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9/11 was a bank heist

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Cult Watch
See other Cult Watch Articles

Title: "This Is Serious": Facebook Begins Its Downward Spiral
Source: Vanity Fair
URL Source: https://www.vanityfair.com/news/201 ... rberg-facebook-downward-spiral
Published: Jan 23, 2018
Author: Nick Bilton
Post Date: 2018-01-29 09:53:34 by Tooconservative
Keywords: None
Views: 371
Comments: 42

Years ago, long before Mark Zuckerberg became Mark Zuckerberg, the young founder reached out to a friend of mine who had also started a company, albeit a considerably smaller one, in the social-media space, and suggested they get together. As Facebook has grown into a global colossus that connects about a third of the globe, Zuckerberg has subsequently assumed a reputation as an aloof megalomaniac deeply out of touch with the people who use his product. But back then, when he only had 100 million users on his platform, he wasn’t perceived that way. When he reached out to my friend, Zuckerberg was solicitous. He made overtures that suggested a possible acquisition—and once rebuffed, returned with the notion that perhaps Facebook could at least partner with my friend’s company. The chief of the little start-up was excited by the seemingly harmless, even humble, proposition from the growing hegemon. Zuckerberg suggested that the two guys take a walk.

Taking a walk, it should be noted, was Zuckerberg’s thing. He regularly took potential recruits and acquisition targets on long walks in the nearby woods to try to convince them to join his company. After the walk with my friend, Zuckerberg appeared to take the relationship to the next level. He initiated a series of conference calls with his underlings in Facebook’s product group. My friend’s small start-up shared their product road map with Facebook’s business-development team. It all seemed very collegial, and really exciting. And then, after some weeks passed, the C.E.O. of the little start-up saw the news break that Facebook had just launched a new product that competed with his own.

Stories about Facebook’s ruthlessness are legend in Silicon Valley, New York, and Hollywood. The company has behaved as bullies often do when they are vying for global dominance—slurping the lifeblood out of its competitors (as it did most recently with Snap, after C.E.O. Evan Spiegel also rebuffed Zuckerberg’s acquisition attempt), blatantly copying key features (as it did with Snapchat’s Stories), taking ideas (remember those Winklevoss twins?), and poaching senior executives (Facebook is crawling with former Twitter, Google, and Apple personnel). Zuckerberg may look aloof, but there are stories of him giving rousing Braveheart-esque speeches to employees, sometimes in Latin. Twitter, Snap, and Foursquare have all been marooned, at various points, because of Facebook’s implacable desire to grow. Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus VR, and dozens of others are breathing life because they assented to Facebook’s acquisition desires. Meanwhile, Zuckerberg moved quickly to circumnavigate regulations before governments realized the problems that Facebook created—and certainly before they understood exactly how dangerous a social network can be to their citizens’ privacy, and to a democracy as a whole.

From a business standpoint, Facebook’s barbarism seemed to work out well for the company. The social network is worth over half-a-trillion dollars, and Zuckerberg himself is worth some $76 billion. Facebook has some of the smartest engineers and executives in the entire industry. But the fallout from that success has also become increasingly obvious, especially since the 2016 election, which prompted a year of public relations battles over the company’s most fundamental problems. And now, as we enter 2018, Zuckerberg is finally owning up to it: Facebook is in real trouble.

During the past six months alone, countless executives who once worked for the company are publicly articulating the perils of social media on both their families and democracy. Chamath Palihapitiya, an early executive, said social networks “are destroying how society works”; Sean Parker, its founding president, said “God only knows what it’s doing to our children’s brains.” (Just this weekend, Tim Cook, the C.E.O. of Apple, said he won’t let his nephew on social media.) Over the past year, people I have spoken to internally at the company have voiced concerns for what Facebook is doing (or most recently, has done) to society. Many begin the conversation by rattling off a long list of great things that Facebook inarguably does for the world—bring people and communities together, help people organize around like-minded positive events—but, as if in slow motion, those same people recount the negatives. Unable to hide from the reality of what social media has wrought, Facebook has been left with no choice but to engage with people and the media to explore if it is possible to fix these problems. Zuckerberg determined that his 2018 annual challenge would be fixing his own Web site, noting that “the world feels anxious and divided,” and that Facebook might—just maybe—be contributing to that. “My personal challenge for 2018 is to focus on fixing these important issues,” he wrote. Now, the company has said it’s going to change the focus of the site to be less about news and more about human connections.

The question, of course, revolves around this underlying motivation. Is Zuckerberg saying this because he really does worry what the world might look like tomorrow if we continue headed in the direction we’re going? Is Facebook eliminating news from its site because it realizes that spotting “fake news” is too difficult to solve—even for Facebook? Or, as some people have posited to me, is Facebook rethinking the divide it has created in order to keep growing? After all, much of Zuckerberg’s remaining growth opportunity centers upon China, and the People’s Republic won’t let any product (digital or otherwise) enter its borders if there’s a chance it could disrupt the government’s control. Why would the Chinese Politburo open its doors to a force that could conspire in its own Trumpification or Brexit or similar populist unrest?

There’s another theory floating around as to why Facebook cares so much about the way it’s impacting the world, and it’s one that I happen to agree with. When Zuckerberg looks into his big-data crystal ball, he can see a troublesome trend occurring. A few years ago, for example, there wasn’t a single person I knew who didn’t have Facebook on their smartphone. These days, it’s the opposite. This is largely anecdotal, but almost everyone I know has deleted at least one social app from their devices. And Facebook is almost always the first to go. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and other sneaky privacy-piercing applications are being removed by people who simply feel icky about what these platforms are doing to them, and to society.

Some people are terrified that these services are listening in to their private conversations. (The company’s anti-privacy tentacles go so far as to track the dust on your phone to see who you might be spending time with.) Others are sick of getting into an argument with a long-lost cousin, or that guy from high school who still works in the same coffee shop, over something that Trump said, or a “news” article that is full of more bias and false facts. And then there’s the main reason I think people are abandoning these platforms: Facebook knows us better than we know ourselves, with its algorithms that can predict if we’re going to cheat on our spouse, start looking for a new job, or buy a new water bottle on Amazon in a few weeks. It knows how to send us the exact right number of pop-ups to get our endorphins going, or not show us how many Likes we really have to set off our insecurities. As a society, we feel like we’re at war with a computer algorithm, and the only winning move is not to play.

There was a time when Facebook made us feel good about using the service—I used to love it. It was fun to connect with old friends, share pictures of your vacation with everyone, or show off a video of your nephew being extra-specially cute. But, over time, Facebook has had to make Wall Street happy, and the only way to feed that beast is to accumulate more, more, more: more clicks, more time spent on the site, more Likes, more people, more connections, more hyper-personalized ads. All of which adds up to more money. But as one recent mea culpa by an early Internet guru aptly noted, “What if we were never meant to be a global species?”

If Facebook doesn’t solve these problems, and I’m not sure If it actually can, the outcomes could be devastating for the company. As Tim Wu, a professor at Columbia Law School and former senior adviser to the Federal Trade Commission, told me recently, Facebook is in real potential trouble of running into regulatory hazards, either at home or abroad. Whether it’s over hate speech or privacy protections, governments all around the world are exploring how to stop social sites, specifically Facebook, from enabling more harm to spread through society. Wu predicts that if the U.S. government turns its sights on Facebook, it could quiet easily break it up, where Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp, and Facebook are run by four different people. Scott Galloway, professor of marketing at N.Y.U. Stern School of Business, echoed this sentiment in a separate interview with me last year, where he predicted that out of the five big tech companies (Google, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, and Facebook), Facebook is the most at risk of seeing a legal hammer come crashing down on its platform. “This is serious. Either it’s this government, or the European government, but this is going to get real,” Galloway told me.

It’s impossible to predict where Facebook and other social sites will be in five years. Will they be largely extinct? Will they be more akin to Netflix, or like TV channels we can group-comment on? Will they have fixed their problems and be thriving? Just a couple years ago, most people believed Twitter was dead on arrival, and then Donald Trump came along and made it his 24-hour mouthpiece. Facebook could go in this direction, saved by its foray into scripted content, or the mass adoption of virtual reality. Or, it could be split up into half-a-dozen pieces.

But one thing is certain. For years, Zuckerberg and Facebook have tromped through the technology landscape and demolished everything that stood in the way. This was done without any reprisal, without any consequence. In fact, each time the company destroyed a competitor, or found a way around traditional regulatory concerns, the valuation of Facebook would go up. But now, it seems that all of those actions are coming back to haunt the company, and social media as a whole. Facebook was always famous for the sign that hung in its offices, written in big red type on a white background, that said “Move Fast and Break Things.” And every time I think about the company, I realize it has done just that—to itself. But I think that Zuckerberg, and the people who work at Facebook, also realize that the things they have broken are things that are going to be very difficult to put back together.


Poster Comment:

Hugh and serous.

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#1. To: Tooconservative (#0)

I have an FB account, but I don't like it, really. I've unfollowed relatives that post too much political content I don't agree with. I've spent too much time on it also, after which I would change the PW to some huge random number sequence so I'd stay off it. But then I get back on out of special, particular necessity. I'm on it now but notice there is much less political stuff on it for me to wade through, and there's no endless stream of junk entertainment info too. I also found that when posting something, you can now filter who it goes to, which is a new feature, I guess in response to the points in the article. That might be an indicator of having passed it's peak.

It used to be and maybe still is a big time waster. I used to wonder if the FB stock price could be used as a forecaster of the unemployment rate, as the more unemployment there is, the more FB would be used and the higher the stock price would go. Might be something too that, actually.

With Brexit, Trump and popularism growing worldwide, I can see big megacorps like FB falling into ruin as spillover from that.

Pinguinite  posted on  2018-01-29   11:19:56 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: Tooconservative, rlkk (#0)

Chamath Palihapitiya, an early executive, said:

"[Social networks] are destroying how society works."

Sean Parker, its founding president, said:

“God only knows what it’s doing to our children’s brains.”

Liberator: "JUST as planned."

Scott Galloway, professor of marketing at N.Y.U. Stern School of Business, echoed this sentiment in a separate interview with me last year, where he predicted that out of the five big tech companies (Google, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, and Facebook), Facebook is the most at risk of seeing a legal hammer come crashing down on its platform. (“This is [hugh and]serious.)

Naah. Wishful thinking. Too much $$$ spread out at the legislative and judicial levels for Facebook or other social media platforms to face any legal restrictions. And besides, turning brains to mush and creating a psychological dependency out of cell phones and social media have become addictions not much different than narcotics.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-29   11:50:14 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#3. To: Pinguinite (#1) (Edited)

I have an FB account, but I don't like it, really.

Wow. YOU??

I've unfollowed relatives that post too much political content I don't agree with. I've spent too much time on it also, after which I would change the PW to some huge random number sequence so I'd stay off it. But then I get back on out of special, particular necessity.

Friends of mine for YEARS have complained that their alleged "friends" and relatives use Facebook as a political sledgehammer with which to bludgeon OTHER alleged friends and relatives -- vicious stuff they'd never say to their faces. FB in that context has been a mechanism for liberal-progressive bullies and cowards to gang up on conservatives. FB really took off during 0bama's 8-year reign of terror.

With Brexit, Trump and popularism growing worldwide, I can see big megacorps like FB falling into ruin as spillover from that.

I hope you're right. Perhaps the tables can be turned.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-29   11:55:48 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#4. To: Liberator (#3) (Edited)

The writing is on the wall for FB... well it would be if they weren't censoring links to the writing anyhow.

FB's bots are actively censoring comments with links to external sources - especially youtube sources like Jordan Peterson.

This significantly debilitates utilization of information available towards the desirable, truthful, end...

"Truth is great and will prevail unless disarmed of her natural weapons - free argument and debate" --Thomas Jefferson

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   13:04:37 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#5. To: VxH (#4) (Edited)

The writing is on the wall for FB... well it would be if they weren't censoring links to the writing anyhow.

Interesting. Hope you're right.

FB's bots are actively censoring comments with links to external sources - especially youtube sources like Jordan Peterson.

This significantly debilitates utilization of information available towards the desirable, truthful, end...

So you're saying that once word get around that they are selectively censoring and trifling with non-Leftist/Dem posts that the conservative-centrists will react by all abandon the FB ship?

I despise these fascists. They aren't interesting in the truth, never have been.

Q: Why doesn't a yuge conservative social media site emerge?

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-29   13:18:15 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#6. To: Liberator (#2)

Naah. Wishful thinking. Too much $$$ spread out at the legislative and judicial levels for Facebook or other social media platforms to face any legal restrictions. And besides, turning brains to mush and creating a psychological dependency out of cell phones and social media have become addictions not much different than narcotics.

I think the EU will act. They took on Microsoft multiple times (IE as default browser, WMP as default media player, default search engine, etc.). They already forced Google to reveal the info they hold on you (sign into your Google account, you can see it). And China will impose requirements.

Facebook is global but they can't really operate a different Facebook for all these different regions very well.

Tooconservative  posted on  2018-01-29   13:19:32 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#7. To: Tooconservative (#6) (Edited)

I think the EU will act. They took on Microsoft multiple times (IE as default browser, WMP as default media player, default search engine, etc.). They already forced Google to reveal the info they hold on you (sign into your Google account, you can see it). And China will impose requirements.

That's interesting. Blowback even from China. But the EU challenges don't make sense in that they are all about censorship and control.

Are you sure this isn't just a ploy, propaganda by EU authoritahs that give the impression of battling FOR the citizenry? (btw, I refuse to establish a G00gle acct, use Google or their email service.)

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-29   13:24:08 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#8. To: Liberator (#5)

So you're saying that once word get around that they are selectively censoring and trifling with non-Leftist/Dem posts that the conservative-centrists will react by all abandon the FB ship?

Timely article:

www.wsj.com/articles/what...ia-neutrality-1517175805? mod=searchresults&page=2&pos=2

Back in the days when I was a TeamB moderator on NNTP, we all understood the spirit of the 1st amendment - especially in the context of the contrast between the USA and the USSR. Sometimes messages were moved out of the tech forums into non-tech, be we never deleted people's thoughts.

There's a thin line, historically, separating the deletion of thoughts from the progressive deletion of the thinkers.

Observe the Khmer Rouge: "no bad seeds". I think young Americans are dangerously close to that mentality - and FB reflects that.

Q: Why doesn't a yuge conservative social media site emerge?

Good question. I'd suspect navigating the patent minefield is going to present significant challenges:

patents.justia.com/company /facebook

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   13:40:08 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#9. To: Tooconservative, Lliberator (#6)

Facebook is global but they can't really operate a different Facebook for all these different regions very well.

Maybe Trump's nationalized 5G plan should include transparent infrastructure to facilitate social networking.

The USPS, for all its faults, doesn't censor the thoughts it facilitates communication of.

"Government of the people, by the people, for the people"

It's OUR DARPAnet. Not Zuckerturd's.

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   13:46:27 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#10. To: VxH (#8)

There's a thin line, historically, separating the deletion of thoughts from the progressive deletion of the thinkers.

Observe the Khmer Rouge: "no bad seeds". I think young Americans are dangerously close to that mentality - and FB reflects that.

That it does. That thin line is obviously crossed. Now what to expect? /rhetoric

(Q: "Why doesn't a yuge conservative social media site emerge?")

I'd suspect navigating the patent minefield is going to present significant challenges...

Patent number: 9876844

Abstract: Systems and techniques for transferring one or more files by connecting to a communications system host; sending, to a client connected to the communications system host, a request to transfer one or more files; when a client permits access to the one or more files, establishing a direct socket connection from the client and bypassing the communications system host; and initiating the transfer of the one or more files from the client over the direct socket connection.

Type: Grant

Filed: January 8, 2015

Wow. MIND BLOWN. They got an actual patent on social media TECHNIQUE and system??

What next? A patent granted for the eating, breathing, and all sensory modes?

I noticed the date(s) of FB's patents. They should never have been granted. Of course 0bama and his machination would entertain this BS.

The only think that can be done is a gubmint anti-trust lawsuit launched against what is an obvious monopoly.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-29   13:57:26 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#11. To: VxH, Tooconservative (#9)

It's OUR DARPAnet. Not Zuckerturd's.

It should be noted.

Trump needs desperately to address the siege and monopoly of social media by Leftist-NWO elements.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-29   13:59:08 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#12. To: Liberator (#10) (Edited)

They got an actual patent on social media TECHNIQUE and system??

Quack Waddle.. sounds a lot like another "TECHNIQUE":

https://www.photoattorney.com/photographers-patents-event- photos-declared-invalid/

Would FB's patent stand up any better? - maybe maybe not. But Patent trolls like Wolf managed to extort a lot of competitors out of business before he finally got his arse tossed.

They're banking on competitors not having the balls or deep pockets required to take them on.

Screw 'em. I think Jefferson and our other American Founders would approve of public infrastructure that secures the right of individuals to articulate our thoughts without the approval of our would-be owners.

"COMMERCE BETWEEN MASTER AND SLAVE IS DESPOTISM"

The 5G National Superhighway should facilitate the spirit of the 1st amendment - not the tyrannical spirit Zuckeberg Inc. are pulling out of their mighty, dominion assuming, arse.

"ESTABLISH THE LAW 5G NETWORK FOR EDUCATING THE COMMON PEOPLE"



"I HAVE SWORN UPON THE ALTAR OF GOD ETERNAL HOSTILITY TO EVERY FORM OF TYRANNY OVER THE MIND OF MAN" 
--Thomas Jefferson 

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   14:18:03 ET  (2 images) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#13. To: Liberator (#7)

But the EU challenges don't make sense in that they are all about censorship and control.

It makes sense to fight for control. Why just automatically cede control of society to people with tech degrees and big bucks? There is no reason to, and there are good reasons not to. It's a question of who will be master, elected governments or tech tycoons. The answer is elected governments.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-01-29   14:22:48 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#14. To: Vicomte13, Liberator, TooConservative (#13)

and there are good reasons not to.

"COMMERCE BETWEEN MASTER AND SLAVE IS _____________?"

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   14:26:20 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#15. To: VxH (#14)

"COMMERCE BETWEEN MASTER AND SLAVE IS _____________?"

Illegal. Because slavery is illegal.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-01-29   14:28:00 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#16. To: Vicomte13 (#15) (Edited)

>>>>>"COMMERCE BETWEEN MASTER AND SLAVE IS _____________?"

Illegal. Because slavery is illegal.

des·pot·ism
ÈdespYÌtizYm/
noun
  1. the exercise of absolute power, especially in a cruel and oppressive way.
    "the King's arbitrary despotism"
    • a country or political system where the ruler holds absolute power.
      plural noun:  despotisms

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   14:32:27 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#17. To: VxH (#12)

Would FB's patent stand up any better? - maybe maybe not. But Patent trolls like Wolf managed to extort a lot of competitors out of business before he finally got his arse tossed.

They're banking on competitors not having the balls or deep pockets required to take them on.

Wolf's claim is beyond outrageous. But then so was FB's.

You're right of course -- money talks when it comes to patents. Or ANYTHING involving gubmint bartering their authoritah for $$$. We'd just had a discussion recently on the importance of morals and ethics in America.

Screw 'em. I think Jefferson and our other American Founders would approve of public infrastructure that secures the right of individuals to articulate our thoughts without the approval of our would-be owners.

Concur 110%. Well stated.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-29   14:32:47 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#18. To: Vicomte13 (#13)

It makes sense to fight for control. Why just automatically cede control of society to people with tech degrees and big bucks? There is no reason to, and there are good reasons not to. It's a question of who will be master, elected governments or tech tycoons. The answer is elected governments.

Good point and perspective, Vic. I didn't look at it from the seat of the typical EU czar.

The EU cabal of control-freaks are fighting NOT for citizenry freedoms, but CONTROL of control. Master of the social media/tech domain.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-29   14:36:18 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#19. To: VxH (#16)

a country or political system where the ruler holds absolute power.

That's different than owning someone, the right to all their labor, their children, etc.

Tooconservative  posted on  2018-01-29   14:38:44 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#20. To: Tooconservative, Vicomte13, Liberator (#19) (Edited)

That's different than owning someone

Who owns (or has been allowed to assume dominion over) the virtual aspects of the lives individuals have casually vested in FB or Fleaceathon Republic?

And who owns the ability to delete those virtual elements at their whim?

Many companies now routinely demand access to social media accounts as condition of employment. Is an individual's Social Media persona an accurate representation of the character of the person when Zoookerberg and Co. are allowed to delete content and distort perception at their whim?

This is ALL facilitated via "public" infrastructure with privilege of corporate charter, under the guise of Social-media being "private property" -- WITHOUT being held accountable to the spirit of the 1st amendment.

Corporate charter is a privilege, bestowed upon collective Franken-entities - not an inalienable right held by natural individuals who God created free.

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   14:53:29 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#21. To: VxH (#20)

Many companies now routinely demand access to social media accounts as condition of employment. Is an individual's Social Media persona an accurate representation of the character of the person when Zoookerberg and Co. are allowed to delete content and distort perception at their whim?

Here in the States, I think that won't withstand court scrutiny over time. The trick will be waiting for the right case to come along with a willing litigant.

Even worse are employers demanding the passwords for your social media accounts. Extremely invasive. I keep thinking that Facebook themselves will take action against these people, under the guise of protecting their users from their employers.

Tooconservative  posted on  2018-01-29   14:57:13 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#22. To: Tooconservative (#21) (Edited)

I keep thinking that Facebook themselves will take action against these people

I think they won't.

All of their actions telegraph the usual human tendency towards acquiring power by assuming dominion over others (for the good of the collective of course) - unless prevented from doing so by government whose defined purpose is "TO SECURE THESE RIGHTS".

As Greenspan's "Fraud? The market will figure it out" buffoonery demonstrated - - Sans government intervention towards that end, the Merchants will continue to use their dishonest scales.

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   15:03:10 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#23. To: Liberator (#18)

The EU cabal of control-freaks are fighting NOT for citizenry freedoms, but CONTROL of control. Master of the social media/tech domain.

It's more complex than that.

Let me give you an example: you send an e-mail to your wife, setting up dinner and weekend plans. To whom does that communication belong? The European (specifically the French answer, seconded by the Dutch, Belgians, Germans, Italians, Spanish, Portuguese and Luxembourgeois) is that the communication is a private communication among family and belongs to the family, and nobody else, period.

The American answer is that it belongs to the people on whose machine the message was transmitted, and the people via whose software it was sent.

There is a fundamentally different belief set in what is essential between these two cultures. To the European, the privacy of the communications between two people is paramount, and property rights in hardware and software owners do not extend so far as to permit either of them to penetrate into the circle of family communications. The government cannot listen in or read private communications, legally, without a court order, and the Europeans believe that this is logically also true of private actors. The government can't listen to your phone calls to you wife (or mistress), and, logically, neither can the phone company or, if you're calling from, say, a restaurant (or a job), the owner of the phone. The owner of the phone can say that you can't use it to make a call at all, but once he hands you the phone and lets you make the call, he has no right to listen in or record it.

This view makes the privacy of private human communications the paramount social value, above ownership rights of equipment or software.

The American view of this same situation goes in a very different direction. Americans agree that GOVERNMENT should have no right to listen in without a warrant, but Americans think that private property rights supersede private civil rights. Thus, the owner of the phone, or the owner of the software that transmits messages, DOES have the right, in America, to listen in and copy the communication.

To Europeans, this is abhorrent and absurd, a direct attack on the privacy of family. There is no reason that the phone company, or Yahoo, or the boss, or the restaurant, should have the "right" to listen to your private conversation with your wife (or mistress) because you're using their phone. They don't have to let you use the phone, but if they do, they have no right to spy, to do what the government could not do without a warrant. Individual privacy is a higher moral right, and a liberty deserving higher protection, than the "right to spy" by private actors who provide the software for the communication.

I myself think that the European belief set is much, MUCH more protection of human liberty and personal freedom than the American approach, so in these battles between Facebook or Microsoft or American employers and European individuals or regulators, I side with the Europeans. It is ABSURD that Yahoo should have a "right" to read your personal e-mail. It is criminal for the government to do it without a warrant, and it ought to be criminal for Yahoo to do it too. In Europe, it IS, and that's obviously the better rule.

Zuckerberg provides a service, and he gets handsomely rewarded for it in America AND IN EUROPE, by advertisers. The European privacy rules do not make it impossible for Facebook to make a profit there. They make plenty. But those rules DO prevent Zuckerberg and his ilk from legally collecting blackmail material on people.

One of the reasons that Europeans are considerably freer than Americans are is that European privacy is protected by very firm laws. I wish we had them here.

But America has a funny relationship with economic subordination. The old spirit of master and slave, senior and servant, is strong in the American psyche. We don't mind the idea of lords and peasants as much as Europeans do, so we allow the distinctions in power to remain, skewed in favor of the "masters". The Europeans, having lived under that system (as white people) for the greater part of history, are sensitive to it and chop it off with law.

I agree with the European approach on this.

Yes, that DOES mean that European governments do fight for control of control, but they don't do so in a vacuum. They do so because that's what their people want: to be left alone in their private lives, not just by government (Americas agree with that), but also by private companies, including their employers. A European would say: Why do I have to be subject to my boss 24/7 if he only pays me for 8 hours a day five days a week? What compensation does he pay for the other 16 hours five days a week, and 24 hours two days a week, that warrants giving him the liberty to interfere in my private life and make me subject to him in that? None! Either bosses must pay wages 24/7, OR they are not permitted to exercise authority over private life outside of work!

The European system doesn't give bosses authority outside of work, by protected the privacy of everybody through criminal laws. The American system does not protect individual liberty in the same way.

Example: suppose you are a public person sitting with your wife in your own back yard, behind a hedge and a gate, by your pool. In America, and in England, if some paparazzi gets in a helicopter and flies above your house and uses a telephoto lens, he can publish whatever he can film, even if it is through your windows into your house. But in France and Western Europe, this is a direct assault on private life, and the photographer can be prosecuted for having taken the picture. No Continental magazine will publish those photos - that would be an assault on private life.

The Europeans believe that people have the right to be left alone. In America there is no such right. This makes Europeans freer to live their lives than Americans - a LOT freer, because employers cannot retaliate against people for what they look at and do in their off hours. Americans have to watch themselves at all times, because they can be "held accountable" for their off time by people who don't actually pay for that time.

Europeans are much more free, personally, than Americans are, precisely because of these privacy laws. Obviously the European privacy laws are uncomfortable for American companies that do business in Europe.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-01-29   15:03:40 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#24. To: Vicomte13, Liberator, TooConservative (#23) (Edited)

But America has a funny relationship with economic subordination.

Meh stupid 1st amendment.

Cube-Cattle don't need/got no steeeenking 1st amendment in their "private" herds... right?

Collective artificial entities (Corporations) should not be allowed to deprive individuals of 1st Amendment rights. That is an abuse of the privilege of corporate charter and the privilege should be REVOKED when the collective subordinates the value of truth to their own whims.

"Truth is great and will prevail unless deprived of her natural weapons - free argument and debate"
--Thomas Jefferson

The TRUTH should prevail.

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   15:07:28 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#25. To: All, Vicomte13, Liberator, TooConservative (#24)

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   15:22:00 ET  (1 image) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#26. To: VxH (#24)

Cube-Cattle don't need/got no steeeenking 1st amendment in their "private" herds... right?

Corporations should not be allowed to deprive individuals of 1st Amendment rights.

The TRUTH should prevail.

Which truth?

In essence, in America your boss has the right to read your mail because you sent it on his machine. And with "employment at will", he has the right to fire you because you have a mistress and he doesn't like that.

That's one form of truth.

In Europe, your boss cannot read your private e-mail, and it doesn't matter whether or not you sent it on his machine. The privacy of the communication supersedes the right of the owner of the hardware. Nor can the boss prevent reasonable communication with your family from work. Excessive, sure, but it is not reasonable - or in the best interest of society - for people to be cut off completely at work and forbidden from contacting their families during the workday. European law comes down on the side of privacy and protection of the family.

Similarly, your boss pays for your work within a set time period, to do certain tasks. He has the right to hold you accountable for those tasks during that time period. He does not pay you for the rest of your time, and has no reasonable right to impose his opinions on you, nor to discipline you in the work environment for what you do in your own free time.

Once again, the scope of authority of the employer in Europe is very sharply limited to only what he pays for - in that limited time frame. He does not have any right, or any expectation, of control during time periods for which he does not pay.

Which truth should prevail? I think the European is much freer than the American precisely BECAUSE his employer cannot use the "I control your paycheck, so I can say what you can do outside of work" card that the American employer can (and does).

Some Americans view the extensive power of the American employer to be a matter of civil rights. The European views it as a wholesale assault on individual liberty. If you want to control somebody 24/7, then you have to pay him a salary 24/7, not just for 8 hours a day. No pay, no control.

To me, this is exactly right. Europeans are freer in their private lives than Americans are because of the different power dynamics regarding employers.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-01-29   15:22:49 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#27. To: Vicomte13 (#26) (Edited)

Which truth?

The one Thomas Jefferson had in mind:


"...who, being themselves but fallible and uninspired men , have assumed dominion over the faith of others, setting up their own opinions and modes of thinking as the only true and infallible, and as such endeavoring to impose them on others, hath established and maintained false religions over the greatest part of the world, and through all time;
 
...
 
 that it is time enough for the rightful purposes of civil government, for its officers to interfere when principles break out into overt acts against peace and good order; and finally, that truth is great and will prevail if left to herself, that she is the proper and sufficient antagonist to error, and has nothing to fear from the conflict, unless by human interposition disarmed of her natural weapons, free argument and debate, errors ceasing to be dangerous when it is permitted freely to contradict them. "
 
"I HAVE SWORN UPON THE ALTAR OF GOD ETERNAL HOSTILITY TO EVERY FORM OF TYRANNY OVER THE MIND OF MAN"
-- The Virginia Act For Establishing Religious Freedom
--Thomas Jefferson, 1786
 
>>Which truth should prevail?

The one supported by the EVIDENCE.

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   15:50:11 ET  (1 image) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#28. To: Vicomte13 (#23)

The American view of this same situation goes in a very different direction. Americans agree that GOVERNMENT should have no right to listen in without a warrant, but Americans think that private property rights supersede private civil rights. Thus, the owner of the phone, or the owner of the software that transmits messages, DOES have the right, in America, to listen in and copy the communication.

You pay for a phone or for a stamp to send letters. That makes them private.

What makes these non-private in America is when you utilize free services like Facebook. They spell out (vaguely) the uses to which they will put your data when sell ads to their advertisers (Facebook's or Google's actual clients).

Tooconservative  posted on  2018-01-29   15:55:17 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#29. To: Tooconservative, Vicomte13 (#28)

They spell out (vaguely) the uses to which they will put your data when sell ads to their advertisers (Facebook's or Google's actual clients).

https://www.fa cebook.com/politico/posts/10151593135981680

 


 

Those who control the past control the future

Those who control the present control the past

--George Orwell

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   16:21:34 ET  (1 image) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#30. To: Tooconservative (#28)

You pay for a phone or for a stamp to send letters. That makes them private.

What makes these non-private in America is when you utilize free services like Facebook. They spell out (vaguely) the uses to which they will put your data when sell ads to their advertisers (Facebook's or Google's actual clients).

That's according to American law, which is quite bad. European law rejects all of that, and European regulators enforce it.

American companies do business in Europe, and are therefore subject to European law. They have the choice of not going into Europe, but to eschew Europe means leaving hundreds of billions of dollars on the table, to protect what? An excessive degree of power over privacy that simply is not worth the lost revenues to protect.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-01-29   16:28:21 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#31. To: Vicomte13, Tooconservative, Liberator (#30)

American companies do business in Europe, and are therefore subject to European law.

Observe how American companies are "subject to" American Law these days:

graphics8.nytimes.com/201...ess/complaint.pdf?mcubz=3

Rob a bank and pay a fine with the money you stole.

Who wants Bananas?

VxH  posted on  2018-01-29   16:45:46 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#32. To: Vicomte13 (#23)

Let me give you an example: you send an e-mail to your wife, setting up dinner and weekend plans. To whom does that communication belong?

The European (specifically the French answer, seconded by the Dutch, Belgians, Germans, Italians, Spanish, Portuguese and Luxembourgeois) is that the communication is a private communication among family and belongs to the family, and nobody else, period.

The American answer is that it belongs to the people on whose machine the message was transmitted, and the people via whose software it was sent.

I understand the point you're trying to make. The American answer is apparently everyone BUT the Sender owns the email message. We know this only because the NSA was caught with their hand in the cookie jar, thanks to Snowden etal. Otherwise we'd still be in the dark. Like the Europeans.

What guarantees would you cite that validate your claim that EU IPS respect their citizenry privacy?; That they do not monitor emails? Technically perhaps they don't; perhaps they rely on America's NSA to do the dirty work for them which circumvents EU law. Have you considered that angle?

In any case given we both agree the EU is about total control, why wouldn't the the EU use the NSA as its surrogate spying machination? Sure, Snowden's revelation was met with feigned open outrage by European leaders -- how else were they to react? But their PTB dayum-well knew all along.

One of the reasons that Europeans are considerably freer than Americans are is that European privacy is protected by very firm laws. I wish we had them here.

I realize you have experience in this regard. But isn't your context just a sliver of the Big Picture? Claiming Europeans are "considerably freer than Americans" seems to be quite a stretch. In what sense exactly? Supposed online privacy? Well, European citizens' voice is sewn shut. They are either censored under the threat of "Hate Speech," even arrested. How can that be considered "freedom"?? OR "freer" than Americans?

The overall picture: EU nations are already enslaved in so many ways. Their so-called "leaders" make decisions with ZERO consideration or consent by its citizenry. EXHIBIT A": The EU already demonstrates their contempt of citizenry sovereignty by importing barbarian Muzzies by the millions WITHOUT CONSENT. Doesn't this violate their right to privacy within their own town or city? These barbarians have occupies entire center squares.

Yes, in the past, privacy and discretion among Europeans and its PTB was very important, ferociously guarded, a time-honored gesture. I acknowledge that; But that tradition and measure of respect is long gone these days, Vic. It's now an illusion. I guess perception is everything.

Zuckerberg provides a service, and he gets handsomely rewarded for it in America AND IN EUROPE, by advertisers. The European privacy rules do not make it impossible for Facebook to make a profit there. They make plenty. But those rules DO prevent Zuckerberg and his ilk from legally collecting blackmail material on people.

One of the reasons that Europeans are considerably freer than Americans are is that European privacy is protected by very firm laws. I wish we had them here.

You may be right in this context, in these FB examples of the US vs. Europe. Yes, the REAL reason for G00gle, Yahoo, FB, Twitter, etc is harvesting info is NOT "targeted-marketing," but potential blackmail. Same of the NSA (who claim to be about "National Security.") I've gone a bit off track here, but you're still assuming other covert monitoring entities aren't at work in Europe, harvesting and warehousing all online transmissions.

...In France and Western Europe, this [paparazzi invading one's privacy] is a direct assault on private life, and the photographer can be prosecuted for having taken the picture. No Continental magazine will publish those photos - that would be an assault on private life.

This is a very fringe example of the EU's respect for privacy. Again, just how "free" and just how much is "privacy" respected for the average European when authoritahs at every level of entire cities and towns allow millions of Muzzies to overrun every nook and cranny?

Even if I give you your primary point that European Authoritahs absolutely respect online privacy, at the same time they censor and ARREST those of whom they believe are committing "HATE SPEECH CRIMES" via social media or merely as a matter of public opinion. Exactly how do you consider Europe more "free" than America?

Europe is a prison, its citizenry captive. Captive to the whims of its PTB who ignore consent. At it's very fringe Europe may still retains a few morsels of freedom. But even it is an illusion.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-30   11:17:33 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#33. To: VxH, Vicomte13, TooConservative, Buckeroo (#24)

Meh stupid 1st amendment.

Cube-Cattle don't need/got no steeeenking 1st amendment in their "private" herds... right?

Speaking of which...EU citizens HAVE NO 1A.

They are censored and/or arrested for expressing mere opinions that are negative or critical toward...say barbarian Muzzies. HOWEVER, negative comments and criticism of Christians are acceptable. The same phenomena is occurring in Canada right now.

militantly God-less EU deserves all of the grief it's got coming. In rejecting its Christian heritage and faith -- while also regarding it with contempt as it respect Islam and Allah -- will result in a its own blood-bath quite soon, courtesy of their Muzzie "guests."

The US needs to disband and divest itself of NATO (no more Cold War, now obsolete) and any responsibility for defending Europe (from what will be ITSELF.)

Not one more drop of American or Christian blood defending these suicidal pagan Muzzie-lovers.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-30   11:29:19 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#34. To: VxH (#25)

Not a big fan of Ayn Rand, but she understood the importance of the 1A. Unlike the EU.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-30   11:30:44 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#35. To: Vicomte13, VxH (#26)

In essence, in America your boss has the right to read your mail because you sent it on his machine. And with "employment at will", he has the right to fire you because you have a mistress and he doesn't like that.

His company, his computer, his time, his rules. If one agrees to the terms of employment, then what's the problem?

I'm not sure one can be fired for "having a mistress."

Europeans are freer in their private lives than Americans are because of the different power dynamics regarding employers.

Again -- your perspective of "freedom" is extremely narrow given the Big Picture.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-30   11:34:37 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#36. To: Tooconservative, Vicomte13 (#28)

You pay for a phone or for a stamp to send letters. That makes them private.

That could be a solution.

What makes these non-private in America is when you utilize free services like Facebook. They spell out (vaguely) the uses to which they will put your data when sell ads to their advertisers (Facebook's or Google's actual clients).

Exactamundo.

Signing up for and PAYING for a far more guaranteed privacy other than the usual suspects, G00gle, Yahoo,MSM email and FB. There's a reason the aforementioned are "FREE".

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-30   11:38:09 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#37. To: VxH, TooConservative (#29)

Zuckerburg, Case and their ilk are smug and fascist. The ferals ought to take a good look into their monopolies.

Pelosi is a bigoted lunatic who out-Hitlers Hitler, Goebbels and Stalin depending on her daily medications and degree of demonic possession.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-30   11:42:04 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#38. To: VxH, TPaine (#31)

Observe how American companies are "subject to" American Law these days:

Rob a bank and pay a fine with the money you stole.

Insane.

Trump wants to change stuff like this (which is one reason he is hated/feared.)

This is reason number 101,648 why definitive morality and ethics DO matter in politics and in life.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-30   11:44:45 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#39. To: Liberator, Vicomte13 (#35)

If one agrees to the terms of employment, then what's the problem?

1. Sans an explicit contract, there often aren't any "terms of employment" in at-will states.

2. Consider the following exchange on The Company "private" intranet:

MBA Manager: Trains are Awesome.  I like trains.  Click on this {link} - Vote for the train.
Cube Slave: Uhhh, who's going to pay for the train?
MBA Manager: Questions about infrastructure financing are political questions.  Political questions are not allowed on The Company intranet.

 

So, The Company (a Bank in this instance ) can tell people to vote for infrastructure projects where The Company has a direct interest in the financing of "public" construction projects; while The Company exploits relationships with the political cronies.... etc.

But, Don't ask who's going to pay for the train because THAT is "political".

Is that an ERROR that should be contradicted or just swamp-bidness as usual in the Banana Republic so just...

 

...shut up and code?

VxH  posted on  2018-01-30   13:28:06 ET  (1 image) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#40. To: Tooconservative (#0)

I tend to doubt Facebook will be gone anytime soon. I had a Facebook account several years ago, and it was literally stolen by some Chinese girl. My account settings were changed so I couldn't even change the language preferences. Through Babelfish, I went in and and changed my password. I haven't used the account since.

But still, social media is here to stay. And Facebook is still at the forefront.

no gnu taxes  posted on  2018-01-30   14:15:21 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#41. To: Liberator (#3)

Friends of mine for YEARS have complained that their alleged "friends" and relatives use Facebook as a political sledgehammer with which to bludgeon OTHER alleged friends and relatives -- vicious stuff they'd never say to their faces.

Of course, that sort of thing should only be done on political discussion forums like LF, which of course we would never do if we were in the same physical location.

Facebook, and discussion forums, give people a chance to spout off about politics without having to go through the mundane ritual of looking people in the eye.

FB in that context has been a mechanism for liberal-progressive bullies and cowards to gang up on conservatives. FB really took off during 0bama's 8-year reign of terror.

I think it goes both ways.

Pinguinite  posted on  2018-01-30   16:31:28 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#42. To: Pinguinite (#41)

"...Alleged "friends" and relatives use Facebook as a political sledgehammer with which to bludgeon OTHER alleged friends and relatives -- vicious stuff they'd never say to their faces."

Of course, that sort of thing should only be done on political discussion forums like LF, which of course we would never do if we were in the same physical location.

With all due respect, I guess it's a matter of your own personal opinion and perspective. What YOU feel is what you feel.

THE DIFFERENCE:

Whereas most of the LF posters here have "known" each other for years and know each other's respective tendencies, we have never met each other, are NOT "relatives," and may not even be "friends." MOST of us understand that others are merely venting in the moment. THEN MOVE ON. Are there a few exceptions? Obviously. The tone of LF debating? It would obviously be softened face to face, but not the content.

Moreover, with respect to WHAT HAPPENS AT FACEBOOK it is the LIBERAL-Progs-Dems who are "un-friending" their conservative-Repubican-Christian friends and relatives for daring to have a difference of opinion. EVERYTHING is made personal by Dem-progs at FB. Or at any social media.

These vicious people I'd referred to -- the vast majority are LIBERALS or DEMOCRATS. In too many clear cases to recount. There are NO more obsessively hateful, nasty, irrational, illogical, emotionally unhinged people than liberals, leftists, or Democrats. (Or do you disagree?)

Do some LF posters get loud? Nasty? Even vicious at times? Sure. The difference is that UNLIKE the aforementioned Dems, libs and progs, we wouldn't actually want to KILL or maim our co-posters. OR do the same at FB.

"FB in that context has been a mechanism for liberal-progressive bullies and cowards to gang up on conservatives. FB really took off during 0bama's 8-year reign of terror."

I think it goes both ways.

I could NOT disagree more in degree or in numbers. The life philosophies and faith of conservatives in general precludes them from acting like complete and utter animals who hate as an obsessive hobby. The respective tone and vibe is completely different between the two.

Tell me -- is there a conservative mirror-group for BLM? For Antifa? For the SPLC? Communists? The 0bama-Clinton disciples? For the Leftist MSM media?

What they ALL have in common: They LIE and HATE with every fiber of their being their being. They have NO moral or ethical boundaries.

I'll give you one final thought to consider on the difference between Dems and everyone else; The very same mentality of a Dem Party who sat glumly, finding no reason to applaud all the positive ways Trump's policies have helped the Black Communitah actually HIGH-FIVED each other earlier like excited little kids because they "won" the battle against Republicans to keep on murdering pre-born babies in the womb after 20 weeks.

Liberator  posted on  2018-01-31   11:26:55 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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