Tag Archives: Facebook

Community & Grieving

Eco-grieving, and eco-community, more specifically. I received a notification today on Facebook from The Edmonton Eco-Grief Support Circle that I am part of, and I wondered if there were such communities for region where I have just moved to. I did a quick search, and it turns out that no, there don’t seem to be. However, there are some general eco-grief groups, and I wanted to put them here for posterity and also so that I have links to go back to and research when I have the time for it if I can (some are private).

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On public writing / writing for the public

(In January 2018, I found this in my drafts folder from August 2016; I’m posting it now)

I’m currently in the midst of reading Public Poetics: Critical Issues in Canadian Poetry and Poetics, and I just finished Sina Queyras’ contribution – “Public Poet, Private Life: 20 Riffs on the Dream of a Communal Self”. I really like it. It’s vulnerable and defiant, a quasi-autobiographical account of her struggles with engaging with a public voice. It touched a chord in me.

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On writing

How We WriteWhen I was in high school and undergraduate studies, I used to keep a LiveJournal – pseudonymous and locked, of course, so that only those in my friends circle who also had LJ accounts could access my posts. It was like keeping a diary in plain sight, where I would record my thoughts and feelings and accomplishments and failures, and have a group of sympathetic and supportive individuals cheering me on or sharing my sorrow or indignation, and giving helpful advice and input on situations that frustrated me.

Last week, my friend gave me a copy of How We Write, edited by Dr Suzanne Conklin Akbari, and it reignited my drive to write non-fiction – both often and online.

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Whose ethics? False dichotomies of business & government in the machine learning debate

In their book Big Data, Viktor Mayer-Schönberger and Kenneth Cukier use the film Minority Report as a speculative lens to envision a society where decisions are driven by predictive algorithms drawing from a database of personal information. In a chapter titled “Risks”, they warn that “as troubling as the ability of business and government to know our personal information may be, a newer problem emerges with big data: the use of predictions to judge us” (157). Mayer-Schönberger and Cukier follow in the tradition of paranoid science fiction writers of the mid-20th century and sensational journalism of the 21st, forecasting that predictions generated by algorithms that draw from databanks of past behaviour will be used to to punish people for what they might do in the future. There are no second chances. No mercy from the machine.

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On Facebook and Privacy (from the archives!)

Note: whoa, I found this post from November 2014 sitting in my drafts pile! Am publishing it now because it’s an interesting retrospective on my thought process at the time. I’m not this cynical about the voting process – or at least, on most days I’m not.

Just an FYI for those friendly folks I see on my FB wall who may have been taken in by this hoax about how putting up a legal notice on your Facebook wall will guarantee your future privacy.

There is no simple fix for this. Increasingly, in our society, there is no simple way to exercise your rights; perhaps voting used to be, but in the system we have right now in Canada, even that is about as effective at shaking up the government as posting an official-sounding screed about your rights and freedoms in a venue that is set up to exploit your content, your photos, your very self down to the last penny. I digress. In my opinion, if your information’s going to be out there anyway, might as well make your peace with it and move on with your life.

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