Science Addiction

A dormant blog by Devanshu Mehta

Tag: facebook

Thoughts on Google Buzz: 120 Days Later

When I last wrote about Buzz, I was cautiously optimistic.

I still am.

I continue to use it after four months, but not many other people do. Of the things that I noted that I did not like about Buzz, only #1 has been resolved. I live with the rest. A few thoughts on Google Buzz usage:

  • Buzz has its own place in my social media landscape– I use it to share links with a known, finite set of people. My wife, my parents, and about 3 friends.
  • Engagement is fairly high among this small group.
  • The only distinguishing feature of this group is that they are all avid GMail users.
  • The only reason I am able to sustain sharing on Buzz is because I am an avid GMail, and more importantly, Google Reader user.
  • The role of Buzz is very different from Twitter, Facebook or others in my social media universe. On Twitter (and my blogs), I talk to the world and the world may or may not listen. On Facebook, I talk to my subset of the world, and the most random embers from my past glow in response. On Buzz, I send specific links curated for a specific set of people. I know who they are, and post links for them. It is so much more like email; no wonder it lives in GMail.
  • I have 41 followers. I know almost all of them personally.
  • I follow 48 people, but only a handful post anything regularly. Almost all the people who post regularly, do so because they share from Google Reader. Put another way, they would be sharing links on Reader even if Buzz did not exist.

Facebook Awarded $873 Million in Spam Damages

Facebook awarded $873 million in spam case, but nothing for the poor users who actually got the spam. According to Max Kelly of Facebook, this is the largest judgment in history for a case brought under the Can-Spam Act.

Will the Web Kill the Two Party System?

Via Julian Sanchez and the newly launched Law & Disorder journal at Ars Technica, here’s an excerpt of David Carr’s piece in the New York Times:

More profoundly, while many people think that President-elect Obama is a gift to the Democratic Party, he could actually hasten its demise. Political parties supply brand, ground troops, money and relationships, all things that Mr. Obama already owns.

It’s a novel idea, but Sanchez is rightly skeptical- the system and its participants have a strong interest in maintaining the status quo. The way the electoral college works- where one candidate needs to get more than half- means that a simple plurality of votes is not sufficient and this is not going to get resolved any time soon. People are more likely to vote for a lesser of two evils who might actually win, than the better candidate who will not.

That One ’08

That One ’08

That One was born in Hawaii on August 4th, 1961. His father, That One Sr., was born and raised in a small village in Kenya, where he grew up herding goats with his own father, who was a domestic servant to the British. That One’s mother, Ann Dunham, grew up in small-town Kansas. Her father worked on oil rigs during the Depression, and then signed up for World War II after Pearl Harbor, where he marched across Europe in Patton’s army.

McCains off-hand, inartful description of Obama in last nights debate is now an internet phenomenon. You can buy t-shirts and there’s a facebook page. And here’s the original video.

That One 08

that one - biden 2008