Recently, Professor Sherry Turkle made a TED Talk. She argued:

Turkle, a psychologist who leads MIT?s Initiative on Technology and Self, believes that while our constant communication and social media engagement does make us more connected, it?s coming at the sacrifice of real conversation. VIA

Although I would agree with most of her observations and arguments, I cannot agree with the overall conclusions. I believe Prof. Turkle falls into the theoretical trap of “real conversation” and gives priority to face to face relationships in the last analysis. before the internet era, this would maybe be framed in oral vs. written culture debates. Now in the age of internet, this new medium is claimed to be a derivative of “more real” communications. As if, when people are in face to face conversations, they act more real. As if, people do not have any “masks” in “real life”…Erving Goffman portrays this so nice.  Prioritizing face to face relations as more real is a false start… I wish there could more productive framing attempts to portray our social media existence…

TEDxUIUC – Sherry Turkle – Alone Together


Your Guide to Pinterest

from Daily Bits by noemi
Are you on Pinterest yet? I remember when I first heard of the site some time last year. At that time, I was working on a project that required dealing a lot with images of delectable food. When my boss explained the concept of Pinterest, I was not overly excited, but I did sign up. Sad to say, I didn?t ? and don?t ? really spend a lot of time on there. One thing is for sure, though: whenever I log in to my account, time does tend to pass by because of those eye-catching images you see everywhere!


Vatican officials says tweets are ?like the gospel?

from by Jonathan Dube
Pope Benedict XVI will soon be opening his own Twitter account, a Vatican official announced, saying that tweets were in some ways similar to ?the gospel.? ?The tweet can be reformulated, redistributed, relaunched and disseminated,? said Father Claudio Maria Celli, the head…

Global Intelligence Gate: From Confessions of an Economic Hit Man to the Stratfor Corporation

from WL Central

Authored By: Nikolas Kozloff
I have always been a bit skeptical about some of the more salacious claims made in John Perkins? Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, the story of one man?s life working for the secretive National Security Agency or NSA. When he was a young man, NSA interrogators interviewed Perkins and explored his ?frustration about the lack of women, sex, and money.? Perkins? fit the NSA?s psychological profile, and after being accepted into the organization?s shadowy ranks, he landed a corporate job working as an economist with a major consulting firm. It was all a cover, however, for Perkins? real purpose: as a self-described ?economic hit man,? the youth was dispatched to poor Latin American countries such as Panama and Ecuador where he was tasked with cheating governments out of money and funneling cash from the coffers of the World Bank into the hands of major corporations and wealthy elites.


Russia’s unlikely internet giant

from BBC News | Europe | World Edition
How a minor US blog site became a hotbed of Russian dissent

Social Share Buttons: Just Pick Three

from Pushing Social by Stanford Smith
In the movie Office Space, Stan the manager of Chotchkie?s badgers Joanna (Jennifer Aniston) to wear more flair, cheesy aluminum buttons usually handed out by political candidates.  At Chotchkie?s flair was proof of enthusiasm and team spirit.

Google’s New Privacy Policy: What Has Changed and What You Can Do About It

from Wired Top Stories by Jon Brodkin – Ars Technica
Today’s the day Google’s new privacy policy takes effect. It’s too late to pull out your data now, but there are still some not-completely-foolproof ways to hide from Google.

HTTPS and Tor: Working Together to Protect Your Privacy and Security Online

from Updates by eva
This week EFF released a new version its HTTPS Everywhere extension for the Firefox browser and debuted a beta version of the extension for Chrome. EFF frequently recommends that Internet users who are concerned about protecting their anonymity and security online use HTTPS Everywhere, which encrypts your communications with many websites, in conjunction with Tor, which helps to protect your anonymity online. But the best security comes from being an informed user who understands how these tools work together to protect your privacy against potential eavesdroppers.

Anonymous: We Were Infiltrated by Police

from Mashable! by Alex Fitzpatrick


Study at CMU, MIT, Georgia Tech Suggests Nine Ways to Improve Tweets

from Bloggers Blog: Blogging the Blogsphere
Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Georgia Institute of Technology conducted a study and found that users say only a little over a third of the tweets they receive are worthwhile. They also found that users say one quarter of tweets are not worth reading at all. That figure actually seems low.


Bigger Than Facebook! Foreign Sites That Outshine the Web?s U.S. Stars

from Wired Top Stories by Wired Magazine
From Kooora to Kijiji to VKontakte, alternatives to the web’s US stars are overshadowing the big guys.

Is Google+ on the Path to Extinction?

from Sysomos Blog by Mark Evans
For people who have become enamored with Google+ or simply interested in its birth and rise, it might be time to become an avid user or stop caring.

Hackers Will Replace Terrorists as Top Threat, Says FBI

from Mashable! by Alex Fitzpatrick

Privacy and Civil Liberties in the Digital Age

from Wired Top Stories by Sen. Al Franken
Between our wireless phone company, the company that we use for e-mail, our smartphone company and the companies that provide the apps on our phones, there exists a detailed, expansive record of everywhere we’ve been, every website we’ve visited and everyone we’ve called, e-mailed and texted and what we’ve said ? often going back years and years. I believe that consumers have a fundamental right to know what information is being collected about them. I believe that they have a right to decide whether they want to share that information, and with whom they want to share it and when. And I believe that consumers have a right to expect that companies that store their personal information will store it securely.

Cyclones in Cyberspace? How Crowdsourced Cyber Warfare Shaped the Russian-Georgia War

from iRevolution by Patrick Meier

?Cyclones in Cyberspace: Information Shaping and Denial in the 2008 Russia-Georgia War? was just published in Security Dialogue, a respected peer-reviewed journal. The article analyzes ?the impact of cyberspace on the conflict between Russia and Georgia over the disputed territory of South Ossetia in August 2008.? The authorsRon Diebert, Rafal Rohozinski and Masashi Crete-Nishihata argue that ?cyberspace played a significant, if not decisive, role in the conflict?as an object of contestation and as a vector for generating strategic effects and outcomes.?

Mobile User Privacy Bill of Rights

from Updates by parker
Mobile smartphone apps represent a powerful technology that will only become more important in the years to come. But the unique advantages of the smartphone as a platform?a device that’s always on and connected, with access to real world information like user location or camera and microphone input?also raise privacy challenges. And given the sensitivity of the data that many consumers store on their phones, the stakes are even higher for manufacturers, carriers, app developers, and mobile ad networks to respect user privacy in order to earn and retain the ever-important trust of the public.

Anonymous, Decentralized and Uncensored File-Sharing is Booming

from TorrentFreak by Ernesto
The avalanche of negative file-sharing news over the past weeks hasn?t gone unnoticed to users and site operators.
From SOPA to Megaupload, there is a growing uncertainly about the future of sharing.
While many BitTorrent sites and cyberlockers continue to operate as usual, there is a growing group of users who are expanding their horizons to see what other means of sharing are available if the worst case scenario becomes reality.

What the Facebook and Tumblr Controversies Can Teach Us About Content Moderation

from Updates by eva
Two weeks ago, Gawker?s Adrian Chen published a leaked copy of Facebook?s Operations Manual for Live Content Moderators, which the company uses to implement the rules and guidelines that determine which content will be allowed on the platform. The document was widely ridiculed for a variety of reasons, from the attitudes expressed toward sex and nudity (photos containing female nipples are banned, as is any ?blatant (obvious) depiction of camel toes or moose knuckles?), to its lenient attitude towards gore (crushed heads and limbs are permitted ?so long as no insides are showing?), to its arbitrary ban on photos depicting drunk, unconscious, or sleeping people with things drawn on their faces.

Filtering Software Companies Should Follow Websense’s Lead

from Updates by jillian
EFF is pleased to see that Websense, a company that produces Internet filtering technology, has issued a statement against Pakistan?s call for proposals [PDF] for companies to assist with their pervasive censorship plans.  Websense?s statement, posted on their website also calls upon other producers of filtering technology to refuse complicity with Pakistan?s plans, which run counter to the right to free expression enshrined in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Complete Guide To Facebook Timeline Pages

from All Facebook by Brian Honigman

Trails of Trustworthiness in Real-Time Streams

from iRevolution by Patrick Meier

Real-time information channels like Twitter, Facebook and Google have created cascades of information that are becoming increasingly challenging to navigate. ?Smart-filters? alone are not the solution since they won?t necessarily help us determine the quality and trustworthiness of the information we receive. I?ve been studying this challenge ever since the idea behind SwiftRiver first emerged several years ago now.

How to be a Social Media Writer in 10 easy steps

from The Next Web by Allen Gannett

BitTorrent’s elite switches from Xvid to x264

from Boing Boing by Cory Doctorow

A high-level summit of the torrenting world’s elite release groups — the groups responsible for the highest quality, earliest infringing video releases — has resulted in a consensus on dumping the venerable Xvid codec (a video compression scheme) for x264, requiring the torrent-downloading public to rethink which tools, devices and converters they use. Here’s the official consensus. Torrentfreak’s Enigmax has more:


Social Media is a Spiritual Awakening, Not a Technological One

from social media vb by Chris Dessi
Social Media is a spiritual awakening, not a technological one.

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