Showing posts with label Facebook. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Facebook. Show all posts

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Don't f*ck with us - Part 1 [324/365]

Before I start today's post, I must begin with a confession.
I hate Bal Thackeray. I hate the Shiv Sena and I hate their ideologies.
And I'm just reinstating a hatred that I have always had towards what I'd call the 'Scum of Mumbai'.
I don't subscribe to their ideologies mainly because they are populist and very discriminative.
They have instigated the local SUAS (Stupid and Uneducated AssHoles) against the Muslims for far too long now. They have pitted locals against the 'immigrants' who actually make Mumbai what it is - a bustling metropolis with a dream.

But that's the essence of Mumbai. It could be dirty, and crowded and busy and fast. Yet Mumbai is addictive. I can't put a finger on why I love Mumbai, but it grows on you. Mumbai is unlike any other city that I've been to and will never match any other city I know either.

Mumbai is a wonderful place where you'll see the 'can do, or will die trying' spirit. From the rickshaw wallahs to the random person in the 'locals', given a choice I would like to live in Mumbai for atleast a few years. Why won't anyone?

But when the grumpy ol' leader of the brat-pack died yesterday, I was relieved. Phew! But there was a bad feeling and much of Mumbai felt it too, which is why they shut themselves down. Amazing! The city that does not sleep and refuses to rest took a massive doze of barbiturates and went to bed.
Not fair, everyone said. I mean when hundreds died a few years ago, the city didnt miss a heartbeat.

After all, it is the US of India, where people are driven to accomplish and free to speak. Or not.
Today, two girls where arrested.
The reason will have you laughing your last meal out. One of them made a remark about how crippling a strike like this was and the other for 'liking' the post. Now laugh.

I haven't heard of a more absurder charge than this. I mean c'mon! I'm pretty sure that Bal 'No Balls' Thackeray have had more harsher critics than SRK, but this? I've called him and his bunch of rag-tag assholes even worse names in my blog posts and I have no hesitation in saying that. They deserve worse but this arrest smacked of good ol' fashioned Indian sycophancy. The cops who made the arrests were obviously trying to appease the rascals.

I guess I have a reasoning on why this happened. The A-holes seeing how they were not getting a chance to run amok decided to make some news themselves. Which brings me to an interesting question:

  • When the rascals were supposed to be mourning the death of their rat leader, what were they doing on FB? Not checking for new 'friend requests', I hope.
  • What gives them the right to ransack an hospital and who gave them the right to take the law into their hands?
But then I realise the second question is redundant since they aren't really known for their law-abiding skills and this was just one of their ways to release some nonsexual frustration.
What next? Knowing how the well greased Indian Politico works, here's what we can all expect:

  1. The cops will release the girls. Or we'll make them.
  2. The state government will make all the right sounds and mock scold the Sena scum.
  3. The cops will be suspended (some much needed vacation) pending enquiry. They will be reinstated in a couple of months (I'd give them 4 weeks).
  4. The victims will change their statements atleast half a dozen times. No prizes for guessing why.
  5. The government will announce a plan to make the law fool-proof. Not going to happen.
  6. In the time that the above takes, everyone will forget about what happened and Sena will build a memorial and demand that half of Mumbai be renamed to their fallen leader.
Mumbai is a great place to be, except on days when the Sena Scum run amok.
Last Question, Mr Thackeray: Do you think we'd wish you to rest in peace for the ways you didn't let others live in peace?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The proud Billion [286/365]

About 159 days after the world's largest Social networking website went public, we heard that FB hit a billion.
Well, Mr Zuckerberg, we hit that number a few years ago.

So what does this really mean for us? Does it really mean he has a billion people hooked onto FB?
Mark stayed clear of saying who and went FB hit the number perhaps because he knows it couldn't really be a billion yet. For those who read/watched his interview online, he came off as a person who rambled on.

That said, no one can deny how much FB is part of our society today. It feeds off our basic and primal need for intimacy and voyeurism. I know dozens of people who create fake accounts to stalk their ex'es. Having a facebook account is just as necessary as having an email address but when I read a recent newspaper article about how an increasing number of teens are becoming depressed just because their peers have more number of friends, or have more 'Likes' for the posts they put, I wondered aloud- How much is facebook doing to protect its younger members? An overwhelming majority say individuals under the age of 18 mustn't be allowed to use FB. But a look at the number of pre-teens and teens that are online and posting pictures and content will tell you another story.

But then FB may not have a billion yet, and this could be just a massive PR exercise. Let's face it, Mark is a ruthless businessman. For a company that likes to measure everything in billions, it sure has lost a lot of its sheen when its stock has lost over 40% since going public. The company is now facing angry stockholders and disappointed employees. He himself has lost billions and while the company tries to shift focus away from its failures, the real question will be- 

Can facebook really transform our lives beyond being just a distraction in our daily lives?

Thursday, May 31, 2012

May'ed out [151/365]

Ah, so May is always a special month for me.
As a preschooler, I remember how I'd sit with my 'Kwality Street' chocolate box every morning until my birthday.

While the world celebrated the first anni, I have this distinct feeling that Osama didn't get his 99 virgins when he was gunned down and given off as fish feed. I hear his plane crashed into the tall towers of Hades.

FB fell flat. Period.

Didi in the news again. This time she wants a interest-free loan and her choice for Prez. I'm beginning to believe Didi actually wakes up every morning and plans ways to screw her allies.
Is there not going to be an end to this?
What the hell are the 'intellectuals' doing?

Raja ban gaya free man.
Our politicians for want of real non-issues squabbled over a bunch of satirical cartoons that were drawn half a century ago.

Aamir Khan debuts on the small screen with Satyamay Jayathe. The nation sits up and takes notice. Master stroke!

The Supreme Court orders a ban on sun films on all four-wheeler vehicles across India. Difficult to understand why the apex court in the country had to make such a decision which makes very little sense.

IPL and SRK. Nuff said.

All in all, this was an exciting month and one that won't be forgotten in a hurry.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Facepalm moment [141/365]

Okay, I gotta admit.
Normally, I'd be happy when I am right. But this time I wasn't feeling too good about being proved right.
I'd (rightly) said FB had made a huge mistake valuating themselves at the price they did. (Read here)

At the boroughs, the stock debuted at $42.05 but soon plummeted to $38.01 before settling down below their issue price of $38 upon close of market hours.

So what does this mean for investors like you and me?
The closing means FB is worth about $105 billion, which is a shade more than Amazon, McD's, HP and Cisco.

While this should not be a cause of concern for people like us, I think FB disappointed since nearly everyone expected double digit increases on the first day. Clearly, not everyone 'liked' FB.

However, not all is lost here. Looking ahead, the company now has it's task cut out for them. The focus lies in understanding how the company will remain relevant in the mobile scheme of things.

Facebook needs to deliver on their promise to be the bigger better deal.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Epic Journey or Grand Delusions [127/365]

Starting today, facebook [fb] will go public.
Valued at $90 billion and set to mop up as much as $20 billion, this IPO is touted as one of the largest IT IPO's ever,  and is hoping to have dream run at the boroughs.

Judging by several factors, buying stock in facebook could easily be one of the best things you can do. Considering how it's grown in just eight years, learning from the mistakes of it's predecessors - Orkut, MySpace - facebook now has a worldwide community that rivals any of it's compatriots.
To a layperson like you and me, buying a facebook stock makes as much money-sense as tanking up on the night before the fuel prices go up.

Is the Facebook IPO really what it is made out to be?
Are we really witnessing the rise of a giant or another bubble about to go bust.

First the facts:
Facebook has the largest online population of humans. Ever. Infact if facebook was to become a country, it will be the third most populous in the world. And growing.

Owner and founder, Mark Zuckerberg is the youngest billionaire in the world. With an estimated net-worth of $17.5 billion, this IPO will make him the richest human being in history. The flip side is that he ends up paying almost 80% of what he will earn from sale of his share of stock mandatory taxes in the United States. And yes, of course the fact that he can get fired too.

And now, for the reality:
Can you really trust an IPO which is being advertised as the biggest thing that will ever be, where the founder/owner chooses when and how much he/she needs without considering how that extra $ will add to the value, is like playing Russian Roulette.

Facebook is Zuckerberg and Zuckerberg is Facebook.
Simple. $20 billion is the price we pay to be able to access 900 million users. And sources say Zuckerberg will still retain his 57% voting stake in the company. Voila!

Notorious for the way he's handled his company and his rivals so far, what remains to be seen is how much power will he relinquish when it goes public.

While the company itself is profitable, this alone cannot guarantee a golden egg for its eternity. Analysts will tell you that it's revenue has fallen in the past couple of years. And Mark knows this. He acquired Instagram, an online photo editing software company, for a whooping $1 billion dollars a few weeks ago. Speculations ran thick and wild on why a company like facebook would buy a startup with just a handful of people for such an amount, but the fact is that this acquisition has only sweetened the deal for facebook.

Lastly and most importantly, no one can really tell how or why internet companies reward themselves a billion dollar price tag. While facebook's business model is extremely robust, it's valuation is something that may need closer scrutiny.
Nonetheless, IPO's are about optimism, and facebook has certainly drummed up enough supporters to feel good about it's IPO.

Considering how big this IPO has been in the news, I would take Warren Buffet's word when he says 'I think the worst mistake you can make in stocks is to buy or sell based on current headlines'

Friday, January 06, 2012

Hacks! [5/365]

45,000 Facebook users lost their peace of minds last Friday.
Users, mainly in Britain and France, had their login details stolen by common hacks. (Read article)
I guess a news like this would have made international headlines for and triggered a panic wave across the world, a few years ago.

But in a world where we are constantly living on the edge, this barely made a ripple. So this is fine, you know. 
We somehow believe that this is not going to happen to us and won't affect us in any way... Until it does.

While Facebook would have fixed the backdoor trap and restored access of accounts to it's rightful owners, I am hoping the lightening does not strike twice.

Somehow, if all the dirty bombs or other "weapons of mass destruction" does not trigger a global conflict, such random acts of virtual ambush will. 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Stalk 'em

Recently when a close friend of mine was relating to me how her ex was keeping a close tab on her. I was hardly surprised.

That's what most ex'es do.
Atleast the bitter ones.

Orkut was a wonderful thing. Sneaking a peek at the photo albums to see who's been dating who and hoping that they are having a miserable time, even if you are secretly envious about the good time they are really having. Browsing through the scraps to find out who he/she has been writing to and hearing from.

Then came Facebook. Darn those privacy levels. Now, he/she can't see those photo albums and or read those wall posts. So, now you have a stalker who is despicable enough to be rummaging through information (mostly pictures of you) on the internet. However, despite all the privacy online, and with the kind of footprint that we leave online, it is only a matter of time, that you can find some information. Even if it is as mundane as a note about a doctor's visit. "Finally, some new information!"
Well, congratulations, Shortie!

Statistics reveal cyber stalking is prevalent in developing countries like India, where there isn't strict enforcement of rules that protect privacy of an individual online. I know a person who left a malicious yet anonymous comment on google maps against me in the hope that I would toe his line. But being anonymous online is misnomer. A little digging yielded his computer's IP Address, name and postal address. But this is the cost we pay for freedom and free speech.

Relationships are tricky.
The first times are always so beautiful. The first date, the first look, the first shy smile, the first kiss and even the first fight (aka lover's spat). All immortalized. Or until you break up, whichever comes first.

Breakups are a tight rope walk. Long after you unceremoniously dumped him/her, you burn with the innate desire to still be a part of that one person you should have never hurt and cheated upon.
It could be infidelity or simply boredom. Love turns sour faster than you can say 'Sufferin' succotash'. And it's all downhill after this. If you are married, you're headed towards many painful months of counseling (if you are lucky) or a divorce (if you are unlucky). If you are just a couple, you'd still go through all the pangs of a 'divorce'. Mutual friends stop being that. Gifts get returned/donated/burned. The memories of all the places where the both of you went to and 'did' it and all the things you did together suddenly begin to trap you in a vicious cycle of denial, hate, depression and anger. For the lucky few, the transition is nice and easy and the wounds heal.

For as long as humans crave love and value lust, we'll always have partners who cheat and all the trauma that comes along with it. And lecherous men and unrepentant women would want to spy on their former better halves and secretly want them to suffer but I've got three words for you-  
Get a life!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Thank God its Friday!

As we approach the weekend, I am on a high. Indescribable. The joy of being able to kick off your shoes and relax over the weekend doing absolutely nothing or maybe everything pending makes weekends look like summer vacations.
Mondays are still a very long way away.
Fridays are perhaps the happiest days at work. We can handle any rejection, we can overcome the nastiest of glitches. Halleluiah Endorphin!

But as we come to the end of a yet another week in India, many families are grieving. For victims of the latest attrocity to strike India, this week could have been better. They would have traded what happened to their loved ones for all the gold and all the platinum in this world.
Yet we have people who sympathise with terrorism. While we have shining examples of how people have united in mankind's gravest hours, we have a few hundreds who theorize that perhaps terrorists are victims themselves.

A chap, (who I know not and thank God for that) recently opined " If you make the world a ideal wouldnt be beautiful / borning hence for everything there is a balance which is required according to Newton 3rd law & it is part & parcel of the Deed... A simple answer is - Do we always do good? or do we also indulge in not so good things... There lies your answer.. Terrorism is only highlighted in Media !! hence people write on blog , twitter -FB etc...but understanding the pain of terrorist is also rquired to eradicate such menace...In india with 50% of people earning less than 5k...If Terror org pay u 10Lac so that your family is secure...would u take the bait? In official records...he is a terrorists but he is in real ensuring his family leads a good life - AOL :)"

Heck they are.

While I can understand why people would want to be the defender of the weak and exercise their right to speech and debate, when people empathise with what is clearly against human nature and the purpose of life, then they cross that fine line of propriety.

While we are being overwhelmed by opinions and counter arguments, it is essentail to remember that death hurts you only when tragedy strikes nearer home.
Until then, we will have people who are morbidly insensitive

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Bragging Rites

Don't you hate it when you hear your relatives/neighbors gloat and brag about things they have at home? Well, I do.

Absolutely hate it.

Hence I have a policy when it comes to socialising with the beggars of glory. My policy is 'Don't socialise'

And as if bragging to your neighbors were not enough, we now have jackasses doing it online too.
"Oh, I loooooooooooove my new bike". "Best thing I've ever done in my entire life".
Alright, we get it. 

We know that you've been wasting your two decades plus of wasteful living in doing things less than the 'best thing in your life'. But must we be the unfortunate recipients of all this BS?!
I mean, I don't have anything against social networking, but please do us all a favor and quit the self glorifying tirade.

Yes, we can choose to not read it. But having to read your hourly statuses of how wonderful those screws and nuts go together is not really my idea of a News Flash. No thank you.
I finally blocked a bunch of people and by the way things look, I might have to block a few more too.

So here goes...
My sincere apologies to all those who didn't make it on my wall.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Dont try this at home

Please don’t commit these hideous Facebook crimes. If you are currently guilty, stop now before the whole world becomes aware of your apparent lack of Facebook etiquette.
Remember, these aren’t mere suggestions, they are warnings. Stop now or be judged later by the Facebook Gods – they are fierce, unforgiving and may sentence you to eternity on MYSPACE!!!
Facebook Don’t:

1. Couples, DON’T put cutesy “No, I love you more!” posts on each other’s walls. ESPECIALLY when you live together. It screams desperate and just makes others jealous…like me. Cuz I can’t even get my boyfriend to put ‘In a Relationship’ on his profile. But I’m totally fine with it. I mean we’ve only been dating 7 years so it’s like totally NOT a big deal. Okay, moving on…

2. Don’t send notices out for ALL CAUSES. Be selective. Pick and choose. If you are already a part of the cause to stop animal cruelty, stop crimes against children, eat vegetarian and adopt a fugly person to date – that’s enough. Stop there. If you’re for all the causes – you’re really for none of the causes and everyone will nickname you FAKEY McFakerson with a capital F!

3. Learn how to flip your pics. Nothing says “I’m a total internet granny” like posting pics that are sideways or upside down. Seriously, you can do it. There is a flipping option under the pic after you upload it.  It’s just plain unfair because we all know that everyone looks hotter sideways and/or upside down. Show us your TRUE SELF~

4. TMI! There is a such thing as TOO MUCH INFORMATION. Your Facebook friends don’t need to know about your last bowel movement, what it looked like, smelled like or what it took to create it.

5. Depressing status updates. Quit bumming us out with depressing status updates where you say “my life sucks” or “this is the worst day EVER” or “I’ll be dead by the morning.” Seriously! At first I liked this because it made me feel better about my life, but after seeing people post these depressors daily – Facebook friends no longer want to empathize with you. Instead, they want you to start lying. Facebook is not your therapist or BFF. It’s time to face the reality that some of your friends got stuck befriending you in hopes that this would deter you from stabbing them one day.

6. OVERLY HAPPY STATUS UPDATES WITH TOO MANY EXCLAMATION POINTS THAT ARE IN ALL CAPS!!!!! Okay, so you may think you have the best husband, boyfriend,wife, mistress, kid, cat, or disease EVER, but guess what, you don’t and no one agrees with you. Our selfish minds won’t let us because all we think when you proclaim your “bests” is  - “Ours are better!”

7. Excessive status updates about how much good stuff you do like volunteer, work out, eat
vegetables and feed the elderly.  GOOD FOR YOU! Now keep that stuff to yourself, FACEBRAGGER!

8. Taking more than 2 quizzes a day is UNACCEPTABLE. Get a life! Not like I have one, but I know others that do have a life and it doesn’t involve finding out what Hoggwarts character you are and when you are going to get married. It’s just nonsense, especially when guess what, you are already married!

9. If you receive event invitations the WORST reply is ‘Maybe.’ This is okay if you really are on the fence and plan on making up your mind and posting yes or no before the event. However, always being the ‘Maybe’ person doesn’t go unnoticed and infuriates the Facebook Gods. You don’t want your FaceRights taken away from you now, do you?

10. If you beat my Farkle score, under no circumstance is it okay for you to post your win to my wall. Since I play Farkle obsessivelyoften, I already know. Braggers don’t make for good FB friends and sometimes Farkle just feels bad for people and gives them a really high score, which coincidently puts them ahead of me on the scoreboard. So it’s not about talent or good luck, it’s just about pity, but not when it happens to me.
Now get a sense of humor and follow these tips AND you will have the best social networking life EVER!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Socializing the Net

Social media should improve your life, not become your life!
Patrick Driessen
Of all the different roles that the Internet played, Social Networking gripped popular imagination in a vice.
A term that has entered the lexicon of many boardroom debates and pantry gossips, social networking is an equalizer. It enabled people who were shy in real life, become virtual extroverts.
Tracing its evolution, the earliest entrant; Orkut used to be my kind of networking, because it was simple, no fuss and very uncluttered. Privacy and rampant misuse was a major concern, but it has cleaned itself up pretty nice.
Its much younger cousin Facebook, was in comparison much more cluttered and confusing. It took a very long time for me to get it round my head.

But I soon realized that like in any thing else, Facebook picked up from where Orkut left.
They had improved security, privacy levels that could be customized and the newer avatar of the site is a lot less cluttered than its predecessor. 
Orkut sparked the fire, but FB (as Facebook is popularly known) fanned it into a phenomena. 

Twitter, Linkedin, MySpace and the such have only cashed into a concept that makes you believe that social networking is as essential as the air you breathe.
I could testify on how profoundly Social Networking has changed my life, but what is more disconcerting is how people are spending more time socializing online than before.
Scrapping, twittering and tagging has become acceptable ways of showing recognition amongst the young and not so young. 
Why don't we just visit our friends or, take the moment to visit people who are less fortunate more often?
Social nuances and etiquette can never be substituted for that 'gift' you give online.

Fights go online too!
I've seen people change their relationship status from 'committed' to 'single' to prove a point and maybe wash the proverbial dirty laundry in full view of your 'buddies'.
Technology has certainly made a lot of lives easier and world is only a wall post, scrap or a tweet away, but where does that leave the good ol' days of letter writing.

Social Networking thrives on our collective love of watching other people live their lives. 
We love Voyeurism. We love to know what is happening, and unconsciously we are constantly vying for more attention. 
We want our 15 posts of fame and we are ready to do anything for it.
But is all this Networking really helping us?
Personally, I believe it does not foster ties with the same warmth and cordiality as when we meet a person face to face. I would prefer talking with a person sans the avatar.
Social Networking has its dark underbelly too, where employers are increasingly turning to popular sites likes Facebook while screening prospective employees. 
Insignificant requests and inundating news feeds end up eating up quality time that could have otherwise helped solidify personal contacts.

Unabated use of technology leads to it's misuse and unless we learn to restrain ourselves and understand that Social Networking is just an aid and not the purpose to live we will continue to see our friends addicted to farming melons, tweeting sweet nothings and scraping their love out.
When the Television was invented, it was said, it will kill the Radio star. I don't think it did. 
Over time, I think it just made the Radio more creative.

Sure, Social Networking has come a long way from the baby steps it took and does allow ties that are weak to strengthen over time besides enabling hitherto hidden opportunities to come our way, however unless we exercise discretion and practice common sense in using this wonderful tool of modern interaction, the day is not too far when we choose Social Networking instead of social living.

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