Social Media



Last week John Pospisil, the editor of Blorge.com, passed away, but his Twitter feed continued updating, since he’d configured it to re-tweet all the headlines from his group technology blog. “Eventually I…



Chicken Pox PartyRight, because you’re “afraid” of vaccines, let’s deliberately put pathogens in the mail. Reports KPHO CBS 5 News:

PHOENIX — Doctors and medical experts are concerned about a new trend taking place on Facebook.

Parents are trading live viruses through the mail in order to infect their children. The Facebook group is called “Find a Pox Party in Your Area.” According to the group’s page, it is geared toward “parents who want their children to obtain natural immunity for the chicken pox.”

On the page, parents post where they live and ask if anyone with a child who has the chicken pox would be willing to send saliva, infected lollipops or clothing through the mail. Parents also use the page to set up play dates with children who currently have chicken pox. Medical experts say the most troubling part of this is parents are taking pathogens from complete strangers and deliberately infecting their children.


t1larg.like.button.fbViolence stemming from the inevitable confusion over marital duties in the internet age, via Yahoo! News:

A 36-year-old Texas man has pleaded not guilty to battery charges after allegedly attacking his estranged wife for failing to “Like” a status update he posted to Facebook.

Benito Apolinar had posted an update to his Facebook page about the anniversary of his mother’s death. Angry that the post had elicited no response from his wife of 15 years, he confronted her after dropping off their children at her home in Carlsbad, New Mexico on Tuesday.

“That’s amazing everyone ‘Likes’ my status but you, you’re my wife. You should be the first one to ‘Like’ my status,” he allegedly told her before punching her in the cheek and pulling her hair.


Google and Facebook would have you believe that you’re a mirror, that there is one reflection that you have, this one idea of self. But in fact we’re more like diamonds, you can look at people from any angle and see something totally different.

4chan founder Chris Poole discusses the problem with personal identity as conceived by Facebook and Google. Basically, that they expect us to maintain a single, consistent persona throughout life, which is not how we actually exist:


Sal LabarberaSimone Wilson writes on LA Weekly:

Local arts blog LA Taco is fuming over the “callous” Twitter activity of LAPD Homicide Detective Sal LaBarbera. (As of December 2007, according to the Los Angeles Times, La Barbera was “a 20-year homicide veteran who heads the Watts homicide squad in LAPD’s South Bureau.”)

LaBarbera is certainly active on Twitter — throwing out RTs, #FFs and hashtags like he was born to the social-media generation. (The detective is also big on @ing journalists from local news stations and the Times.) His handle on the medium is pretty impressive for a weathered murder cop…

… and right out ahead of other police departments’ slow struggle to incorporate social media into their investigative work.





Media theorist Douglas Rushkoff explains why limiting access to social networks is not the answer to preventing riots, for CNN: In the past, people seemed to require a massive “cue” to form…



NYPDRocco Parascandola reports in the NY Daily News:

The NYPD has formed a new unit to track troublemakers who announce plans or brag about their crimes on Twitter, MySpace and Facebook. Newly named Assistant Commissioner Kevin O’Connor, one of the department’s online and gang gurus, has been put in charge of the new juvenile justice unit. He and his staff will mine social media, looking for info about troublesome house parties, gang showdowns and other potential mayhem, sources said.

The power of social media to empower both criminals and cops has been on full display in London this week, where riots and looting have been spreading dramatically. The rioters have been using Twitter and BlackBerry messages to choose targets for looting or burning – and to alert one another about police positions.





rep.licants.org enables you to hand over control of your Facebook or Twitter account to a bot that simulates your speech patterns, personality, and interests. Your online friendships and connections will be maintained…



NevermindUpdate: Even though several news outlets are reporting this, the album cover is still on Nirvana’s Facebook Page. I’m not sure if this smells like censorship or publicity stunt right now …

Looks like they haven’t managed to get completely get rid of it. Hard to believe this story is real. Lauren Schutte reports in the Hollywood Reporter via MSNBC:

Twenty years later, Nirvana is still managing to cause controversy.

The band, whose Nevermind album made waves when it was released in 1991 because of its cover art which featured a naked baby boy floating in a pool, has run into censorship yet again, this time on its Facebook page.

After product shots of the album (which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this fall) were uploaded to Nirvana’s Facebook page, the social networking company removed the photo citing a violation of its Terms of Use.

“Facebook does not allow photos that attack an individual or group, or that contain nudity, drug use, violence or other violations of the Terms of Use,” the notice read.



anonymouslogo0207211AnonPlus is to be a new social networking site without censorship, but how different is it from other social networks? The Raw Story reports:

Infamous hacker group Anonymous launched Monday its own social network after being rejected by Google’s freshly-launched online community.

“Today we welcome you to begin anew,” the hacker alliance said at the website anonplus.com, which it described as a platform to distribute information.

“Welcome to the Revolution – a new social network where there is no fear…of censorship…of blackout…nor of holding back.”

The drive to build a social network came after the Anonymous account was suspended at the Google+ online community, which was launched last month by the Internet giant as a challenge to Facebook.

A message on the anonplus.com website promised that the Anonymous social network would be for everyone and listed online monikers of developers taking part in the project.




Facebook wants to be the place where you feel most yourself, with the most control over how you are regarded. It inextricably intertwines marketing with selfhood, so that having a self becomes…