Tag Archives: Telegram

The contemplation

We all have things to contemplate, for me this all started a while ago, but it got to the forefront yesterday after a call with a friend. We disagree on something and it is not about right or wrong, even if I believe I am right, I see that he in NOT wrong. My setting is data and I have been around it for decades, I have been in specific fields, he has not, but he has a real good grasp of data. So as I made a joke about not forgetting the population of zero for Parler, he dismissed it as zero data groups do not matter, and for a lot it does not, but it actually does.

So how to bring it to the forefront? In this (as a Republican) we can look at the stupid, stupid left and can coin a few phrases. There was the Washington Post ‘Parler, a Platform Favoured by Trump Fans, Struggles for Survival’, my by-line? ‘Rebekah Mercer just got a $23,000,000 tax deductibility option’. USA Today gives us ‘Parler goes dark: Amazon suspends the social platform from its web hosting services’, there is a lot more, but the setting is made, no more Parler and now we get to the zero part. You see, the one thing that President Trump achieved was a larger polarisation, the left thought that they had won, but players like Rebekah Mercer, one the people behind Cambridge Analytica and Parler have settings, they have larger plans. You think that she gives away $23 million without a larger gain somewhere else? It was the nightmare scenario, a unified place for right splinter groups and extremists. You think that people like John Matze will sit still? Uniting right wing splinter groups can be massively profitable, when no one will do business with you, losing 10% on the one who does business with you is still appealing, and splinter groups that cumulatively surpass the 50 million member marker is  still worth the effort.

How does this relate?
Even if Parler is at zero, its members will go somewhere else. There is Telegram, Signal and these people need attention and they will go where they can find it. Even now we see the Financial Times give us ‘WhatsApp fights back as users flee to Signal and Telegram’, and even as we see the quote “Facebook is scrambling to deal with a sudden competitive threat to its messaging platform WhatsApp after a change to its terms of service sparked privacy concerns and prompted users to turn to rivals such as Signal and Telegram in droves” (at https://www.ft.com/content/ee1b716d-4ed2-4b26-8da1-40c98db7b9b6), the stupid stupid left just doesn’t learn, presenting that a thing is doesn’t make it so, and the setting that the media cannot be trusted is out there in big letters. So when I say that Parler: n=0 is important. These people find other means and even as not all will go over, and not all will go to the same solution, if Parler had 100,000 voices, we need to find where at least 80,000 went, we need to tag and identify the extremists, I reckon the US Capitol setting made that clear. 

In this we could consider the work of Marina Soley-Bori ‘Dealing with missing data: Key assumptions and methods for applied analysis’, it was written in 2013, but it is quite good and we start with the premise “the precision of confidence intervals is harmed, statistical power weakens and the parameter estimates may be biased. Appropriately dealing with missing can be challenging as it requires a careful examination of the data to identify the type and pattern of missingness, and also a clear understanding of how the different imputation methods work”, it is a decent starting point. In this stage, the report gives us a group NMAR (Not missing at random) that is the stage we have and it is an important stage. In the report she quotes Allison, 2001 “They lead to an underestimation of standard errors and, thus, overestimation of test statistics. The main reason is that the imputed values are completely determined by a model applied to the observed data, in other words, they contain no error”, the NMAR group is largely ignored and we can accept that in this work, yet in real life, the QAnon group and the Parler users are a larger stage and those who do not flee to 4Chen are in the wind and that is where we do not want them to be, so pushing these people to the dark-web was a silly move. Perhaps some might notice that I bolded one word, one word made the difference. Bias is the setting in missing values that is the dangerous one, most who know what they do see that, they tend to call it ‘arbitrary decisions’ but it remains a form of (whether good or not), of bias and that is where the train goes of the rails (without it being a maglev). The stage to find the NMAR is becoming increasingly important. It is not merely those that move there, it is the group they drag along that becomes a lot larger. You see, they might only gain the interest of an additional 2%, on a stage of 50,000,000 extremists, that is one million votes, that much changes an election, the silly democrats making presentations should have considered that in a much earlier stage. Yes, we see that pornhub can no longer use credit cards, but as these so called hypocrites will still cater to child labor and implied slavery, how much was gained? Especially as one stage was founded on consenting adults, the other was not. We see one side of the story, and the left keeps on hiding the other side, that does not mean that the other side does not exist. The democrats have an ‘out-of-sight-out-of-mind’ approach, that is unless they get hit directly, then they become vindictive. That was never a stage that would ever work, but they will learn at some point. The problem is not their mindset, it is their inability to follow through and people like Rebekah Mercer have the goods to unify one side and get rich in the process. All whilst players like Google pull up their nose at a $25,000,000 bill for a 60% share, they say that they can solve it themselves (they wish), and when they rely on ‘EVERYONE LOVES GOOGLE TV’, all whilst the consumer, when the $65 bill is due and the people see their budget melt away, do you still believe that everyone stays happy and loving? So when I make my solution public domain, do you think that there will be zero cease and desist messages? 

In this the stage is rather large, the splintered right have moved somewhere else and now the larger stage cannot be predicted, when the Parler group goes dark-web, the stage changes even further and earlier some had days to prepare, now hours, how is that a better stage? 

There is no population zero, unless they are all dead they merely vacated somewhere else and that somewhere else is the problem. This population is not missing at random, they are shunning the media and as we are given ‘An Absurdly Basic Bug Let Anyone Grab All of Parler’s Data’ by Wired (at https://www.wired.com/story/parler-hack-data-public-posts-images-video/) a mere 11 hours ago, do you think that it will be that easy, a person like Rebekah Mercer learned from Cambridge Analytica, was at a bug or an open backdoor? So when we see “The truth was far simpler: Parler lacked the most basic security measures that would have prevented the automated scraping of the site’s data. It even ordered its posts by number in the site’s URLs, so that anyone could have easily, programmatically downloaded the site’s millions of posts”, anyone thinking that things where that simple are out of their mind, this is a setting where some had the lowdown on millions, and as Wired gives us “I wouldn’t even call it a rookie mistake because, as a professional, you would never write something like this”, they touch on the stage that matters, when someone has the lowdown on a group of millions of people and they can unite them, do you think that no one looked at something out there for 2 years? Do you think that this is merely seen 11 hours ago (plus a few weeks to write the article), this issue has been out for a while and now that these people go to other means and other voices (the same voices in other accounts), the problem becomes a lot larger and more real. The people of Parler did not stop being an issue as Parler has population zero, now the people who needed to keep informed need to go back to square one and find them first. So how silly was the move we see now?

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Identity denied

There are moments when we resort to other ways of expressing ourselves; it is in our nature to find alternatives to the story, so that we can tell the story. Nearly every person does it. Sometimes we ask ‘would you take that extra pastry?‘ instead of telling someone that you really feel like having another pastry. So when it comes to social media, we see not ourselves, but the person we want to be. We want to own the Hall of Faces (Game of Thrones) where we can mask ourselves with the identity of a dead person, like Ethan Hawke in Mission Impossible, walk in, sound like the person we are not, because we do not like ourselves in that particular moment. So when we look at Facebook, are we thinking the Hall of faces? In light of all that was revealed, are we in a stage where we prefer to be someone else?

You see, the shit is on the walls as some would say. Mark the Zuckyman did the right thing, he stood up (after a few days of silence) and held himself responsible and we are all over this that he is the culprit, but is he truly guilty? We see all kinds of articles on Facebook, like ‘You’ve decided to delete Facebook but what will you replace it with?‘ (at https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/mar/31/youve-decided-to-delete-facebook-but-what-will-you-replace-it-with), even after a week this is still highly valid, because for millions of the multibillion users of Facebook, it has yet to sink in. Go to WhatsApp? Instagram? Both are owned by Facebook, so where does that leave you? So when we try to trivialise it with #DeleteFacebook, we need to realise that this is new territory. We now talk about the Social Media Landscape and it is not small. It is huge and most importantly, this is the first true generation of the Social media generation. We were not ready, and i have been trying to explain that to people for nearly 3 years. Now we see overreactions whilst sitting down contemplating it all was never an option. The law was missing it as it is more interested in facilitating for commerce, exploitation and profit (Sony and Microsoft are nice examples there), Human rights are failing, because the issue of Digital rights is only seen in the relation of commerce, not in the relation of privacy, in this the entire Google and the people’s rights to be forgotten is merely a reason to giggle, a Google giggle if you preferred.

The article has one funny part, with “For those determined to exit the Facebook ecosystem, the best approach is more likely to be a patchwork of sites and apps that mirror individual features. Messaging is the easiest: apps such as Telegram and Signal offer messaging and group chats, as well as voice calls, with encryption to keep your communications private. Telegram even has a thriving collection of chatbots, similar to Facebook Messenger“, you see, it is done on a smartphone (mostly), so you could consider dialing a person and have a conversation, your mum if she is still alive is not the worst idea to have. You see, the plain point is where you end up. So when we see “Part of Vero’s appeal to Facebook deleters is its determination to be ad-free. It is planning instead to start charging a small annual subscription at some point“, you see these people designed it for wealth (as one would) so where are they getting the money? The small annual subscription does make sense, but in light of that you better remember where all your data is and even as we see ‘emphasis on privacy‘ we need to realise that there are clear situations where the word Privacy is open to suggestion. What people forget is that ‘The boundaries and content of what is considered private differ among cultures and individuals, but share common themes‘, so are their settings of what is private the same as yours? Also, when they sell their company for a mere 2 billion, make no mistake, the word privacy is not open for debate, it will be whatever the new owner decides it to be. This is merely one side of data, as data is currency. That is what I have been trying to explain to nearly everyone (for 5 years now) and they all shrugged and stated, ‘it’ll be right‘, so is it right? Is it all right now? If you are considering becoming a member of the growing party of #DeleteFacebook it clearly was not.

So when we are treated to ‘News of Facebook’s secret tool to delete executive messages caps days of chaos‘ (at https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/apr/06/facebook-using-secret-tool-to-delete-messages-from-executives) we see another part of Facebook, we see new uproar. The question is whether this is justified. You see, when we see “the company has a two-tiered privacy standard (one for executives, one for everyone else) and over its use of facial recognition software“, in most cases this makes perfect sense. Corporate executives tend to be under scrutiny a lot, as it sometimes is valid; they still have a job to be done. I was amazed on how many people Mark Zuckerberg was connected to in the beginning of Facebook. It was awesome and cool, but I reckoned that it was not always constructive to productivity. I have been in places where the executives had their own server for a number of reasons, mostly for HR reasons and whether it is valid or not, it is a corporate decision, in that light I am not amazed, only when I was doing work for Google was I on a system where I could see everything and everyone all including what I thought was the board of directors. Here is where it gets interesting, because Google has a (what we refer to) a true open system for all who work there. It is invigorating to get access to so much information and my first night was me dreaming of combining things, what if we did ….. and ….. would we then be able to …..? It was exhilarating to feel that rush of creativity, in areas where I had no skill levels to boot. With a ‘closed’ system like Facebook, we need to consider that by setting the state of all is open that it is a legal trap when you give billions of people access to systems and situations. The mere legal differences between the UK, US and AUS, all common law nations would be the legal nightmare of decades. Shielding the executives from that is a first priority, because without them at the wheel it all falls to chaos.

That reality is seen with “Facebook says the change was made following the 2014 Sony Pictures hack, when a mass data breach at the movie studio resulted in embarrassing email histories being leaked for a number of executives, ultimately costing co-chair Amy Pascal her job“, some might remember the mail that George Clooney send in regards to the Monuments Man, it made pretty much all the papers. I love his work, I enjoy the artistic values he has, shares and embodies, but without certain levels of privacy and shielding his artistic side might take a large dump towards uncertainty, not a side I am hoping for, because even as he is merely 360 days older than me, he should be able to create another 30 years of movie excellence and I would like to see those movies, especially as we see that he is doing to Matt Damon in Suburbicon, what the Coen brothers were doing to him in Burn after reading and Hail, Caesar!, so plenty of fun times ahead for all us movie fans.

Even as we are all looking where we want to go next, the foundation of issues remain. There is an utter lack of Social media legislation; there is a mess of issues on where privacy is and what is to be regarded as privacy. The users gave it all away when they signed up for options, apps and ‘solutions’ again and again. Until that is settled, any move we make moves the issue and moves the problems, it will not solve anything, no matter what some of the app developers decide to state. In the third part “‘The third era of Zuck’: how the CEO went from hero to humiliation” (at https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/apr/06/mark-zuckerberg-public-image-cambridge-analytica-facebook), I think he got kicked in the head real hard, but not humiliated, although he might think he was. So as we recall Dean Martin with Ain’t That a Kick in the Head? we need to realise that is what happens. That is what happens when Social media becomes a multi-billion user behemoth. Mark Zuckerberg made mistakes plain and simple. What do you do? You get up from the floor, fix it and restore the need for growth. And now still we see that mistakes are made. This is seen with “On Friday morning, the company apologized and pledged to stop deleting executives’ messages until they could make the same functionality available to everyone“, the largest mistake and it opens social media to all kinds of organised crime. Merely send the threat, tell the people to do …. or else and after an hour, after it is seen to have been read, the message is deleted, it becomes a miscommunication and no prosecution is possible.

That is the biggest mistake of all, to set a multi-billion user group open to the needs of organised crime even further then it likely is. How stupid is that? You see, as I interpret this, both Sheryl Sandberg and Mark Zuckerberg are in the musical chair setting, trying to do things on the fly and that will hurt them a lot more than anything else. We get it that mistakes were made, fix them, but not on the fly and not just quick jumps overnight. Someone has pushed them into defence play and they actually suck at that. It is time for them to put their foot down and go into offensive and attack mode (pun intended). When we consider what was before, we get it that Zuckerberg made mistakes and he will make more. We merely need to look at Microsoft and their actions over the last 3 decades to see that they screwed to pooch even more royally than Zuckerberg will be able to do, but the media is silent there as it relies on Microsoft advertiser funds. IBM and Apple have made their blunders in the past as well, yet they all had one large advantage, the impact was never towards billions of users, it potentially could have hit them all, but it mostly just a much smaller group of people, that was their small blessing. Apple directly hurt me and when I lost out on $5500, I merely got a ‘C’est la vie‘ from their technical centre, so screw that part!

There will be a large change sooner rather than later, the issue with Cambridge Analytica was too large to not make that happen. I merely hope that Zuckerberg has his ducks on a row when he makes the jump, in addition to that was Steve Bannon arrested? Especially when we consider Article 178, violating the Free decision of Voters. You see, it is not that simple, social media has never been used in that way, to such an extent, the law is unclear and proving that what Cambridge Analytica did would constitute a clear violation of the free decision of voters, that is what makes this a mess, legislation on a global scale has failed when it came to privacy and options regarding the people in social media. Steve Bannon can keep on smiling because of all the visibility he will get for years to come and after years when no conviction comes, he can go on the ‘I told you so!‘ horse and ride of wealthy into the sunset. That situation needs to be rectified and it needs to go way beyond Facebook, the law itself has faltered to a much larger degree.

The fact that politicians are all about terror cells and spilling inflammatory messages whilst having no resolution on any of this is merely showing what a bunch of apes they have proven themselves to be. So when we saw in January ‘Facebook, Google tell Congress they’re fighting extremist content‘, where were these congressmen? Where the fuck was Clint Watts, the Robert A. Fox Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute, and National Security analyst as CNN now reports that optionally 78 million records have been pushed onto the Russian servers? (at https://edition.cnn.com/2018/04/08/politics/cambridge-analytica-data-millions/index.html), now implying that Cambridge Analytica has undermined US safety and security in one operation to a much larger extent than any terrorist has been able to achieve since September 13th 2001. That is 17 years of figments, against one political setting on the freedom to choose. I wonder how Clint Watts can even validate his reasoning to attend the US Congress at all. And this goes way beyond the US; in this the European Commission could be regarded as an even larger failure in all this. But it is unlikely we ever get treated to that side of the entire show.

The media needs both players a lot more and bashing Facebook makes for good entertainment they reckon. Time will tell whether they were right, or that the people at large just never cared, we merely end up having no social media identity, it will have been denied for reasons that were never real in the first place.

 

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