Blog Index for April 2018

SmugMug Buys Flickr -- leaving free account holders in the dark?

(April 21, 2018)

For years Yahoo's acquisition spree built them an impressive portfolio of websites, that may have sunk Yahoo's financial stability. Now that Yahoo has been acquired, some of its properties may be up for sale, and today SmugMug sent notification to Flickr account holders they'd purchased Flickr. For some Flickr account holders this will be good news since it appears SmugMug has some top-notch photography archiving and sales tools. But, what about the Flickr account holders who don't want to pay a monthly fee? While the announcement implies that, initially, the Flickr account tiers will remain the same, what will happen over the long term?

PAY ATTENTION: Facebook showing users permissions granted to 3rd party apps

(April 18, 2018)

Buried in the Facebook user settings area is a page showing the permissions that have been granted to 3rd party applications. Most of us click through the permissions granting process - we just want to get to that game or whatever, and it's like a click-through-license that nobody ever reads. But recent events in Facebook's ecosystem shows the extreme danger of information leakage, of personal identifying data, from being too liberal with permissions grants. It's extremely useful that Facebook is calling attention to the permissions grants.

Apple's monopolistic repair policies bite YouTuber who disassembled iMac Pro

(April 18, 2018)

Apple's hardware designs are thin and sleek, a heavily-stressed selling point. Getting that thin/sleek design motif requires impeding the repairability due to soldered-on parts, or parts that are glued in place, and easily shattered glass panels. A popular YouTuber in January disassembled an iMac Pro, then botched the reassembly, and now Apple is refusing to repair the machine, so the YouTuber now has a prominent video up complaining about Apple.

Facebook has built a surveillance state where the inmates WANT to be in the prison

(April 6, 2018)

Facebook may need to come under government regulation. Facebook's COO claimed in a TV interview that the company has an advertising-driven model just like Radio and Television, both of whom are regulated by Governments. She also said that what Facebook is selling is access to people, but that's not for sale, which causes a big "HUH"? Any owner/operator of a Facebook page knows that over the last year or so Facebook has diminished the organic growth potential of Facebook Page postings. Such postings previously showed up organically in the newsfeed of folks following the pages, today that doesn't happen organically (very much). Instead, Page owner/operators are constantly barraged with please to spend money on advertising, in other words Facebook begs page owners to buy access to Facebook's users.

A DIY iPhone storage upgrade - the upgrade Apple hates the most

(April 6, 2018)

Price any Apple hardware and you'll find they charge a pretty penny for larger memory capacity. In Apple's latest design iterations it is getting harder and harder to make upgrades, and upgrading iPhone memory or storage capacity has never been possible. You could say Apple's whole business model is predicated on charging a premium for memory and storage.

The YouTube Adpocalypse enraged a YouTuber to randomly shooting people at YouTube HQ

(April 4, 2018)

For months a growing anger among YouTube "content creators" has bubbled due to de-monetization of videos. There are many people building large audiences, whose videos are seen by lots of people, and who are able to make a living making videos for YouTube. In some cases YouTube's policy changes have decreased income for those people thanks to demonetization, or when YouTube turns off monetization for certain videos. On Tuesday April 3, 2018, a YouTuber started shooting YouTube employees at the YouTube HQ, and then killed herself, and it's clearly because of her rage at YouTube's policies.

Facebook is selling user data, even as Facebook does not sell user data

(April 4, 2018)

Facebook is under extreme fire currently over "leaks" of user data to 3rd party firms, such as Cambridge Analytica who has reportedly used that data for political manipulation projects. The current issue is that miscreant 3rd parties have been exploiting Facebook API's to access user data and build gigantic databases of user information and preferences. The situation is causing Facebook to loudly deny it is selling user data to anyone, and claim the company sells NO user data at all. Unfortunately that's a lie.