Facebook refuses to remove hoax picture accusing man of child abuse

Facebook refuses to remove hoax picture accusing man of child abuse

I originally posted about the Cody Wright child abuse accusation here, back in December of 2015. For the TL;DR version someone posted an uncensored version of the above picture on Facebook. I believe the picture to be a hoax because there has been no arrest, no criminal charges and no mentions in the media in over a year. Even though there is no factual evidence to support the accusations, the photo still gets spread around Facebook like it’s gospel. People who claim it’s true can’t even agree where it took place. Some say it’s New Hampshire, others say it’s Manchester in the UK, some say it’s Florida and one person has even claimed that it happened in Manchester, Indiana. This story has all the markings of being an urban legend, born out of a false accusation.

Right now, a new round of infecting the less intelligent among us on Facebook has occurred, and this time it’s been shared over 500,000 times. Since it’s going around again I thought not only would I remind the Facebook zombies that there is no proof that it’s true, I’m also going to share my story of trying to get the photo removed from Facebook. I mean, we hear all the time about how Facebook is trying to fight ‘fake news’, yet they’ll let a baseless and possibly libelous picture that has the potential to destroy an innocent man’s life spread like a disease on their network.

First off, let’s talk about the numbers. The post I attribute to the first main spread of this misinformation has been shared over 43,000 times since it first appeared in late 2015.

The second post that seems to have spurred the latest rash of postings was also posted in December of 2015, and since that time has been shared almost 600,000 times.

I thought to myself that this has to stop. Surely, this picture violates some part of Facebook’s terms of service. Well, according to Facebook, it doesn’t.

I reported the first post as harassment and this is the reply I received. I removed the names of the posters because I’m not an irrational douche, but I digress.

Then I reported the second posting as inciting violence, and this was the response I got from Facebook.

So let me get this straight. Posting what basically amounts to a bounty poster and the picture of a severely injured child with no evidence to back up the accusations doesn’t violate ANY of your ‘Community Standards’, even though posts like this in the past have severely damaged innocent people’s lives? Yet God forbid you post a picture of a mother breastfeeding her baby and Facebook will bring the wrath of God down upon you.

If anyone is reading this, who has a decent heart, go to Facebook and search for ‘Cody Wright’ Manchester’ and you should be able to find the original posts. Please report them to Facebook. Maybe if enough people report it we can finally put these unfounded accusations to rest. Also, please consider sharing this story on Facebook. Maybe if this post can become as viral as the original picture we can get it taken down.

Lastly, to those of you who believe it’s true, show me proof. Not third-hand information you heard from the girl’s cousin’s brother’s roommate. I mean actual evidence, like an arrest report or news article. Until then, shut the fuck up, sit the fuck down, and move away from whatever device you’re using because you’re just making the rest of Facebook as dumb as you.

UPDATE 3/29/2017: I found another instance of the picture being shared. This time it had been shared over 100,000 times. I reported this one to Facebook as well and again I received the same answer.

Someone with more cache than I have needs to ask Facebook why this is considered acceptable by their ‘community standards’. If any one reading this happens to be a reporter or journalist, could you please submit a media request to Facebook asking them why they think this is the best use for their platform?

The Asus 4G Surf Linux Challenge: ToriOS

The Asus 4G Surf Linux Challenge: ToriOS

Just when I think that there can’t be another Linux distro to fit on the tiny hard drive of the Asus EeePC 701 4G Surf, the Linux community surprises me.

As I’ve mentioned before, I love it when DistroWatch adds a new distro to their database. Not too long ago they added a distro called ToriOS. THis is what caught my eye about ToriOS…

ToriOS is a Debian-based distribution which is designed to work on older computers, even 32-bit machines which do not support running PAE-enabled kernels.

I thought to myself, I have an almost 10-year-old computer that’s 32-bit that doesn’t support PAE kernels. Surely, it won’t be able to fit on the EeePC. Actually, it does, with room to spare. After installing the distro, there was close to 2GB of space left. That is of course without installing it without a swap drive.

Speaking of the installation, this is not a distro for beginners. The installation took me a coupe of tries before figuring out the installer. Also, it doesn’t come with what many would consider a normal web browser. It took me a couple of more tries before I was able to figure out how to get a browser installed. Once I did, Opera btw, it was not that bad. I was able to use Gmail with little to no issue. YouTube failed miserably but that’s more the problem with the EeePC rather than the ToriOS.

If you’re more used to Ubuntu I would recommend something more like Zorin Lite or wattOS. However if you like to experiment with Linux, Tori OS makes a great addition to the Asus 4G Surf Linux Challenge family.

Trench’s adventures in Linux: Zorin OS 12 Core

Trench's adventures in Linux: Zorin OS 12 Core

As far as Linux distros go, I’ve been a fan of Zorin OS for years. I still have fond memories of using Zorin OS 5 Core for longer than I use most Linux distros. The problem was, that in my opinion, the quality of Zorin OS Core fell off in the following years. With Zorin OS Core 12, that fondness for Zorin has returned and then some.

The first benefit is that Zorin OS 12 Core is based on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS edition. In the past Zorin would release distros that were either a generation behind the current Ubuntu distro or would release one that was not based on the LTS (long-term supported) distro. So in this instance, Zorin finally nailed the timing in their current distro.

The second thing that really impressed me is that they finally abandoned the AWN Dock which has been long abandoned by its own developers. In its place is what they call Zorin Desktop 2.0. According to the release announcement

We have entirely reimagined the Zorin Desktop environment in Zorin OS 12. This new version of Zorin Desktop is powered by Gnome Shell and packs an enormous variety of new features.

While it’s not as customizable as something like the XFCE desktop, it still has enough options to keep it looking fresh. As a matter of fact Zorin has three different desktop settings. You can have a Gnome 2 type appearance, a Windows type appearance and a Unity type appearance. If you like Unity on Ubuntu I recommend using Zorin instead as the desktop isn’t as torturous as Ubuntu’s.

zorin

Lastly, the last time I tried a Zorin OS Core installation, it appeared to me that it was a resource heavy distro. That has changed with OS 12 Core. Right now I have it installed on my Acer Cloudbook 14, which only has 2GB of RAM and a 1.60GHz Intel Celeron processor, and I have had no hiccups or any chugging. So if you’re looking to re-purpose and old laptop, Zorin may not be such a bad choice.

The only issue I had was that OS 12 Core cones with Chromium pre-installed as its default browser which gave me some issues. I removed that and installed regular Chrome and have had no problems since.

Zorin OS 12 Core is not only a great Linux distro for beginners and Windows users, but for intermediate Linux enthusiasts like myself.

Trench’s further adventures in Linux: Enchantment OS

enchanmentosdesktop

One of my favorite things, as a Linux fan, is to read the weekly issues of Distrowatch’s ‘Distrowatch Weekly’, and seeing what new Linux distros are being added to their database. In the August 29th issue, under the ‘Distributions added to waiting list’ section was a distro called Enchantment OS, and it was described as follows…

Enchantment OS is a Linux distribution which is based on Xubuntu LTS and designed with less technical users in mind.

Ok, so it’s billed as a beginner’s Linux distro, but it’s much more. First off, the Enchantment OS website is professional looking. Sometimes if a distro’s website is janky looking, I won’t download the distro. The only compalint I have about the website is that the distro is a straight download from Sourceforge. I’d have preferred a torrent download, but if a distro is a newer one it may not have the users to torrent. Enchantment OS also offers pre-installed USB sticks and DVDs for sale along with a paperback guide for the distro. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a distro that was so encouraging to new Linux users. I can’t offer a review on the book since I can’t afford the $30, but I’m not above taking a free review copy if Enchantment wants to send me one. (hint, hint)

After downloading the distro, I installed it onto my Acer Cloudbook 14 with its 2 GB of RAM and 32GB hard drive. I had no problems with installation as I had with some other distros like Zorin OS and Linux Lite. It’s a very nice and clean-looking distro with all the software you might need. and not a lot of unnecessary applications. After downloading all the programs I needed, that weren’t included with the distro, I still had 18 GB left on the hard drive, Compared to the 3GB I had left after the last Windows 10 update, 18 GB is plenty.

enchanmentoslogo

It boots fast, It has some great looking wallpaper choices that comes with it and, as one famous company once said. it just works. The one thing I didn’t care for was Enchantment’s Software Boutique, basically its app store. Instead of being able to search through it, you can only browse through it. However, Enchantment, in its Software Boutique, also offers you the option to download any other software manager like the Ubintu software store which I prefer. It also comes with Firefox Fast browser pre-installed, which is a really good privacy browser with the best ad and flash blocking extensions pre-installed.

If you were to sit a Windows user in front of a machine that had Enchantment OS installed on it, they should have no problem using the machine, but as with most Linux distros they’ll probably need their hands held for a few things. I would imagine that’s where the Enchantment OS book comes in.

As a regular user of Linux, I love Enchantment OS, and it is now currently my favorite distro. It comes with the XFCE desktop, and is based on the long-term supported Xubuntu 16.04, so you won’t have to do a fresh install every six months. In closing of my disjointed review, I give Enchantment OS the full Trench Reynolds’ seal of approval.

The Asus 4G Surf Linux Challenge: wattOS 10

wattos10

I almost thought about not doing the EEEpc challenge anymore. I was playing a video game and tried using the Surf to look something up about the game. The Surf was so slow to work that I thought that it’s not really a functional computer anymore. Not only is it a 9-year-old computer, but my low-end smart phone, the Moto-E, is more powerful than the first generation EEEpc. Not only that but recently, most Linux developers are only focusing on 64-bit architectures, while the 701 EEEpc has a 32-but processor.

wattos

Then the other day I was over at Distrowatch and saw that one of my favorite Linux distros for the 4G Surf had a new release recently and that would be watt OS 10. Watt OS and Zorin OS Lite have been trading the challenge crown back and forth for a couple of years now.

When I booted it for the first time I did have to use the forcepae trick to get it to boot into the desktop. While installing I once again used no swap space to get the distro to fit on the 4GB hard drive. After installing and running the updates, I still had over 800MB of space left. Unfortunately, I could not get the function keys to work correctly but that has been the case with most distros for a while now. The computer itself functions fine but by today’s standards it’s incredibly slow. While not as low as dial-up speeds it does have an issue loading modern products like GMail and Facebook.

So while wattOS is a very good lightweight distro for older computers, the Asus EEEpc 701 4G Surf is now just a historic oddity. Stay tuned however, because there will be a new Linux challenge coming shortly.

Why Periscope making users into moderators is doomed to fail

Periscope to make users into moderators and why this won't work

Recently mobile livestreaing app Periscope announced that they will be enlisting users to be their moderators when it comes to commenters leaving abusive comments. As the Forbes article I linked to points out, this is not a good idea. I would go as far as calling it the inmates running the asylum.

I’m not saying that all Periscope users are obnoxious trolls but we’re talking about the venue where watchers were giving likes to an alleged livestreamed rape. In addition to that, if history is any indicator, leaving moderation to the users always ends up in the moderators being the most abusive. Craigslist’s ‘community policing’ comes to mind. The classifieds site claims that they can’t afford to hire moderators and let the users flag ads that violate their terms of service, except that’s not what the users do. Instead they use the flagging ability as their personal harassment tool. A number of business will flag the ads of competitors or racists will flag any ad that’s not in English among other abuses of the privilege. Let’s also not forget all the ads for illegal items and services that never get flagged.

While giving users who stream more robust tools to moderate their own streams is commendable, letting stream comments be subject to mob rule will only make the experience not only less enjoyable but could potentially be a business killer for Periscope.

Trench’s Tech Tip: Updating Windows 10 on an Acer Cloudbook

Trench's Tech Tip: Updating Windows 10 on an Acer Cloudbook

Recently I purchased an Acer Aspire Cloudbook 14 since my regular laptop is probably not too long for this world. A great pickup if you need a cheap laptop to just browse and Facebook and stuff, or in my case writing. The problem with the Cloudbook is that it only has a 32 GB hard drive, hence the term Cloudbook since they want you to ‘live in the cloud’ as they say. However, living in the cloud doesn’t help when it comes to updating the operating system. So I’m going to share with you how I fixed a recent problem with that in order to save people some time who happen to have the same problem.

Windows 10 notified me that it was in need of an update but there wasn’t enough space on the hard drive to complete the update. However I could choose an external drive to download the temporary files to. I had a 32GB SD card inserted into the SD slot and the system recognized it but it wouldn’t let me choose the card. The trick is to format the card as NTFS instead of FAT32.

The first thing you want to do is back up anything on your SD card that you don’t want to lose. After that you click on My PC, then right-click on the SD Card and choose Format. One of the options will be for format type and you want to change that to NTFS. Once that’s done restart the update and the system will let you select the SD card as the external drive. Once the system is done updating you can delete the temporary files on the SD card.

Hopefully this will save someone from having to scroll through endless forum posts looking for the answer.

Browser plugin to erase names of mass shooters

browser-wars

From the ‘This is Possibly the Stupidest Thing I’ve Ever Heard’ Department comes a new plugin browser from the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. The Chrome plugin called Zero Minutes of Fame is designed to scrub the names and images of mass killers from any website that you look at online. This is their attempt to prevent copycat crimes except I see just one flaw in their master plan, they’re preaching to the choir. If you’re already a follower of the Brady Campaign you’re probably not someone who is getting ready to commit a shooting spree so what purpose would this really serve?

As I’ve said before we should know the killers’ names because to do so would garner them even more infamy in my opinion. Not to mention that the people who give them infamy are a tiny minority of society and they’re obviously not going to install this plugin.

Also, does the Brady Campaign consider Firefox users a lost cause?

Don’t leave a comment on Facebook

nofacebook

In today’s online world Facebook is king. As a content creator I always have to keep Facebook’s quirks and idiosyncrasies in mind whenever I’m crafting one of my blog posts. Its popularity and ubiquity can not be ignored. However I think I speak for many content creators when I say if you like something that we’ve created and want to comment on it DON’T JUST LEAVE A COMMENT ON FACEBOOK. A lot of us have websites, or YouTube Channels or what have you where we’ve poured out heart and souls into our creations only to have people only comment about it on Facebook and not where are creation lies.

I get it. Everyone you know is on Facebook and that’s fine however there is no rule that says you can’t leave Facebook every once in a while. A lot of my posts have had some great discussions on Facebook but on the website it looks like no one cares and do to the fickle way that Facebook likes to close accounts those discussions could be lost forever. Not to mention that Facebook may not be around forever, just look at MySpace and Facebook is only one sparkly animated gif background away from becoming MySpace.

It’s ok to leave Facebook every once in a while. After all isn’t a walled garden just a pretty prison?

The Asus 4G Surf Linux Challenge: Zorin OS 11 Lite

zorin11lite

I’ve been a fan of the Zorin OS Linux distro for a while now. Their Core OS is a great Linux distro for those just getting into Linux if they’re coming from a Windows background. It’s also good for regular Linux users if you just want to install a distro and just have it work out of the box.

However today I want to talk about Zorin OS 11 Lite and my Asus EEEpc 701 4G Surf. The last time I tried running Zorin Lite on the limited laptop I ran out of hard drive space after doing all the updates. This time I installed it without using a swap partition. After the installation and updates there was roughly 300MB hard drive space left. I uninstalled some software that I felt was unnecessary for the EEEpc and when all was said in done I had close to half a GB of space left. Within recent years that’s a lot of space left over on 4GB hard drive.

It also not only looks great but works great as well. While you won’t be watching a ton of YouTube on it it’s great for casual web browsing and Facebook and the like. The only quibble I had is that the Fn keys weren’t responsive at all however you’ll still be able to use all the controls with no problem.

So for right now Zorin OS 11 Lite gets the slight nod over Watt OS as my favorite OS for my EEEpc.