Friday, July 07, 2006

Boo hoo Yahoo?

The NUJ are advising members to boycott Yahoo as result of them passing info to the Chinese authorities that has resulted in the arrest of journalists and bloggers.

It's outrageous that the blogosphere should be abused in this way. Hands off! This medium belongs to us!

Thanks to Island Monkey for flagging this up.

15 comments:

Sharon J said...

Shiiiiitt!! That's nasty, mean fuckadoodooledoo shit!

I'm gonna have to re-think my yahoo email account now. I'll have to see whether I can open another account somewhere else and have my email redirected from yahoo to the new one. I know that's still using yahoo but it'll only be for re-directing email that comes from those who already have my yahoo address and who I can't contact (you know what it's like).

Arseholes!

Minx said...

Oh yes, get on Google then we can all 'chat' and I can annoy the hell out of everyone instead of the select few!!
Sorry you missed the party on Pundy last night Debi, they tend to be impromptu things that happen at all hours!

Sharon J said...

Chat on Google? What you mean, Minx?

Minx said...

Googlemail has an 'MSN' type thingy alongside the it's ordinary email service. It shows you when people are availiable for a 'chat'and you can talk directly to them. Can send a Google invite if you wish.

Maxine said...

Well Google gets into trouble for its Chinese "censorship" too. But what I say is, if you were Chinese (or anyone), would you rather have a weedy Goolge without rude words in or would you rather have no Google? Tough one.

Bottom line to me is that corporations, whether Internet ones or any other, are out for a buck first and everythign else second. Bit like the only good politicians are the ones that aren't in power (yet or ever).

But I am a major cynic ;-)

ISLAND MONKEY said...

To continue the Corporate theme. It came to my attention recently that MySpace is owned by Rupert Murdoch. There is currently a lot of disinformation flying around about the benefits of MySpace and who it is serving...

Sharon J said...

It's the fact that Murdoch owns MySpace that's stopped me using it. I really wouldn't want to touch anything that could make him more money. For the same reason, I don't have Sky.

crimeficreader said...

I am for free speech and will always be for free speech. Luckily I am not a Yahoo user, to feel I have to make a stand at this juncture and move my account...

Re MySpace: I read an article today in the Sunday Express by Kate Garraway (GMTV presenter) - who has a column there, it seems. Her lead article focused on the risks associated to teenagers deriving from their use of MySpace. I am reliant on memory here, as I browsed someone else's paper, but she said that she had been informed by the authorities that there are some 50,000 paedophiles on line at any one time. These are the obvious risks. But she also went on to talk about the interaction of teenagers in this modern cyberworld. She noted that a parent had found that their daughter had posted/sent by email, as a result of using MySpace, apparently, a topless photo of herself. The recipient was also a teenager. She recognised that the phenomenon of "I'll show you mine if you show me yours", typical of teenagers, and younger children, has moved into another sphere with the net and all the digital equipment at our disposal. She said that all parents want their children to first experience sex in a loving environment and the fact that this is happening means that parental guidance is ever more required and needs to take on another tangent.

I can understand that teenagers may find the site "cool", but I wonder at the commercial motivations behind it, seeing as it leads to the accumulation of so much personal data. Finally, given the points in what was a fine article from Garraway, is MySpace and similar the best thing to offer teenagers? Do the benefits outweigh the risks for teenagers using the site unsupervised? Only if the risks are well known and appreciated by the users, I believe. And I'm still not falling on the side of the fence that says this is a good thing, where the benefits outweigh the risks.

MySpace has been the subject of controversy in recent months. I can understand why. It's just too attractive to the wrong sort of person; certainly the type of person no decent parent would envisage their child coming into contact with. Garraway highlighted something else of concern in respect of teenage and innocent behaviour. Teenagers may trade pics of themselves, but once the pic is out there in the almost infinite cyberworld, who knows where it may end up? I think that girl was lucky that she sent her pic to another boy; but this is apparently a practice not unheard of.

I'd urge Murdoch to pull the site. MySpace has made contact across the net easier, but that benefit is its fundamental risk. Children need protection; MySpace has the cyber equivalent lure of sugar laden drinks and fast food with far more real danger attached. It's just not good. And it's just a matter of time before some poor, unsuspecting child feels the embarassment of using it, or far worse. It's not good at all. Bin it!

crimefic said...

Sorry to have gone on there, but it is an important topic, I believe...

Just as is free speech across the world and the Yahoo/Google issue is no less important for me.

One thought to leave you with on this topic - rememeber Tiananmen Square?

I certainly do. And it's not a world I'd like to see.

Debi said...

Whahey! This could well be the recipient of the 'Smallest Post Gets the Biigest Comments' award!

You're absolutely right re Google. And MySpace ...

Given the whole globalisation issue, the virtual world is finely tuned between being for us and being used against us. It provides an amazing opportunity for like-minded people (with computer access!)to link up.

But the risks are also huge. There is no end of powerful individuals heading up global corporations desperate to exploit the medium. And if they succeed, they will be able to call the shots.

We need to be very much on our guard ...

Thanks for the info re MySpace. I've never properly researched it. Firstborn mentioned it a while back and I instinctively took against it and wouldn't let him go there.

But I wasn't sure if I was just being Ms Mean Mummy - a frequent persona who is also responsible for my children not having Playstation/X Box/Gameboy etc ...

Sharon J said...

You sound like me, Debi. My kids were the only ones in their school who didn't have a computer game attached to the TV and my youngest is now the only one on her college course who doesn't have Sky. At one point a lecturer had used a Sky channel as part of the lecture thinking everybody would know about it (she's doing media) so I had to ask him (well... tell him, actually) not to do that as my daughter doesn't have and isn't going to have Sky.

I let the kids have a lot of freedom because I believe in freedom with responsibility, but they have to be taught that responsibility in the first place, something that I don't believe happens when they're just stuck in front of the TV all the time.

Maxine said...

Well. My Space was very well developed in all the no-doubt horrific ways described when Murdoch bought it. In fact that's why he bought it, because teenagers go there and do rude things, pedophiles, other parent-shocking things hang out, etc.

At a web meeting I went to recently, the speakers were all laughing at Murdoch for spending so much money on it, becuase at the end of the day it is an empty space and if the users (teenagers) don't like it they will just bugger off to one of the many competitors (BeBo et al) and Murdoch will be left with a great big empty space.

I must say my attitude as a parent is different. I am the girl who was not allowed a Barbie doll becuase my parents didn't approve. I let my girls have internet, computers etc, and I know Cathy has been a myspace user from before I had even heard of it. But they have to have their own worlds and develop their own way. I would never censor what books they read. I think that if you as a parent live a certain way and treat your children with respect, they won't have a problem integrating all this into their own lives, and feel in control to boot. If you respect them, and show them you believe in them, I think they'll deal with it all in a way that suits them.

I don't have sky or cable TV, just terrestrial. I hate TV but don't stop the girls watching it. However, they would rateher blog, play on the computer, read or do other activities than watch TV most of the time.

Cathy loves her computer and Myspace and all that, but I think you'd be hard pressed to find a teenager who reads as many books as she does.

Debi said...

Right - I'll come clean.

We don't have cable tv.
The boys are allowed internet access from my laptop and I don't tend to check where they're going. (I know this will probably need to change some time.) At the moment, it's exclusively racing and sport games. Firstborn already spends longer than I'd wish staring at screens - either this one or tv/dvd/video.

More than anything else, I wish they'd read more. Firstborn is dyslexic and it's HARD WORK for him, which I find heartbreaking and terrifying in equal measure. I do still read to them.

I wouldn't dream of censoring their reading. If only that was an issue!

Sharon - your Sky story reminds me of the frustration I feel when the boys come home with a project that starts 'Find a shady spot in your garden - maybe under a tree.' They should at least have the sensitivity to know not every child has a garden!

Kath T said...

Thanks all, thought I was a voice in the wilderness regarding Sky etc. Television should be a facet of life - not the sole source as a lot of people believe.

ISLAND MONKEY said...

If anyone wants a larf they should check the terms and conditions on MySpace. It's basically - 'We own your soul' or thereabouts..