FUN WITH NEWS: THE WHO KNOWS WHAT YOU KNOW EDITION

Who knows what you like?

Facebook knows.

Who knows who you know?

Facebook knows.

Who knows what news articles you read?

Google knows.

Who knows how many Android apps you opened in the past three years?

Google knows.

When Facebook announced that users could download all the data about them, New York Times Tech reporter BRIAN X. CHEN downloaded his and reported:

I Downloaded the Information That Facebook Has on Me. Yikes.

By BRIAN X. CHEN April 11, 2018

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/11/technology/personaltech/i-downloaded-the-information-that-facebook-has-on-me-yikes.html?em_pos=large&emc=edit_ct_20180412&nl=technology&nlid=2473797edit_ct_20180412&ref=headline&te=1

“With a few clicks, I learned that about 500 advertisers — many that I had never heard of, like Bad Dad, a motorcycle parts store, and Space Jesus, an electronica band — had my contact information, which could include my email address, phone number and full name.”

“Most basic information, like my birthday, could not be deleted. More important, the pieces of data that I found objectionable, like the record of people I had unfriended, could not be removed from Facebook, either.”

“’They don’t delete anything, and that’s a general policy,’ said Gabriel Weinberg, the founder of DuckDuckGo, which offers internet privacy tools.”

 

And Google:

“For my personal email account alone, Google’s archive of my data measured eight gigabytes, enough to hold about 2,000 hours of music. By comparison, my Facebook data was about 650 megabytes, the equivalent of about 160 hours of music.”

So where does the data come from? A data-broker called Acxiom, https://www.acxiom.com.

From the New York Times article,, Mapping, and sharing, the Consumer Genome, by NATASHA SINGER  JUNE 16, 2012.

“Few consumers have ever heard of Acxiom. But analysts say it has amassed the world’s largest commercial database on consumers — and that it wants to know much, much more. Its servers process more than 50 trillion data ‘transactions’ a year.”

And from Acxiom:

“Personicx is Acxiom’s household-level consumer segmentation marketing product that groups U.S. households into one of 70 segments based on demographic characteristics. These 70 clusters are organized into 21 distinct life stage groups made of up households that have reached similar life events…”

The article provided links to getting Facebook and Google. I downloaded my Facebook data and got a Zip file that opens into four folders: html,  messages, photos, and index. Under html, Ads, Aps, Contacts, Events, messages, photos, pokes, security, timeline, and videos. Ads showed a long list of companies and services, some I had no idea about. Security showed every time I opened Chrome or Facebook, and the others are as named. In the Messages folder is a list of names of those I contacted. I’m sure there is more, though. Photos showed the ones I put on Facebook but also some from my Animal Pictures folder on my hard drive.

Index provided a break from the dull data. My profile was actually funny on account of misinformation and had solid laugher. The address given wasn’t an apartment but a post office box I gave up seven years and change ago. I had rummaged around various supernatural sites for amusement and possibly writing in that genre, so under “Activities” only Nigromancy. What? I simply do not summon the dead! I hadn’t put a birthdate so Facebook made one for me, taking eighteen years off my actual age, and the best in show here is under “Family.” Only one name, a woman on my friend’s list whom I lived with in the mid-seventies is listed as my sister!

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Google is much larger and more complicated. The whole download took 587 megs and nearly five hours and broke into twenty-four folders. The Drive folder shows me all the text that happened on my Chromebook since April 3rd 2017, including my poems, blog posts, lists of magazines, submission records and so on. The folder structure was identical, and the poems, etc. are as accessible as on the hard drive.

However, “accessible” doesn’t apply to other of the twenty-four folders opened from the Zip drive. “Bookmarks” gave me a link to an html page, but instead of bookmarks a Google Map picture of my house and a note that I lasted visited nine months ago. Items in some folders open only as code without a view option, while other with the option lists dates and times of whatever but no specifics. I watched more videos  than listed, and several I never heard of. My searches are listed by month but in JASON, so unreadable to me.

How accurate? Items under “News” stops at October 17, 2017.  Given the mistakes, I wonder if the software involved does more of the decision-making than the humans who run it.

And private, finally? Well, private to me because I can’t read JSON files.

For your Facebook data: https://www.facebook.com/help/131112897028467

For Google: https://takeout.google.com/settings/takeout

Owl looking askance

 

Advertisements

Men’s Magazines

 

Erotic is my term, against

Those dysphemistics such as filth,

Or crying down corruption of some code.

To me such wording made no sense,

And then the printing press stopped still.

I was there to watch it all explode.

 

225px-Percy_Bysshe_Shelley_by_Alfred_Clint

This poem is  published in the February 2018 issue of Blue Unicorn.

THIS AND THAT (December 29th)

Tiny Kittens Rescue Service

http://www.tinykittens.com/#

“TinyKittens is volunteer-run, and our purpose is to blaze new trails in animal rescue. We want to show that every life has value, and we often prove that by taking on the really hard cases that wouldn’t be given a chance anywhere else.”

Their activities include fostering pregnant feral cats, maintaining a feral cat recovery ward, a trap-neuter-return program and “kitties in the classroom,” teaching kindness.

You can see their work on LIVE rescue kitten tv.

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The next two items are from Smithsonian pop-ups: Federal Tea Taster and White Knights with an accompanying blog.

For 99 years, the FDA had a department called “The Board of Tea Experts” whose function was to test imported teas:

The FDA Used to Have People Whose Job Was to Taste Tea

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/fda-used-have-people-whose-job-was-taste-tea-180967545/#rTzwF80C5vzpj

By Kate Eschner

“The Board of Tea Experts, as they were called, was created as part of the Tea Importation Act of 1897.” The concern was more about purity, because then all kinds of adulartents were found in all kinds of foods. The chemistry for a detailed analysis wasn’t available, so tasting was the test. The Federal government had been trying to get rid of it since the Nixon administration, but the act was finally repealed in 1996. At the time of repeal, the head tea-taster was chemist Robert H. Dick, an assistant tea taster, Faith Lim, both based in Brooklyn, and two further tasters at the ports in Boston and San Francisco.

The tea-tasters way of brewing is somewhat the way I do it but without weighing the tea. Otherwise, I brew it, poured it and tasted it. The article didn’t go further, and I wonder if the tasters also steamed the leaves by rinsing the pot in boiling water before adding the tea and let it sit while boiling the water for it.

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White knights?

Contradicting certain current ideas about the Middle Ages, again from the Smithsonian, Not All the Knights of the Round Table Were White

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/not-all-knights-round-table-were-white-180949361/#MXcIUX8zvP99zfGm.99

By Rose Eveleth

In addition to the knights we’ve all heard about (No? Go to Wikipedia), there is also a Sir Morien: “He was all black, even as I tell ye: his head, his body, and his hands were all black, saving only his teeth. His shield and his armour were even those of a Moor, and black as a raven…”

The article points to the delightful blog, Elodie Under Glass,  

https://elodieunderglass.com/: “In vitro veritas: science, feminism and the media.”

In her article, Black Knights, Green Knights, Knights of Color All A-Round: Race and the Round Table, Elodie states, “Since it seems like some sad internet people are mad that a man of color is going to play a role in a modern adaptation of the King Arthur mythos, I thought I would drop some classical-education truth-bombs about the 5-ish Known Men Of Color in King Arthur.”

“First off, six percent of the Knights of the Round Table were men of color. Granted, that’s only three out of 49 men, but the entire expanded United States Congress is hovering around 13% people of color and only has one black Senator.”

She discuss a Sir Palamedes the Saracen, and his brothers, Sir Safir and Sir Segwarides. They were Saracen (Arabic) princes, the sons of King Esclabor of Babylon, an area near modern Baghdad.

Elodie also points out that “Interestingly, in Arthur’s time, race as we know it didn’t exist; Western Racism is a very modern, very colonialist concept.”

She relates different arthurian legends in her delightful blog.
Again the URL: https://elodieunderglass.com/.

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Here’s Tiny Kitten’s  Amelia and her brothers

Amelia and brothers
That’s that for This And That for December 29th.

 

THE FATE OF SECTION 8

In my previous post, I discussed how I discovered three poems of mine were published when a friend saw them on the ‘Zine’s Web site. Here are the surprisingly published poems. Seasonal Affective had already been published in this Blog, but here it is again. Somebody liked it.

 

About.Me

I am made of syllables and sounds,

Of word and tone and clarity of voice,

Caught by curious rhythms I set down.

Given what I hear, I have no choice.

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“Feeling Okay?” His Caretaker Asked In The Access-A-Ride Car

Nothing this disabled man would eat,
What the broken mind beside me has.
At least it doesn’t stink, the bag
He dips into, retrieving gulping chunks.
When he asks his care-companion’s name,
I hear the fracture in his voice.
I write and he eats lunch—
Between we damaged, who is better off?

========================

Seasonal Affective

Improving the texture of the day
Takes more than simply getting stoned:
Needs circus colors’ ambience and sounds,
With shiny and the glitter in array,
Some clowning props to set the tone,
Then listen as the laughing things rebound.

==============================================================================================================

Section 8 is defunct and is the third magazine, Screech Owl, Bijou Review and now 8, who went under after publishing me. Is there a Blaustein curse, run my work and then go under?

No, no. The other five’Zines who’ve published me are still there. So far.

 

Puppy in kitten litter_o

 

(NON-) REJECTION FUN: SURPRISE!

(I wrote this post on May 22nd, 2016 and hadn’t gotten around to posting it.  I went through my entire list of posts to see if I had, and it wasn’t there. It’s here now.)

On March 25th I submitted three poems to Section 8 and wasn’t notified that my work had been received, but this isn’t unusual since only a few of the ‘zines I submitted to acknowledged receipt. When I mentioned submitting to Section 8 to a friend, she looked up the site and found that my three poems are currently up there. I didn’t recall having been so notified, so I went to the site as soon as Access-A-Ride brought me home.

There, under “Poetry” and then my name, sat “Seasonal Affective,” “About.Me” (no Oxford comma) and “‘Are you okay….'” I took three passes through my Yahoo Mail Poetry Response folder and couldn’t find the acceptance message from Section 8. I took two passes through my Inbox from a day or so after the submission to current and couldn’t find an acceptance

message from Section 8.

Now, let’s see. Since poems were published without notice to the poet, I see the possibility of poems being rejected without notice to the poet. Poetic Paranoia? I have one clear example, Barrow Street. I sent three poems on December 11th, 2014, and I inquired about the submission in late Spring 2015. As with the submission, no answer. I wrote once more and again no answer, and I have to say their arrogance is breathtaking.

At least something got published.

Racoon claps paws