Facebook

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Facebook is 3 things: bad interface, bad management, and biased policies. I want a social network that gives me control of what I see and share -- both to my friends and to advertisers. I realize they need to make a buck, and my information is their product, but the point is you can still give users the illusions of control. But Zuckerberg seems to have falling into the egocentric pit that many young billionaires do, they think because they timed things well, and worked hard, and got lucky that they're smarter than everyone else. This makes them arrogant, less mature, and slower to grow than the average human: Dunning-Kruger, inflated by being surrounded by yes-men.


YAWYD! You are what you do. We can have the nicest words and intent, but what matters is our actions. So if a person (or company's) words and actions conflict, judge them by the actions. With that in mind, here's some of the things Facebook has done: Facebook : 27 items


2019.02.11 Gun Safe Ad - Since Facebook doesn't believe in the fucking constitution (or the first or second amendments), thus they ban gun commercials or more accurately, commercials that have legal firearms in them. So Liberty Safe (famous for Gun Safes) ran this advertisement that didn't show a gun in it, but got the message across anyways. Showing that most people are smarter that progressive douchebags that try to control them.

2019.02.25 Facebook Moderators - The Verge did an expansive expose on how crushing it is to be a Facebook Moderator, both because of the context you're exposed to, and the grueling conditions and environment you work in. To me it read as a slightly overstated truth: that lots of elements are true, but like an Oliver Stone film, if you pack every bad rumors/story into one piece, you're magnifying the horror and filtering out the rest. It's not untrue, but not necessarily a balanced piece or the whole truth either. I think many could work in this environment and be fine, but generation do-for-me (and participation trophy) isn't really prepared for this kind of job, or getting out of the safe space of their parents basement.

2019.05.23 Crossfit bans Facebook - Crossfit had enough of Facebooks arbitrary bans, unwritten rules, and general douchebaggery: so they banned them. This happened after Facebook deleted the 1.6M user group: Banting7DayMealPlan, without warning or explanation, and reinstated it with equally poor communication. While investigating the incident Crossfit realized how vile FB was as far as respecting Crossfits customer's privacy and security, and decided that their future/business should not be coupled with FB in any way. Whether you agree with their assessment, I think goodonya to Crossfit for putting corporate responsibility above money/promotion.

2019.06.01 David Dix - A friend of mine posts a lot of the traditional stuff, art photos, cat videos (just interesting videos) and the like, and he also has some Texas conservative views. So he got perma-banned for the high crime of posting 20 seconds of bunny video (with proper attribution and link-back), only 15 seconds is considered fair use. No warning, no real clarity, just your account has been removed for violating our terms.

2019.06.26 Hate Crime Hoaxes - The Wall Street Journal posted an article that explained Hate Crime Hoaxes are more common that one thinks (only about 33% of claims were real). I wasn't surprised as I documented dozens @FakeHate, and real hate crimes that are not tracked/recorded because they happened against conservatives @RealHate. There's also a well know site tracking them ( http://www.fakehatecrimes.org/ ). But the average person might not know of those. Facebook blocked the article (and theFakeHateCrimes site) as being against Facebooks community standards, which doesn't allow for truths that the left doesn't want to hear. It may or may not be caught as "a mistake", meaning their censorious algorithm trying to eliminate anti-PC thought, is a wee bit too aggressive. But that's like saying that a little oppression is OK.

2019.06.26 Illinois Gun Owners Together banned - Facebook banned popular ‘Illinois Gun Owners Together’ group for the high crime of? Being gun owners. Of course FB says that it was because of their cover photo (of a canon?), the group’s description (that they were gun owners who supported the 2A?), and address the posts that supposedly violate Facebook’s “community standards.” -- without of course the specific examples to know how to comply with that.

2019.07.14 Facebook bans St. Augustine - This quote from Saint Augustine, meant to convey the message to stop focusing on the sins of others and concentrate on their own, a rewording of Jesus' Gospel (Matthew 7:3), is way too conservative/contravercial for the algorythm of snowflakes at Facebook. And, of course, since you're not allowed human interaction, they won't explain why it so offensive as to get blocked/banned.
❝ Let us never assume that if we live good lives we will be without sin; our lives should be praised only when we continue to beg for pardon. But men are hopeless creatures, and the less they concentrate on their own sins, the more interested they become in the sins of others. They seek to criticize, not to correct. Unable to excuse themselves, they are ready to accuse others. ❞

Apple and the Google/Facebook fight - The short version is that Apple Enterprise agreement allows you to install apps directly (without using the store or the store rules), but the requirements are that this is only for internal employees (and can not be used to install on other users machines). As I setup the policy and some enforcement for my company, I'm 100% aware of this and warned internal employees extensively to NOT use this program license to subvert Apple's normal developer or beta program (TestFlight). (Don't side load customers like FB and Google were doing). Facebook and Google both broke those rules, willfully, and had their hand slapped (Apple turned their certificate off) as a warning: breaking all their corporate iOS Apps.

Blocking/Banning - While, blocking/banning in Social Media is the equivalent of book burning, I really don't have a problem with it: if a company is transparent, defines the terms, and documents how someone violated them. My problems are when they have double standards where they attack those on the right for being more informed but occasionally resorting to the tools of the left (name calling, etc), while they ignore far worse from "their side". And that's why I'm not a fan of Facebook, Twitter, Google, and others that want to arbiters of fairness, while only demonstrating hypocrisy.

Diaspora - Self-hosted Social Network founded in 2010 (funded via crowd funding / a Kickstarter campaign) in response to Facebook user spying. Diaspora is Greek for scattered (as in dispersed population).

Facebook & Congress -
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Mark Zuckerberg got called before congress (a couple times)... he got bullied by congress, for all the wrong things. Congress is not filled with the technically knowledgable. Mark dodged and lied about censorship and bias, he looked like a robot (which didn't help with the meme folks), but in the end, he defended the Internet, Freedom of speech, the gig-economy, and advertising... just poorly. Fortunately, the Congress was even less focused, so it may have been "good enough". But we have a long list of dodges, lies, and obfuscations. Those lies/obfuscations will come out over time, and that will work against him and the Internet Freedom in the long term, because those with the most invested in it (like Google, Facebook, Twitter) are such lousy stewards of Freedom of Speech.

Facebook Backlash - Facebook's obnoxiousness has not only lead to natural attrition (and a decade in users), but it started a movement called #DeleteFacebook... and some prominent names like Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak decided to lead by example and delete his presence. It doesn't have much momentum yet, and there isn't a good alternative despite a few I list at Alt-Tech section, but it's a strong hint that customer are taking notice and momentum is building.

Facebook Bias -
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🔥 There's many dozens of documented examples of FB bias and double-standard. If they get enough publicity, they're an "honest" mistake, and might get corrected -- but there are thousands that will never get that exposure and get blocked or censored, with the gross majority going in the far left's favor (or against conservatives, moderates, or inconvenient truths against liberal orthodoxy). Things like using the far left hate group, the SPLC, their political donations, bans for ads against conservative groups or movies, Jesus on the cross is considered too violent while Jews being strung up from nooses as part of the BDS or Palestine is fine, dozens of conservative folks getting banned while far more offensive/abusive lefties do not, Chick-Fil-A appreciation day is blocked but Antifa or BLM calls for violent protests are fine. And dozens of others. A few is a mistake, a few dozen is a pattern. Zuckerberg claims he's about diversity, just not diversity of thought.

Facebook Goodness - Of course not everything Facebook does is bad. I use the platform, and Social Networking has done some good things for society as well as bad. I'm hoping like advertising that it teaches people to be more skeptical and critical thinkers in the long run. (So there could be some long term net benefits as well as short term costs). The jury is still out. And on a less macro level, I even like some of the things Facebook does or pushes like the following:
    • 2017 - While FB has done a lousy job of FakeNews filtering (and what they filter is just conservative truths they don't like), but then they do some good by fighting even further left governments (like Germany) who want to decide what people can see/read, in the name of marxist fascism. Maybe that's just two socialists fighting over which one gets control of the proles, but it's something.
    • 2012 - Eduardo Saverin, Argentinean billionaire co-founder of Facebook Inc., renounced his U.S. citizenship to save hundreds of millions on his taxes when Facebook IPO'd. Demonstrating the problem with over-aggressive taxes, is a good thing, even if Zuckerberg didn't make a more overt display. But at least it's something.

Facebook Obstructs Justice - I lean civil libertarian, but I also believe in balances. From a cousin (Detective who went after child exploitation and other abusive family issues) would tell many stories about how Facebook ("Fuckerberg") would give him the run-around, while trying to stop pedophiles and child abductors -- and put their agenda above public safety. According to him (and some buddies in the Police), Facebook would change the name of their account services group -- so that after they had gotten the proper warrants, they would say, "Oh, sorry, that group doesn't exist", and they'd have to figure out the new organization name, and get the warrants re-issued and stuff like that. And they'd notify the suspects that the cops were going after their accounts, all aiding criminals. I like standing up for the little guy, and there's plenty of places that the Law can go too far. But I don't think amber-alerts and trying to protect child safety is is one of them.

Facebook data scandal -
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Facebook actively gives our data away to those they want to (like the Obama campaign in 2008, 2012, or Hillary Campaign in 2016). Then when Cambridge Analytica does some analysis that was in Facebooks guidelines, they change the rules after the fact, then help sensationalize a story about data abuse. Why? Because it might have been used by the Republicans, or [Gasp], Donald Trump's campaign (before the primary). Also, by pretending their data has more value than it does, it might inflate their ad value -- though evidence of successes are greatly exaggerated.

Facebook's Bad User Interface - What I want in a social network is all the things that FB is worst at:
    • Ability to customize what I see: who and topics.
    • Ability to customize what I share, how it looks, and who sees what.
    • Competent searching, organization, and management of my stuff
    • Competent feedback

Facebook: Hate speech - I got FB-slapped. Imagine my surprise when I go to check FB and am forced to re-log in, and get a, "This post goes against our Community Standards on hate speech" welcome dialog. Hate speech? Me? What are they talking about? It turns out the accession is a crime in FB land: so I was warned by automated systems. I appealed, and won. But the fact that guilt by algorithm or accusation is still not a good thing.

Facebook: Reported - Sunnyvale Dept of Public Safety is doing a gun buy-back Sept 29th (2018), along with a few other departments.There was arbitrage, undercutting, unintended consequences, and worst of all, FB was allowing the violation of their own rules (against buying/selling/advertising Guns). But the rules are for proles, not them.

Hate Agent - Breitbart got internal Facebook documents that show how they bring the Chinese Social Media scoring (or equivalent) to America. They have scoring on whether you're an agent of hate based on things like you associate with Christian organizations or people that are to the right of Stalin (they use far-left SPLC type enemies of left lists to see if you associate with the wrong people or organizations), they check to see if you use hateful symbols like cartoon frogs or OK hand gestures, if you said something in private that someone else claims you said (and sounds offensive to the left), if you like or support people like Candace Owens or terrorism expert Brigitte Gabriel (because they said true things the left doesn't like). If you've done any of those things (among other clearer symbols) then you get a score that might get you kicked off the platform.

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Instagram - Facebook bought Instagram, so what Instagram does, reflects on Facebook. And Instagram withholds likes from people, to get them to post more often, and is a known partisan outlet.

Mark Zuckerberg - While I have no problem with Zuckerberg personally, he has a reputation as an arrogant, contemptuous (of his customers), man-child billionaire. Sort of a "Steve Jobs knows best" view of the world, without having the talent to back it up. And Zuck lets his ego get him into things he knows nothing about (like politics). While all celebrities get mocked and Meme'd, Mark Zuckerberg has uniquely been able to parlay the bad will he's earned into being a parody of a caricature.

MeWe - When Zuckerberg called privacy a “social norm of the past” (circa 2012), Mark Weinstein created MeWe: a privacy-centric alternative to Facebook. 4M users (circa 03/2019) is not exactly 2B of FB, but it is a signal that there are a fair amount of people looking for Social Media that doesn't require you buy into Zuckerberg's crypto-fascism. (Though honestly, it's not even that hidden any more).

Political Ads -
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Facebook enacted a new policy, "We require Pages to be authorized to run ads about social issues, elections or politics."... and to become authorized you need to list the name/identity of the person(s) paying for the ad. (Not the voracity or quality of the article/post, just the identity of the poster). They of course have no such requirements for anything else, or I suspect if the political leaning of the ad is left wing enough. To the superficial thinkers, that sounds reasonable, "just trying to prevent trolling from foreign governments". While thinkers realize that foreign agents have resources to create fake identities and credit cards: so the only people it is really blocking are domestic folks that want to remain anonymous. And who would do that and why? Because the left has a rich history of violent threats and actions. I speak as someone that has had death threats mailed to my house. The latest leftist fad of doxxing and harassing anyone on the right is well known. From getting CEO's fired for having unpopular conservative views, to various other vandalism and assaults (like spitting or Andy Ngo Assault). The right knows to not put their families at risk by having their name on a leftist hit list, like FB's ads. Whereas the last major political assault on a lefty for being an ignorant progressive was when JFK when he was shot... by a further lefty for not being left enough.

Russians ads swung the 2016 election -
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There was like $6.8B spent on the election versus you have like $50,000 spent on a few troll ads on FB-- most of them were before/during the primaries (or after the election) and they were spent on things the Democrats usually support (Black Lives Matter, anti-America, anti-interventionism, etc). All things the Democrats support. They weren't campaigning for Trump, they were slamming everything, or trying to insight unrest, and undermine confidence in everything.

So when someone claims the Russians swung the election because of their Facebook ad spending, they are claiming that a few Russian trolls throwing random shit-memes are 68,000 times more effective in their ad spends than the entire American political system at swaying voters? If so, then they deserve to win.

The Creepy Line - This is a documentary on how Facebook and Google turn your data into their profit, and manipulate you in the process. It was a bit sensational in parts, but did a worthy job in letting people know who and why their data was captured, and what they did to manipulate you. Generally, it was liked by viewers -- but far lefties didn't like that it attacked leftist icons, or showed how these organizations colluded with the Hillary (and Obama) campaigns to rig elections.

Used gaming to rip-off kids & Parents - Internal documentation shows Facebook encouraged game developers to let children spend money without their parents’ permission, then refused to give the money back, and called this practice, "friendly fraud". Then ignored warnings from its own employees that it was bamboozling children. All according to unsealed court documents that are part of a class action lawsuit focused on how Facebook conducts business. Ouch!

Conclusion

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So I don't mind Facebook as a company. I think they probably have done more good than harm. Maybe. But they're an embarrassment to what they claim to be about -- and I hate hypocrisy/dishonesty. They're a lousy social network (from a UI and policy PoV), you couldn't pick a worse person than Mark Zuckerberg to be a steward of free speech or the Internet, they have lousy policies and hypocritical and inconsistent implementation of their "rules", and they'll lie for their agenda, poorly, and get caught -- ultimately doing more harm than good for the very causes they care about. They're the epitome of modern fake-liberalism. They were smart enough to beat the competition in the short term, and dumb enough to not beat their own egos or get how their actions would come back to bite them in the future (an echo chamber with zero introspection, and less diversity).

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