Facebook

Eli Pariser of the progressive organization MoveOn says the Internet is hiding things from us, and we don’t even know it. In this TED Talk he calls out Facebook, Google and other corporations who are transforming the Internet to suit their corporate interests:



myfarm-logoWhat happens when Farmville becomes reality and not just a game? National Trust create MyFarm, an actual working farm that has 10,000 virtual farmers. BBC reports:

A National Trust farm is to be run by online subscribers voting on which crops to grow and livestock to rear.

For a £30 annual fee, 10,000 farm followers will help manage Wimpole Home Farm, in Cambridgeshire.

The National Trust says its MyFarm project aims to reconnect people with where their food comes from.

It was partly inspired by the online Facebook game Farmville and follows the example of Ebbsfleet Football Club which is run on a similar basis.

Decisions about the running of the team in Kent has been in the hands of MyFootballClub subscribers since 2008.



Zachary Sniderman writes on Mashabe.com: It’s one thing to feel bad for homeless people; it’s another to be forced into their shoes. Advertising agency McKinney has teamed up with Urban Ministries of…



CIAFacebookThanks to Erick Schonfeld on Techcrunch for the find.

Even though this is intended to be a joke, the CIA’s interest in what it calls “open source intelligence” has been documented (see here and here).

Via the Onion:

After years of secretly monitoring the public, we were astounded so many people would willingly publicize where they live, their religious and political views, an alphabetized list of all their friends, personal emails addresses, phone numbers, hundreds of photos of themselves, and even status updates about what they were doing moment to moment. It is truly a dream come true for the CIA.


Facebook = Katy Perry; Twitter = Snoop Dogg; Google = Lady Gaga. Who’s got the biggest star? Not much competition as Alexia Tsotsis points out at TechCrunch:

As the battle for Silicon Valley engineering talent intensifies, it seems as if hot tech companies like Apple, Facebook, Google and Twitter have launched some sort of ridiculous competition as to who could can score the biggest Hollywood talent for an onsite appearance, in order to wow current and future employees.

Between Ashton Kutcher and Chamillionaire at Y Combinator Demo days…



Mark Zuckerberg CEO FacebookBBC News reports:

Facebook is launching a system that allows users to report friends who they think may be contemplating suicide.

The feature is being run in conjunction with Samaritans, which said several people had used it during a test phase.

Anyone worried about a friend can fill out a form, detailing their concerns, which is passed to the social networking site’s moderators.

It follows reports of several cases where Facebook users announced their intention to commit suicide online.

The reporting page asks for the address (URL) of the Facebook page where the messages are posted, the full name of the user and details of any networks they are members of.

Suicide-related alerts will be escalated to the highest level, for attention by Facebook’s user operations team.


Facebook & EgyptVia CNN:

A man in Egypt has named his newborn daughter “Facebook” in honor of the role the social media network played in bringing about a revolution, according to a new report.

Gamal Ibrahim, a 20-something, gave his daughter the name “to express his joy at the achievements made by the January 25 youth,” according to a report in Al-Ahram, one of Egypt’s most popular newspapers.

Many young people used Facebook and other social media networks to organize the protests, which began January 25 and ultimately led to the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak after 30 years in power.

Wael Ghonim, a Google executive who organized a Facebook page on his own time, became a central figure of the revolution.




Business Insider charts who will be getting filthy rich when Facebook goes public in a year. Somehow, the answer is just what you most feared/suspected: Mark Zuckerberg, Goldman Sachs, and, somehow, Bono.



Douglas Rushkoff called the impending doom of AOL when it’s hapless merger with Time Warner was announced. Now he says Facebook is cashing out and it’s the beginning of its demise, in…







Yesterday I went to a confidential presentation of data visualization tools developed by a major media organization in New York. It’s scary just how much these organizations (among others) can learn about their “users” using these tools. This CNN story focuses on Facebook, but believe me, everyone in the tech and media space is doing the same thing:

Worried about when you might get dumped? Facebook knows.

That’s according to a graphic making the rounds online that uses Facebook status updates to chart what time of year people are splitting up.

British journalist and graphic designer David McCandless, who specializes in showcasing data in visual ways, compiled the chart. He showed off the graphic at a TED conference last July in Oxford, England.

In the talk, McCandless said he and a colleague scraped 10,000 Facebook status updates for the phrases “breakup” and “broken up.”

They found two big spikes on the calendar for breakups. The first was after Valentine’s Day…


Hate to say it, but I’m surprised a “FarmVille-related family killing” hasn’t happened before — I’m calling it the start of a trend in American homes. The Florida Times-Union reports on a…


When it was recently revealed that a Ugandan newspaper was outing gays in its pages many people were shocked, but perhaps put it down to that country having societal values different from…


An article (largely inspired by Disinfo posts—thank you) that contextualizes recent developments in an increasingly nosey society, published by Taki’s Magazine: The perverse coupling of surveillance and exhibitionism forms a cornerstone of American technocracy. Most…