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Posts Tagged ‘#news’

Facebook

September 25, 2018 14 comments

I don’t know if it’s the same for those of you WordPress users who pay a premium for your site, but we cheapskates who just use the free version recently received an email notifying us of an ‘improvement’ being made by Facebook. This email came from WordPress – I don’t recall hearing anything from Facebook about it directly. I could be wrong on that, but I don’t think so. This so-called improvement was the withdrawal of the facility to link our blogs to our personal Facebook pages, which meant that we would no longer be able to share our posts with our friends. No doubt most of mine were hugely relieved at this, but it was an option I know at least a few of them used to read my posts, though they don’t actually follow my blog. We could, of course, still copy a link to each post into Facebook, but somehow that extra little step didn’t seem quite the same.

I read elsewhere that this change was part of Facebook’s efforts to reduce the amount of ‘fake news’ their site was playing host to. The words ‘sledgehammer’ and ‘nut’ spring to mind – this seems to me to be an incredibly extreme reaction by the company as part of the long overdue need to get its act together. Whilst there would, no doubt, have been some who were using their blogs to promote fake news, this ability to link a personal blog to a personal Facebook page could hardly be thought to be a major cause of the proliferation of such crap. I really don’t believe that I could be accused of spreading as much fake news in my sporadic posts to my small group of Facebook friends as Fox News peddles every day to millions of gullible morons in the US and other countries in which they broadcast! A small aside here: Fox News is no longer available in the UK on the biggest satellite network – Sky – as the viewing figures were so pathetically low that they decided it wasn’t worth paying any longer for the access. I now have to get my laughs elsewhere.

As if that change wasn’t enough, Facebook compounded its stupidity by allowing us to share our posts directly to a separate page from our personal one. Yep, if we wanted to spread fake news via our blog direct to a small, private group of friends, we couldn’t – but if we were prepared to set up a public page, which could be seen by anyone, that would be alright. Is it just me, or is that breathtakingly idiotic? In effect they were saying that fake news on a small scale was wrong but it was perfectly alright on a large scale: they had taken the sledgehammer to the nut but had hit the tree instead.

I follow quite a few blogs for which there are discrete Facebook pages, and I’ve hit the ‘like’ button on several of these. More often than not, they are the ones with much larger followings than mine – sometimes, but not always, commercially oriented – and I hadn’t really considered doing this before, as I felt I wasn’t in the same league as them. I gave it a fair amount of thought and eventually decided to set up such a page a month or so ago. I haven’t promoted it at all since then apart from a passing reference in my post 300 Not Out – A Retrospective  and this probably explains why, to date, only one good and loyal friend has ‘liked’ the page! It is called – rather imaginatively I thought – Take It Easy . You can click on that link to find it, or on the site name in the image to the right of this post. Or if neither of those suit you, here is the full web address: https://www.facebook.com/takeiteasyblog/

Why would anyone bother, I hear you asking? Well, apart from the ability to read my posts there, I intend it to be a place where I expand on what I do in the blog itself. As regular readers will know, I love music, and often put on the headphones for a late night YouTube session, in the course of which I share the occasional song with my Facebook friends. I am now going to put up a regular ‘Song of the Day’ on the new Take It Easy page, starting from today – go take a look! These will be separate from the irregular series of #SaturdaySongs that I will still be doing occasionally: those are songs which have some special, personal meaning or memory for me, whereas the Song of the Day will be more of dip into my musical taste, with a little explanation.

In addition to music, I’m intending to make the page a place where followers can go to find other things which interest me, but which I don’t want to devote a full post to. So you will, over time, find things which amuse and entertain me, as we can all do with some of that in our lives, can’t we? There will also be links to news stories that interest me on topics including, but not limited to, mental health, social issues and a little bit of politics. Don’t worry, I’ll try to keep it light, but some things are too important not to be raised and shared.  Basically, I’m intending it will become a magazine style page, with the blog as its core. I will of course cross-reference between the page and this blog, but I hope to make them complementary: I see no point in just setting up the page and only sharing posts, which regular followers will probably have seen already. I’d ‘love it, absolutely love it’ (©️Kevin Keegan 😂) if you’d visit the page and show your love and support by hitting the ‘like’ button, and I hope you’ll feel that to be a worthwhile investment of your valuable time, and will dip in regularly. Thank you in advance, and I hope to see you there – drop me a message if you do visit and let me know what you think.

And finally, to give you a taste of what you’ll find there, here’s a recent post that you won’t have seen on the blog:

(Very) late night music time. I’ve been listening to a lot of Celtic punk/folk recently, most of which doesn’t come from anywhere near Eire! There are the brilliant Dropkick Murphys, from Boston, USA. Then there’s the O’Reillys and Paddyhats who, as I’m sure you guessed from their name, are German 😂 Or you could try Selfish Murphy from, wait for it, Transylvania. Yes, really! But I’m giving you this, because I think it’s fantastic and contains a good allegory for today’s times about people fighting over nothing. This is the Rumjacks who, of course, are Australian 😉

See you soon on the Take It Easy page? 😊

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Nightmare

April 1, 2016 17 comments

Taking liberties with the format, a little piece of 100 word flash ‘fiction,’ especially for today:

“It’s April 1 2020. The news is worrying. The UK General election is coming fast, and the country is veering towards a post-Brexit win for Nigel Farage’s renamed UK National Socialist Party. President Trump has just declared war on Mexico for its continuing refusal to pay for his wall, and has threatened Scotland with armed retaliation for the nationalisation of his golf course. President Putin and Wendy Deng now control her ex-husband’s media empire: their newspaper, Pravda of London, has begun circulating.

Am I dreaming? Is this real? A bad April Fool’s Day joke? Or is the world really stumbling towards oblivion?”

Far-fetched? I hope so, but there is so much happening now that makes me worried about our future. I hope I’m wrong! Happy April Fool’s Day!

I Knew You Were Trouble

November 2, 2014 2 comments

Do you ever find yourself idly passing time on the interweb by flicking from site to site finding things to read? I often do, usually among the news sites, many of which have a ‘funnies’ section which is usually good for some entertainment. One of my favourite sites is the BBC, which is very comprehensive. Yesterday, I found this little gem on there:

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Clearly this is a man with previous: I’ve never heard of a 45 game ban before. But 50 years?! Without wanting to offend anyone, what most surprises me about this is that it happened in Switzerland, a country which has a reputation for being…er…not to put too fine a point on it…a little bit dull and unemotional. Maybe the Swiss will now be closing their borders to Portuguese immigrants who, if this guy is any example, are bringing mass destruction to the otherwise precise existence they usually enjoy. This is, after all, the country renowned for its cheese with holes in it, yodelling, alpine horns, leather shorts, cuckoo clocks, makers of expensive timepieces and the Sound Of Music. Oh, and triangular chocolate available at petrol stations for that ‘I remembered after the shops were shut’ gift. But the lawyer for the football league says they get this about once a year. Does he mean that Ricardo is a serial offender or is there a steady infiltration of dangerous overseas players aimed at destroying Swiss football? But let’s face it, if England can win 2-0 over there that already seems to have happened!

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t advocate any kind of violence anywhere, whether on a football pitch or not, but this punishment does seem a little excessive. Perhaps we aren’t getting the whole story: did the water not come out of  a bottle but was in fact Ricardo’s own natural supply, if you get my meaning? Now that would be a story! I love the deadpan humour behind the final sentence in the report, but who knows? By the time he is 78 average life expectancy will probably be about 150 years, and the retirement age about 130, so this may just be a brief hiatus for Ricardo. That should give him an incentive to stay fit and keep himself ready for his return to the sport he loves! So, Ricardo, my message to you is to keep in mind the immortal words of the great Monty Python: Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life. Either that or change your name and take up something more suited to your skills – bodyguard, nightclub bouncer, kickboxer….

[A brief footnote: I’ve included the BBC among my tags for this post. I imagine that will leave a few disappointed when they realise this is nothing to do with movies of a certain type. Sorry, guys!]

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