Students are now using the internet to criticise their teachers behind their backs by using a popular new site called Rate My Teachers. While some 'feedback' left at the site is relatively tame, many teachers are not spared from a flood of insults (which isn't surprising when a group of venting teenagers are involved). The owners of the site are calling it a useful teaching critique tool, but teachers groups are labelling it "a vengeful smear campaign." The site is available in a host of international flavours, such as the UK and Australia, to name but two. Hmmph. Back in my day, we used to just write our 'critiques' on the blackboard while the teacher wasn't in the room...
In 1997, a geeky little boy from New Mexico became one of the first major web celebrities when he reached out to meet his future girlfriend. He talks about the impact that this unexpected celebrity had on his life. Apparently, after years of eschewing the web, he's all grown up and he's looking for "bois" on MySpace (sound is NSFW). (via szanalmas, possibly NSFW).
China is taking steps to curb Internet addiction. This isn't the first time they have moved to regulate use. Are you addicted?
The Great Firewall of China connects to a server within China, and lets you know if your site is blocked or not, per the government's internet censorship.
Packet Garden observes how you use the internet, then takes that info and generates a 3d world based on it. [via]
A beginner's guide to faking your death on the internet - a post without an omg is a post incomplete. (YouTube alert - via Borklog)
Kids today. They have no sense of shame. They have no sense of privacy. They are show-offs, fame whores, pornographic little loons who post their diaries, their phone numbers, their stupid poetry—for God’s sake, their dirty photos!—online. They have virtual friends instead of real ones. They talk in illiterate instant messages. They are interested only in attention—and yet they have zero attention span, flitting like hummingbirds from one virtual stage to another.So goes the common wisdom but things in fact are more complex.
"Police in Mexico are investigating claims that rival drug gangs are using the internet as a new battle ground."
The bastard offspring of Borat and Inspector Clouseau shares his insights on internet marketing, the time to take action, the correct use of videos (!!) and plenty more. Warning: his website crashed my browser.
A hacker breaks into the forums of the guild Band of Brothers on the MMORPG Eve, where he discovers an Eve devolper, called t20, is not only a high-ranking member of the alliance, but has been feeding BoB expensive and rare in-game items. CCP, the company who runs EVE, denies any wrong doing, before it is revealed that CCP knew about t20's abuses for over six months. Players are not happy.
While Courtney pulled an Albini, Jeff handed out the bread. Are the peasants acting like emperors, or do they still want something shiny, aluminum, plastic, and digital? Debacle or cage, something's got to give (pdf). Alternatively, you can just roll your own.
In Korea, you use Windows and IE, or you're out of luck. MeFi's own Gen Kanai writes about the Microsoft lock-in in South Korea. It is also a monoculture in other ways, of course, but in a country of 48 million where internet usage has risen from 9 million in 1999 to 35 million today, that leads the world in broadband penetration, some lessons for the rest of the world about the dangers of monopoly might be learned.
FBI turns to broad new wiretap method. "The FBI appears to have adopted an invasive Internet surveillance technique that collects far more data on innocent Americans than previously has been disclosed." [Via TPMmuckraker]
According to a recent Zogby poll, parents would rather their daughter meet a date at a bar or a Star Trek convention than through online dating.
The whojackie memorial charity drive. My Name Is Earl* and Television Without Pity bring the meta. *Video available in US only. Sorry.
Sheep and Ostriches Closed brothels. Banned books. Closed minds. Internet censorship. Australia, the land of the free.
David Gonterman is still alive. Gonterman was last mentioned here five years ago. Gonterman has become a long-time Deviant. Gonterman is accepting comissions via his journal. Gonterman is writing a "part autobiography" about a boy who was teased in school and retreated into a fantasy land. Gonterman has made available the first part of this novel (doc). Gonterman has made available the first part of his new furry PI comic series (pdf). If you don't know Gonterman, you are fortunate: this is Gonterman.
StumbleUpon is now bigger than del.icio.us, counting 1.3 million users. Is it just another social booknetworking site, or a way for me to finally "surf" the intertubes? Just ten more Stumbles before bed, and this time I'm serious.
Who'd have guessed? Turns out that Senator Ted Stevens was simply a man ahead of his time. The internet really is a series of tubes.
The top questions people in China want to ask the internet...
Bubbleprice.com is the handy guide for Internet startup entrepreneurs to use to calculate their next investment round. If you've recently raised money for your startup, how do you plan to use it? If you're working for a startup, better hope Matt Marshall doesn't tag you with the dreaded bubble tag.
Oh, Henry! Soft spoken Henry Rollins says a few words about internet freedom. (NSFW)
Pr0n at Work = Addiction? Spawning from such cases as a recent lawsuit with IBM over employee termination due to online sex chatting at work, recent debate over whether Internet abuse is a legitimate addiction, akin to alcoholism, is heating up. Attorneys say recognition by a court—whether in this or some future litigation—that Internet abuse is an uncontrollable addiction, and not just a bad habit, could redefine the condition as a psychological impairment worthy of protection under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Businesses would be required to allow medical leave and provide counseling. The condition could even make it into the next edition of the American Psychiatric Association's DSM, making it a full-blown neurosis. It wouldn't be a complete surprise, with a recent Stanford study showing that 14% of people state it would be "hard to stay away" from the net for a few days in a row.
Luke Vaughn has no car, but he wanted to travel from his home in Eugene, OR to the East Coast for the holidays. So he asked his fellow fans of the show with zefrank for a little help. He's becoming the Human Baton, and with the help of dozens of internet strangers, he's started his trip cross-country. They're each putting a pin on his jacket, posting photos, and blogging it. Oh, and they're planning meetups with him all through his route.
Hansdehar - rural life in India.
Psiphon facilitates circumvention of national firewalls.
it, it, it's alive! social networking sites have a pulse. "The form of the monster on whom I had bestowed existence was forever before my eyes, and I raved incessantly concerning him."
You got chocolate in my Google! How do you make websites better? Simple. Like Peanut Butter Cups, you just take two things that rock and mash them together. It's cheap, effective...and really gaining steam. Here's one example, along with a list of a ton of others.
100+ authoritative research sources that are available online. Various topics, real info. Think of it as a kind of do-it-yourself AskMe, or you know, a research library.(via Making Light)
Video the Vote. "Starting this election... people like you and I... will document problems as they occur. We'll play them online, spread word through blogs and partner websites, doing our part to make sure the full story of our elections is told." via Rushkoff.
Teh Intarweb suXXors! Macleans, the venerable Canadian magazine of declining circulation, declares the Internet a failure. But they're not bitter.
Crystal Clear A sliding tile-matching game that allows addictive heads-up play. (Pretty sure it's flash).
It is done. Windows Internet Explorer 7 has been released.
In most online communities, 90% of users are lurkers who never contribute, 9% of users contribute a little, and 1% of users account for almost all the action.
The Croquet Project is a staggeringly ambitious attempt to create 'an operating system for the post-browser Internet' - a multi-platform, open-source, extensible, decentralised, peer-to-peer, 3D virtual reality metaverse [2,3], designed for 'highly scalable deep collaboration', led by Alan Kay.
Big Brother 101 -- Could your social networks brand you an enemy of the state? (Popular Science Mag) And one staffer finds out it might--due to a connection to the Buffalo Six. Think 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon, but with tapping and surveillance and worse at the other end.
First blog from space Milestones yet to be reached: First convoluted post about breakup from space; first fringe political views from space; first emo band in space (sponsored by MySpace, natch).
Meet George -- 39, single, quirky sense of humour, looking for friends to chat with online. Last year, he won the Loebner Prize, to bots who can most successfully pass the Turing Test. More here from BBC. How long before we have our own Mefibots?
commercialsihate.com is an old-school site that had me laughing so much that i hyperventilated. does anyone do stuff like this still?
News Sniffer. It's a site dedicated to monitoring news articles and discussion threads at the BBC. For censored comments from BBC news threads: Watch Your Mouth. And now it has implementation that tracks changes in news articles, to see how things are edited: Revisionista. Here's a couple of examples.
The Votemaster has returned. Electoral-vote.com has been re-launched for the 2006 elections. The major focus is on the Senate but there is also some quick analysis of the hotter House races. For those who missed the phenomenon during the heady days of 2004, here is the Wikipedia article and previous MeFi discussion.
The Internet and our social and psychological well-being : This older study correlates Internet use with declining social relationships and isolation. A more recent study (PDF) shows that the Internet has changed and positively affects social relationships.
Second of two pieces. Scary. For real? Do pedophiles really wear special jewelry?
DHS's CyberStorm-- --Recognizing the imminent threat hippies and assorted leftists obviously pose to us all, a massive cyber terror simulation (international and involving 115 organizations) recently came to light: ...The attack scenario detailed in the presentation is a meticulously plotted parade of cyber horribles led by a "well financed" band of leftist radicals who object to U.S. imperialism, aided by sympathetic independent actors. At the top of the pyramid is the Worldwide Anti-Globalization Alliance, which sets things off by calling for cyber sit-ins and denial-of-service attacks against U.S. interests. WAGA's radical arm, the villainous Black Hood Society, ratchets up the tension on day one by probing SCADA computerized control systems and military networks ...
The Interweb Medley!! What happens when you mix up some of the more well-known Internet memes around? Madness.
They'll never piggyback on your wireless again Your router makes the computer look funny. (via MeTa)
AOL releases 3-months of queries from 500k users. AOL, either fairly or unfairly, is sometimes considered the internet with training wheels. So while parsing this data, keep that in mind. Some of these queries seem like spam email subjects, don't they? Don't forget, this is the same demographic that brought you the September that didn't end. AOL tried to retract the data, but it's of no use - it's out there, on the web.