I’m currently training a flock of carrier pigeons.
Not a bad option tbh. In all seriousness, I think we are missing out on something that was a real blessing in the early church now that we no longer have to send “messengers” like Epaphroditus in Paul’s letter to the Philippians.
Also windows that actually open. Like Eutychus.
OK OK, we all need to acknowledge that the true place of friendship and security is your local church. Yes and amen.
Still, the Internet has been quite the blessing to me, including being able to virtually hang out with all you guys on occasion. I don’t want to lose this communication tool.
I was wondering about the same thing. Over at CrossPolitic they just recently featured the book Life After Google, by George Glider. Perhaps blockchain would be an answer to prayer.
If you want to get a good picture of what Christians in China has to deal with. There’s no FB, but there’s WeChat, which is completely government owned. People from my church put devotional stuff on there, but you can’t write the names of those who’ve been baptized, if they ever want to have a job when they go back (BTW, DON’T post pictures of Chinese believers being baptized in any social media, at least not in any recognizable form. They can get in big trouble if they go back.). I haven’t try to use it much because of it. I think it’s ok to criticize the US for its sins, but they’re very sensitive of any anti-Chinese posting.
I think one difference between China and where we are going in this country is that this country is getting pretty diverse ethnically. And the left is all about diversity in all its shapes and forms. What if the different ethnic groups are also conservative? I don’t know how the left would treat that. I have several Latino brothers here in Milwaukee who were outspoken against the anti-conversion therapy ban. Would FB shut down their accounts, given the environment that everyone is afraid to be called a racist? Just wondering aloud.
But of course, we have to be not ashamed of the gospel.
Author-entrepreneur Paul Jarvis is not a Christian, but he’s been working his way through many of the privacy concerns that we have. His recent Sunday Dispatches newsletter is titled:
What we do not own, we do not have sovereignty over.
Slack (messaging software) made the news when it decided to remove access for people in or thought to be in countries it deemed unsavoury because it wanted to comply with another country’s sanctions. So if you were ethnically Iranian but a citizen of a country like Canada or the US, your account was still instantly shut off, without warning.
The original idea behind the internet as a completely distributed network is dying. It’s being replaced by what Harvard Business School calls “surveillance capitalism” where companies are essentially monetizing human beings (i.e. our data). Think about it: Amazon, Facebook, Apple, Google, all operate huge server farms—a term that’s fairly new, with the advent of owned platforms. But, have you ever thought about what they’re “farming”? It’s us, by extension of the personal data we give them. Digital activist Aral Balkan calls them “factory farms for human beings.”
But that title: “Ownership Is Sovereignty.” Yeah, that resounds with me.
He also wrote earlier in 2019: Create your own digital grab-and-go kit
Farming is a good analogy. It’s important for people to think about who the customers are, follow the money.
We are not Facebook’s customers, we don’t buy anything from them, and we don’t have customer service hotlines. The advertisers, in many cases, are the customers. And we are the product being sold: our data, our attention, …
I’ve been enjoying Wire. It’s a very decent alternative to Facebook Messenger. Just needs folks like you on it
I don’t know if this post was meant to be prophetic, but I just got a ‘friendly’ message from FB:
Changes to What Group Admins Can See
This message is just for your information. It is not in response to anything you’ve posted, and does not mean we’ve removed any of your content.
Our Community Standards help keep Facebook safe and welcoming for everyone. If we find that content in a group goes against the Community Standards, we remove it from Facebook. We may also tell the group’s admins which standard the content violated, and in some cases we may allow the group admins to see the removed content for up to 7 days.