Social Media Is The Mind Killer

For Paul Atreides of “Dune” fame, it was fear that was the mind killer….but we have gone further…..and in my opinion is far more dangerous than simple fear.

I have never been a fan of what is called “social media”……I think it is the most mind numbing activity a human can delve into….me I use Twitter as a news feed with very little interaction other than a few friends… media is being used to feed the wild thoughts and hopes of insane morons and lazy d/bags…..and then there is the so-called “influencers”…..A social media influencer is someone who wields that influence through social media. The form of influence can vary and no two influencers are the same. The right influencer can reach your target audience, build trust, and drive engagement. They create original, engaging content.

Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt suggested Wednesday that social networks are “amplifiers for idiots” and that the U.S. government’s new antitrust lawsuit targeting the search engine giant is baseless.

Schmidt’s remarks came during an interview at a technology conference hosted by the Wall Street Journal just a day after the Justice Department announced the landmark case.

Social network platforms, said Schmidt, are deserving of regulatory scrutiny.

“The most obvious candidate for regulation are the excesses in the social-networking space,” said Schmidt.

“The concept of social networks, broadly speaking, as amplifiers for idiots and crazy people is not what we intended,” he said, adding, “Unless the industry gets its act together in a really clever way, there will be regulation.”

The former executive’s comments came amid growing questions about efforts social media platforms including Facebook and Twitter have made to promote or censor news stories and hate speech and to control misinformation.

(Common Dreams)

These so-called “influencers” are slowly destroying the system that took 200+ years of work….and they are NOT all that….some spread lies and conspiracies that have NO foot in reality.

I think that the rise of social media has plunged us into age of darkness……and propaganda… you might imagine I have given my thoughts of this as well….in essence social media is killing the mind and the processes needed for rational thought.

Yes I am an old fart….and this is basically my social networking scheme….

Be well….be safe……

“lego ergo scribo”

Internet Kill Switch

Closing Thought–05Oct20

Most of us bloggers have made it known that we are part of the defense of a open internet…..but did you know that there is the possibility that Trump or a future president being able to turn off the internet on a whim?

Ever hear of the Communications Act or 1934? How about Section 706 of that Act?

Do not run for the Google button….I can help…..

The Act is here…..

Click to access 1934new.pdf

Section 706 is the most telling….if you are allergic to reading then here is the pertinent section…

SEC. 706. [47 U.S.C. 606] WAR EMERGENCY–POWERS OFPRESIDENT.(a) During the continuance of a war in which the United States is engaged,the President is authorized, if he finds it necessary for the national defense andsecurity, to direct that such communications as in his judgment may be essential tothe national defense and security shall have preference or priority with any carriersubject to this Act. He may give these directions at and for such times as he maydetermine, and may modify, change, suspend, or annul them and for any suchpurpose he is hereby authorized to issue orders directly, or through such person orpersons as he designates for the purpose, or through the Commission. Any carriercomplying with any such order or direction or preference or priority hereinauthorized shall be exempt from any and all provisions in existing law imposingcivil or criminal penalties, obligations, or liabilities upon carriers by reason ofgiving preference or priority in compliance with such order or direction.

I bring all this up because there are a couple of repres that are trying to prevent any interruptions…..

Civil libertarians on both sides of the aisle and in both chambers of Congress have joined forces to call for canceling a little-known executive power.

Sens. Rand Paul (R–Ky.), Ron Wyden (D–Ore), and Gary Peters (D–Mich.), along with Reps. Tulsi Gabbard (D–Hawaii) and Thomas Massie (R–Ky.), introduced bills this week to abolish the so-called “internet kill switch”—a sweeping emergency executive authority over communications technology that predates World War II.

“No president from either party should have the sole power to shut down or take control of the internet or any other of our communication channels during an emergency,” Paul argued in a statement announcing the Unplug the Internet Kill Switch Act.

Rand Paul, Tulsi Gabbard, Thomas Massie, Ron Wyden Join Forces To Unplug the President’s ‘Internet Kill Switch’

I am not a big fan of Rand Paul but I will applaud his attempt here…as well as the candidate that I was supporting until she dropped out Tulsi Gabbard.

Learn Stuff!

“lego ergo scribo”

That Internet!

I try to help my readers understand a wide array of subjects…..FYI if you will……today let’s look at the internet.

Looks like today is gonna be history day…..Learn Stuff!

Do you know where the internet idea came from?

Was it from the US military of the 1960s? Or maybe it was 1991 and from Tim Berners-Lee? Some think it was Al Gore…..well all those guesses would be mistaken.

The internet as we know it was started in 1991 when Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web. The idea, first developed by the US military in the 1960s, had been around forever, and not just because of science fiction, but rather a prediction made by a witch in the 15th century.

Ursula Southeil, better known as Mother Shipton, lived during the 15th century but her predictions had consequences even to the 19th century. According to The Vintage News, Ursula was born in a cave in 1488. Her mother, reports The Yorkshire Post, was a 15-year old orphan named Agatha. People at the time treated the small family horribly, especially because young Ursula supposedly had a large crooked nose, a hunched back, and twisted legs. Ursula studied the forest and discovered she could tell the future.

After she married a builder named Toby Shipton, Ursula, now called Mother Shipton, began going around towns telling futures and making prophecies. Her prediction “around the world, men’s thoughts will fly. Quick as the twinkling of an eye” is widely believed to be about the internet. Her other predictions included the Black Plague, the Great Fire of London, the defeat of the Spanish Armada, and the end of the world.

Now the record has been corrected.

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Are You A Bad Person?

If you spend all your time on social media then you may well be a dickhead.

Recently a loyal follower of IST, Pete wrote a post about the social media craze of misspelling just about everything……

And then I read an article about social media and being a bad person……

Your addiction to social media is probably making you a jerk.

Addictions to Facebook, Snapchat, and other platforms aren’t just making you hungry for more likes and recognition; it’s also negatively affecting others in your lives, according to new research.

Researchers from Michigan State University and California State University-Fullerton found that there are dark sides to social media use including an enhanced call to be “cruel” and “callous online.” Dar Meshi, a cognitive neuroscientist and assistant professor at Michigan State University, said that researchers were interested in finding out both the benefits and problems with social media use.

I had noticed that there is a wealth of dickheads on social media….and now we can point to this study to explain just why they are such d/bags.

Don’t get me wrong…..I can be a dickhead….but usually after someone has attacked me or insulted me….I try to keep things civil but there is always one that will press that one remaining nerve and I lash back.

AS far as social media goes….I am on Twitter…..I use it as a news feed…..I do not go any further….no Facebook, no Instagram, No any of it.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Closing Thought–27Jan20

Social media….vintage social media…..

I am an old fart so I remember the rotor telephone, stamps, photos printed on paper,….but enough of the that …let me show you “our” social media…

And somehow we made it to the 21st century without having told everyone every minute of our lives… were “famous” back in the Dark Ages for actually doing something exceptional…not because you did something stupid and put it on-line for all to see.

This silly thing, social media, is how we got to this spot in history and the turn will define the next decade……

“lego ergo scribo”

Closing Thought–26Dec19

Lots has been written about the problems we all suffer if we use the internet….the tracking of our visits, etc….

If you are worried then you need to read this article I found….

Here are some mildly terrifying things I learned when I recently did an online privacy checkup: Google was sharing my creditworthiness with third parties. If you want Target to stop sharing your information with marketers, you have to call them. And, my favorite: If you would like Hearst, the publishing giant, to stop sharing your physical mailing address with third parties, you have to mail a physical letter with your request to the company’s lawyers.

Cool cool cool.

I was inspired by this story my colleague Kashmir Hill wrote this month about the company Sift, which collects your consumer data and analyzes then scores your transactions.


I do not care that they track me.  I do no business on-line that could be used against me…..I am an old radical so I am use to watching what I do or say for the government is listening. (COINTELPRO).

Bernie is doing what all politicians do….promise.

Vowing to take on the telecom giants that have monopolized the web for private profit, Sen. Bernie Sanders on Friday unveiled a $150 billion plan to make the internet a public utility, break up and tightly regulate corporate behemoths like Verizon and AT&T, and provide high-speed broadband for everyone in the United States.

“It is outrageous that across the country millions of Americans and so many of our communities do not have access to affordable high-speed internet,” Sanders, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, said in a statement. “Access to the internet is a necessity in today’s economy, and it should be available for all.”

Sanders vowed that, if elected president in 2020, he will ensure that every American household has affordable and high-speed internet by the end of his first term.

I like the idea….but this is a non-starter…..big business will, never allow such a move.

Just thought you might like to know.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

The Death Of Local Journalism

I use to read my local paper it was an excellent source of news and opinions from around the area……it is now about 5 pages and is printed in a city 180 miles away…….the paper is in essence……dead……dead….dead…….

Now it is more about the ad dollar than the news……I would wager that this is a similar occurrence around the country.

The rise of social media and the internet has done what rival papers tried to do for decades…….killed local journalism…..and in-turn has fed the rise of the divisiveness of the nation……

In May 2017, former Republican Rep. Leonard Lance crossed party lines and voted against the GOP health care repeal, a proposal deeply unpopular with voters in New Jersey’s 7th District, which he had represented in Washington for nearly a decade.

A year later, Lance again joined Democrats to oppose the Republican tax cut bill. Although he supported portions of the bill and its overall intent, he decided to vote against it because it would hurt the ability of his wealthiest constituents to deduct the value of their state and local taxes.

Put simply, Lance was doing what a member of Congress is supposed to do: look out for the individual needs of the people who live in his district. Then he lost his reelection bid.

Once Bill Clinton allowed corporations to own the news the purveyors of propaganda took hold and now the MSM sets the dialog with the nation….it is not the voter that picks the candidate but rather the MSM chooses who is presented to them as the candidates.

The death of local journalism has signaled the end of any bi-partisanship ever……

In the long run we voters pay the price for the death of local journalism and that price is partisanship and the election of mental midgets that disguise their mental deficiencies with mindless slogans.

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Facebook In The News

Closing Thought–03May19

Everybody’s favorite site, Facebook, well almost everyone’s….I have NEVER used Facebook and will never in the future….I do not feel the need to share that much of my life……

Poor Zuck has had his bad news in the past couple of years….from investigations to calls for his baby, Facebook, to be broken up…..The Zuck has fought governmental control until recently…..with all his troubles he now wants the government to handle all of it for him…….typical BS as usual from him.

Facebook made the news by banning hate speech and hate sites from their media……

Facebook announced Thursday afternoon that it had designated some high-profile people, including Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, who’s notorious for using anti-Semitic language, and right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, as “dangerous” and said it will be purging them from its platforms.Jones and his media outlet InfoWars had previously been banned from Facebook (FB) in August 2018, but had maintained a presence on Instagram, which is owned by Facebook. On Thursday, Jones and InfoWars will be barred from Instagram as well. Other people banned on Thursday included Paul Nehlen, an anti-Semite who unsuccessfully ran for Congress in 2016 and 2018, and fringe right-wing media personalities Laura Loomer, Milo Yiannopoulos and Paul Joseph Watson.

Of course I think this is a good thing….but I also see where a 1st amendment battle may ensue…..

Then there is more bad news for Facebook….it appears that their platform has been used for the sell of illegally obtain artifacts from Iraq and Syria……….

Facebook is being used by networks of traffickers to buy and sell looted antiquities, the BBC has learned.

Private groups also discuss how to illegally excavate ancient tombs, according to research by academics.

Facebook says it has removed 49 groups following the BBC’s investigation.

The BBC has also seen evidence that antiquities are still being smuggled from Iraq and Syria into Turkey, despite a police clampdown and the retreat of the Islamic State group.

Read that!

Facebook closed down 49 sites after the BBC investigation. They do not act until someone else does the heavy lifting for them.

Sorry…time for Facebook to be broken up into manageable sites for they are not so today. What do they do for the money they make?

The time for me to step back and get my stuff ready for the weekend…..

Who Said That?

Breaking News:  Sorry to break with IST tradition and posting on the news of the day on weekends…but this is kinda important….

Before I begin I feel I must update my readers on the Christmas gift that Federal employees got yesterday…..

……a high-profile meeting was raising hopes that a government shutdown could be averted, reports Politico. Mike Pence, Jared Kushner, and acting Trump chief of staff Mick Mulvaney met with Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer at the Capitol to try to forge a compromise on the president’s demand for $5 billion to build a border wall. “I’m feeling better now than I did an hour ago because that meeting is occurring,” said GOP Sen. John Cornyn of Texas. “The fact that that’s happening represents progress.”

The meeting comes after Senator Majority Leader Mitch McConnell rejected the idea of changing the Senate’s filibuster rules to push through a bill containing the border money with a simple majority, reports the Washington Post. President Trump had urged him to do so earlier in the day. A week ago, Trump said he would be “proud” to have a shutdown over the wall impasse, but on Friday he made a reversal of sorts, reports the Hill. “The Democrats now own the shutdown!” he tweeted. Late in the afternoon, the president also tweeted an image of what the barrier might look like: “A design of our Steel Slat Barrier which is totally effective while at the same time beautiful!”

Now the blame game begins but that will be little comfort to the many fed employees that were laid off just days before Christmas…..sadness given as a gift is pure pathetic theatrics.

Who will blink first?

Sorry for the interruption……..

Saturday and some things I read just make me laugh and then worry…..the way that we seem to give technology more and more power over our lives worries me.

As Christmas approaches there is always the dash for that perfect gift to slip under the tree for the whole family…..

Look under the tree……what is that little box with no name on it?

Echo, Google or Alexa?

The trend these days is to have your home wired so that the refrigerator gives you the time, your TV can start your car for you on cold days, and it goes on and on…..

Personally, I refuse to give my toilet the power to lock and unlock doors (humor not real)… can be a wonderful thing….within limits….but beyond my dislike what could go wrong with speaking a command and your coffee maker turns on?

After a man in Germany contacted Amazon to request any a copy of any data the company had collected on him—his right under the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation, Gizmodo notes—he was surprised to receive 1,700 audio files in response. Why? Because he doesn’t use Alexa, Amazon’s voice assistant that is used with its smart devices and that is known for listening in on people that use it. According to an article in Germany’s c’t magazine, the audio files (which were sent to the customer along with the data he likely expected—files relating to his Amazon searches) turned out to be recordings of a complete stranger, who used Alexa via his Amazon Echo, Fire box, smartphone, and smart appliances. The man also received a PDF transcript of the stranger’s recorded voice commands.

The customer says when he contacted Amazon about receiving data from someone else, no one responded, but the link to the data was disabled. He had already downloaded a copy of it, and got in touch with c’t. From the recordings, the magazine was able to locate the person whose data the man had received, and even identify the other man’s girlfriend. The man was “shocked” to find out his data had been sent to a stranger, and noted that Amazon had not alerted him to the breach. Amazon finally got in touch with both men only after being contacted by c’t. As the incident started making headlines, an Amazon spokesperson told Reuters, “This unfortunate case was the result of a human error and an isolated single case. We resolved the issue with the two customers involved and took measures to further optimize our processes. As a precautionary measure we contacted the relevant authorities.” The incident is one of multiple reasons Gizmodo recently published a post entitled, “You Should Return the Amazon Echo You Bought and Get a Better Gift.” (Alexa may play a role in a murder case.)

If I want the “Jones'” to know what goes on inside my house then I will invite them over for a chat.

I am sure some of my younger readers will be in favor of this technology and if they would like to defend please do so…I am open to the experience.

If you are going to be traveling on this holiday please drive safely and take care of yourself the flu is out there looking for a body to invade.

Have a Day!

Be well, be safe!

A Flash from the past……

Peace Out!

Closing Thought–27Nov18

How many of my readers were on the internet in 1999?

Well I was and I participated in an experiment into democracy……

Democracy on the internet…….

in 1999 I felt that the internet was the future of democracy and voting…….now a look back into those days……

In 1999, the organization responsible for the backbone of the public internet, ICANN, tried to build a democracy.

In theory it was utopian: Internet users from around the world would register as at-large members of ICANN, elect delegates to represent their continent, and these delegates would sit on the ICANN board of directors. The structure of internet would be governed by its users.

ICANN was in a position to do this because it’s in the business of determining how people are found on the World Wide Web. It governs the directory that every computer uses for directions to the right web page on the right server. If you register a web page, it gets registered by an ICANN-approved registrar. This proposal wasn’t just about who could register a .edu domain versus a .org, but instead who would be allowed to have a place on the web at all.

I still think that the internet could be used for good but that would require a free internet and there are too many working to make sure that is NEVER the case.

Any thoughts?