Hello, LiveJournal

Monday, June 26th, 2017 02:24 pm
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
Because LJ has made it intensely difficult for me to sign in on my dial-up connection, and because I can't guarantee that none of the entries I write will violate the laws of the Russian Federation, I am pretty much a Dreamwidth-only creature these days. My recent entries have been access-list only, but if you'd rather not get your own account on Dreamwidth, then those of you who are signed into LJ should be able to log in with OpenID and participate that way.

Same username there as here. And just so you know, it hasn't been all whining over there. I had a good weekend. :-)
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
From a TechCrunch piece entitled "Can Anything Stop The Facebook Juggernaut?":
As usual, William Gibson put it best: “Facebook feels like a mall. Twitter feels like the street.” (Which I suppose makes Zynga the mall’s arcade.) It’s one thing to shop there occasionally, but quite another to be a full-fledged mallrat—and according to the stats, that’s what we have collectively become. I want to believe that eventually we’ll wake up, and grow up, and realize that new and interesting things mostly happen elsewhere.

And so, I speculate hopefully: what if Facebook is the new LiveJournal?

You might not remember LiveJournal, a now-moribund social-blogging site...

PSA

Thursday, April 16th, 2009 08:58 am
hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
Because friendbots seem to be taking over LiveJournal these days, those of you with accounts here should keep this link handy:
Report Suspected Bot

If you think that account that just friended you out of the blue that's posting badly-written fiction, sex tips (in English or Russian), advertisements (of course), or whatever might possibly be a bot, just report it already.

If we must have bots around here, let them be entertaining bots, not this unoriginal crap.

PSA

Friday, September 19th, 2008 01:56 pm
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Kaleidoscope (purple & white))
[Edit: It's 3 o'clock now, so the window for the drawing is probably over. Please skip this paragraph.] For those interested in such things, [livejournal.com profile] haikujaguar is having a Balance Card one-card draw right now! It lasts until 3 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (which is, unless I'm much mistaken, seven p.m. UTC). If you'd like to have a Balance Card drawn for you for whatever reason, go and ask!

~~~~~

On an unrelated note, for those of you who weren't paying attention to the [livejournal.com profile] news announcement a while back: LiveJournal has a paid account sale going on until September 30.
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
Today is your last day to vote! If you haven't voted for the LJ Advisory Board yet--or if you're sick of hearing from your candidate and want to change your vote to somebody you've never heard of--go here! Vote now! Candidate position posts are linked to from this news post if that matters to you.

I understand that many people believe this is a pointless election between tiresome candidates and that the results won't change the way the country site is run, but I must point out that many Americans felt the same way back in November 2000 and look what happened there.

Lest anyone doubt that this election is a serious affair, not only has [livejournal.com profile] legomymalfoy posted that she was the one to receive the original "credible" death threat, but now [livejournal.com profile] jameth says he has also been threatened. All this for an unpaid position that involves some communication with LiveJournal, Inc. and a free trip to Istanbul.

Happy LJ Elections

Wednesday, May 28th, 2008 08:24 am
hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
If you haven't yet voted in the LiveJournal Advisory Board election, please consider doing so! Relevant information and links may be found in this news post. It should be noted, though, that a couple of candidates have dropped out because the election has gone completely bloody insane (threats? threats?!).

I might have endorsed a selection of candidates in this post, but I'm starting to wonder if they're a bunch of politicians after all.
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (8 months)
[livejournal.com profile] elfwreck writes a post featuring a discussion between SixApart and the Abuse Prevention Team about the flagging feature. I LOLd.

Online life

Monday, December 10th, 2007 08:29 pm
hummingwolf: Mathemagical animation made out of string. (Incredible String Thing)
So, a bunch of people have been linking to this article recently, all about a Russian blogger (a LiveJournal user) who was charged with "inciting hate" against police officers in his journal several months ago. People who have been linking to that article have been claiming that it's evidence of SUP's being in bed with Putin's government, but is there any proof of that? Were the blogger's entries public or in some place where the Russian government should not have been able to find them? Wait, let me follow the links instead of asking you lot...

Do You Dare To Leave a Comment? He posted a comment, apparently publicly, and recommended that six police in every city be "ceremonially burned daily, or better twice a day (at midday and midnight, for example)." "The law enforcement agencies have proven that Terentyev is the author of the offensive statements by studying his school essays. Terentyev has been asked to provide a written statement promising he will not leave the city, Yury Knyazev, a senior aide to the republic's prosecutor, told Gazeta.ru." So it's a case of Russian prosecutors cracking down on dissent, but not (apparently) a case of SUP cracking down on him. 'Anton Nosik, director of livejournal.com's chief administrator in Russia, told daily Kommersant the case was "absurd." "The ignorance of local judges often plays a role in the outcome of cases connected to the internet," Nosik said. "I hope that with many journalists present, the judge will look at the essence of the case and not simply hand down a guilty verdict."' More on Russian blogs here.


In more entertaining LJ-related stuff, the latest list of things you can't search for on LiveJournal is over here. Check out the interest list on this profile, which consists entirely of terms you cannot search for on LiveJournal. I began to do something similar over here*, but must bow down to the true masters.

Whoever thought that an interest in "children's choral music" or "undaunted circumnavigation" could be so naughty?


For those wondering: the closest anyone has gotten to an official LJ statement about the interest search so far is comments by [livejournal.com profile] marta over in [livejournal.com profile] lj_policy.
We discussed this today, and I need to talk to several more people this week before I'll know what to say about the blocked search terms. I'm sorry I don't have an answer today (that was what I was optimistically hoping for) but I want to be sure what I say is really correct and accurate.

So far a) it's been that way since June and b) there was a one-time addition to the terms in late October and c) it's not related to the flagging program or the SUP purchase or anything like that.

Thinking back, I believe I did search for other users interested in "raccoons" in the last few months and did get the new error. But if this did in fact happen, I figured it was because LJ was having a server glitch again. Never did it occur to me that my interest in my fuzzy masked neighbors could be seen as a sign of evil intent.


* Thanks to the magic of OpenID, with my accounts at LJ and IJ I have four different profiles: hummingwolf here, hummingwolf there, hummingwolf.insanejournal.com on LiveJournal, and hummingwolf.livejournal.com on InsaneJournal. There is someone who has me friended on InsaneJournal who has never friended me on LiveJournal, and someone who has hummingwolf.insanejournal.com friended on LiveJournal who has never friended either hummingwolf on InsaneJournal or hummingwolf on LiveJournal. It all gets terribly confusing.
hummingwolf: animation of green and gold fractal, number of iterations increasing with time (Iterations in green and gold)
perspicacity:, n. keen judgment, understanding; acuteness of perception; the capacity to assess circumstances or situations and draw sound conclusions.

I added "perspicacity" to my LJ interests list this morning. Those of you who saw my post of 1:15 a.m. will probably not be surprised to learn that you cannot currently do a search for other users who list "perspicacity" as an interest. You also can't search for "perspicuity" (clarity of expression; lucidity).

Comments over in this post list some other strings you cannot search for. A few minutes ago, I added "spicy rice crackers" to my list so I could have something which is unsearchable for two reasons instead of just one.

Iiiiiinteresting

Friday, December 7th, 2007 01:15 am
hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
While waiting for the house to heat up enough for me to go to sleep (don't ask), I saw a post by [livejournal.com profile] mynn saying that here on LJ, it is no longer possible to do a search on the term "genocide." "So far it is not the only 'unavailable' interest." With a bit of link-hopping, found [livejournal.com profile] elfwreck's post on the issue, which lists a few more of the unsearchables.

A Google blogsearch for the phrase "Sorry, we're unable to help you find users matching the interests you've provided" showed that there were a few Russian users--or at least LJers posting in the Cyrillic alphabet--who noticed this issue as early as November 11.

Now, I can understand why you wouldn't want fans of "white power" finding each other. Really, I get it. It seems to me, though, that an organization with a decent amount of brainpower would recognize that allowing people to talk about "genocide" for, say, historical research purposes is not a bad thing. "Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it" and all that.

And here's the fun part: you can't search for Spice Girls. And you're out of luck if you like spicy food. What are little girls made of? You can't do a search on that either. The innocent spicebush is forbidden. And you're going to have to find a substitute for allspice. As of right now, quarter-after-one in the morning EST on December 7, 2007, LiveJournal thinks you should be living a spice-free lifestyle.

Makes me want to pour habanero sauce on the lot of 'em.
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
For those of you who have been either living under a rock or out having lives recently, there are some changes to LiveJournal you should know about.

First, there is a new content flagging feature. No matter what your settings for anything else on LiveJournal have been, you will want to visit your settings page, go down to the section for "Adult content options," and pick something. You can rate your journal if you like, or you can leave it alone--this option is (currently) (supposed to be) voluntary. If you are unable to select certain options, make sure you have your birthdate set to something (anything!) over 18.

For information on both your ability to rate content on your own journal, and the ability of different people to flag content on journals they do not own, see this post and this post in [livejournal.com profile] lj_biz.

Next: LiveJournal has been sold to a Russian company called SUP (pronounced "soup"). Many people, knowing something about the corruption that's endemic to Russia, are a bit concerned about this, even though the new LiveJournal, Inc. is located in California and is supposed to be governed by U.S. law. Other people, somewhat less informed about what's been going on in Russia, are afraid that LJ's servers will now be located behind the Iron Curtain. (Hint: There has been no Iron Curtain since the 1980s, dudes. Hate Putin's government all you like, but pick a new metaphor.)

This thread should prove very useful for us all.

Brad's reaction.

An old Wired news article about SUP's involvement with LJ in Russia.

Collection of more links here from [livejournal.com profile] stewardess.

Note: If you're coming to the game this late, all of the "In Soviet Russia..." jokes have already been made. Better luck next time.

Now I have a question: If it is indeed now going to be dangerous to criticize and/or make fun of Vladimir Putin on this site, which one of the following will get me into more trouble?
The faces of Vladimir Putin and George Bush combined together - Vladimir Putin's Face Combined with Monkey - The faces of Paris Hilton and Vladimir Putin combined together -

Linkies

Thursday, November 29th, 2007 07:55 pm
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
First: If you are a LiveJournal user and you don't follow [livejournal.com profile] news, you probably should. Anyway, the most important bit is that LiveJournal now has new settings & flagging tools for "adult content," which you can read more about here. Note that by default, your search settings are "Use Moderate Filtering"--filter out explicit adult content. My guess is that many of you, when you do use the search feature, don't want to filter any results out at all, so it's a good idea to go to your viewing options (settings) page and change that.

Right then. In news unrelated to LJ, but related to the late great TV show Firefly: "I, Malcolm" by Nathan Fillion. Oh, Captain! (Link via [livejournal.com profile] musesfool.)

Unrelated (or at least not directly related) to any Joss Whedon show, [livejournal.com profile] nancylebov links to The Fantasy of Being Thin. The essay begins with this quote:

Obese patients are often encouraged to believe that weight loss is an appropriate way to combat depression, save a failing marriage, or increase the chance of career success. The irrationality of hopes pinned on weight loss is so striking that dieting might almost be likened to superstitious behavior…. Passing from childhood into adolescence, leaving home, marrying, starting a new job, having a baby, experiencing marital difficulties, adjusting to children leaving home, and growing old — all these life situations may become unexamined reasons to diet. In other instances, concerns over weight mask even more serious problems.”

-Wooley and Garner, from “Obesity treatment: the high cost of false hope,” published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, vol. 91, no. 10, 1991.


Many of you will recognize that the essay applies to more than just dieting. "Because, you see, the Fantasy of Being Thin is not just about becoming small enough to be perceived as more acceptable. It is about becoming an entirely different person – one with far more courage, confidence, and luck than the fat you has." Replace "being thin" and "fat" with, oh, "having a college degree" and "being a college dropout" or whatever other combination of words applies in your life.
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
Personal stuff: Remember how a few days due to fatigue, I have done my best to keep not just my eyes but all my information about Y was heavily filtered through the perceptions of X, who still doesn't exist no matter how much nutritious food I eat or how much exercise I get, nobody will be able to understand what life is like for someone else, the work of trying to find ways to keep the heat exhaustion from getting worse, that probably wasn't too hard.
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
According to the Attorney General, "we can use Jedi mind control. These aren't the droids you're looking for. The program is part of southern (US) regional dialect. A Google search for the wisdom that would be most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be under any state compulsion to recognize other kinds of relationships are valid should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their right, it is their right, it is their right, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off your chains.
For Libra, where the sun and attracted swarms of flies and ants which found no nourishment their digestive systems could process and so expired there on the pavement where they were later sniffed at by overheated birds... or something like that, but probably less interesting.

Spent 4 hours in air-conditioned places. Walked roughly 3.5 miles total. Read bits of lots of things. Resisted the urge to buy lots of fresh fruit. You know I'd have spent less money if I were ever at a bowling alley.

How often do you change your bed sheets?
Once a week.

Do you have arthritis in your hands or fingers?
No, but that doesn't seem to be split on whether it's utterly brilliant melding of old and new or obnoxiously noisy dance music clashing with singers who could do better. I love it. The three songs most likely to go running through my head for no discernible reason. It's taken over my brain every once in a while I'd look out my door instead of my usual box of eight large white. Why, when it usually pays to buy in bulk, are the boxes of eight usually cheaper per egg than the boxes of eight usually cheaper per egg than the boxes of eight usually cheaper per egg than the boxes of twelve? And why did it take me until just a few minutes ago to figure out if I am capable of actually doing anything this evening. Have a good weekend, all.


[Edit: Really, I was just wondering if a second post would include anything previously generated by MegaHAL. Wouldn't an autopost made up entirely of old MegaHAL posts be cool? Hello? Hello?

Ah, I see that three autoposts have been posted now. I will stop and get myself offline. Be good to yourselves, everyone!]
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
According to the Attorney General, "we can use Jedi mind control. These aren't the droids you're looking for. The program is part of southern (US) regional dialect. A Google search for the phrase "very concerning" turns up a bunch of people to get nekkid; and while the show certainly does have some attractive actors, I still like some decent storylines on my television. But each episode I've caught this season has been enjoyable, even if Lana Lang is still annoying as heck. Another question: I know everybody hates Lana, but am I the only one who ever bothers to take out the trash?

Plus there's the usual medical problems, bureaucracy, inability to pay my bills. Bleah.

Yes, I'm cranky. Venting a little bit now then later more

Angel, angel, ring them bells
Ring them bells
Something is wrong it doesn't belong
and it's not natural to sing that song

And if I wash my hands in your dirty water
Will I be blind for all I see

Oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh
I know I saw the snow had stopped, the sky lightening and turning pink. I went back to reading. Looking up once more, I saw a branch hanging low over the sidewalk and was considering whether I should try again some other day. Tried again today, repeatedly. Same message every time.

Called dental school. Earliest available appointment is for a full bleeding month from today. Full exam & x-rays: $100. See, this is why I was standing in line today along with oodles of friendly neighbors.

As we stood in line, the election judge called for our attention, holding up a piece of paper and shouting, "Listen! This is a link for fans of mashups: If you haven't heard about my Easter celebration (though at least I no longer remember what it was. Maybe it'll come back to me after a few hours' sleep.

[Edit: LiveJournal has a brand-new toy, y'all. I'm likely to be offline for a couple days, but I just had to be one of the first to try this one out. :-)]

Happy Morning, LJ!

Tuesday, August 7th, 2007 09:03 am
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
For those who don't already know, Brad is leaving LJ. Frank the Goat is missing him already. While at [livejournal.com profile] brad's journal, noticed this link: LiveJournal Monopoly. You can go to get printable PDFs here if you want to play at home on those horrible summer nights when the power's out (either at home or where LJ's servers are) and you can't play directly on the site.

While this window's open: There's a rumor going 'round that [livejournal.com profile] burr86, the poor guy who has allowed himself to become the face of LiveJournal to so many people nowadays, went into the [livejournal.com profile] efw community (who had supposedly never heard of him before) for the sole purpose of mocking Harry Potter fans and cackling with evil glee as he typed his wicked, wicked comments. Well, last night while it was too hot to sleep and I was too bored to do anything remotely useful, I went back into the community archives and discovered that he'd posted there way back in October 2006 and that his post had nothing directly to do with any fandom at all. Not being a member of the community, I can't say if he'd posted any f-locked entries earlier than that; and not being that bored, I didn't bother to look for older comments from him. But one hopes that fandom comes to terms with the fact that sometimes it isn't All About Them. One also hopes that the many new members of the community realize that EFW stands for Existential Flame War and not Eternal Fan Wank, though one realizes that one's hopes may possibly be in vain.

Here's hoping that my next post has nothing to do with any LJ drama anywhere. Maybe I'll go out into the wide world and get something done in today's beautiful... 99 degree weather with heat indices of 105 and unhealthy levels of ozone? Yeah, maybe not.

How will I be suspended from LJ? )

Oh, LJ

Friday, August 3rd, 2007 08:50 am
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (one)
I really do love this site. There are so many wonderful people here who I never would have gotten to know if it weren't for this place. But LiveJournal? You so need to stop infuriating fandom and many outside with actions which, while they may be both well-intentioned and well within your rights, do not really make quite as much sense as you probably think they do.

Looking at the aftermath of Strikethrough '07, I honestly thought that LJ had learned something. Apparently what they learned was to re-do site code so that deleted & suspended accounts don't have a strikethrough anymore.

Copperbadge says it well.
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
If you had a paid account during LiveJournal's outage on July 24, you'll want to see this post.

Ahh, Clarity

Friday, July 20th, 2007 09:15 am
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (one)
For those of you who aren't avoiding LJ in an attempt to avoid Harry Potter spoilerers: You probably already know that [livejournal.com profile] lj_biz issued clarifications about LJ policy yesterday, but you should also be aware that they have since clarified the clarifications. Yeah, HP fanfic authors are going to be so pleased when they get back.

On Tuesday, US President George W. Bush unveiled a new executive order, Blocking Property of Certain Persons Who Threaten Stabilization Efforts in Iraq. Associated Press article about it is here; Shakesville clarifies.

Here in the DC area, temperatures have finally gone from sickeningly hot to reasonably pleasant, considering. Does this mean summer's worst is over? Clearly not.

More LJ Stuff

Thursday, June 21st, 2007 08:35 am
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Cuddly plush toy)
In [livejournal.com profile] lj_biz: what happened: a recap. As [livejournal.com profile] burr86 says in comments, "This was definitely a case of Murphy's Law -- we were reviewing things and we found that everything that we could have screwed up, we screwed up quite spectacularly. :P"

Also in lj_biz, SixApart's CEO wants "to clarify any confusion there may have been about our policies regarding your content on LiveJournal." For real clarification, you might still need to read comments (as well as the previously-linked post).

In the world of LJ

Wednesday, June 20th, 2007 10:12 am
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
Hey guys, Warriors for Innocence are back! I suppose this is what SixApart gets for putting advertisements on LiveJournal.

In other news, Permanent Accounts will be on sale soon; and for every account purchased during the first 36 hours of the sale, LJ will donate $25 to EFF, RAINN, Creative Commons, and WITNESS. "We know that other actions count too, so we're actively working to make our policies more transparent and our actions accurately reflect the will of the community. To this end we are working on:" [see list at link].

Links for the Fans

Sunday, June 3rd, 2007 12:28 am
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Cuddly plush toy)
Hey LJ Fandom, are you tired of hearing about Deletegate/Strikethrough07 yet? If not, go see the Pictorial Log of the wait for 6A/LJ's explanation to revisit some of the icons, cat macros, and other entertaining graphics produced for the event. (Lots of pictures. Not dial-up friendly. Text may not always be safe for work. Objects may be closer than they appear. Viewer discretion is advised.)

This one's for the Supernatural fans: Ten Expressions from the Great LiveJournal Strikethrough 2007.

(Can't remember how I got to the first post, but the second was linked to by [livejournal.com profile] yasminke.)
hummingwolf: Gold starlike kaleidoscope images. (Gold stars)
If you don't already watch [livejournal.com profile] paidmembers or the ever-helpful [livejournal.com profile] the_lj_herald, see this post about how you can get an extra week of paid time as compensation for LJ's recent downtime.

Once again: If you had a paid account during the recent LiveJournal downtime (that was the weekend all us addicts were whimpering that we couldn't get to our friends pages, remember), you can get a full seven days of extra paid time.

"This extension claim expires in a week on Monday, 11.20.06 (at 11:59pm GMT)" so go check it out now.

Tagging

Monday, October 9th, 2006 03:10 pm
hummingwolf: Mathemagical animation made out of string. (Incredible String Thing)
I've been looking at old entries this weekend, finally getting around to tagging things somewhat systematically--and then deciding that the tags I've chosen are all screwy and what on Earth am I doing anyway? Have decided that I don't particularly want to create tags for health complaints, bureaucrap, sleep deprivation, or that old futile job search because not even I am all that interested in putting my whinging into categories. But there are some old posts I'm not at all sure how to label: for instance, does the educational comment thread on this entry mean I should give it some kind of "religion" tag?

I refuse to tag everything. If anybody cares that much about my old posts, they can go back and read 'em in context.

Why don't I ever make cryptic one-line posts anymore?

If I link to The Way of the Wacko again, will anybody read it? Some of you really should.

For some reason, even though I haven't modified the site in years, one of my generated kaleidoscopes is still up on this Fortunecity page (dial-up warning: animation over 900KB). Is still very pretty.

I've made enough MegaHAL posts that I should probably break that tag up into sub-tags. Eh, maybe later.

Huh. I remembered listening to an Indian woman and a Southern woman talking about the proper way to cook okra, but I actually completely forgot that I did eat some of the potato and okra curry special that day.

Hmmm... I wonder how I want to tag a post that says
Have you ever been in that state of clarity of thought where logic and instinct function in perfect harmony, where many threads of meaning come together in the mind, with you as master weaver creating a tiny replica of the densely patterned fabric underlying the cosmos... then suddenly your brain short-circuits and you can barely figure out how to turn the knob on the bathroom door? Don't you hate when that happens?

Why yes, I did remember to take my medication today. Thanks for your concern. :-)

Some of my tags really aren't all that helpful. I may end up deleting most of them anyway. Other tags might have been helpful if I'd thought of using them about 50 posts ago. Like now, I've suddenly decided I should use a tag to label some of my whacked-out metaphors. I may change my mind later.

It's fun to read old posts where I was so thrilled about having walked a whole four miles without feeling like death warmed over. Nowadays four miles really isn't all that unusual for me. Even though some of my health problems have gotten worse, it's nice to be reminded of improvements like that.

I am not creating a tag for posts about walking. I'm not I'm not I'm not (unless I change my mind later)! I mean, if I do that, I may as well create tags for different kinds of weather (which I've actually thought about doing).

Okay, I've worked my way from December 2002 backwards to my first post and I still don't feel like I've done anything all that useful.
hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
One of the things that kept me busy on Saturday and a small part of Sunday was watching [livejournal.com profile] lj_biz, specifically this post about sponsored content on LJ followed by Brad's valiant attempt at damage control, both posts of course followed by umpteen zillion comments about how much people hate the idea of sponsored content. As bad as LJ's introduction of the change may have been, Making Light points out (link via [livejournal.com profile] supergee) that the real problem is what the publicists for The Science of Sleep did with the sponsored "community" they got for their money.

Unlike a lot of people, I don't hate advertising. In fact, I think it provides a valuable service (along with much entertainment) as long as it's informative (or at least entertaining) and not deceptive. The problem here is the erosion of trust created by a bunch of sock puppets pretending to be a community of genuine fans. I'm a big fan of real community. Fake "sponsored community" just makes me want to claw somebody's eyes out.
hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
For the three of you who haven't seen it already: Frienditto will steal your soul.

For those who have seen the above but not a rebuttal, here you go.

I do not use any service which wants me to give them the password I use on an unaffiliated site, but that's just me. Well, me and most internet users with sense, anyway.

[Edit: On Frienditto, someone justifying the site.]

[Another edit: More on why people do not trust Frienditto.] [Edit again: The previous post was a put-on. Cancel Red Alert. But Yellow Alert is still a pretty good idea.]

[This should be my last edit: This post seems to be pretty well updated with the latest in the ongoing saga.



In other news, the real reason certain hysterical types want to ban the Harry Potter books is not for religious reasons as so widely assumed. No, the real reason is that they are Bush supporters who do not want us all to realize that the administration is full of Death Eaters. Don't believe it? Just try to tell me that this isn't a refinement of the Cruciatus Curse.

In all seriousness, if they do get this weapon working, you can rest assured that rioters will not be the only ones to suffer. Being in the line of friendly fire doesn't sound like any kind of fun. Besides which, research into the long-term effects of pain is already showing that pain, regardless of the cause, can damage you by itself. As someone who has chronic pain already, I really do not like the way these things are going.

Why am I here?

Thursday, July 29th, 2004 09:36 pm
hummingwolf: (two)
Questions from a June post by [livejournal.com profile] conscience:

1. Why/What do you post in your journal?

Why? Because [livejournal.com profile] grrwoo gave me an invite code so I could keep up with all his posts. Didn't know what to do with the journal, so I posted some quiz results. I quickly did an interests search, found [livejournal.com profile] madralaoi's old journal, and realized that I knew her from a mailing list we were on (and that I still owed her an e-mail). After adding her to the list, I figured it was only fair to post something once in a while.

What do I post? Whatever seems appropriate at the time. I still haven't figured out what I'm doing, honestly.

2. What does NOT get posted?

If I think it will hurt someone I care about, I don't post it. Sometimes I decide against posting things publicly out of respect for someone who doesn't even know I have a journal online: the question "Would they want this to be known publicly?" may intrude if there is too much personally identifying information, even though the "Hummingwolf" name and my real name are kept as separate as I've been able to manage.

3. How do you feel about Friend Lists? Are the journals personal friends, reading fodder or a mix of both?

Definite mix. I do use the list to keep up with friends and potential friends, but some people have been on the list in the past who I may not have liked very much. The list is a reading list for me, and I usually refer to it as "my reading list" or "my flist" to keep that problematical "friends" word out of the discussion.

4. What do you see going on in LJ that just royally pisses you off...or just irritates you?

I get annoyed by people who justify writing half-truths here with "It's my journal and I'll write what I want to!" Deception is deception wherever it takes place. On the other hand, I get immensely irritated with folks who try to tell other people what to say or do with their journals. "Don't post so many quizzes!" "Don't add that person to your friends list!" "Quit complaining about your health!" "Quit bragging about your job!" "Stop flirting with everybody on your friends list!" Seriously, as long as a person's not out to ruin someone else's good time, let them write what they want.

5. What is the perfect journal? Personal, educational, dramatic, humorous, many links to interesting sites...other....

There is no one perfect journal.

6. Your Friend's List...what makes you add someone to it? Do you add them because they added you? Do you have to have some common interest or be entertaining to stay on your list? Do you form a bond with everyone on your list?

I add journals because I want to read them. Simple as that. If I don't add someone who's added me, it may not be a reflection of them. I may simply be unwilling for whatever reason to read what they're posting on a regular basis. I've deleted people I genuinely liked because I didn't have the energy to deal with what they write.

~~~~~~

I think I had something to say, but my brain melted and leaked out my ears. Will try again tomorrow.
hummingwolf: Snowflake-like kaleidoscope images (Kaleidocoolth)
Don't click on mysterious links.

I am sooo tempted to end this post right here.



There are a handful of links and forms going around now which exploit a tiny hole in LiveJournal. If you click on the link or the shiny button, a new post (containing the link or form) will appear on your journal without your having to write--or approve--the post yourself.

So far the different variants of this exploit seem harmless. If you clicked on the link, your password has not been stolen (you were already logged in to LJ, your password was not required) and there probably isn't anything for you to worry about. It's never a bad idea to change your password and delete your cookies, of course, but there doesn't seem to be any immediate danger. However, it's theoretically possible (and, given human nature, it's now probable) that somebody will use this little trick to create a post on your journal detailing your indecent love of small furry animals, to change your userinfo, or to add new people to your friends list. [Edit: The person who wrote one version now admits that he's planning to change the image from a tiny 1-pixel thing you don't see to a "Bush/Cheney 04" graphic. Oh, the horror! the horror!]

[Edit 2: The guy who wrote the one that posts "this is very interesting" must be very proud of himself--looking at someone else's friends page just now, I saw three identical posts in a row. Imagine what would have happened if he'd made his first post on a Monday morning rather than during the slow weekend hours.]

[Edit 3: If you have clicked on one of these links, check your friends list and make sure there's nobody extra. One version of the sausage meme apparently does add two users to your list.]

[Edit 4: Have read that no, there weren't any users added to anyone's friends list after all. Not sure how accurate the information is; if you have clicked on any of the links, it doesn't hurt to check your own list. Anyway, the good news is that the LJ team worked on a fix and it should no longer be possible for any of these forms and links to post to your journal without your approval. Still, this is the Internet. It pays not to click on mysterious links. (While I'm here (and I know this is silly and unrelated (and yes, I do like parentheses)): It's still very strange not to hear any cicadas. I wonder if they'll be back tomorrow.)]

Please note: This hole is not browser-specific. If your browser has javascript enabled, that's all that's required for these tricks to work. Those of you who were preparing to mock IE users may be quiet now (you know you'll have plenty of other chances to mock IE users anyway).

Oh, the mysterious link at the beginning of this post goes directly to a discussion in [livejournal.com profile] lj_dev about this hole and what might be done to fix it. If you're not interested in the geeky technical parts of the situation, there's no need to click the link.
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
It seems that, for the time being, it's best not to click on any link you see anywhere on your friends page unless you're prepared to have the same thing posted into your own LJ. Some of you have realized this already, either with the "sausage meme" (the list of usernames and (in the original version) Russian text, referred to as "sausage" because of all the links) or with the "This is interesting" link. From what I've read, neither of these seems to be harmful in itself, but there's a possibility that a copycat will dream up something less benign.

Here is an lj_dev post with discussion of the security hole--and for the record, any link I intentionally post in my journal will have some description or hint of what I'm linking to, so a generic "This is interesting" link shouldn't be appearing here ever. If you do see a generic link in my journal, please let me know.

Happy Anniversary!

Wednesday, January 14th, 2004 12:08 pm
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Cuddly plush toy)
According to my full userinfo page, this journal's date of creation was 2002-01-13 21:05:34, which works out to five-and-a-half minutes past midnight on January 14 my time. Yes, my LiveJournal is now entering the Terrible Twos. It's all [livejournal.com profile] penguinboi's fault, I tell you--he's the one who gave me that dang invite code.

My very first journal entry read as follows:

Monday, January 14th, 2002

1:17a - Let's see if this works.

Can I post yet?

Do I exist?

I then proceeded to spend most of the rest of the day trying to post the results of a quiz with wonky HTML code. Right then. As I obviously have a grand and glorious tradition of profundity to continue, herewith I shall post some silly quiz results )

True Colors...

Tuesday, May 20th, 2003 12:26 pm
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
For those of you whose journals have changed color today, there's a known bug with some new version of code. If you don't like the colors you've got this morning, this suggestion seems to work for some people: Go to http://www.livejournal.com/modify.bml and change the Color Theme setting from "Default Theme" to "Custom Colors" without changing anything else. Since I've been using custom colors already, this isn't an issue for me, but I've got nothing better to say at the moment.

Ooh, new Buffy tonight! Last Buffy episode ever (unless SMG's film career goes completely down the toilet and she begs Joss Whedon for a job).
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
3 things for those of you on LiveJournal who don't read the LJ [livejournal.com profile] news:

1. "There seems to be a new email scam targeting LiveJournal users, effectively asking them for their login information by visiting a URL that almost matches "livejournal.com". If you receive this email or any others bearing a similar resemblence, please disregard it entirely, and certainly do not click on the link provided. We do not delete accounts for simple inactivity."

If you receive anything that appears to be from the LJ people asking you to input your password, ignore it, 'kay?

2. If you're a paid user, see what you can add to your friends list now.

3. http://www.livejournal.com/singles/
Eep.
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
For those of you who don't already know, there are a few nifty new features here on LiveJournal this week.

1. When you look at someone's userinfo page, not only are interests you have in common now in bold type, but common friends are bold as well. (Hey! My friends aren't common! Well, most of you aren't, anyway...)

2. Along similar lines, if a user name you see in a friends list has a line through it, that crossed-out name represents a deleted or suspended account.

3. The lj-cut tag is now closeable, so you can include more text after /lj-cut. For example, this is an lj-cut tag ).

4. A new tag is the lj comm tag, which works just like the familiar lj user tag but applies to communities rather than individuals. For example: If you read [livejournal.com profile] news and [livejournal.com profile] lj_nifty, you'd already know these things. And if the previous sentence includes [unknown lj tag] rather than displaying the way it's supposed to display, I am not at all surprised--the LJ servers aren't quite used to the tag yet.

(Information about LJ-specific tags can be found in the LiveJournal FAQ in this section.)

5. The one most likely to waste paid members' time: There are now friendsfriends pages where you can see the recent unprotected posts by friends of people on your friends list. The addresses for these pages are of the form [paidmember's name].livejournal.com/friendsfriends, as in http://bearybipolar.livejournal.com/friendsfriends
You may need to reload this page once or twice, as the LJ servers don't seem fully accustomed to the new feature yet.

Oh let me mention an old page as well, since some of you seem unaware of it: http://www.livejournal.com/portal is a good page to visit, for the nifty links if for nothing else.

This has been a public service announcement. We now return you to your regularly scheduled LiveJournal.

Memes!

Friday, February 1st, 2002 09:25 am
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
Nothing interesting of my own to say this morning. I just found out about http://www.livejournal.com/meme.bml
The fact that the most linked-to pages are quizzes surprises absolutely no-one, I'm sure.

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hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
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