From the late 1970s on, the Chicago School economists worked with the likes of Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, Augusto Pinochet and Brian Mulroney to dismantle antitrust enforcement, declaring that the only time government should intervene is when monopolists conspired to raise prices -- everything else was fair game. (more…)
Twitter draws a lot of fire for making it easy for anyone to set up an anonymous account or a bot; the argument against this says that making it easy to be anonymous also makes it easy to be shady. (more…)
Nurses picketed The Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital And Trauma Center (AKA "Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital") and covered up Zuckerberg's name on the hospital sign, citing concerns that patients would not trust a hospital that was associated with someone with such a long rap-sheet for privacy violations. (more…)
The looming deadline for the EU General Data Protection Plan means that companies have a duty to be extremely clear about what data they're collecting on you and what they're doing with it, and give you a chance to refuse -- they've already had a duty to do this for a very long time under both EU law and California law, but the difference this time around is that the GDPR has large, terrifying teeth: companies that fail to comply can be fined 5% of their annual global turnover. (more…)
Multiple Facebookers and ex-Facebookers risked lawsuits by revealing the company's longstanding problem with employees who abuse their access to Facebook's databases to stalk Facebook users, and its longstanding practice of binding all concerned to nondisclosure, keeping it a secret from the people who were stalked by its employees. (more…)
Journalist and advertising consultant B.J. Mendelson (author of Social Media is Bullshit) was interviewed in the C-Realm podcast about the ineffectiveness of using social media to promote your book or small business. Root Simple has a summary of Mendelson's findings:
Any of you who administrate a Facebook page for a business or non-profit will know that unless you pay, Facebook’s algorithm will bury your posts. Some other points Mendelson makes in the interview:
- A 1% click through rate on a paid post is often as good as it gets.
- Eighty percent of Facebook users are outside of the U.S. If you’re a local business, like say a plant nursery, what good is paying to reach someone in Latvia?
- Bots equal 60% of internet traffic (something to think about when looking at your stats).
- What happens if you rely on Facebook as a platform for your business and, like so many other internet companies of the past, Facebook goes out of business?
To illustrate how social media companies exaggerate their advertising power Mendelson offers a personal example. He has 700,000 Twitter followers. When he sent out a tweet about his new book he sold, not hundreds or thousands of copies, but exactly 28. A tweet to his 700,000 Twitter followers asking for a donation to a breast cancer charity netted just $1. While acknowledging that social media can, occasionally, be an effective advertising medium, for most of us it’s probably a big waste of time.