Facebook Blocks News Content in Australia – Consequences & Workarounds

https://digitalcitizen.ca/category/writing/As of Thursday morning in Australia, Facebook has blocked all news content from around the world to be shared on its social media platform! There was an Australian law set to go into effect where Facebook, and other social media platforms, would have to pay fees to news publishers for news content shared on their platforms, either in deals directly with the publishers, or directly to the Australian government. Google has complied, as described in this BBC article with Robert Murdoch’s News Corporation, among others. Facebook, meanwhile, has opted to go the other way, which, as far as I’m concerned, is bad news for Facebook unless it changes because I don’t think it’s going to win this one… and this could be the first step in likely many, to Facebook’s demise. I’m not saying that demise will happen fast or anything, as they’ll go down fighting, but if they stick to this mentality, they’ll be going down because unlike other big tech giants, they don’t have a lot of other revenue sources than advertising. That was partly why I proposed Apple build its own privacy-enhanced social media platform, because they have other revenue streams and can “starve out” Facebook. But beyond all that, here are some other consequences to Facebook’s decision.

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Prettifying Photos of Yourself Just Turns You into a Walking Letdown

Prettifying is a word, firstly. It’s the act of making prettier, especially in a superficial way.

Prettifying photos is also a tech trend these days, apparently. Big enough it’s helped Snapchat and other apps grow exponentially, according to Wired magazine. While it’s great to have nice photos of yourself that look better than the real life you, the problem is people don’t meet your photos in person. They meet you.

The real you.

The real you that’s less than the prettified picture of you.

And what would you expect their reaction to be?

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Share Your Year’s Themes in Songs on Facebook

Here’s a simple and fun Facebook meme idea as you reflect back on your year. Think about some themes, big events, important memories and such for your year, and pick a song that describes each, with a little description, to share. An example for me would be a lot of unexpected reunions with people in my past, of whom I thought of fondly, through chance events. As a result, I might pick Continue reading

Facebook Newsfeed Needs a Key Words Filter

Facebook Newsfeed allows you to control some content that appear there. Primarily, it allows you to remove or minimize content by a person and/or a source that one or more people on your Newsfeed might share a lot of. However, I’m not finding that enough. Few of my Facebook friends share so much annoying stuff I have Unfollowed them. As for sources of links shared, there are so many few appear often enough for me to do something about it. What I’m finding is that neither serves to suit my needs to just remove stuff I absolutely don’t care to be seeing, like Donald Trump.

Wouldn’t it be nice if the Facebook Newsfeed allowed you to remove content that had certain key words in the title or any text that gets shared? That might not be the main body of an article, as it’s a link that’s shared, with some summary text, not a whole article usually. It also wouldn’t be fair to expect Facebook to know what’s in the article and what’s not by screening text on the other end of the link. I’m just talking about text shared like statuses, text with links, tags, embedded tags like in pictures, etc.

Word screening could be full words, but that would eventually work against the user, I think. It’d have to be some combination like “Donald+Trump” as a rule, not just “Donald” or “Trump”. If just either one, you could eliminate a whole bunch of content you might want to see. That accidental screening would be the main deterrent to people using the key word filter, or Facebook to administer it. I get that. However, let people use it at their own risk. It’s search engine results for stuff people aren’t even looking for! It’s not like guns and alcohol and cigarettes that carry a lot more risk which people are allowed to use all the time!

Man, what I wouldn’t give to screen out content on my Newsfeed like “Donald Trump” and the “Film Tax” given all the nonsense involved in it that appear on my Newsfeed!

C’mon man! Whaddaya say, Facebook?

What Would Your 2015 in Preview Look Like?

Happy New Year, everyone!

Facebook recently did their annual year in review summary for people to post and/or customize if they wished to, which gave me an idea for a thought and/or writing exercise.

If you were to do a review of your 2015 a year from now, what would it look like?

What do you have coming up that you are planning? What are you hoping for in 2015, whether you do it or it happening to you? Long shot or slam dunk?

Take a little time to think about it all and I hope you’ll like what you come up with!

Best wishes for a joyous and prosperous 2015, everybody! Thanks for coming by my blog!