Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Google+ - Expanding The GoogleSphere Again

This month, Google takes on both FaceBook and Twitter, and captures the good features of both - and more.

Google+ combines the community building possibilities of FaceBook, Following / Friend Connect, and Twitter. It adds, to the functionality of FaceBook, the built in ability to separate your personal, business, and other lives - so your future prospective employer never need learn about the last summer you spent debauching yourself. And it adds, to the functionality of Twitter, an unrestricted message length - not the imitation SMS message length limitation of 140 characters, that frustrates many Twitter users.

Yet, there are limitations and pitfalls. Owners of Blogger blogs, who are unaware of the involvement of Picasa in hosting the photos uploaded into their blogs, have learned the hard way that deleting photos from Google+ is a very bad idea.

We've learned how to publish to a Blogger blog from Google+, though a seamless technique for posting from Blogger to Google+ is yet to be provided.

Overall, though, Google+ is the new feature of the year. When you get an invitation, from a friend, this is one Internet service you will want to setup immediately, and to share with your friends - when you get the chance.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Personal Cyber Warfare - Defamation Is Not Impersonation

In in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, we see a fair number of complaints asking why Blogger won't remove a blog that contains trash talk (aka "libel" / "slander"), which is targeting them, personally.

Impersonation may involve identity theft, and is a TOS violation. Blogger / Google will resolve impersonation issues, by removing a blog or website that contains impersonation, when properly reported. Defamation, however, is not so simple.

What one person sees as libel or slander, another person (maybe in a different country, and bound by a different set of customs and laws) may see as free speech. Libel and slander are civil or criminal issues, which must be decided by the courts system. Other legal conflict will involve various governmental agencies - differing from country to country.

The Internet, in it's ability to casually bring together people from different geographical, legal, and political systems, is going to cause international conflict, from time to time. As each new Internet feature, such as the recently released Google+, debuts, we're going to see new forms of personality clashes. It will be interesting to see how all of the conflict shakes down.