Posts Tagged ‘complaints’
Facebook has come under fire from those who say the network is turning down the volume on their posts, but the bottom line is that the network can — and will — do whatever it wants with the algorithms controlling its news feed.
Facebook seems to be making users upset and/or confused again with the way it handles its news feed. A few months ago, it was actor George Takei and billionaire Mark Cuban who were upset with what they saw as changes to the Facebook algorithm that made their content less visible, and this time around it’s New York Times writer Nick Bilton, who complained that his posts haven’t been getting as many likes or shares as they used to. The assumption is that Facebook wants you to pay to get this kind of reach, but regardless of whether that’s what is happening, it still sends a valuable message: you are not in control — Facebook is.
Bilton described in a piece for the Bits section of the Times how his posts used to get as many as 50 or even a hundred likes and shares, from users of Facebook who had signed up to get his feed using the network’s relatively new Subscribe feature. But even though the number of users who subscribe has soared from just 25,000 after the feature was launched to almost half a million now, Bilton said that he gets far fewer responses to his posts — sometimes as little as 10 or 15 likes and shares. After paying Facebook to promote his posts, however, that number increased by almost 1,000 percent..
The conclusion that everyone seems to be jumping to is the same one that Mark Cuban arrived at when he complained in November about the increasing difficulty of reaching his fans on the network: namely, that Facebook is deliberately tuning out (or at least turning down) the signal coming from some users so that it can convince them to use promotional tools like ads and “sponsored stories.” Cuban said he was so irritated by the move that he was diverting almost all of the marketing budget from his various brands away from Facebook to Twitter and other platforms.
…An official post on the Facebook site entitled “Fact Check” says:
“Our goal with News Feed is always to show each individual the most relevant blend of stories that maximizes engagement and interest. There have been recent claims suggesting that our News Feed algorithm suppresses organic distribution of posts in favor of paid posts in order to increase our revenue. This is not true…”
The bottom line, of course, is that there is no real way for anyone to know why Facebook’s algorithm behaves the way it does, any more than it’s possible for us to know why certain pages rank high in Google. They are both a black box, and the way they function is a mystery. As I tried to point out to Cuban, Facebook is entitled to do whatever it wants with your news feed, including using it to convince you to pay for promotional tools, because it owns your news feed — not you. It’s good to be reminded of that sometimes.
Being a political animal, first, I’m glad to catch any page views I do. We live in society that has always discouraged dissent. The penalties can run from ignoring you – to prison. And don’t kid yourselves, I’ve had friends who experienced the latter.
But, my experience online has continued to be one of growth and concurrent acceptance. Yes, my experience was much the same when I was a performing artist. But, then, I had to put up with all the crap that comes with the territory. I finally quit the circuit – because I wasn’t satisfied with what I was able to do. Online, it’s all pretty much my own responsibility, my choices.
That’s good enough for me whether posting here at my personal site or at one of the Big Sites where I’m one of several contributing editors.
The cartoon’s not plausible. A PayPal spokesman saying, “I’m sorry”? C’mon.
Hackers seized control of a PayPal Twitter feed for more than an hour on Tuesday, then sent out messages criticizing the payment processor in the second attack of its type in two days…
The attackers sent out messages promoting paypalsucks.com, a site devoted to what it says is “exposing the nightmare of doing business ‘the PayPal way.’”
The Tweets were removed within a few hours of the hijacking…
A PayPal spokesman said via email that the attack on the Twitter account had not affected the company’s operations….
So, in other words, PayPal still sucks?
WikiLeaks violated its acceptable use policy, “which states that our payment service cannot be used for any activities that encourage, promote, facilitate or instruct others to engage in illegal activity,” PayPal said in a statement.
WikiLeaks, which confirmed the change Saturday, said on its Twitter page that the action was based on U.S. pressure.
Why do I say funny? Because PayPal screwing with accounts is hardly news, ever.
Of course PayPal caved. About all you have to do to make PayPal nervous is to say that you don’t like green eggs and ham.
Delhi – This city is famous for its snarled traffic and infamous for its unruly drivers — aggressive rule-breakers who barrel through red lights, ignore crosswalks and veer into bicycle or bus lanes to find open routes.
Now, the city’s overburdened traffic police officers have enlisted an unexpected weapon in the fight against dangerous driving: Facebook.
The traffic police started a Facebook page two months ago, and almost immediately residents became digital informants, posting photos of their fellow drivers violating traffic laws. As of Sunday more than 17,000 people had become fans of the page and posted almost 3,000 photographs and dozens of videos.
The online rap sheet was impressive. There are photos of people on motorcycles without helmets, cars stopped in crosswalks, drivers on cellphones, drivers in the middle of illegal turns and improperly parked vehicles.
Using the pictures, the Delhi Traffic Police have issued 665 tickets, using the license plate numbers shown in the photos to track vehicle owners, said the city’s joint commissioner of traffic, Satyendra Garg.
Despite some concerns about privacy, and the authenticity of the photos, the public’s response has been overwhelmingly positive, he said…
Mr. Garg acknowledged that it was possible photos could be manipulated to incriminate someone who was not actually breaking the law. But, he said, drivers can contest the tickets if they think they were wrongly issued. The police advise residents not to let personal animosity influence their photo-taking, and not to do anything to compromise their own security, like antagonizing law-breakers while snapping photos.
I love it. American society is so afraid someone’s privacy might be compromised, say, versus catching some SOB who just ran a red light and almost killed six kids – red light cameras are becoming illegal.
The nearest city to Lot 4 has a photo van which cost $50K – which they park by the side of the road in different trouble spots every day – after they notify the local press where it will be.
Delhi has the equivalent of dozens of photo vans for the cost of a couple of coppers taking a few minutes to check their Facebook page, every day.
African-American workers at a Texas pipe factory endured a string of racial slurs and harassment and were targeted by their managers when they complained, federal investigators have determined.
Black employees at the Turner Industries plant in Paris, Texas, regularly “were subjected to unwelcome racial slurs, comments and intimidation, racial graffiti, nooses in the workplace and other symbols of discrimination,” the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission reported.
Black workers also were denied promotions and disciplined more harshly than whites, the agency concluded in a three-page letter in late March. Managers at the plant not only were aware of a “hostile environment,” they also targeted workers who complained and disciplined white employees who opposed the harassment, the EEOC found…
Lawyers for the seven Turner employees who went to the EEOC displayed photographs of the slurs, of hanging nooses and threatening notes left for employees at the Paris plant during a news conference…
Paris is about 110 miles northeast of Dallas. The Rev. Peter Johnson, a state civil rights leader, said the problems reported at the Turner plant reflect a “culture of discrimination” that lingers in East Texas.
It never seems to end, does it?
Grassroots fools will never relent and cease their bigotry until the companies and corporations, churches and politicians that own their lives, run their towns, are forced to respect law and order. I wouldn’t expect common decency to follow along until a few generations have passed through this backwater of ignorance.
History repeats itself: AT&T complaining about its “unlimited” plan customers using the service too much
“What we are seeing in the U.S. today in terms of smartphone penetration, 3G data, nobody else is seeing in the rest of the planet,” Ralph de la Vega, president and chief executive for mobility and consumer markets at AT&T, told analysts at a conference in New York. “The amount of growth and data that we are seeing in wireless data is unprecedented.”
AT&T is the exclusive United States carrier for the iPhone, whose owners are big users of network capacity as they surf the Web and download videos.
And it shouldn’t be a surprise to any long-term AT&T customers that AT&T would blame this on the customer.
[De la Vega] emphasized that the company would first focus on educating consumers about their data consumption in the hope that doing so would encourage them to cut back, even though they are paying for unlimited data use. [emphasis mine - ed.]
The company might consider a “pricing scheme that addresses the usage,” Mr. de la Vega said….
Still, [Mr. Chetan Sharma, an independent wireless analyst] said pricing plans based on use were only part of the answer to AT&T’s network congestion.
“They still have to improve things on the back end so they can deal with the issues of multiple users on the network at the same time,” he said.
Mr. de la Vega acknowledged the company’s difficulties in meeting the demands of its customers.
This may sound very familiar to those who, in the late ’90s, were on the “unlimited” dial-up plan. Then also, AT&T lacked the infrastructure to support the commitments it had made to customers.
Back then, AT&T’s best move was to staff a help newsgroups which could keep customers abreast of improvements, literally on a day-by-day basis. Gradually, things got better. The newsgroup folks earned their pay.
Today’s AT&T lacks even the limited vision it still possessed back then to deal with customer dissatisfaction. Don’t expect much support from them.
The dozens of public works officials, municipal engineers, conservation agents and others who crowded into a meeting room here one recent morning needed help. Property in their towns was flooding, they said. Culverts were clogged. Septic tanks were being overwhelmed.
“We have a huge problem,” said David Pavlik, an engineer for the town of Lexington, where dams built by beavers have sent water flooding into the town’s sanitary sewers. “We trapped them,” he said. “We breached their dam. Nothing works. We are looking for long-term solutions.”
Mary Hansen, a conservation agent from Maynard, said it starkly: “There are beavers everywhere.”
Laura Hajduk, a biologist with the state’s Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, had little to offer them. When beavers are trapped, others move in to replace them. And, she said, you can breach a beaver dam, but “I guarantee you that within 24 hours if the beavers are still there it will be repaired. Beavers are the ultimate ecosystem engineers.”
That was not what Mr. Pavlik was hoping to hear.
He is not alone in his dismay, and it is not just beavers. Around the nation, decades of environmental regulation, conservation efforts and changing land use have brought many species, like beavers, so far back from the brink that they are viewed as nuisances. As Stuart Pimm, a conservation ecologist at Duke University, put it, “We are finding they are inconvenient.”
RTFA. A predictable – if cautionary – tale of human beings so self-concerned and egregious that nature, even restored to a fraction of original capacity, must take second place to our foibles.
I haven’t taken a snap to supplement this post; but, we have one tree in our wee orchard that was almost girdled and killed last year by one of the beavers returning to the bosque of the Santa Fe River. We’ve since undertaken the “enormous” task of closing a small gap in our fence – the one we put in to keep out the fracking cows that used to roam our neighborhood before we won the struggle to return the land to nature’s original critters.
We had one neighbor too cheap to put up a fence. He was going to shoot any beavers that came onto his property. The money was raised and volunteers put up a fence for him.
Give me a choice? I’ll take the beavers any day.
“Get off my lawn!”
Sternipark, a day care center lodged in a handsome villa in this wealthy city, has everything children might need, from knee-high banisters to pint-size wash basins, to sleeping mats for nap time.
The children themselves, however, are long gone — victims, at least for now, of a neighbor’s lawsuit over the noise they make that has now made its way to Germany’s highest court.
Behind the dispute, which has been replicated many times across Germany, lies not so much a legal disagreement as the collision of two socially desirable but, for now, mutually exclusive goals: noise abatement and increased fertility.
A lawyer and the head of an education union in Turkey have objected to virginity testing incidents at two universities in the capital, Istanbul…
Their statements came after revelations of two incidents of forced virginity testing at Istanbul universities. In the first incident, a father was forced to obtain virginity tests from two hospitals for his daughter, identified as C.G., after the principal of the student’s dormitory accused her of engaging in sexual activities. The father said he plans to file a legal complaint.
The second incident occurred during a District Education Board official’s visit to an Istanbul university. Bianet reported 30 female students were picked at random by the official and forced to answer questions about drinking, sexual activity and pregnancy in their dormitories.
Lawyer Yasemin Oz is aiding victims of the incidents in filing criminal complaints against the officials. Their actions are against the law – not that it would ever keep a religious moralist from trying to get the rest of the world to kneel before their sword.
From a sparse desk dominated by two computer screens in the new Comcast Center here, Frank Eliason uses readily available online tools to monitor public comments on blogs, message boards and social networks for any mention of Comcast. When he sees a complaint like Dilbeck’s, he contacts the source to try to defuse the problem.
“When you’re having a two-way conversation, you really get to clear the air,” Eliason said.
Comcast is going an extra step by talking back, contacting customers who are discussing the company online.
Odds are they are complaining about Comcast. The company was ranked at the very bottom of the most recent American Customer Satisfaction index, which tracks consumer opinions of more than 200 companies.
Hundreds of customers have filed grievances on a site called ComcastMustDie.com.
Comcast says the online outreach is part of a larger effort to revamp its customer service. In just about five months, Eliason, whose job redefines customer service, has reached out to well over 1,000 customers online.
They’re also doing their job of getting the word around about this outreach. In my particular corner of the geek world, John Dvorak twittered Eliason about a problem – and it was sorted out quickly.
In fact, Frank Eliason ended up on an episode of TWIT with Leo LaPorte and John – discussing the project.
I’m a Comcast broadband customer [like John Dvorak] and I’m afraid I provoked some of John’s complaints by telling him how much faster than stock my system runs. And it still does.