Tag Archives: Facebook

Is Facebook censoring NMT headlines like they already do our images?

Who can say what is the cause? But this began in November when suddenly images on the Not My Tribe website would no longer appear alongside the NMT articles being crowd-aggregated by Facebook users. Now a link to our Snooze article failed to resolve into a post headline, instead remaining a raw http link, further reducing NMT’s visibility on the social network. If eventually we are completely blocked you won’t know it. Facebook is the new AOL. Already if a tree falls outside the shopping mall, America doesn’t hear it.

Facebook advertisers can repost “likes” in your name so you don’t have to

Users of Facebook are accustomed to seeing friends listed in right-column ads, mentioned liking such-and-such a brand, or two or three. It’s understood that those friends at some point visited the brand’s page and clicked “like”, permitting that company, Amazon for example, to pay Facebook to advertise the “like” as frequently as it wishes. It’s also understood that when one “likes” a page, a post is simultaneously shared to herald the act and appears on the user’s wall unless that feature is turned off. What you may not know is that your initial timeline post can be reposted, in the center-thread, at the advertiser’s whim, perhaps limited to when you’re online, perhaps triggered when you log on, but not logged on your wall and thus unseen by you. Does it also boost the number of people pretended to be “talking about” that brand? Are 372,523 talking about Starbucks? That could include “you”, repeating yourself ad-maybe-nauseum.

Or maybe, for a premium, your original “like” is not shared simultaneously, but doled out as each of your friends comes online to guarantee one hundred percent reach. Who knows. As personalized as we know the ads can be, no doubt the algorithm is not calculated for clarity.

Do you remember which pages you’ve liked or not? Perhaps you clicked like to be able to comment on the page, or to monitor a monopolistic miscreant, or perhaps it was before Wells Fargo, Bank of America, or British Petroleum became persons and not-so-grata. Maybe now you’d rather not be said to like Chevron, Monsanto, or killer Coke. You can review your “likes” under INFO, then INTERESTS. Or you can check the list below. On each page, see if beside the LIKE button, you have the option to unlike, for example, Facebook.

Here’s a quick list of corporate brands which have fallen from fashion among those with fashion sense. You can click on each to check whether you are counted among their unpaid repeated endorsers.

Nike
Gap
Fox News
CNN
AT&T
Caterpillar
Disney
Walmart
Target
K-mart
Toys-r-us
Lowes
Ikea
Home Depot

And the fat merchants:
McDonalds
Burger King
Hardees
Carl’s Jr
Wendy’s
Taco Bell
KFC
Pizza Hut
Sonic
Chick-fil-A
Jimmy Johns
Subway
Outback
Dairy Queen
Dunkin Donuts
Krispy Kreme

Do you Facebook? You’re a Yahoo

What is Facebook worth? To whom does it belong? Reigning property right schemes aren’t reciprocal to Facebook’s actual content providers. Maybe an outrageous IPO will prompt a user’s bill of rights and a new intellectual rights paradigm, monetizing the net to flow outward instead of inward to the cyber 1%. Facebook is the whole world in a filing cabinet, but they’re your files, and you’re the volunteer file clerk. Facebook is Yahoo outsourced basically, because Google is too complicated for thought-overwhelmed people. Yahoo mapped the known internet, Google rationalized the database, but the social networking outfits calculated that interests could be predicted along personal ties. We’re sheep after all, and we only want to follow where the flock is going. While Twitter’s cues comes at you like Space Invaders, Facebook provided the blinders and rear view mirrors to coax the reluctant along, and resurrected the virtual community of the World Wide Web’s first internment camp, AOL. This time when everyone is comfortably corralled, it will be interesting to see what becomes of the web’s open range.

Step on up folks, He-Who-Shoots-From-Cover Indian name hits nerve with identity-obscuring internet trolls

A little bird tells me there’s been a discussion on Facebook, an overnight marathon of name-calling about ME. Alias-extrovert Agent Doubt offered a beer or coffee to whoever could come up with the best quip to counter my Indian-name for Chairforce pilots and other US soldiers who wield disproportionate force: He Who Shoots From Cover. I guess this sobriquet hit too close to home for identity-concealing internet snipers too. In any case, it looks like Doubt’s outsourcing his creativity again, and sneaking the makings of a date on an unsuspecting winner.

Consider the Lilies

My friends are no doubt a scrappy bunch. It’s no big surprise that guys like Jon and Adam and–holy shit–Skip, are pissed off and ready to burn a few barns down, so to speak. I don’t think I need to look up a bunch of fancy references to convince anyone that things are dire, dire, dire. The college students I went hiking with yesterday afternoon will have to live what, like 20,0000 years to pay off the stupid shell-game debt they supposedly owe. Some guy on Adam’s page was trying to convince me the whole business is thus because we never pay our bills. Bullshit. It’s like this because a buncha paranoid Fascist clowns have set up a little magick trick to try and convince us they have some legitimate claim to all the cheese. THEY DO NOT!!!

So there’s a fight working alright, and I’ve been in it since I was a potential in my Granddad’s genetic line. But I recently noticed–this is so weird–we’re all fighting the wrong guy, and he is us. If we collapse our little bubble here in our little gob of the quantum foam, we’re all screwed; not just us little guys. And we really do have enough guys to kick their Fascist asses on the way down. But guess what, we’ve all got it wrong!

Like it or not we’re all in this together. We’re each and every one of us as fucked up as the Devil!!! Shit he may have been the only sane one all along–but now I’m just picking at scales. Sorry. Didn’t meant to. Ahem. Point is some of us are fucked up differently than others. It doesn’t matter. That crackhead? Fuck-ed. The cop beating him down? Fuck-ed. Dominique Kahn-Strauss? Fuck-ed. Who else? The Pope? Me? You? Yeah, you’re starting to anticipate if not grok me.

I’m a tool. Sometimes I’m also a dick and an asshole. That’s another matter–I’m happy about being a tool.

A while ago I came back to Colorado from a trip back to Cleveland for the great John Covert’s 95th birthday party. The moment I returned to my adopted home town, every television set in the danged known Universe began to trumpet the imminent falling of the sky, talking heads of every political stripe and linguistic camp bewailing the unavoidable collapse of the American dollar and the entire foundation of all civilization along with it. I found myself with time on my hands, so I started tinkering with this blog as nothing more than an outlet for some frustrations, and a place to sling a bit of my ordinary schtick, mainly just at myself, assuming I’d be the only one reading. I played around on Facebook a little meaning nothing more than to hunt down a few friends from the distant past. That’s what FB is for, right? A series of rapidly developing events took place and I soon found myself in the position I mean to describe right now, as best as I am able.

I guess I can’t recall the first moment I was told I could write. It hasn’t really mattered til recently–everyone knows writing is one of those career choices pursued by quixotic artsy-fartsy types that were willing to sacrifice creature comforts on the off chance someone might give a shit, and that the big bucks might roll in, easy-pleasy. Like hitting the lottery or breaking into the billboard charts with your high-school garage band, right? Besides, writers as a breed must, by necessity, possess a form of self-deluded arrogance that they have things to say of such verity and import that people will be compelled to actually pay money to subject themselves to the grief of listening to the blather produced in the effort to be a big deal. It was never like that. I just wanted something to fill the time that wouldn’t dissolve my brains like the all to comfortable slide into awareness of regularly scheduled TV programming was beginning to do.

Somewhere in the midst of Facebooking about how we need a new econo-political paradigm it became apparent that bitching about this need had long been a habit of mine, as well as of many of my friends. I’ve always been a pretty good bitcher, too, in fact, when I entered the foundationless world of a self-employed remodeler it was a sense of the futility of bellyaching about how paint companies were managed. My brother and I had enough faith in our pooled abilities to believe we could do things better than the people running outfits for which we had worked to strike under our own banner. The key words in this were and remain “faith” and “believe”.

So it occurred to me that if I really believe my own drivel, I ought to live it out.

Well that was an eye-opener. Very little pursuit of that idea led me to examine just what I actually believe, which turns out to be quite a bit, and quite at odds with the established order of things. I started, as is my wont, to contemplate God, and the deeper nature of things. I thought about how this transposes to something manageable in this “real” world. We have to work at a job, right? We have to round up bacon we can trade for goods, services, support for our children, and so on. But wait a minute–20 years of self-employment, and I was broke, money-wise, and most of my relationships were broke in some sense as well, though in most instances I couldn’t tell how, or how to fix it. Seemed the thing I was best at doing was bitching. Where’s the fun in that?

But I do believe in God, right, even though I’ve managed to get myself thrown out of both Christian churches and sorta like devil-worshiping occult groups because my notions of God are…unconventional. Enough so I’m usually inclined to put quotation marks around “God” when I type the word, and to feel compelled to issue tedious disclaimers about how I differ from the general milieu of thinkers on the matter.

An experiment in ontological ideoplasticity.

This whole thing is about stuff I believe. I’m kinda stuck at that level, since there’s not much I know. Some of what I believe has to do with what other folks believe, so I’ll be pretty much doing what a lot of other folks do, in a lot of ways. In some

Whoa!!! Blah Blah F-ing Blah.

Mt 6

25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?

27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?

28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:

29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

My apologies to any devil-worshiping freaks I may have just offended. You’re wrong, anyhow–that’s for another moment. Point is–and I’m no ordinary Christian–this is stuff we all learned from the cradle. I’ll be using Christian doctrinal talking points throughout this whole conversation because that’s where I learned this shit. It’s also where I learned it was all crap.

I’ve had a real hard time with this one, cause by now I can usually say, “The point is….” Right now I still can’t do that. The whole collection of thoughts in my head begins to ooze its way into the point when I come at it this way. Bear with a little, OK?

Christians say they believe the book that stuff up the page a little came from is the sacrosanct Word of God, equated with the Logos–God on paper, if you will. With apologies to those real Christian human beings in the world, Bullshit, Bullshit, Bullshit!!!!! If you shitheels really believed one word of the shit in that book, this conversation would be intrinsically inconceivable. See that at the end of that last sentence? PERIOD.

On the other hand, I believe the Bible to be a beautiful collection of fine literature, some of which may be divinely inspired. We have all these cultural heroes, like Gandhi whom I linked to on FB earlier, Jesus, John Lennon ferchristsake. We pay a bunch of lip service out to them then grab a beer and flick on some stupid nonsense on TV, or punch a child, or throw rocks at a cop, or bust a protester. Fuck that, I decided I believe it. Whatever it is.

You may have noticed me carrying on about a new paradigm, money’s a bad metaphor, we’re all in this together, &c., &c. All that is real, real important to what this is about, but OMG kids! This was a bitch to get off. I’ll be hanging flesh on it all as I go, but be patient. what ended up here just now was way different than what I’d meant to do. A writer has to possess a pretty ridiculous quantity of arrogance in the first place, just to have the motivation to sit here pouring all of it out. I mean, I think this tripe I’m typing is valuable enough, and that you all will want to see it–need to see it–to occupy me at 3:30 in the fucking morning. Even worse, here and round about, (get wit’ me on Facebook, if you came from somewhere else), I’ll be arguing with Hegel, Gandhi, Paul the fuckin’ Apostle. Can you believe it? Whatever, I believe the finer points from all those guys. I’ll explain everything.

This hasn’t been the clarification I’d promised to put up, but it defines some of the questions, I guess. You can have it.

Now don’t forget. A little review: It’s All Bullshit!!!

(Reprinted from Hipgnosis)

The Pope has a facebook page… just not Benedict…

John Paul 2nd.
Yep. Here’s my deal… After I’ve been gone for 6 years… don’t try to contact me. No prayers, no seances, nothing like that. If I’m in heaven where i hope, you’ll just piss me all the way off.
ESPECIALLY I ain’t going to be reading any emails, tweets or Friend requests.
I would however like to hear from bill collectors so I can tell them to finally kiss off.
But other than that, no. Don’t call cause I won’t answer even if i can.

Revolution in Egypt: cue the jackals

The struggle in Egypt between spontaneous uprising and desperate measures taken by Mubarak has become complicated by covert intelligence action. Looters have been unmasked as security agents, the police withdrew from the streets only to reappear as thugs unleashed on the vulnerable public. As the popular revolution appears irreversible, world bankers and investors are threatening to destabilize Egypt with the usual market sanctions.

What Twitter resisted releasing to DOJ, and we may presume Facebook did not

So the US Department of Justice wants Twitter’s records on the Wikileaks crew. So what, it’s social media — why expect that spooks can’t follow like everybody else? Except the USG wants to know more than followers or tweets, they want IPs, whose computer, network, when, etc, plus they don’t want persons of interest or the public to know what info they’re gathering. That’s a standard MO when investigating crimes like racketeering, but this is a DoJ fishing expedition with aim to criminalize journalism and whistle-blowing, in the meantime violating the privacy of untold thousands, if you are reading this, very likely yours.

Unless you know Kevin Bacon personally, you are separated by fewer degrees from rop_g, ioerror, birgittaj, Assange and Bradley Manning.

Twitter notified the users named in the December 14 DOJ request, whose lawyers had a judge unveil the document. The government of Iceland has summoned their US envoy to explain what claim the USG can make to personal data on Birgitta Jonsdottir, a member of Iceland’s parliament. Salon has put the fax online which lists the specifics the DoJ is after:

A. The following customer or subscriber account information for each account registered to or associated with Wikileaks …

1. subscriber names, user names, screen names, or other identities;

2. mailing addresses, residential addresses, business addresses, e-mail addresses, and other contact information;

3. connection records, or records of session times and durations;

4. length of service (including start date) and types of service utilized;

5. telephone or instrument number or other subscriber number or identity, including any temporary assigned network address; and

6. means and source of payment for such service (including any credit card or bank account number) and billing records.

B. All records and other information relating to the account(s) and time period in Part A, including:

1. records of user activity for any connections made to and from the Account, including the date, time, length, and method of connections, data transfer volume, user name, and source and destination Internet Protocol address(es);

2. non-content information associated with the contents of any communication or file stored by or for the account(s), such as the source and destination email addresses and IP addresses.

3. correspondence and notes of records related to the account(s).

Judge-shooter Bruce Nozolino indicted before Facebook friends can jump ship

Bob Balink, Jeff Crank, Bob Beauprez, Kent Lambert and Dave SchulteisConservative petition-circulator Bruce Nozolino warned would-be litigants that he had a reputation, “a propensity to shoot judges and lawyers” and it turns out whoever got in his way. He poses with a rifle on his Facebook profile. Today a local grand jury indicted Nozolino for murder. While Nozolino loitered outside the courthouse beyond a boundary court-ordered by the judge, his associate Doug Bruce was granted immunity for testifying against him. Other Republican friends were not so lucky. Local cronies Bob Balink and Jeff Crank and state crazies Bob Beauprez, Kent Lambert and Dave Schulteis have ties to the self-styled gun-toting avenger, and Facebook has the paper trail! There’s also Robin Coran, whose profile pic features attack-mite Michelle Malkin, local Tea Party heavies Crista Huff and Michelle Morin (Who unfriended Nozolino as I typed this), and other locals who I’ll list here for posterity: “Bob” Clark, Andy McElhany, Carolyn Borgwardt, Jim Pfaff, Judy Rydberg Reyher, Kathy Peterson, Kay Rendleman, Mark H. Barker, Robert J. Lane, Shawn Mitchell, Tom Wiens. This “Likes Cooking bacon with a machine-gun” profile is almost too perfect to be believed, but you can’t claim a Facebook friendship without being accepted.

Gaza Flotilla & Knessit member Haneen Zoabi faces Facebook mob death threat

Israel Knessit member Hanin ZoubiAfter her participation in the Gaza Freedom Flotilla aboard the Mavi Marmara, Palestinian-Israeli Knessit member Haneen Zoabi came home to a Facebook page which called for her death. “Execute MP Haneen Zoubi” it screamed with the graphic at right, and angry Israelis were friending the effort by the thousands. Making such a threat is of course illegal. An Israeli storekeeper has been reprimanded for offering free groceries for life to whoever would murder Ms. Zoabi. Shouldn’t Facebook members who add their personal endorsement to Kill U with a “join”, “friend” or “like”, be considered accomplices to attempted intimidation?

Betty White’s muffin on the boob tube

Which came first: the Snickers ad, the Facebook group, or SNL’s crowdsourced mandate to fete American sitcom icon Betty White? American as Apple Pie
To me this blonde’s netroots smack of a publicist’s hand, and White’s performance Saturday night all but validated SNL’s reluctance until now to spotlight the octogenarian’s one note routine. The SNL tribute could laud only her age, raising the specter that a proverbial domestic bread might have been named for her.

Betty White was a broadcast fixture, not a luminary. On the plus side, she hasn’t stooped to pitching life insurance on infomercials, although I suspect her screen persona lacked the gravitas. It does look like the Snickers “Divas” campaign wants to boost White’s brand recognition up to the visibility of its other stage and screen legends.

Of course Betty’s first name predates namesake archetypes of American comedy, but it’s no indication of her contribution. When a McGruber sketch had the title comic break character to wend an impassioned I Love You to grandmother White, I was horrified to predict that the actress’s persona had no stretch to stray from her signature negativity.

White may have begun her career in the age of the Honeymooners, but her caricatures belong squarely to the American sitcom as it devolved into cynicism. The high notes of Mary Tyler Moore and Golden Girls were achieved in spite of muddy cutouts like Betty White. The social relevance of every sitcom that followed was twilighted in my opinion by Oliver Stone’s brilliant parody of American television in Natural Born Killers.

Seeing Betty White on SNL reminded me of attending a celebration of another show business icon Shirley Jones. Both larger than life, both admirably spry, and both masters of well-honed chops, but we’re talking pork chops, with no more hue than the rosy cheeks of Paula Dean. Luminescent as they come, Jones could emote with a twinkle, but that didn’t make her Lena Horne. I know, apple pie is not an art medium.

Betty White can play the ditz or calculating shrew. Where else was SNL going to go with her but convalescent home vamp? I’m not sure the jokes made at the expense of her muffin weren’t clammier than Alec Baldwin’s Schweddy Balls. Hohoho, the ultimate promise of the boob tube.

Like surviving veterans of the wars quickly receding in our memories, White deserves honors rekindled with every new generation. Like the soldiers’ contributions, I’d say her deeds in particular were forgettable. We don’t ask our aging vets to reenact their killings. Bad jokes are worse than reenacted, they’re swung around afresh.

Leave Betty White to shill for candy bars, she’s part of America’s cultural pantheon and deservedly so. Laugh track optional.

Take the ACLU Facebook quiz to see what kind of open book you are

Maybe you don’t fear facing off with an army intelligence interrogator, FBI detective, or secret service agent sitting in a Fusion Center determined to anticipate your next move. But what about a loan officer, insurance adjuster, arbitration negotiator, prospective employer, or plaintiff’s lawyer taking your deposition, who’s armed with your psychological profile made up of your Facebook quiz answers? Your plan to defeat an IRS polygraph by clenching your butt-cheeks is a plan B of olden days. The ACLU has been anticipating these eventualities for you. They’ve devised their own Facebook quiz to illustrate.

The Facebook disclaimer makes clear, between the lines, that when you “allow” an application access to your personal information, the app’s third party can suck up every last detail of your file, “for the quiz to work.” It also grants access to each of your friends’ entire files, each time YOU click “allow.”

Now you may feel like you’ve put everything up on Facebook voluntarily. You can presume your friends did too. And although our info is limited to our friend circles, we probably assume that determined sleuths can extract it all anyway. And that’s certainly true. Even casual idiots can sidle up to glean important details without arousing our suspicions. We presume no insurance company or parole officer is going to preemptively fill their files with happenstance biographical queries, and so we feel safe.

We overlook that the great value of social networks to us, the web of connections, provides the filing tabs by which information aggregators can accumulate their data in a useful, ie. commercial, manner.

Soon we’ll have to worry about underwriters or graduate schools or fiance’s parents dismissing us outright based on our DNA. When that day comes, every marriage will be arranged, and preschools will have sufficient information to accept applicants in utero.

For now the thought of an accessible collation of my Watson-Glaser, Yale-Brown, Myers-Briggs, and which-potted-plant-most-resembles-you tests already hinders my being able to look you in the eye. I am who I want to be, and my 16th Century royaum is shrinking.

Who killed Neda Agha-Soltan?

neda soltaniThe video footage is shocking. An attractive young woman watching the demonstrations in Tehran is struck by a sniper’s bullet and dies before several video cameras. The tragedy is projected unto Facebook and Youtube, with advocates hoping it will galvanize (American) public support for the brave reform movement in Iran. News accounts blame “Basij snipers” on the rooftops. Other protesters have been killed in confrontations with Iranian riot police, without the benefit of video witnesses, much like two million Iraqis, Afghans, Pakistanis et al. Poor 27-year-old bystander Neda Soltani stood at the quite improbable convergence of bullet and camera –correction– cameras. I don’t have to suggest the scene was staged; whether or not the triggerman was an American is immaterial.

Think about just the improbability of your seeing this video. When was the last time the mainstream press has circulated a snuff film? The average person is embarrassed to watch a person die. It’s exploitive. Even when America was fixated on beheaded hostages, our television gatekeepers refused to broadcast the footage. Many horrific war killing moments have found their way unto Youtube, which antiwar activists could only hope would find wider distribution, if only to bring home the inhumanity of our soldiers’ deeds. It never happens.

The western press is running with this story because it demonizes the apparently naked inhumanity of Islam. Muslims stone women, hang gays, look: the bastards shoot their own people arbitrarily. Curiously our media doesn’t make hay with the hapless victims of US snipers.

neda salehi agha soltanThe Neda Soltani snuff footage hit internet shores prepackaged with a smiling mug, and a name that translated means “the voice.” Could a casting director have picked a better title character to represent Iran’s repressed? The western press is even poised to outdo the Muslims in indignant piety, already lauding Neda as a martyr, whom we are informed should launch a thousand Shiite funeral processions. Western pundits compare Neda to the first Shiite martyr, the grandson of Mohammed himself.

Of course, also showing excessive Islamic sensitivity, western reporters readily dismiss the vanishing of Neda’s body, to the Muslim tradition of hasty burials. For the record, in case you missed it, Neda dies onscreen from an apparent gunshot. We do not see the bullet strike, nor now can anyone habeas corpus.

If the scenario was acted entirely, given the success with which the girl’s face is being made into an icon, young Neda’s life is probably as utterly expendable now as already depicted. You think you’re mourning Neda now, imagine her fate if this is a hoax.

OR the gunman could just as well have been a US black-op hit-man who had his eye on the videographers approaching innocent Neda. The US military has long admitted that special forces are already operating in Iran. If the Iranian forces are shooting civilian protesters, what’s the harm of helping them out where there’s a camera ready?

When we’re not meant to see it, the soldiers shoot the cameramen too.

It could be the work of Moussavi henchmen, who are our henchmen.

The Green Revolution, or TwitterTM Revolution, rebranded a “Social Media Revolution,” is a fabrication of the US pro-democracy agents working to destabilize Iran. They are hard at work in Cuba, in Venezuela, in Bolivia, and everywhere regimes threaten US globalization by enslavement. Remember the Orange Revolution? Any movement that is color-coded is the work of organizers reading US how-to manuals or attending OTPOR training seminars.

Where are the international voices decrying election fraud in Iran? No one other than the US and its stooges is asserting that populist leader Ahmadinejad did not win by a landslide. Only Iran’s urban middle class has taken to the streets of Tehran. And to protest what? Their minority standing in Iran?

The reformists in Iran are protesting democracy, not the failure of democracy. They are protesting Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s hard line against irreligious western economic and colonial policies which traditionally benefit the secular urban elite. “Pro-Democracy” is neoliberal for pro-capitalist plunder.

See: Shah’s Son Backs Iranian Protesters.

Like the “dissidents” of Cuba, the Green greenback-seekers are marching on the CIA’s dime, and being meted the fate of foreign provocateurs. I have no doubt the majority are idealists and are well-intended, but like the Kurds who rose against Saddam Hussein, the US has set them up for slaughter, the sooner to motivate western support for military aggression against their evil regime.

Our media pundits point out that the protest banners are written in English, a sign that the Iranians are desperate to appeal to American viewers. They dismiss Iranian accusations of the demonstrations being US-backed as pure paranoia, and ignore the most simple explanation behind the English slogans, and the websites and networks amplifying the message to English speakers: these materials are being crafted by USAID advisers. This is a propaganda campaign aimed at Western ears, to call for regime change in Iran.

Neda’s Theme is tried and true: Jessica Lynch, Roxana Saberi, Euna Lee and Laura Ling, Neda Salehi Agha Soltan. Onward Christian Soldiers.

Neda Agha Soltan iranian martyr victim of US sniperThe American public won’t believe another fiction about Kuwaiti babies dumped from incubators, or of Belgian children impaled on the bayonets of the evil Hun. So Madison Avenue has upped the amperage. Today’s television armchair adjudicators have to see innocent young women snuffed on film before our eyes. Provided to us by a press too otherwise prurient to show us the mass of death we deal everyday.

The Iranians in the streets, and poor pretty Neda, are being sacrificed by heartless US strategists. I doubt even an errant Iranian bullet can match the American military for cruelty.

Putting my best Facebook forward

Video Snapshot 7
For real in virtual reality.
 
I’ve constructed an image of myself on Facebook. I did MySpace too, just in case my cyber hologram lacked a dimension. What dimension, a fourth? Before that my virtual world representative was an avatar in Second Life. I make this distinction because I’m online already, in a blog. If that’s not a proxy of myself too.

What is left of me off line in the old three dimensions? So much of my resources are spent updating and uploading to fashion my idealized electronic profile. But I discover that my ability to keep my best side facing toward the camera, so to speak, escapes my control just like real life. Other have pictures. Deeds are linked, past words, past lives, with no degrees of separation. We have Google to thank for pinning our press clippings to our shoulders. It’s as if our business card now comes attached with our personal Rolodex.

I’m deluding myself obviously to cling to selective anonymity. We’ve all taken our first steps unto the internet with alter ego usernames in sundry chat rooms, user groups and forums, revealing our true selves behind web masks. Who we are in-world soon approximated who we are out, as N approaches an infinity of monkey archivists. For flakes who think they can tailor their best Face[book] forward, no respite.

Except that it feels like the real world me has become a facade too. I think I’ve become an empty vessel, discarded like an outgrown skin, untended, un-watered because everything’s going online. What do photographs of the actual me represent anymore? Pictures of me when I used to inhabit the real world. Pictures of me wanting to be online.