Page 1 of 1

ACC & Facebook

Posted: Wed Mar 21, 2018 7:05 pm
by Henry Gresham
I suppose everyone who reads or watches any news now knows what Facebook does with your personal data and all your contacts. And remember when they live streamed the torture of a disabled kid in Chicago about a year ago? Is it any wonder that some NWA ACC members aren't keen on Facebook? Why does the club seem to be abandoning our website in favor of "Fakebook"? Just curious. I guess I'm one of the contrarians who will continue to boycott that unethical company. Just saying.

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 10:25 am
by Gordon Kumpuris
Hi Henry,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. You are not alone in your frustrations and in light of recent data breaches etc, it remains to be seen if Facebook remains the social media juggernaut that it has become. I will say that the ACC has absolutely not abandoned it's website -
In fact, we recently spent considerable effort totally re-designing it, updating content and making it one that is more mobile device friendly. As for this ACC Message Board, that's a different story. For years now we've seen it's traffic dwindle to a trickle. Facebook simply offered a much more superior product to engage with our members and potential members than this message board. Also, the bottom line for the ACC and pretty much any institution that relies on social engagement and participation to survive is we have to go where our members are. For the time being, that's still Facebook. We will continue to post major club information on this message board but we can't force people to use this communication channel. If more people migrate back here, then we will certainly spend more of our volunteer resources engaging our members and potential members here.

Thanks for using the message board.

Gordon Kumpuris
ACC Communications Officer

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 10:46 am
by okieboater
When Facebook first became popular, a rafting bud of mine used it for communication (with pictures) for a western river trip. It was good for that and I used Facebook for a while.

I made my living off computers from the room sized units to the personal computers. I began wondering how facebook was making so much money off a news sharing service at no cost. Then I read the agreement most of us click yes on and never read. Seems like we give up all legal rights to what ever we post on facebook. Then I started doing some research on my browser and found out just how much tracking Facebook does, by the way Google is even worse at tracking. I decided to stop using Facebook and Google. I found out it is next to impossible to figure out how to stop Facebook and Google. What ever you enter on Facebook and Google is stored away and my take is never deleted. I still get emails from Facebook wanting me to re establish Facebook by reading a post. Both facebook and google say stuff they accumulate is stored in such a fashion it cannot be traced back to individuals. I do not believe this for a New York MInute.

I use a search product called Duck Duck Go, supposed to not keep your searches. I do not know if this is true or not. The amount of tracking gadgets loaded on most browsers will boggle your mind. I use browser addon's to reduce tracking but Google, Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and the list goes on, get better and better. Same for your Smartphone which is nothing more than a handheld computer and camera. Take a look at the apps on your smart phone. Most want to access every thing on your phone and you will be astounded at how much your Smartphone knows about you and where you go. Tracking is down to almost a minute. Look at the Austin TX bomber catch. The police finally got ahold of his smartphone address and knew exactly where the bomber was located. Do you want every one to know where you are all the time. Your choice.

A lot of my buds say they do not care as they are doing nothing wrong and it is ok for every retail outlet with the money to spend know every thing about their purchases, where they are, what they do searches on and the list goes on. And, thanks to state of the art computer power and on line storage capacity this data is available to anyone with the money to ask for it.

I look at the current CEO of Facebook and the major news media horror at what happened to data analysis outfit that supposedly was used by the Trump campaign. Data analysis of information has been going on for decades and gets better and faster every year. Google, Facebook and other so called free applications get all that money from finding out things about our habits that retailers, FISA courts, corrupt political operatives and the list goes on. Every political organization for decades uses Google and Facebook stored data to target potential voters.

What can individuals do to protect their electronic privacy. Get off Facebook and Google is a start. Use a VPN for your computers and phone. Use quality protective barriers to your browser being infected. Any free stuff is probably little to no protection.

It is probably impossible to totally secure your electronic communications. But, for me at least I do my best to make it harder to share personal stuff.

I am not a conspiracy type person. But I do believe in the US Constitution protection for every US Citizen. Our own government is guilty of trashing our privacy. And, outfits like Google and Facebook make billions of dollars off us. What we get in return is targeted computer advertisements and phone calls from every organization in the universe.

Sorry for the long post.

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 12:11 pm
by Gordon Kumpuris
Full Disclosure - I work for a data aggregator who is one of the worlds largest repositories of consumer marketing data. We sell to marketers globally.

Just a couple of thoughts.....

The joys and information that the Internet provides at the scale that currently exists is not possible if someone is not paying for it. Either the marketer who pays for advertising and data sets of user information used to target market OR the Internet users who are the source of said data in the form of access fees.

Support companies such as my own that place data ethics at the very top of their mission and work very very hard to ensure that those who we do business with adhere to the same data ethics.

Know that the vast majority of data that is shared/sold is "anonymized". Basically that means that it does not have Personally Identifiable Information (PII). Instead it often has an anonymized propriatorey identifier that is used to tie back to your internet connected devices, i.e. your cell phone, MacBook, PC, Digital TV or other internet connected devices such as your home security system or even your car. So what the marketer has at their disposal is very valuable marketing information about your propensities your demographics, your movements in some cases, etc but not about you personally. They may know for instance that I am included in a data set Called "middle aged, outdoorsy type, males, w/ 2 + kids and at least 1 pet who reside in the southern part of the U.S. who drives by Walmart at least twice a day" That is a heck of a lot more valuable than just "Gordon Kumpuris" by the way. A name without other demographic info is not all that valuable anyway to a marketer. It's the demographics and the propensities that are important. Info such as your actual phone number, your email address, your name and physical address are not shared by reputable companies. (there in is the kicker). Reputable companies would risk complete shutdown by the government if they knowingly ignored these standards. One major fine an the party is over! Problem is there are smaller often fly by night, unethical companies that do risk it. Just like there are criminals that put themselves at great risk for a quick buck, there are unethical data brokers out there. The European Union has recently made a huge move to change a lot of this by instituting much more strict data protection laws where in essence, users must opt in to share data where in the U.S. users in most cases must opt out. That is a big difference. The rest of the world is very likely to follow suit. If for no other reason, because companies like mine whose applications and highly complicated systems and practices have been and are being changed to accommodate. It's much less expensive to build one system that serves all the globe than multiple systems and processes for different countries.

Don't knowingly share data with companies that you don't trust. Just like anything else, if it feels fishy don't do it. Know that as far as free social media, free apps, free websites in almost every case YOU ARE NOT THE CUSTOMER. YOU ARE IN FACT IN MANY WAYS THE PRODUCT. It's an odd twist on business dynamics where the product is also a stakeholder who must be maintained and whose interests must not be misused but none-the-less, you must remember that every time you share data willingly about yourself you are providing value to someone.

Also know that most marketing is really good. I personally would much rather get ads for kayaks, mountain bikes, and SUV's and stuff than ads for oh let's say Depends undergarments. Even if you were to be able to block all propensity data about yourself, you would still remain a marketing target, albeit one with less value to the marketer. They'd likely still push ads to you but would not spend nearly as much to do so and you'd get some really lousy ads.

Anyway...... Got to go back to work. I have to send some spam email and junk ads to Dave. :)

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 12:18 pm
by Henry Gresham
Gordon, you're right, I should have been more specific and referenced the forum. The general website does have nice features. But since this has somewhat morphed into a discussion of privacy and security, I'll add a few more comments. I used to use Windows on my computer, from Win1.0 thru Win7. When I saw that Microsoft was modifying its business model to mimic Google and Facebook with Win10, I jumped ship. I now use Linux as my OS, and use Win7 only in a virtual machine when absolutely necessary. I also search with DuckDuck, and I use Firefox or Chromium to browse the web. (Chromium is an open source version of Chrome.) I do use a Samsung Android phone for convenience, but employ as much security on it as I can. For example, how many folks take pictures of their kids and post them on Facebook, and don't even realize that the default settings tag each picture with geographic coordinates? I convinced my daughter to turn off that feature so weirdos don't see cute kids and learn where to find them! I've completely closed my little used Facebook account, and have dumped all the other social media sites. On one hand Americans complain of government and corporate intrusion into their privacy, but on the other hand they blindly broadcast their locations and most private personal and family information. Just look at how many people get fired or arrested because of stupid posts to public forums. I'll shut up and not post more on this issue, as this isn't a privacy forum, but I do hope ACC Facebookers realize how vulnerable they are. 50 million users have now had their personal data compromised to the world.

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 12:22 pm
by Gordon Kumpuris
Good exchange Henry. Thanks for sharing your practices. Those could be very helpful.

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 1:00 pm
by Deuce
Henry, a message board conversation with Jim Krueger years ago is the reason I'm a club member. Since then I've had many enjoyable and informative exchanges with many members including Dave Reid(okieboater). It truly makes me sad to see how little traffic the message board gets now, but that's just reality. Ironically I've been enjoying a great conversation with a new member from Baton Rouge this week which has amounted to several months' worth of message board activity for me. That's not because I don't frequent the board; quite the contrary. I check in here several times a day. It's because most everyone interacts on FB now so we're compelled to have a presence there. Refusal to participate sometimes results in missing out and that's a risk nonusers of FB must weigh when making that decision. That's not a criticism, just a fact.

I sorely miss the days of community and trash talking here and fervently hope it will return at some point, but I don't believe there's anything impactful we can do to engender or hasten that process. If you have ideas we're all ears. In the interim I'll continue to check in frequently on both FB and the MB and try not to worry too much about which Russians know my hat size. FWIW despite my glibness I do understand what you're saying. I haven't experienced anything alarming and frankly there's more about me available elsewhere than there is on the facebooks, but that doesn't mean I discount your concerns. Come to think of it I don't even know my hat size. :confused:

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 1:21 pm
by okieboater
Gordo, I love you as a paddle bud, have to disagree a bit with your defense of data aggregators. I applaud your specific company for doing the "right" thing on data research. It is unfortunate, that the major players like Facebook, Google, Twitter and others do things with our most private data that we may or may not agree with. My last 17 years in business was as CIO for a multi billion sales retail operation. Data analysis of product movement and customer trends was and has become key to staying in business and data analysis has become key to many retail or organizations like political parties or government in general.

Your explanation of the way your data is tracked is right on with what I know. I do think the modern systems can get back to the individual machine address or I/P address and the ISP can get to your name and address for sure zip code. You are correct in that given just a zip code and access to government Census data bases, retailers know where the money comes from as far as group disposable income etc. It is only when the government gets involved that individual address become important.

I recently went to a VPN and depending on where I locate the VPN server, I almost instantly start getting emails in that locations language. I did some research the other day and discovered just how much personal data your browser contains and the many ways outfits like Google and Facebook have to get at that data.

I think modern information systems have given us a way of life that was unthinkable not long ago. I also think the individuals privacy has been taken away and our government (both Democrat and Republican officials) are not taking care of us average people. Maybe Senator Paul is the lone voice crying out but who cares about any Senator's TV time these days.

I am with Henry in that between our desktop computers and hand held smart phones we have either knowingly or by choice given up our basic privacy to advertising or worse. For sure when I was CIO, I went with Microsoft products primarily because it like IBM was the safer choice for business. Now in retirement, Linux based products is the way to go and I am a big fan of Ubuntu as the way to run personal computers.

I love the ACC and I love this message board, thanks to the ACC BOD for keeping it going. Like Deuce, over the years I have enjoyed quite a bit of trash talking (usually about Dutch Oven Cooking) and for sure have forgotten how many trip invites I got from msg board members. I realize that most of the younger ACC members are Facebook fans big time. I know my Granddaughter about to graduate from OSU basically has grown up with a smartphone attached to her hand and facebook communication with her bud's etc. It is sign of the times.

I got to get off the keyboard and finalize a float down Texas way. Having said that I still enjoy a spirited discussion on most anything now that I am truely retired from the world of business. A big thanks to Gordo for using the ACC msg board quite a bit and just as big a thanks to the ACC BOD for their support.

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 3:00 am
by paddledog
I wish there was a 'Like' button for this conversation........ :D

Re: ACC & Facebook

Posted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 10:07 am
by Sparky
It's nice to see a conversation of this depth take place one more time on this message board. My use of this message board led me to join and maintain membership with the ACC. I will maintain my membership with or without the message board. I'm one who has chosen not to transition to Facebook or any other social media association. Social media is very time consuming and I choose to spend my free time involved in simpler tasks. Maybe the message board will become the canoe of whitewater and just refuse to go away. I've met and paddled with many fine people via conversations here. If it does go by the wayside, so be it. My many thanks to those brought the forum together and maintained it for all these years. Brent