Tag Archives: comments

Exfoliate – Automates Removal Of Facebook Content

imageI like the idea that technology makes it easier to stay “connected”, but Facebook , Twitter and the like, take that connected feeling well past my comfort zone. While I do have a Facebook account, that account is dedicated to professional use only.

On balance, social networking is a good thing – it’s opened new doorways of opportunity to stay connected. But, with those positive opportunities, comes a new set of problems. With Facebook, those problems include a corporate philosophy that includes unethical behavior and bullying.

It’s unfortunate that Facebook users make the assumption that Facebook is essentially safe, and harmless – despite the fact that it’s anything but. Facebook is a scam and malware magnet without parallel.

Look, it’s natural for we humans to communicate, be friendly, and generous – and, Facebook is certainly a vehicle for that. But, the lack of privacy controls – or, perhaps more accurately – the ever changing privacy controls on Facebook, are cause for concern. There’s little doubt that Facebook’s privacy settings are a continuing source of controversy.

Regular reader, and good friend John B., recently pointed me to an application – Exfoliate (currently priced at 99 cents) – which can automate the removal of content from Facebook – content that perhaps you now regret posting.

From the site:

Exfoliate helps you remove old content from Facebook(tm). Content on social networking sites is a potential threat to your privacy. Removing this content by hand is tedious, and practically impossible. On your wall, Exfoliate can remove any post, comment, like, or photo, whether made by you or by others, older than a time you specify. Exfoliate can remove your own posts, comments, likes, and photos, from your friends’ walls too. You can choose the age of items you wish removed, and Exfoliate will remove any items that are at least as old as your selection from any of your selected content areas. It is important, though, to understand that Exfoliate truly deletes the content. It is not backed up and it is not recoverable – well, that’s kinda the point.

Exfoliate is easy to use. Here are the three simple steps:

1. Set your preferences. Indicate the age of the items you wish removed, from where (your wall and/or friends’ walls) you want the items removed, and the type(s) of items you want removed (posts, comments, likes, photos).

2. Log in to your Facebook account using Exfoliate.
3. Start the automatic cleaning process.

Application screen shots:

image

image

image

System requirements: Android: 2.2 and up.

Download at: The Android Marketplace

5 Comments

Filed under Android, Connected Devices, downloads, FaceBook, Privacy

“Officer Bubbles” Blows Threats At YouTube

imageI’m very supportive of the police (in most circumstances), and I’m well aware that they do courageous work. But, that support stops when unlawful petty tyranny is used to intimidate those who are engaged in exercising their right to protest against public policy.

The freedom to express an opinion, on public issues, is one of the most important foundation blocks of western democracy. That includes the right to protest against policies that some might consider pro-corporate policies of their government.

While Canadian Forces are fighting in Afghanistan, in defense of the right of the people of Afghanistan to choose democracy as their representative form of government, Canadians were recently exposed to their own government’s hypocrisy, writ large.

During the G20 summit held in Toronto in late June of this year, democracy took a beating – leading to the arrest of more than 1,100 protestors (including members of the media), who were then held in cages, open to the weather, for periods ranging from hours to days. All those held in these conditions, were denied access to legal counsel.

Common complaints by those who were held included – being left cold, hungry, without water, and without proper toilet facilities. A number of female protestors subsequently revealed, they had been sexually threatened by the police, strip searched, and taunted with threats of rape.

Virtually all of the caged protesters were released without charge, after having spent as much as several days in these conditions. Of those left facing charges, 6 have pleaded guilty to minor infractions, leaving 17 individuals still to be dealt with by the courts.

There are now a slew of ongoing lawsuits (totaling in excess of 200 Million dollars), claiming assault and battery, unlawful arrest and detention, malicious prosecution, and violations of constitutional rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. As well, police conduct is now being investigated by no fewer than three separate government inquiries.

A reasonable person could conclude that the Toronto police overreacted, and engaged in the wholesale suppression of democratic rights during the G20 summit. A powerful representation of this overreaction was illustrated by the now infamous “Officer Bubbles” incident, in which a Toronto policeman threatened to, and then subsequently arrested, a young woman for blowing bubbles.

The cell phone video of this incident “Officer Bubbles”- From Bubbles to Bookings, has proven to be a big hit on YouTube.

image

 

image

As well, this incident has led to the creation of some rather pointed cartoons, staring Officer Bubbles, which are widely available on the Internet.

image

image

Taking things from the sublime to the ridiculous, Officer Bubbles – Adam Josephs – has now launched a Million dollar defamation lawsuit against YouTube, in an attempt to force YouTube to divulge the identities of those who made a series of negative online comments. According to the lawsuit, there are 24 identities being sought.

In a show of resistance to this patently absurd situation, scores of new comments (including the one below), have been posted – many of which challenge Josephs to add their names as defendants to the lawsuit.

Hey officer bubbles.

It’s James Piper. Kitchener, Ontario.

Free speech reigns.

I suspect that this lawsuit will never make it into court, and should it do so, it will be dismissed. Hopefully, Officer Bubbles will be reminded by the courts, that attempting to suppress an online community through bully tactics, is a non starter.

I can’t imagine, that in a democracy, the right to comment on public issues would be infringed. But then again, that’s where this article started.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

12 Comments

Filed under Interconnectivity, Opinion, Recommended Web Sites, YouTube

How to Piss Off a Blogger

Those of us, who are old enough to have been part of the scene when Westerns were the most popular fare, on both TV and at the movies, are sure to remember the key words used by the “bad guy” to provoke the “hero” into a gun fight. “You’re a liar”, was the phrase which most often led to the climactic scene in which the “good guy” disposed of the “bad guy.”

image

An unwelcome experience with a comment this past weekend, in which the writer inferred that I was a liar, brought to mind this old fashioned, but common movie scenario.

I keep reading that rude, aggressive and disrespecting comments are to be expected if you are a Blogger. Fair enough; the world is full of socially inept, aggressive, and marginally functional individuals – but, to be called a liar, either directly or by implication, takes rudeness and aggressiveness to a new level.

Whether its social conditioning, or an evolutionary throwback, being called a liar almost always leads to an inevitable stress response in which discussion, civilities, and good manners, are replaced by an overwhelming urge to deal with the accuser face to face. Not reasonable, not responsible or practical, but nevertheless a common response, it seems.

For the most part, comments, on this Blog, tend to lead to interesting discussions which adds value for the reader. In almost every case, these comments are polite, civil, and non-confrontational.

Occasionally, readers will disagree with either a previous comment, or take issue with the content of an article. Again, even these differences in opinion are generally expressed in a civil manner and are likely to be non-confrontational.

Of the 4,000 + comments received on this site in the last year and a half, I can count on one hand the number that I have found to be offensive; comments that attacked me, or a previous commenter, on a personal level.

Frankly, the hallmark of those who launch a personal attack on an anonymous basis, without a physical presence, is that of a coward. Despite the assurance, readily given, that they would repeat the offensive comments, face to face; I think not.

This Blog serves as a reasonably accurate representation of who I am on a personal level. What warts I have, tend to be reflected in what I write about, and how I write.

This is my home on the Internet, albeit a public home, and just as I wouldn’t allow someone to call me a liar, or to be personally offensive to me, in my own home, I’ll be damned if I’ll allow someone to call me a liar, or to be personally offensive to me, in a Blog comment.

Reader dissent, or personal perspective, is not stifled here. This Blog has an open invitation policy for those who disagree with any content published here; in the form of a guest writer page. Dissenting opinion and diverse views, based on experience, are not only welcome, but encouraged.

Drama is best left to the movies, or the theater. I have neither the time, the patience, nor the interest, in becoming involved, at any level, in the skewed lives of those who think that aggressiveness, rudeness, or the lack of good manners, is an alternative form of expression.

Personal attacks aimed at me, guest writers, or previous commenters, have been in the past, and will continue to be – deleted.

17 Comments

Filed under Personal Perspective