I’ve been wondering what I needed to do to get my Instagram account restored, because going through their appeals process generated nothing but silence. Now I know.
SFWA has honored Petra Mayer with a posthumous Kate Wilhelm Solstice Award.
Twitter's auto-moderation is pure horror.
I operate multiple Twitter accounts: a few popular parody accounts, a handful of pet projects, and -- until a while ago -- a personal account.
For Twitter's algorithm, Multiple Accounts = Bad. Intermittently it goes on a rampage, locking & suspending everything it can find. And I get to spend days trying to convince Twitter Support – for whom The Algorithm is Never Wrong – that I'm not a bad actor, account by account.
I'm tired. Musk is welcome to it.
This list of "8 Ways Social Media Distorts Our Realities" is sobering reading.
What's interesting is that most of the ways seem to be directly linked to the profit motive -- the pernicious effects arise from the infamous 'algorithm' (really, algorithms) created by social media business owners to increase engagement and the effectiveness of advertising. Non-commercialized social media (like Mastodon) might not be AS bad.
What is the point of two-step password entry, where you enter username and password on separate screens? To me, this looks like a pure antipattern, because it offers no discernible benefits and conflicts with password managers.
Yet it's spreading everywhere, so someone must think it's a good idea. Why?
Google's #AI is not strong on irony. When my friend texted me that he was "still testing positive [and] looking forward to another weekend trapped in one room", Google cheerfully suggested that I might like to reply with "That's great news!" or "Sounds like fun!"
@pluralistic Great piece! I've been thinking quite a bit about XMPP (née Jabber), as it offers this kind of thing: messaging based on protocol, similar to email, without limits about who you talk to, and features like e2e encryption (based on Signal protocol).
We have the tech, but there isn't an incentive for capitalist business to invest in such things if they don't have the critical mass of email, when they can lock users in, instead.
Would it simply take integration of existing networks?
Oh, @pixelfed looks neat. I have been day-dreaming about how to make a distributed photo-sharing service based on RSS feeds - but this might be a nice alternative.
I have the feeling that the Fediverse is beginning to take off, something that excites me considerably more than all the Web3 bullshit flying around.
I couldn't resist trying out the ESPHole ad blocker recommended by @pluralistic. It's pretty sweet and very easy to set up, although it doesn't seem to block as many ads as I might expect. Perhaps it only kills the worst of the worst?
Still, it's nice to visit a site and watch your "Nah!" count go up.
My cousin has written a beautiful, thoughtful meditation on the death of his brother last year.
According to eBay, there is such a thing as "tactical" shoe laces.
Excuse you, but if they don't come with a steel wire core, so that I can garrote a motherfucker with them, improvise a daring zip-line escape, and use them as a radio antenna in case of necessity, they are not actually "tactical".
They're just sage-green.
This article by @eff suggests that Twitter's new owner may decide to eliminate pseudonymous accounts from the service.
This will -- among other things -- put an end to a number of popular parody accounts, including some that I run.
I guess that's just one of the "nice things" that we can't have if the new broom sweeps as clean as it threatens to.
On the other hand, Devin Nunes will probably be pleased not to be harassed by wayward bovines any more.