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The Internet of Garbage

Old 08-29-18, 12:55 AM
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The Internet of Garbage

I'm not entirely sure this is the right sub-forum, but it seemed to make sense as a socio-political discussion and definitely has intersection with things like purported political bias of online platforms...

The Verge has made available an in-process revision of the book The Internet of Garbage by Sarah Jeong whose first edition was published in 2015:
https://www.theverge.com/2018/8/28/1...ine-harassment

The Verge's summary of the book is as follows:
The Internet of Garbage provides an immediate and accessible look at how online harassment works, how it might be categorized and distinguished, and why the structure of the internet and the policies surrounding it are overwhelmed in fighting it.
I highly recommend reading the whole thing - it's a quick read as far as books go (just under 80 pages in PDF form). I'm not a fast reader and I read the whole thing tonight in less than 2 hours.

In the book, the author details the problem of online harassment specifically, and more generally "garbage" discourse on the internet. She makes a compelling case that it is akin to spam in that it's a large scale problem for major internet platforms that is threatening to render them unusable, and that the internet could benefit from the same level of sophistication and resources devoted to anti-spam infrastructure also being devoted to anti-harassment infrastructure. She also points out that on the other side of the coin, it has some of the same moral quandaries that spam once had surrounding the ethic of "free speech".

It's a fascinating read and raises a lot of interesting points. I'd be curious to know what others think of it, even if you only read part of it.
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Old 08-29-18, 10:58 AM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Maybe this belongs in the book forum.
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Old 08-29-18, 11:12 AM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by VinVega View Post
Maybe this belongs in the book forum.
Please stop with the online harassment.
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Old 08-29-18, 11:18 AM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by General Zod View Post
Please stop with the online harassment.
Please stop with the censorship.
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Old 08-29-18, 12:10 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

I don't need to read a book to know that it's wrong to be mean to people.
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Old 08-29-18, 02:52 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

I usually see garbage of the internet.
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Old 08-29-18, 03:16 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by grundle View Post
I don't need to read a book to know that it's wrong to be mean to people.
Remember when the dudes on here wanted to take what you posted and email it to your church and its members? That was definitely garbage. Could have been a whole chapter in this girl’s book.
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Old 08-29-18, 03:17 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Online harassment is a huge problem, and not merely as simple as "just words on a screen" as I've seen some folks dismiss it. More and more, industries are moving toward tech, and not away from it, so peoples' jobs rely on internet access and, yes, even social media. The coordinated harassment campaigns, of which there are many examples, feed on not just members of a known harassment forum taking action, but convincing enough "normies" that it's for a good cause, not a bad one. Someone gets one Facebook message, "Go fuck yourself!" that's no big deal. But they get 50, or 100, or 1000... in the span of 24 hours, along with texts, and calls. That's when it gets bad real fast. And rarely does the harassment stay online; they find personal details and start SWATting, trying to get into bank accounts, calling them in the middle of the night to scream at them, or calling employers, or family members, or all sorts of other people in real life. And in some cases, those people will cut ties with the person being harassed if for no other reason than THEY just don't want to put up with that crap, ignoring that the person being harassed might have less and less places to turn.

There's not a good system in place for people who are genuinely targeted. It usually happens very fast, and they panic and don't know what actions to take. There's a site or two out there to help with this, but not everyone knows where to go.

I haven't read the piece by Jeong, but I'll check it out. Thanks kefrank!

Originally Posted by Mabuse View Post
Remember when the dudes on here wanted to take what you posted and email it to your church and its members? That was definitely garbage. Could have been a whole chapter in this girl’s book.
You mean one dude? Who was banned like a year ago? Yes, that happened. And it was shitty for that person to make that threat. That's the sad thing about it; whether or not the threat was real, it's impossible to know until/unless they decide to do it. Kind of like death threats.
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Old 08-29-18, 03:19 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

All that dentist did was shoot one lion and even Jimmy Kimmel got on board ravaging him.
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Old 08-29-18, 03:22 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by grundle View Post
I don't need to read a book to know that it's wrong to be mean to people.
Shortly after Heather Heyer was murdered by fascists in Charlottesville, you posted a meme of a car running over protestors and laughed about it. Maybe you should read the book.
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Old 08-29-18, 03:38 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by Mabuse View Post
All that dentist did was shoot one lion and even Jimmy Kimmel got on board ravaging him.
All that actor did was shoot one president and even all historians got on board ravaging him. Some people do actually deserve to be called out for their bad actions.
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Old 08-29-18, 03:44 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by JasonX View Post
All that actor did was shoot one president and even all historians got on board ravaging him. Some people do actually deserve to be called out for their bad actions.
Not in my example. The guy was mislead by “game wardens” and people were suggesting his license be revoked and he be unable to work and support his family.

So much garbage. And so much of it focused on people losing their livelihood for minor transgressions.
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Old 08-29-18, 03:56 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

The transgression wasn’t so minor to the lion.
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Old 08-29-18, 05:17 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by grundle View Post
I don't need to read a book to know that it's wrong to be mean to people.
Neither do I, but that's not the point of this book.

I considered just posting this in the "Political bias by social media" thread because there is definite intersection between the content of the book and some of the things currently being discussed there (human moderation vs. algorithmic moderation, hate speech as harassment, etc). That said, while there's intersection, the content of the book isn't really directly about political bias at all.

And you don't necessarily have to read the whole book to have some thoughts on the real problem of online harassment or generally hateful, dehumanizing discourse on the internet. For what it's worth, The Verge also posted just the text of the third chapter at the link if you just want to read an excerpt.
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Old 08-29-18, 07:16 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

I am amazed at how some people completely miss the point.
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Old 08-29-18, 08:06 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by Dan View Post
Online harassment is a huge problem, and not merely as simple as "just words on a screen" as I've seen some folks dismiss it. More and more, industries are moving toward tech, and not away from it, so peoples' jobs rely on internet access and, yes, even social media. The coordinated harassment campaigns, of which there are many examples, feed on not just members of a known harassment forum taking action, but convincing enough "normies" that it's for a good cause, not a bad one. Someone gets one Facebook message, "Go fuck yourself!" that's no big deal. But they get 50, or 100, or 1000... in the span of 24 hours, along with texts, and calls. That's when it gets bad real fast. And rarely does the harassment stay online; they find personal details and start SWATting, trying to get into bank accounts, calling them in the middle of the night to scream at them, or calling employers, or family members, or all sorts of other people in real life. And in some cases, those people will cut ties with the person being harassed if for no other reason than THEY just don't want to put up with that crap, ignoring that the person being harassed might have less and less places to turn.

There's not a good system in place for people who are genuinely targeted. It usually happens very fast, and they panic and don't know what actions to take. There's a site or two out there to help with this, but not everyone knows where to go.
The book definitely goes into all of those dynamics and offers some interesting real-life examples. I think you would find it really interesting, for sure.
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Old 08-30-18, 12:18 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by Mabuse View Post
Remember when the dudes on here wanted to take what you posted and email it to your church and its members? That was definitely garbage. Could have been a whole chapter in this girl’s book.

No, I don't remember that.

I don't belong to any organized house of religious worship.

I tell everyone I know about my blog, and a lot of the stuff I post on my blog I also post here at DVD Talk, and vice versa. I'm not embarrassed or ashamed of it. I want people I know to read what I write.
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Old 08-30-18, 12:27 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by Mabuse View Post
All that dentist did was shoot one lion and even Jimmy Kimmel got on board ravaging him.

That particular lion was a healthy, active breeder, so killing it made the population get smaller. (Whereas killing older males that have stopped breeding and started killing other members of their own species makes the population get bigger). The kill was also illegal (although the hunter had thought it was legal because he paid money to a con artist).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killing_of_Cecil_the_lion
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Old 08-30-18, 12:34 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by Supermallet View Post
Shortly after Heather Heyer was murdered by fascists in Charlottesville, you posted a meme of a car running over protestors and laughed about it. Maybe you should read the book.

I still think it's dumb to stand in the street and deliberately block traffic.
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Old 08-30-18, 12:56 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by grundle View Post
I still think it's dumb to stand in the street and deliberately block traffic.
Yes, your complete lack of empathy has been noted. And my point still stands, you clearly do not know how to be kind to people online.
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Old 08-30-18, 12:57 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by Dan View Post
You mean one dude? Who was banned like a year ago? Yes, that happened. And it was shitty for that person to make that threat. That's the sad thing about it; whether or not the threat was real, it's impossible to know until/unless they decide to do it.
As a Mod on a college sports site for a D1 school, I had to ban a guy who sent an e-mail to the school, "Outing," one of their employees who had posted something on our site. The guy didn't like what the employee had posted, and went after him in real life. The employee immediately deleted his account and I have no idea if he was fired or not (he thought he might be because he criticized the shool and encouraged donors to withhold donations unless certain issues in the athletic department were addressed).

So I PM'd the guy (who emailed the school) and asked him if he really did that. He proudly said, "Yes," and felt good about what he did.

So I banned him. Permanently.

He has since created a couple dozen different accounts on the board (been banned each time, but I do think there are a couple accounts that we don't know about), and he's engaged in online harassment of me on different message boards. He's still pissed 6 years later.

I feel pretty good about that banning.

But, really - what else can you do when someone goes after another board member's job over differences of opinion on a message board? If we let him back on (as he repeatedly requests - he's desperate to openly post as himself) and he did that again we could be legally liable since we know he's done that before!

There are a lot of nutjobs on the internet, and they do make it an ugly place sometimes.
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Old 08-30-18, 01:19 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by grundle View Post
I still think it's dumb to stand in the street and deliberately block traffic.
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Old 08-30-18, 01:43 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by B5Erik View Post
As a Mod on a college sports site for a D1 school, I had to ban a guy who sent an e-mail to the school, "Outing," one of their employees who had posted something on our site. The guy didn't like what the employee had posted, and went after him in real life. The employee immediately deleted his account and I have no idea if he was fired or not (he thought he might be because he criticized the shool and encouraged donors to withhold donations unless certain issues in the athletic department were addressed).

So I PM'd the guy (who emailed the school) and asked him if he really did that. He proudly said, "Yes," and felt good about what he did.

So I banned him. Permanently.

He has since created a couple dozen different accounts on the board (been banned each time, but I do think there are a couple accounts that we don't know about), and he's engaged in online harassment of me on different message boards. He's still pissed 6 years later.

I feel pretty good about that banning.

But, really - what else can you do when someone goes after another board member's job over differences of opinion on a message board? If we let him back on (as he repeatedly requests - he's desperate to openly post as himself) and he did that again we could be legally liable since we know he's done that before!

There are a lot of nutjobs on the internet, and they do make it an ugly place sometimes.
I had someone do this to me in 2012. He tracked me down and contacted my employer and took it all the way up to the human resources chief. He failed though, because while I did have to meet with my department head, and it was embarrassing to be outed as a pottymouth outside work, I didn't get fired. I was asked to take down my LinkedIn profile which was the only connection online between me and where I work, but that was all. People who would do that need to get lives.
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Old 08-30-18, 03:11 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by grundle View Post
I still think it's dumb to stand in the street and deliberately block traffic.
Go to third word.
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Old 08-30-18, 10:32 PM
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Re: The Internet of Garbage

Originally Posted by grundle View Post
That particular lion was a healthy, active breeder, so killing it made the population get smaller. (Whereas killing older males that have stopped breeding and started killing other members of their own species makes the population get bigger). The kill was also illegal (although the hunter had thought it was legal because he paid money to a con artist).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killing_of_Cecil_the_lion
Isn’t that what I said?
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