That’s What He Said

Nationwide Tea Party

Posted in Uncategorized by wolfsbayne on February 24, 2009

Citizens of the Greater Los Angeles Area:

Let’s take part in the Nationwide Chicago Tea Party http://www.nationwidechicagoteaparty.com/

The local Facebook event page is here: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=131230090601

Friday, February 27, 2009 9:00 – 10:00 AM

Gather at the very edge of the Santa Monica Pier, to say to our local, state and federal governments: Enough is enough with taxation without representation!!!

If you are fed up with LA City Hall, Capital Hill in Sacramento, and/or DC’s waste of your hard earned tax dollars, join us at the Santa Monica Pier on Friday morning, 9:00 AM. At that exact time other citizens across the nation will be ‘tea partying’ to protest our governments’ irresponsible use of the powers WE have granted them.

This tea party at the pier, like most others,is not organized by an established political ‘apparatus’ – it’s all grassroots! We’re just law abiding, hardworking, taxpaying citizens like you…

Few simple rules, :

NO: breaking the law (e.g., loitering, vandalism)
NO: violence (physical or verbal)

JUST: good cheer & a positive sense of public engagement & a smile.

Feel free to pass the word around in any way you can. We can at least make a tiny ripple in the vast ocean!

That’s all folks!…

The nitty gritty details:
MC – Tony Katz (@tonykatz on twitter)
Speakers TBA

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Gmail Down Tonight – #Fail

Posted in Technology by wolfsbayne on February 24, 2009

I wonder if this is karma due to a few Google execs love affair with certain shady businesses. You know who you are.

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Mel Gibson is Colonel Sanders

Posted in Uncategorized by wolfsbayne on February 23, 2009

I tweeted about this tonight and people thought I was crazy, but really, he’s Colonel Sanders.

TheColonel Trailer

Facebook Reverts Back To Original TOS

Posted in Uncategorized by wolfsbayne on February 17, 2009

Facebook in response to the mountain of feedback they received when they posted a change to their TOS which implied they would own content after an account was deleted:

“A couple of weeks ago, we posted an update to our Terms of Use that we hoped would clarify some parts of it for our users. Over the past couple of days, we have received a lot of questions and comments about these updated terms and what they mean for people and their information. Because of the feedback we received, we have decided to return to our previous Terms of Use while we resolve the issues that people have raised. For more information, visit the Facebook Blog.”

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The Newest Way To Game Twitter – Fake Followers

Posted in Uncategorized by wolfsbayne on February 17, 2009

Last night, fellow Los Angelean, Jason Calacanis (@jasoncalacanis) tweeted about several folks acquiring 30k+ new followers in 6 days.

I know Jason pays attention to numbers since part of his business is watching the numbers. Jason’s an industry leader using SEO to promote his business, Mahalo. So, when Jason tweets about something other than his dogs, or poker, I usually pay attention.

Some of you are probably wondering, “So what?”. I understand. For many people this wouldn’t matter. However, there’s more than one use case for Twitter. Some people really do use Twitter for business. In this realm, more followers means more bragging rights and the appearance of more credibility. The number of followers matters to some of us.

I started looking into this and found quite a few accounts acquiring these bogus followers. For example: @veronica, @techcrunch, @anamariecox, @nytimes, @nprpolitics, @wilw, @ijustine, @mashable, @guardiantech, @pennjillette, @algore, @cnnbrk, and @wholefoods. Looks like whoever is following likes liberals and tech nerds. Just one more thing to offend my conservative sensibilites. 😉

Here’s a few screen captures of the follower graphs from Twitterholic to show the massive trend in follower counts starting on the 11th of February, 2009.

@ijustine:

@nytimes:

@guardiantech:

How did they do it? Someone is automating/scripting the creation of fake Twitter profiles and then following a select group of people. I looked at each of the aforementioned Twitter accounts to see what their followers looked like, . Almost every follower on every new page of followers had an account like this following (given the numbers on Twitter, it would have to be most of the followers on each page for these kinds of numbers – we’re talking about 5000 followers a day, that’s 250 pages of fake followers – every day!):

None of the fake accounts has a profile picture. Most of these accounts are following 20 accounts (I’m sure once the word gets out they will change their script). The pool of people being followed appears to be less than 50, however. This is an automated script that randomizes the 20 people being followed out of the pool of 50 at the time the account is created.

Who’s behind this? Dunno, but if Twitter captures the IP address of the person creating the accounts, they could easily determine who is behind this gaming approach.

What was the primary tip-off here for me? Other than the fact that people currently don’t get followers this fast? The fact that Mike Arrington (@techcrunch) and Pete Cashmore (@mashable) don’t get along at all, yet both are acquiring these same fake followers.

I was trying to do a quick analysis of this to see if there was one account that was followed more than others to determine the source. After looking at 50 pages of these bogus followers, I found that @guardiantech was at the top of the list. This seems to be corroborated by the numbers on Twitterholic. I don’t know who @guardiantech is, or if they have the resources to be behind this, but it’s worth noting.

I’ll update this as I find out new information. Please Digg this blog post. Follow me, I’m @brooksbayne.

Supreme Court to Hear Oral Arguments in Prop. 8 Cases on March 5, 2009

Posted in Politics by wolfsbayne on February 3, 2009

San Francisco—The California Supreme Court today announced that it will hear oral arguments on Thursday, March 5, 2009, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., in three cases challenging the constitutionality of Proposition 8, a statewide ballot initiative that was passed by a majority of California voters in November 2008. (Strauss v. Horton, S168047; Tyler v. State of California, S168066; City and County of San Francisco v. Horton, S168078).

The oral argument session will be held in the Supreme Court’s Courtroom, Earl Warren Center, Fourth Floor, 350 McAllister Street, San Francisco, as part of the court’s regular monthly calendar session in March 2009. The complete March 2009 oral argument calendar is available at http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/courts/supreme/#cal .

In the cases before the court, the court has issued an order listing the following three issues to be briefed and argued:

  1. Is Proposition 8 invalid because it constitutes a revision of, rather than an amendment to, the California Constitution?
  2. Does Proposition 8 violate the separation of powers doctrine under the California Constitution?
  3. If Proposition 8 is not unconstitutional, what is its effect, if any, on the marriages of same-sex couples performed before the adoption of Proposition 8?

The three cases before the court were filed directly in the California Supreme Court on November 5, 2008, the day following the voters’ approval of Proposition 8 at the November 4, 2008 election.

On November 19, 2008, the court agreed to hear the cases, denied a request to stay the operation of Proposition 8 pending the court’s resolution of the cases, granted the motion of the official proponents of Proposition 8 to intervene in the action, and established an expedited briefing schedule. Briefing in the Supreme Court was completed on January 21, 2009.

In an order issued today, the Supreme Court specified the amount of time each of the
petitioners, the Attorney General, and the interveners will be allocated for oral argument.

ACCESS TO ORAL ARGUMENTS

To increase public access to the court session, the Supreme Court has designated the
California Channel, a public affairs cable network, to provide a live TV broadcast of the
session and to serve as the “pool” channel. California Channel will provide a press pool
outside the State Building to facilitate coverage of the oral argument by television and radio stations. For a list of cable companies that carry the network, see
http://www.calchannel.com/carriage.htm .

Oral arguments also will be broadcast in an overflow viewing auditorium in the Milton
Marks Conference Center, Hiram J. Smith State Office Building, Lower Level, 455 Golden
Gate Avenue, San Francisco. In addition, the Supreme Court has announced that all briefs in the Proposition 8 cases are now posted to a special section of the California Courts Web site at http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/courts/supreme/ .

Under the applicable court rules, the Supreme Court generally issues a decision, through a written opinion, within 90 days of oral argument. For more information on the cases, including the attorneys of record, please see the Supreme Court’s online Case Information System at http://appellatecases.courtinfo.ca.gov/search.cfm?dist=5 .

Public and press seating in the courtroom will be extremely limited. Press seats will be
available on a first-come, first-served basis, with one seat to be allocated per media
organization. To reserve a seat, please e-mail Lynn Holton (lynn.holton@jud.ca.gov) or call 415-865-7726/7740.