Spelling Friday.

I am fed up with adults who can’t fookin’ spell! People on Facebook are the very worst offenders for this and its starting to really get up my nose.

So, for those of you who are in any doubt as to which words to use when; here’s a little copy and keep for reference

Your = as in it’s something belonging to you (your ball, your house)

You’re = you are (the apostrophe replaces the ‘a’) – you’re going out later?

There = generally a location or referring to a point in time as a statement. I’m going over there, there is a dog over there. There, I said it.

Their = something belonging to a 3rd person or a group of other people – their socks, their ball. Johnny, can you give their ball back

They’re = they are – same as you’re = the apostrophe is a dropped ‘a’ They’re going over there to fetch their ball.

You cannot use any of these words interchangeably.

There ball = means (as a 2 year old might say) = there’s a ball just there.
Your so funny = that something called ‘so funny’ (a racehorse perhaps?) belongs to you.
It’s over their = its over their what? head? like spelling?

Gah! this is stuff you learned in primary school!!

Next lesson – basic punctuation, capitalisation and full stops. When and where to use.

/rant

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facebook

Online security and privacy for children is not exactly a new thing.  There have been plenty of cases of so called ‘grooming’ by some very nasty people where kids have been lured to their untimely deaths.   All parents should know about this kind of thing, as I said, its not new.

Close to home, there have been a couple of murders in Oz where girls have gone off to meet up with one of their Facebook friends only to turn up very dead.  One was last year (I think) and there was another this week.

The girl this week was 18 years old.

We were having a chat about this with the girls – being responsible parents, we try to educate them into not giving out their real names on-line, never telling anyone their address or any personal details etc.  They have several accounts on various child gaming sites (I’m not saying where, for obvious reasons) where they are under strict instructions only to invite and chat with people they actually know in real life.  No virtual friend collecting, no matter how nice they may sound.

Common sense, right?

We found out that several of their friends managed to open their own accounts and have many hundreds of friends, totally unsupervised or where parents know, but just don’t care.  Unbelievable.

Worse still, when discussing this latest murder, we find out that several of Jay’s little-un’s nine-year old school friends have Facebook accounts with full support of their parents.   Nice – especially as the sign up terms and conditions make it clear you have to be 14.

Compounding this, one of the schoolfriends has over 700 ‘friends’, but ‘its okay, she knows them all’  Apparently her parents were ‘very responsible’ and closed their accounts when the murders happened.

Oh yeah, really responsible.  Gate, horse, bolted.

How can a responsible parent allow a child to have their own Facebook account (with all the adult content that’s on there) and then collect 700 ‘friends’??

I’m utterly stunned.   Parents should know better

Perhaps we’re too strict and keeping the girls from some valuable social interaction, but given the very real risk, as small as it might well be, I don’t care.  They’re not having a Facebook, MySpace, Beebo or any other account until they are old enough under the terms and conditions and also in their maturity to know whats sensible and whats not and to know who they are adding as friends.

And thats a very long way off yet.

jibber jabber

I used to think it was spam choked up the internet, millions and millions of unsolicited emails every second.

I was mistaken, it appears Stephen Fry is now the main drain on the worlds bandwidth. Not directly, and I’m not blaming him, but its just the way the internet is these days.

The cause of this blockage is called social networking, and technically, even blogs like this very one are part of it.

Back in the day, a few people with talent generated content for the internet. It initially required some geeks to help do the coding, and the geeks and nerds soon got fed up with this and made some applications and websites that creative types could use without having to interrupt them from their all night gaming sessions.

Usenet – bulletin boards – trolls were invented. Spam, garbage. They became shite
Then it all got more fancy and people spread themselves out a bit.

Soon everyone had a website. Most were shite.
Soon everyone had a blog. Most were shite.

There’s a reason for 99% them being crap and going nowhere.

It takes effort to write original thoughts day after day, to keep content updated, to be interesting, to want to seek and develop a readership, to be kind and courteous. And most people don’t have it in them. Either the effort, the drive, the words, the creativity, the originality or all of the above.

So then – here’s where the internet has all gone wrong. With Twitter and Facebook, anyone can write stuff and lots of people (the social part of social networking) get to see it. Before, with blogs, you had to make an audience. Now, anyone can add all their mates to Facebook and start publicly talking shite in small and manageable bursts. Worse still, as lots of these people are incapable of originality, its all copied and forwarded stuff. And with the 6 degrees of separation thing, pretty soon, word gets around.

Why is this a bad thing?

Well, it means the proletariat, the great unwashed, Joe Public gets to speak and people have no choice but to hear them. No longer is the internet a safe haven of intelligent life, its now the gutter full of crap, endlessly copied and pasted, forwarded, recycled like London drinking water. This sounds terribly elitist and I guess it is really. I really don’t want to hear a billion people who’s IQ places them in to the retarded category of intelligence. I want peace, intelligence, clarity and debate with people who’s idea of original thought is more than copy and paste.

So, back to poor old Stephen Fry. He uses Twitter. A lot. And, as he’s rather funny, most of the people in the visible universe follow him on there. So, as a consequence, when he writes something of interest, as he so often does being a clever and articulate chap, a few million people copy and paste, retweet, blog, facebook update, myspaceface it, whatever. And their few millions of friends all do the same. And suddenly, Stephen Fry, by proxy, has blocked the internet with endless jibber jabber, static, noise, garbage and the utter polar opposite of original thought.

That’s why social networking is a bad thing. People can’t be trusted with it. For the most part, they are too universally stupid to use it for the advancement of the human race. Instead, its like a endless echoes of people getting hot under the collar about something in the Daily Mail that, frankly, I don’t give a toss about.