Leave while you can

Closed Facebook groups are on the agenda this morning. Now who would want to join a group where they get abuse and threats unless they are the ones giving it out. Everybody receiving threats in a voluntary group voluntarily must have some kind of death wish.

I noticed that the aggressive nature on some Facebook groups has ceased on the open platform and now I’ve learned that there are lots of closed groups. I am not a member of any of them.

I would never stay a member of a group where inter-personal relations are not on the polite level.

 

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Facebook stops Tory lies

Ha, ha, there we have it, Facebook knows how important the platform is to influence the older half of the population.

When a Conservative advertisement on Facebook quoted that the Tory government promise a £14 Billion cash boost for schools whilst another Tory advertisement stated that the cash boost was in fact only £7.1 Billion, Facebook pulled the plug and took the Conservative advertisement off the platform.

Highest respect for that Facebook, thank you.

As one user of Facebook puts it, showing a pic of Boris singing the tune:

“And I will tell 5.000 lies and I will tell 5.000 more”.

Also thanks to Donald Trump for alerting us about False News.

 

Galloway did it again

He won on a 65% turnout, a man with a mission and with his own unique brand of political agenda. I don’t think it had anything to do with Big Brother at all. Voters are not so shallow as to vote for appearances on Big Brother. I doubt they even watch Big Brother as much as some might lead us to believe. I think Galloway just wins on his ‘we are family’ type of politics.  The BBC reports the statistics here.

How ridiculous the stance of the major parties is can easily be described by the comment of the Conservative candidate who thinks that Galloway crushed Labour, when he lost a higher stake with 22.78 % of the votes whilst Labour only lost 20.36 % of their votes.

That just shows Galloway could not win in a high business environment like the Isle of Dogs but he can win where there is the rural type of area with many immigrants from Asia.Of course those immigrants cannot be expected to support a war that sees their relatives far away ending up in coffins.

Here in Tower Hamlets former Respect members have integrated with Labour to build a United Front led by Independent Lutfur Rahman, a type of quietly content coalition of brothers and sisters who are ideologically homeless but know what they want.

Though big efforts are made to get anybody who is somebody in little clean up operations. One councillor was ousted by prosecuting over illegal sub-letting of a flat and fiddling expenses for example.

But politics always uses the same tricks to get rid of opposition, when the goal is just to stay in power rather than make good arguments politically. Galloway gained an astonishing 52.83%. I do not know what his arguments were, as I did not follow the election but here in Tower Hamlets he called for more immigration,which ultimately led to his downfall, as even the most passionate people have to see the geographical restrictions a small area like Tower Hamlets has in terms of population.

Of course the anti-war propaganda always sits well when it gets proven more and more each day how little the troops can actually achieve. The repeated cries for more democracy in primitive countries fall on deaf ears as nobody can really afford it. We can’t even afford it ourselves here any longer.

Whilst the Conservatives here were in alliance with the Tax Payer’s Alliance to stop the waste they turn out to be a big wasting party, and yesterday the alliance turned sour when the Tax Payers Alliance published on Facebook yesterday how Andrew Lansley ran up a ££109,017 bill on tea and coffee in the space of 3 months. That is the real price of politics that countries like Iraq and Afghanistan or even African nations and other impoverished nations can never afford to make politics with the people.  Strangely enough today I can’t find that article on the Tax Payers’ Alliance website any longer but only the Mail on line article.

Yet I belief Galloway’s popularity is only spot on where he won and unique to his area and will never find a broad appeal in Britain because we cannot support that level of immigration that Galloway needs to stay popular throughout. I think this is going to be Galloway’s last stand and after him the Respect Party will be truly buried and done and dusted.

Zynga sets free from Facebook

I have many friends on Facebook who are only my friends because I happen to play the same games as they do. I have very much reduced the games I play because they are very time consuming. Having heard that Facebook gets a one third of every sale Zynga makes it does make sense that they develop their own gaming website as lots of people just play.

I just wonder whether a lot of people enjoy the dual role Facebook plays that they know their friends and loved ones are around when they play.

But on the other hand many not playing the games have to block the games notifications to get some peace without the games. The mixing with the Zynga games makes it hard to keep personal friends and personal messages close to those who are actually interested in them.

Many children register with Facebook because they want to play cute games like PetVille and I do hope that the new Zynga site will make better parental controls on the registrations of under age children possible.

the Facebook mystery deepens

Frequently there are now more and more stories about Facebook on quite large Internet organisations’ website, like MSN and the BBC. It says about what to do and not to do. Recently a juror was given a 8 month jail sentence for contacting an accused and a drugs trial collapsed because of it. The prosecutor was hopping mad and steaming as it was an extremely expensive legal affair.

Generally one should not do on Facebook what one cannot do in real life. There is  no point in letting it all out, whatever that means.

But how to choose friends on Facebook is another story altogether. I read that a prison officer got sacked after he got friendly with an inmate over his Facebook account.

I can imagine that some of my friends might be in jail or hospital because they have lots of time to play those games, which is something a working person probably couldn’t do. But then if one befriends people over playing games, that is another purpose than actually exchanging social information. I am one of those people who approves any friend request without checking up because it is quite impossible to verify any information and unless someone contacts me with odd requests I do not think another moment about a friendship, however, if someone contacts me with things I find odd, I immediately cancel the friendship. There were quite a few friends I cancelled so far but just because they annoyed me. I simply would not have the time to check up on people who play the same games as I do and I presume nor do others.

Quite often I get friend requests simply because I actively play certain games like FarmVille, FrontierVille, MafiaWars and others playing those games need active playing friends because of the way those games are structured, they do need participation, sending of gifts, requests, servicing of game state etc. I think it would be discrimination to have to make a detailed check on people and say just to refuse a friend request for game playing just because a person is serving in a jail. I would not even ask that question nor is anybody required by law to do so or inform others of that status. However in personal life I would very much be interested to know who the people are I converse with in person especially when they come to Neighbourhoood Watch meetings.

I think it really depends on the depth of the friendship on Facebook, whether the social status of the friends is important or not. It does not make the slightest bit of difference to me whether the other person also playing Mafia Wars is the Commissioner of the Police or a criminal wasting away in Wandsworth jail; it does not make any difference to the game at all. I do not even look at other people’s photos or their other friends.

What is really important is always to stay polite and keep it at a level that is reasonable. There are certain times when it would be better to just have a closed account, if one wants to exchange family or private information, but that is another matter.

As for being friends with the boss on FaceBook, that is a bit like kids being friends with their parents, it doesn’t always work out, just that parents can’t sack a child but a boss can.  I think people always have to be aware that Facebook can be used by all sorts and one has to keep the tone of the membership one that is polite and does not overstep the light conversational tone at all times.

Friendly Facebook

I read this story about a Facebook user who complaint that some abuse her photos for fetish purposes and Facebook gave the advice to block such users or only to connect with friends.

That I think is in direct contradiction of the very purpose of such a social networking site that thrives on widespread use. Many people say they get friends suggestions for people they do not know as a sideline of advertising. Facebook wants people to have as many friends as possible.

There are competitions, which game attracts the most users and is most sociable. In fact many games require as many friends as possible to even get the numerous chores completed free of charge. If one doesn’t have friends to help one has to pay to get enough of each item required to make something. That is the same on many games like FarmVille, FrontierVille, Yoville and many, many more.

I think the ‘only friends’ strategy makes a person paranoid because one gets suspicious who really is behind a profile. Indeed some use pics that do not belong to them and others copy profiles.

I do not think one can play a game on Facebook without many friends, so the privacy constraints are really only workable for those with lots of money to complete games or those who do not want to play the games.

Facebook is really just as anonymous as the streets or public spaces we live in. If others use pics without permission there are always the copyright laws that can be used to claim compensation of someone using another’s picture without consent. That will put people off from using them.

In the case of special circumstances or features of a person; it can make a person feel as if they only attract others because of their special features and that can become quite demeaning when it is a disfigurement. It is in public perception good attention when people talk about others for being beautiful but not for having something missing and something perceived to not be beautiful. But in the end one cannot stop others from being obsessed about something whether on Facebook or elsewhere. As long as there is no personal harassment, its live and let live.

The fact is one cannot command people what they have to feel and think when they see some image, person or object and that everybody is free to harbour his own thoughts. Of course as soon as something is pictorially manifested, it can be reproduced and it seems this manifestation is deeply ingrained in today’s society in that people like pictures rather than words. One could say we live in an icon-society.

On Facebook many avoid being ridiculed by simply not using their own pictures and they put on pics of their dogs instead or some bizarre figures or distorted photo. Yet the sheer and vast size of the Internet, the billions of websites, it is a little bit hard-going trying to pursue everyone who abuses a picture, it is very expensive and time consuming too. People always form all types of interest groups and counter interest groups as well as therapeutic groups. It’s hard to imagine though how anybody can get a kick out of lost or missing limbs, so its good that the BBC came to the rescue oft those who suffered.

Is advertising family friendly?

I was very impressed to read about the ‘Mothers Union’ and how it seeks to protect children that grow up in an ever increasing sexualized world, whereby children  are confronted by sexy advertising bill boards and similar material on and off the net. It’s almost part of our daily lives.

Commercial advertisements are made for those who can spent money and that are often the single workers who have got the cash to spare. Cash-strapped families are not so much a target for large scale ad campaigns. Children friendly advertising hits us each year before Christmas and its worst here in the UK than in other parts of Europe where ads for toys are not even allowed to that extent, that we see here regularly.

There are then the Christmas song choices and competitions and I must say that the lyrics of today’s pop songs are often very sexualized and make you think about one thing alone. That without any doubt, influences how children look at persons and personal relationships. I am personally bored by today’s trivial music, which leaves little to the imagination and find the half-naked stage shows unattractive.

Whilst parents in the past tried to avoid the talk about reproduction and sexual things completely, they now have no choice because its not only in music videos, music lyrics, street posters and on the Internet but also the schools give sexual awareness lessons.

One can make too much fuss and bring children’s minds around to thinking about this when otherwise they would not really be interested at all. The Bailey Child sexualisation review has asked for a review of porn control, which is very much needed. I understand that Internet service providers find it workable to put better Internet access controls for families, yet it is extremely easy for a child at present to register with Facebook for example because all a child has to do is put in a fictional date of birth and he presto the membership is accepted. So if that works for Facebook so easy, it will work for others equally easy.  Sites like Facebook are very user-friendly and families even welcome the site for easy communications with family and friends locally and across the globe.

Putting the responsibility in parents’ hands is not so easy because being on the Internet is very much an individual activity, each person is alone with the computer terminal they are sitting on. Putting on strict controls on adult content often results in not being able to see many web pages, which hinders Internet research.

Maybe it would be possible to put an inbuilt control into each new sold machine, that at the time of starting it up, the responsible adult has to enter the children that are likely to use the machine and that all activities requiring a certain age have to be approved by the adult in charge of the machine, this must include e-mail verification of memberships such as Facebook.

Yet the key to all remote and electronic communications is the proof of whom you are actually talking to and that is especially important for children. I think face to face contact is the most important point on computer communications and if a child can see the other persons they speak to it removes a lot of the uncertainty and misuse of the system. The best system to use in my view is the MSN / Windows live messenger, whereby people can actually see each other whilst they communicate over the Internet. Most laptops have inbuilt cameras these days. Often abuse takes place by adults pretending to be children and they coax children to meet them just to reveal their real age, that is not possible if children can actually see whom they talk to at the initial stage.

The voice of families is often not properly taken into account when advertising strategies are decided and therefore I welcome this call to include children’s and families’ needs into commercial policy considerations.

Throughout my experience with community work I realised that families never come to meetings and  I assume it is the same in commerce, it is that single people have  more time to meet and make policies that then affect families. It is this method that is responsible for commercial strategies running away with themselves. Families, parents need to be better consulted in many aspects of today’s commercial, artistic and public campaigns.

Appalling race-hate on Facebook

Today at 18:00 hours a group was founded on Facebook that invited people to attend an event called “Kill a Jew Day“. It was further introduced as “the event will take place on Martin Luther king day because we don’t like niggers. 14/88 HEIL HITLER!”.

This was then posted around Facebook by some people who were appalled by this post and many complained to Facebook to take the post off. The group was still up at 21:00 hours and 247 people actually did promise to come and gave positive comments by that time. That is really sad, that this comes just a few days after the cowardly murder attempt on an American-Jewish politician, Congress woman Ciffords. I have contacted my MEP with links and hope that this matter is made a public matter in that such posts can even get established on the Internet.  Let’s face it if one allows one hate group then all others want to do the same and we’ll have civil war in no time.

PS: Found a message this morning that Facebook took the offending post off during the night. It is however very scary that people feel  fit to post something like that on Facebook. It appears that Antisemitism is present in Islamist Muslims as well as in white Skinheads and for the sake of peace and civil living, I must urge Internet Service Providers of all sorts to bring in mechanisms that does not allow race hate messages to appear. Even short times of display can be enough to spread messages and allow people to put such meeting places into their diaries. It causes real hurt in those concerned and leaves a bitter taste in everybody’s mouth. We do not want race hate, we o want to live in peace.

I ask all those who hate others so much to take example on the Christian gospel and pray for a better understanding of others.

cost-effective policing

I think the latest all-round government initiatives put a clear emphasis on cost-effectiveness. This must also be the case for policing. In today’s The Sun newspaper there is a poll published to show that the majority of readers back

  • use of information obtained through torture (55%),
  • no  human rights for terror suspects (56%)
  • hold terror suspects without charge for 28 days (29%)

In terms of cost effectiveness one has to look at the facts more stringently because how much would it bulk up the policing system if we used all information obtained by torture abroad without certain facts to back up such information? Apart from the fact that torture is deemed unacceptable in human rights terms it is a well known fact that torture victims will admit to all types of things when suffering immense physical pain or other fears. If we believed such information we could spend immense amounts of money following wrong leads and endanger ourselves even more.

If we want to take away human rights from terror suspects or hold terror suspects for 28 days or more without charge, we must look on what grounds they are suspected on. How definite are the suspicions and on what grounds are they suspected.

In Germany in the 70s police could just lock up anybody without any grounds at all. They could literally just fancy locking up anybody. But that turned out to be a very expensive sifting through the hay approach, which injured many innocent people’s lives and led to nothing but a large inflated policing body, with hundreds of thousands of police officers sifting through specs of dust literally.

We should look at all aspects of crime, terror and disorder and what can be done to eliminate it, including better import controls, immigration controls, neighbourhood watch systems, better town hall, housing and benefit administration, just to name a few. One important factor is internet activity. Just yesterday I discussed how people can purchase other persons facebook accounts and take over their identity.

The overall best approach is the know each other system whereby neighbours know each other, police officers and housing officers are stationed on estates or locally and work there to get to personally to know residents again instead of centralising all services when the personal knowledge of people gets lost in the process.

Facebook anyone?

I have read quite a few reviews about social networking sites, amongst which Facebook is one of the most popular. Some say you should not do this or you should not do that, or only if you use Facebook like that you are a good Facebook user and if you do this, you are a bad Facebook user. For some having only 150 friends is good because all they wish to do is exchange views and socialize in-depth with their circle of friends and for others the more is the merrier because some Facebook games require lots of friends to function well.

It is important not to be judgmental about Facebook users because many people get different pleasures out of it. An undisputed fact is that Facebook is a revolutionary new form of digital or electronic method of communication. It brings people from around the globe together doing varying types of activities. There is no good or bad Facebook user, as long as people do not break the law using it.

Some people like to put up their family photos to show off their pride and joys, others love to play games with many of the popular games available like Farmville, Mafia Wars and others like Treasure hunt, others like to compete with MindJolt games*. One cannot judge that only those with 150 friends are responsible users and those with 5000 friends are geeks. Many only join Facebook to play games with others, built up the biggest Mafia or win on some game or other. Some well maintained gaming sites even sell for good prices as collectors items.  Some people are annoyed by Games updates on their feeds whilst others treasure them as a valuable source for gaining extra materials to enhance their gameplay. For many Facebook is an important tool to spread their cause.

Games providers amongst themselves hold competitions to ascertain who has the most social value effect for users.

There is no doubt about it that Facebook is a nice little bonus for free online socializing for those who paid a lot of money to purchase their computers and access to the Internet. It allows people to choose  how they wish to communicate with others, what clubs they wish to open, what messages they wish to spread and it allows all of us to choose what messages we wish to read and which ones to block. So all around Facebook is an excellent method of international communications.

^The list of available features is not exclusive or complete.

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