Musing About Our On Line Society!

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Just when I was watching the news got me thinking do people really think about the nature of the society they are creating especially over the internet?
Do they actually think the society both around them and on line is acceptable?
Though if I said this on likes of Facebook I’d be shot down for questioning such things, sort of answers it!


Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal journal of mine just follow the link to Acta Spiritu Amisso.

Do People Know That Social Networks are Public?

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Do People Know That Social Networks are Public?

Now you think that everyone who uses a social network, especially Facebook, Twitter and so on, would realise that any posts they make on these social networks are public, that is anyone can see their posts especially friends.

But it seams a large majority of users, especially the younger generation, do not even have a perception of this basic fact believing only their friends will see their posts even if they do not set their settings to private.

Add to this they seam not to have the basic concept that any posts they make on these social networks can be seen by the large majority of the users there. We are talking millions of users.

All this made even worse they really fail to comprehend the very public nature of the internet itself along with the fact you can reach millions of people there. Though they are not alone in this as governments and corporations on the large fail to comprehend the same fact.

I know these people, especially the younger generation, fail to understand these facts from personal observations at work where people have called in sick but posted things like they were drinking the night before or been to a concert the night before not realising that some of the managers are also on the social networks in question and could also read their posts.

I have to think did they not realise anyone could read their posts if you not set it to private?

I find it both sad and scary that these people fail to realise posts on social networks are public as after all potentially losing their job is least dangerous thing which could happen to them as an inappropriate post could land them in trouble with the law itself!


Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal journal of mine just follow the link to Acta Spiritu Amisso.

Luther’s Chosen Few: A Personal Place on the Internet with Help of Oxwall

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I have been what is commonly known as a geek again using the power and ease of use of both Linux and Open Source Software to set up a personal community website called Luther’s Chosen Few.

All started when I stumbled on a php based software called Oxwall which was a simple social website engine with a myriad of plugins which could be added to add more functionality to the community website most of which are free.

Much like the cloud software, Owncloud, all you needed to do with Oxwall was download it and unpack into the directory where the social web site was to be held on your server/computer. After which there is a very good set of instructions to set up the required MySQL database and attaching it to your web server software like Apache2.

The I had the fun of customising the site which I found easy including a theme and plugins required which I found to be easier than I expected. The people at Oxwall have put a lot of thought into this along with the administration of the site after it was set up which was also easy to find your way around it with little need to consult the documentation.

As you gather I would recommend Oxwall for those people out there who want to set up a small community website much I did with Luther’s Chosen Few. It also has Windows and Apple versions so there is also possibility of running on such computers but I not recommend it as both Apple and Window computers may not be stable enough to be a server.

So my personal closed community website, Luther’s Chosen Few, was bone a place where I can keep up with my friends outside of the main social web sites which I tend not like to use any more because of their very nature which is very negative in my view.

If you want to see the sites in question follow the links below:

Oxwall – PHP Social Networking Software: http://www.oxwall.org/
Luther’s Chosen Few: http://theplace.atspace.co.uk


Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal journal of mine just follow the link to Acta Spiritu Amisso.

True Friends: Small is Beautiful!

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What has become very clear from my experiences of social web sites over the years is that it is not the size of the social web site but who uses the social web site which makes up the site itself which makes a social web site work as a community or somewhere to socialise.

This has been a singular fact lost on the likes of Facebook and now even Twitter who still believe big is beautiful and give it’s members the best opportunity to socialise and build a community. But all their size results in is something too big for people to comprehend and the opposite effect of alienating its members who end up rather than building a social community end up posting trivia or innate comments.

Yes people do live in a worldwide community but what the big social networks forgot is that people actually live in small groups they feel safe and tend to feel comfortable within plus a large majority of people still want a private life and a control over the people who get near to them on a personal level.

In some way the big social networks have removed the basic right of the individual for privacy all helped by peoples general lack of understanding of social networks nature basically what you post there is public. They have forgotten that people still want a private life a life away from the public gaze that is a place where they can escape people as we all need time alone to our own thoughts to keep ourselves sane even those who think we do not!

What I am saying is the large social web sites including Facebook and Twitter have become too large and impersonal who show little respect for people’s privacy and actual social needs all due to their very nature and those who run them who show little true empathy to the people who use their social networks.

Hence why people like myself now look for smaller social networks which are far more manageable mentally and socially. Add to a fact as with smaller number of people it is far more personal and more likely to create a community feeling something I really need from a social web site.

Myself I found this in True-friends.org which has personally shown the way for social networks which is small is beautiful and large is not necessary best.

Time has Passed for the Big Boys of Social Web Sites!

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It seams to me the time has passed for the big boys of the social web sites as they have become too big, too impersonal and they have lost their direction/propose of actually being social web sites. All made worse by a general attitude of self importance on their part and a general disrespect of their users including their privacy the honeymoon of the big boys of the social web sites as far as the users is now over.

They may be the biggest social networks in the world but there is a growing discontent among their own users over their privacy and the constant changes to both the web sites themselves and terms of service without direct consultation of their own users. These actions are alienating their users from the social web sites themselves as the said users feel less in control or have no input into the social web site itself something really needed for a social web site to work effectively and to grow.

But rather than the big boys of the social web site actually addressing these issues directly or even to start a direct discussion with their users they continue to ignore their users and try to woe the users with brand new features which frankly do not solve the underlying issues and muddy the waters even more.

But as I said the big boys of the social web sites are so self assured that they have failed to see the warning signs of their own demise even to a point ignoring in a smoke screen of media hype saying all is good and there are no problems. It is a sad fact the large majority of users actually believe this hype and continue to use the said social web sites.

My personal view the big boys of the social web sites are on their way out as people discover other more productive and personal ways to communicate with people over the internet some of which already exist, through smaller social new works, for example True-Friends.org, and even more vibrant and creative virtual worlds, for example Second Life.

Who do I mean by the big boys of the social web sites?

Facebook, Twitter, Bebo and MySpace

All of which have singularly failed to listen to their users concerns about them and they are resting on their laurels rather than moving forward!

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