When 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.
Continue reading On writing →
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.
Continue reading On Facebook and Privacy (from the archives!) →
In one of my courses this semester (“introduction to digital humanities”) we are asked to make biweekly blog posts to “think aloud”, rant, engage in debate, etc. Several of my classmates balked at this (citing issues of security and privacy, mostly), and others were excited, especially with regards to the ease and informality of web publishing. Plus the tantalizingly dangled carrot of getting known in internet circles, publishing work on well-read sites, possibly leading to alt-ac* jobs in the future.
None of these debates and hesitations over issues of security and privacy ring especially new to me, as I hold them myself. When I first started blogging, on ye olde LiveJournal back in 2003, my journal entries were locked to “friends-only”: only other LJ users with accounts that I had approved could view my posts in their friends feed. Neither security nor privacy seemed to be a huge issue; the terms of service seemed legitimate to my grade-10 mind, and besides, I was fifteen: who would hack me? Or so went my thoughts.
Continue reading PRIVATE – KEEP OUT: On digital / writing platforms and internet security →