sometimes say things i don’t mean, do things i later regret, and even lose relationships i value. so i have to say “goodbye” and really, alcohol, it’s not you, it’s me.

 

i posted about this on facebook as well.  my facebook friends and wordpress friends have been universally supportive.  i have been so lucky.  and then i got to thinking:

since facebook went public, it has been working very hard to show advertisers and investors that its greatest asset is information about its users.  and a mighty big asset.  sure, it’s interesting that you posted psy’s gangnam style video on your wall and that your cat pictures are soooooooooo damn cute.  but there’s a little more to it.  facebook wants to be able to “share” information about users that will predict spending habits, future needs, even weaknesses that can be exploited by corporate america.

facebook is working with a company called datalogix.  datalogix collects information from retailers using customer loyalty cards and combines this information with things like your regular email address, your alma mater, or postal address that show up in other data bases.  datalogix is not some new kid in the data world–it owns information about almost every american household and $1 trillion in consumer transactions. combining information about consumers allows advertising to be targeted very precisely.

i admit to unnatural lust for the diane von furstenberg copa wrap skirt in orchid. datalogix knows this and can even figure out if i  ever purchase it online or offline. and it can also predict what other items i might lust for. but does it know i lust for the white wine? of course.  even if i hadn’t posted about it, i did put a deposit down on a detox program with my credit card.

depending on how you feel about privacy and about sensitive personal issues, you might feel alarmed.  the only fear i have is that blue cross blue shield is going to suddenly raise my premiums or drop me altogether because i’m seeking help.

and then there’s this:  facebook holds a key to your history, your relationships, your emotions and your past. the idea that forgotten private messages might be made public and be prominently displayed for the world to see could be a frightening prospect for many users.  but that’s exactly what’s happened.

facebook has acknowledged reports, mainly from america and europe, claiming that private messages from prior to 2009 have been popping up on people’s walls.  ouch, that morning after passed out on the couch picture from 2008 that you thought nobody would remember is now out there on your timeline.  the company says there’s has been no breach, claiming instead that the messages were merely old public posts revealed again by a bug.  a little hard to decipher.

i guess i don’t believe in privacy anymore.  everyone can find out anything about anyone.  but i also believe in trying very hard to live one’s life with . . .

well, at least i try to!  and if i were to succeed, then i wouldn’t have to care who knows what about me.

 

i am facing an interesting, challenging, terrifying time and i am grateful beyond measure to every friend who has said “i’m with you!”  many many many thanks!


facebook nation’s baby steps towards democracy

my nation has 900,000,000 citizens and, as near as i can tell, they can all fit in my laptop.  my nation has its own form of money, a movie about its beginnings* and a handsome prince and princess.

prince mark zuckerberg and bride priscilla chan honeymooned in italy just after the much anticipated facebook i.p.o. insta-millionaires were gravely disappointed as the share price opened at $42 and has plunged to $27. but every great nation has initial problems.

 

this past month, facebook held an election on proposed privacy amendments.  i don’t know about you, but i figure i have no privacy on facebook. but some students in ireland disagree with that notion and filed a complaint with the irish data protection commission which is in charge of regulating facebook in europe.  the students claimed “hey, that picture of me drunk on the couch that my ex-girlfriend posted and then i made her take it down, that’s my privacy we’re talking about!”

on may 23, 2005 tom cruise declared his love for katie holmes as he trampolined on a couch on the oprah show. i’m sure HE’D like to say he owns that and then he would burn it. tom is known for being very reserved, secretive, almost like a scientologist. oh, right, he IS a scientologist.

 

so facebook held a vote on amendments to its privacy policies.  the amendments allow for what items are automatically public on facebook, what items facebook owns (anything you post) and what happens when you deactivate your account (facebook keeps all of it in perpetuity).  the data is important because it allows for facebook to target advertising.  and get revenue.  which might help that stock price slide. i’ve seen a lot of posts complaining about privacy and facebook policies.  if i had known about a chance to vote on this, i would have.

three hundred and fifty thousand people voted, just four percent, and overwhelmingly they were opposed to the privacy amendments. the company had said that it would consider the vote binding if more than 30% of its users voted.

 

*the social network chronicled the brave prince mark battling to free people everywhere so that they can connect.  and actually, i believe that is exactly what mark zuckerberg actually intends.  as he has been quoted as saying, “we don’t build services to make money–we make money so we can build better services!”