…a joke. A bad joke, I might add.
As I previously wrote, I’m currently spending no small amount of effort to ‘push content’â€”timeless prose such as thisâ€”onto various ‘social networking’ sites. The idea being that many people now ‘live’ inside portals such as Facebook and can’t be buggered to visit individual sites such as mine.
If that is the case, then, in all seriousness, I need someone to educate me as to why I would want to live in such a virtual Newark, NJ. And by that, I mean that nothing works very well.
First off, and this in itself is fatal: It’s slow.Â I mean really slow. I cannot even imagine using it over dial-up. Or maybe I can because it responds over broadband like Compuserve used to over dial-up. Now that’s progress!
And then there are the crashes. Various ‘apps’ crash all the time. To their marketing credit, they don’t feel all that bad because you get these nice calm messages saying that ‘something went wrong’, which is, I guess, progress over a Windows GPF, but the net effect is the same. You can’t get anything done.
Next, is it just me or is the look totallyÂ crappy? I’m no threat to Project Runway, but this thing looks positively Soviet in it’s boxiness.Â And not very customisable from what I can tell.
And then there are the ads. The ads are everywhere. They are insidious. In this virtual world product placements are everywhere. Even after you leave? I mysteriously begin receiving targeted spam e-mail based on stuff I’ve clicked on inside Facebook. That’s dirty pool. It means that my privacy cannot be maintained in any way. Yeah, I know it’s a ‘social networking’ site, but when I leave Facebook, I expect to leave Facebook. I don’t expect it to follow me around.
What kills me is their lame attempt at ‘security’.Â They want me to upload a copy of my passport before I have permission to post a song! They want to text my cell phone to verify my identity before I can upload a video! This is as pointless and gratuitous as taking my shoes off at the airport. It gives them info on me, but does nothing to guarantee that I am who I say I am. (For example, when asked for my passport, I uploaded a piccie of a lowland gorilla. Worked fine.)
At best Facebook is a pleasant distraction. It seems like The Emperor’s New Clothes; mainly a fad. It may have real benefits, but it’s a very worrisome agglomeration of information and power for what is, let’s face it,Â just a bit o’ fun for most people.
People have always been concerned about Big Brother taking over through information control. But my concern is that Facebook really is getting far closer to Neuromancer than any government program of which I am aware. Most worrisome to me is the fact that, we’re not having our privacy taken from us; we’re giving it away.
Oh, but the main thing is that it’s really, really slow today. That’s my main complaint.