Category Archives: Everything Else

PayPal are evil.


Edit: They fixed it. Thanks for being so scary, internet!

Edited edit: According to the latest post on Regretsy, they have not yet been contacted.

PayPal do bad things. Do a google search. If you can’t be bothered, just know that there is a website called PayPalisEvil, as if you needed more proof. Of course there’s also a website called BertisEvil, but don’t let that tarnish my argument.

Bert (right) has been said by The Internet to be evil. Sesame Street and Ernie (his friend and advisor) deny these claims.

EDIT: also look over here to see what they did to Katrina victims /end edit

The latest and most shocking example of PayPal’s money-grabbing disregard for anything that doesn’t have a dollar sign on it comes courtesy of Regretsy.

The whole shitstorm can be read in detail on Regretsy, which is excellent. This year the site had set up a PayPal “Donate” button to try and help some needy kids and families in the Regretsy community at christmas time. Such was the generosity of the donations that in addition to toys and gifts, Regretsy were actually in the position to send money to the families too.

That is until PayPal shut it down. They decided the Donate button had been used fraudulently by Regretsy and so froze the donated money and the personal account of the site owner, which is all of her revenue from book sales etc. It will be held for six months.

I don’t have precise anatomical knowledge of how exactly having no heart makes you evil, but I’m fairly certain that a pericardiectomy is a prerequisite for a job at PayPal.

EDIT: Scroll to near the bottom of this post at Green Geeks to see why PayPal are wrong according to their own policies.

How can you help?

Regretsy provided this list of every available point of contact that The Consumerist could find. Bother them!

PayPal’s Facebook team are doing a pretty good job of deleting every mention of this posted on their wall, but do keep trying and perhaps something will happen. They’ll be annoyed if nothing else and the Karmic Balance will be redressed somewhat. Be polite, though.

Another good idea and brilliant course of action is to try and get The Daily Show and The Colbert Report to cover this. Their facebook pages are also currently overflowing with links to the Regretsy post. If you’re unfamiliar with either of these shows, please spend a few minutes on YouTube addressing that problem.

This is adorable

EDIT: This is the most adorable call to action I've ever seen.

Please be polite when contacting any of these places. Please and thank you.

Any suggestions or other links are welcome, I’ll stick them up there. Regretsy is a website trying to do some good, PayPal is a company doing something objectively evil for no discernible reason.

EDIT: A change.org petition has been put up for you to sign and vent your outrage into an ordered list.

Seriously, PayPal. You’re evil. Shame on you.

Shame on you PayPal

Shame.

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How to be an internet crazy person.


More and more people are becoming familiar with ways of compartmentalizing their identity online. Almost anyone now realises that a new gmail or hotmail account is free and an easy way of having a new mask for every party, so to speak.

Elaborate web hoaxes are easy to create but where many creators fall down is their ignorance of IP addresses. Having several sock puppet accounts to post comments or edit articles is all very well, but if they all share an IP address it’s a lot of wasted effort and a huge trail of evidence.

Sad Sock Puppet

What a sock puppet may look like

Earlier this year a simple trace of IP addresses revealed the popular Gay Girl In Damascus Blog to be a hoax by an MA student in Edinburgh. Johann Hari, a journalist, was revealed to have a strange web of plagiarism and alter-egos to protect his reputation. He created a sockpuppet in order to edit wikipedia entries that, surprise surprise, shared an IP address with The Independent, his place of work.

Creating a sock-puppet and then failing to change your IP is like opening your front door to a door-to-door seller and smiling politely before closing your door, putting on a hat then screaming abuse at them. It is still obviously, provably you. A less fun analogy is that your IP address is your internet phone number, so let’s learn how to put 141 at the beginning, yes?

The easiest way to be an internet lunatic and master of many sock puppets is to use a web proxy. There are dozens of free ones online, used by school children across the globe to get past their school’s website restrictions because even IT teachers don’t know this basic stuff. HideMyAss.com is the first proxy to come up in a google search so let’s use them as an example.

HideMyAss.com. Now you know how to hide your ass.

All Johann Hari or the creator of Gay Girl in Damascus needed to do was jump on google and use a proxyserver. It’s the simplest thing in the world but they are both n00bs and failed to cover their tracks.

Don’t be an internet n00b AND an internet crazy person. Think of the shame wrought on your family, the titters in your obituary when it’s discovered that you were an utter boob Think of the equivalent-of-blogs-in-the-future where they use you as a quaint example of a naive internet pioneer. Think of the blogs in the present who use you as an example of how-not-to-do-it!

Use a proxy server!

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Really Blizzard?


The new Chuck Norris World of Warcraft Advertisement is only acceptable if we get something cool in game like the Mr. T Face Grenades. (They were actually called Night Elf Mohawk Grenades but my name is cooler.) They were ultimately useless but added a little something to the world. Like the alliance. (I kid, I kid!)

Mohawk isn't even a class! And Night Elves don't exist. My world is falling apart.

Blizzard’s strategy with celebrity endorsements appears to be to get angry men to frown into the camera and intimidate folk into playing the game. Evidence!

Nooooorrrriss

Chuck Norris punches your eyes with his face.

Foo'!
I’m Mr. T and I’m a Night Elf Mohawk


But even if there was a fun in game gadget, the advert would just be ok. Not great or funny or clever. Celebrities who probably never use a computer (like Mr. T and Chuck Norris) endorsing a computer game not only doesn’t make sense for obvious reasons, it’s condescending and weird. It’d be like Paul McCartney advertising McDonalds astride a cow. If Chuck Norris claimed to have a WoW subscription before they paid him money to say he does, I will eat my own head.

The two things that make this especially bad marketing are as follows:

Chuck Norris jokes are an old meme. They were old last year, and the year before that. Advertisers should either pick up new memes and use them in a sort of credible edgy way AND accept that by doing so they will kill them, OR they should leave them alone. Propping up a dead meme doesn’t reinforce my decision to subscribe. I’m mostly just upset this is how they spend my money. I’m surprised they haven’t tried Rick Astley. Maybe he isn’t macho enough. Maybe if he sang about “Never Going to Give Up Punching Things” he’d have more of a shot.

Chuck Norris holds some pretty repellent right wing views. He hates gays, loves guns and america and Jesus, all evidenced on that there linked page. While I find patriotism + guns + religion to be a pretty unwise mix, there’s nothing necessarily wrong with those views. His hatred of gays AND his vocal right wing political views alienate me. Old jokes + weird politics = bad marketing.

The Mr. T adverts at least rates a “Quite” on the badass scale. Chuck Norris rates a “Used to be.”

Response on WorldofWarcraft’s Youtube Page is mixed, at the moment.

Chuck Norris Jokes, you are OLD.

Chuck Norris, you are OLD.

The concept behind the ad campaigns is fine. Some of them are actually funny. The Ozzy Osbourne one in particular makes me happy. This is mostly because he’s represented as Horde and I’m fed of of Alliance getting all the awesome. It pleases me especially because there is footage of him in front of a computer, rather than just wandering around in-game.

This poor darling has it wrong, as it happens. I do share the sense of the injustice that few of these celebrities actually play the game. Rather, they enjoy the image it creates for them of “Kicker of Stuff”. (Walls mostly, in Chuck’s case. )

Verne Troyer talks about stuff you can actually do. Sure you can be a hunter like Chuck Norris, but you can’t do half the things he does in his game trailer And Mr. T was a class that doesn’t even exist.

Some celebrities actually do play and have talked about it. Mila Kunis (yes, her), Jonathan Ross and  Jane Goldman play together, according to their twitter accounts. This is surely better publicity than lame half-joke concepts executed using celebrities who probably never played a day in their lives before the money was offered.

I know I'm not the only one who thinks this would be amazing.

If we must have celebrities who don’t play, let’s at least have some diversity. I think Blizzard are just trying to overcompensate, a fact that Charlie Brooker articulates brilliantly in his piece on why CoD characters are dickheads:

What, exactly, are they overcompensating for? Well, for one thing, games are inherently wussy. The stereotype of the bespectacled dweeby gamer is an inaccurate cliche, but there’s no denying games are far from a beefy pursuit.

Macho ad-guys are the game worlds equivalent to a flashy sports car. ’nuff said.

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An Andtidote! Games Designers and Other Humans Take Note


For those of you who sympathise at all with the sentiments I express regarding women wearing entirely impractical armour to go and kill stuff, this blog may be relevant to your interests. I present to you Women Fighters in Reasonable Armour.

I imagine these women are the ones whose male colleagues were less tight lipped about the location of well stocked armourers.

“What do you mean you’ve only got a child’s chest-piece and some chain mail hot pants…why do you even have chain mail hot pants?”

“Sorry, there’s been ever such a rush.”

“*sigh* Give them here…”

Those days are over! Behold, a fully clothed woman:

Oooh she's so ARGH MY EYE

Diane says that thanks to her new armour, her chances of dying in battle are now a much improved "fairly likely" A prognosis far more promising than the "certain" chance she faced only a few short days ago.

The blogs “About” page details its awesome mission statement:

Nothin’ wrong with sexy!

Cheesecake has its place.

But I like pictures of women who look like they are legitimately bad-ass. Women that don’t fight in high heels. Women that clearly give a shit about the practicalities of getting in a lethal situation. Women who could most definitely kick my ass.

Women fighters in reasonable armor.

Go and see the awesome collection of pictures. Go! Go now!

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Liz Jones. …The fuck?


Ok. All of you. Now. Read this.

If you see nothing wrong, kindly relocate to Atlantis.

The rest of you, see my twitter feed.

I will articulate properly at a later date. For now. Wtf.

 

EDIT: Here is my attempt to articulate in the face of such utter shite. I ask you to please mark any coherent sentences with punctuation as a gargantuan achievment. plz and thx.

I signed into twitter at about lunch time and there was an unholy shitstorm on my feed about Liz Jones. She was also trending nationwide. Fortunately somebody had had the good sense to link to the article without driving traffic towards the Daily Fail site. Here is the freezepage for your viewing pleasure. I will quote choice extracts here. As my friend Rachael pointed out, every paragraph is pure nonsensical gold.

The premise of the article is the fact that Liz Jones is making her most shocking confession yet. The content of the article is Liz Jones taking the sticky, horrific tar of her own serious personal problems and slapping it all over the face of womankind. She basically had a series of relationships with men who had no interest in a family and stole their sperm in an attempt to impregnate herself. No. Really. She did.

She starts her article by highlighting the inevitablity of the maternal instinct, which she uses as an excuse for the violation of several partners. When she was younger, she was free of her lunacy.

As a feminist, I looked down on mumsy types.

I know several awesome feminists with wonderful children and families. And as my friend Laura pointed out, Liz Jones is not a feminist.

Damn right.

Troof.

Her motives were entirely reasonable:

Because he wouldn’t give me what I wanted, I decided to steal it from him. I resolved to steal his sperm from him in the middle of the night. I thought it was my right, given that he was living with me and I had bought him many, many M&S ready meals.

Because, you know, the lifelong committment to raise and care for a child can be bought with microwave dinners.

The ‘theft’ itself was alarmingly easy to carry out. One night, after sex, I took the used condom and, in the privacy of the bathroom, I did what I had to do. Bingo.

Don’t put theft in quote marks. You did steal his semen. You did violate him. And bingo? What sort of fucked up card are you playing from? Misogyny *stamp* Bad Life Choices *stamp* Theft of bodily fluids *stamp* BINGO!

It’s from here that she goes from batshit insane to downright dangerous. She moves from saying what she did was shocking, to implicating that all men are at risk from such mindless insanity. This is clearly something all women do. We just want babies. Secretly. Secret babies. We want to get pregnant by devious methods or the fun just isn’t in it.

if a woman disappears to the loo immediately after sex, I suggest you find out exactly what she is up to.

Ok, great. Now every woman following the sound advice to have a wee after sex is under suspicion from any impressionable male reader. Nice one, Jones. Dudes: women who disappear after sex are either magic or peeing. Women will usually prefer you to impregnate them while she is in your presence, just FYI.

What really riles me up about this is the idea that all women are conniving deceitful liars like Liz Jones says she is. She’s taking her own actions and extrapolating. Obviously women are a monolith. A semen stealing monolith who are not to be trusted with anything ever.

Her first attempt doesn’t work, so she finds another man who doesn’t want babies and tries the same with him. She at least, you will be pleased to know, had the decency to marry him first. Marriage is best founded on completely separate family plans. She has clearly learned from her mistake.

At least on this occasion we were married, which you might think would — should — give a woman every right to want to start a family. But my husband was 14 years younger than me, and he had told me he was not ready for children.

Don’t know if you people were aware, wedding dresses now have behaviour altering drugs in them to make women want babies. If you are married and have no desire for children, please visit your dressmaker immediately for a refund.

She goes on, getting worse and worse. She gives anecdotal evidence of “friends” who are just as insane as she is. Giving warning to men not to trust women in their late thirties or early fourties. This is when we’re most dangerous and the succubus emerges from under our harmless feminine exterior.

I don’t even want to spend my time spelling out exactly why she’s crazy. The lies and baseless assumptions about 50% of the population here are too many and too depressing to list. This is bad and she should feel bad. She won’t, though.

 

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A Small Halloween Request/Demand


I am very much in the process of writing up my Halloween recommendations for this year and this falls somewhere in the Halloween Venn diagram of life, but only just. I found this creation through Cleolinda (who is my internet hub, just so you all know) and felt that I should share.

Somebody, somewhere has to make this Ada Lovelace outfit for Halloween.

Given the theme of my last post, I couldn’t not share this. The nice people at takebackhalloween.com have created this guide for anybody wishing to go as the first computer programmer for Halloween. There’s also a Lise Meitner in there too, if you fancy something a little more German.

I’m not sure how they got from Halloween, a traditional festival marking the thin veil between the living and the dead, the death of the year and the world’s general descent into the darkness of winter, to Ada Lovelace, but I’m not one to complain when the result is this:

DO IT. For science.

Ada Lovelace! She's not scary in the least, but what a nice dress.

I guess they could do zombie Ada Lovelace, or Ada Lovelace as she probably looks now. That would be horrific.

 

To clarify: Non-scary costumes annoy me, except this one.

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It Begins


My blogger is an unorganised, unedited, unformatted mess. I’m calling it, pulling the plug etc. It be ded.

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