Last Week Tonight: Facebook

In today’s installment of “Last Week Tonight,” John talks about Facebook and how it is being used to spread hate and misinformation in other countries, just as it is used here in the United States.

Most “social” medial platforms are full of toxic people spreading their hateful lies. It isn’t limited to Facebook by any means.

😎

Scams & Bots

Scams: those have been around for as long as humans became “civilized.” Various Saturday-morning cartoons have spoofed them from time to time and entire television shows are dedicated to them – Catfish: The TV Show being one.

When the Internet was nothing more than a conglomeration of online forums and message-boards, with only a select few knowing about it or even interacting on it regularly, online scams seemed to be few and far between. After everybody and their mother, grandmother, and great-grandfather’s dog suddenly had access to the World Wide Web, the scammers followed and online scams became the new threat.

As scams became as obvious as Doctor Stanley’s Snake-Oil Cure-All and his wife’s genuine imitation pearls, they ‘evolved’ to circumvent security programs and firewalls. One must always be aware of the means others use to scam people online, and there are many. In this post I speak specifically about ‘bots’ and the ways that they are able to mimic a real person.

For lay-people, a ‘bot’ may or may not be a hijacked computer: one that has been programmed and coded to do specific things without the knowledge of the user. Bots are quite common in MMOs, and my online game is no different.

In the halcyon days of The Elder Scrolls Online, bots were everywhere and incredibly obvious! The in-game bots were of three different types: spam-bots, ‘train’ bots, and ‘collector’ bots. The spam-bots are almost always seen at dolmens or in delves, right on the spot that the boss will spawn at, and they are always using the same ‘ultimate’ move over, and over, and over again.

Spam-bots may or may not be accompanied by the ‘train’ bots. The name is self-explanatory; you might see a ‘train’ of four or five characters running in a circle. The train runs…well, like a train! You have the ‘engine’ doing the main action, then the bots in the train do the exact same motion / action as the ‘engine’ does, only a nanosecond or three later. These types of bots farm bosses for loot, and / or nodes for materials.

The ‘collector’ bots are the most difficult to see, as they have been programmed to do one thing: collect a certain material from a certain node. In-game, there are materials which are valuable to the crafters who make armour, weapons, and other things for their friends and / or guild-mates. The collectors basically ‘farm’ these nodes unfairly, flying through the air at hyperspeed, or sliding underground out of sight, taking the nodes and everything on them and making it impossible for the regular player to harvest these materials fairly.

During the evolution of TESO, the programmers / code-writers behind the bots have evolved as well. The bots are currently as big an issue as they were when the game was first launched, but a bit more difficult to spot. It isn’t impossible, but it takes a bit of observation on the part of any player who spies them. The sad thing is that they can’t be reported on anymore, and even if you do report them the likelihood of them being removed from the game is slim to nil. Customer service is no longer of importance to Zenimax or Bethesda, which seems to happen when a game has become overrun with bored time-wasters who are less interested in playing said game and more invested in trying to spoil it for others.

Thankfully, those types are easily duped and distracted. They will move on to their next target sooner or later, leaving the adults to have our fun.

Patience is a good thing.

😎

Full Frontal Thursday: Another Shooting, Russian Bots & Trolls, and Eric Schneider-man

In this installment of “Full Frontal Thursday,” Sam talks about the latest mass shooting here in the U.S. Way to go, Texas! Keep it “bigger and better” down that way, y’all!

Sam also talks about how easy it was for the Russian-generated bots and paid trolls to infiltrate most social media, and how cheap a price they had to pay to do so. Her “vote Jill Stein” jab at the end was duly noted, as the Russian trolls were promoting Jill Stein considerably during the 2016 election – and, Sam herself threw her mindless support behind Gary Johnston before jumping on the Hillary train! ‘member that?

Incidentally, I have mentioned bots and trolls on my blog in the past. I know full well that they are also prevalent in the online gaming community, because that is also a form of social media. People out in the blog-o-sphere just brushed off my statements and ignored the facts I presented. People are incredibly selective about who they choose to believe, and let their personal biases determine same – even though those very same people claim to want “honest, open dialogue” with others. The mental gymnastics of the hypocrite would garner perfect 10s in the Olympics, I wager…

I digress: In the final clip, Sam sits down for an interview with Eric Schneiderman, the Attorney General for the State of New York, who offers up some much-needed sense and sensibility.

Tuesday Tidbits: Trifling, Troublesome Bots! (re-blogged)

I ran off another silly, stupid troll yesterday, so I decided to re-blog this post of mine in celebration!
😎 😀 XD

Eyrie Of An Aries

Scams: those have been around for as long as humans became “civilized,” it would seem! Various Saturday-morning cartoons have spoofed them from time to time, IIRC; these days, entire television shows are dedicated to them – Catfish: The TV Show being one.

When the Internet was nothing more than a conglomeration of online forums and message-boards, with only a select few knowing about it or even interacting on it regularly, online scams were few and far between. After everybody and their mother, grandmother, and great-grandfather’s dog suddenly had access to the World Wide Web, the scammers followed, and online scams became the new threat. As scams became as obvious as Doctor Stanley’s Snake-Oil Cure-All and his wife’s genuine imitation pearls, they ‘evolved’ to circumvent security programs and firewalls. Now, one has to be aware of the sophisticated means others use to scam people online, and there are many!

For example…

View original post 1,130 more words

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