Listening to an AU interviewee on RNZ talking about the "lost of services" related to the Facebook block on AU use... it highlights how blindly dependent so many organisations in AU are on FB and how they *shouldn't be*. It's their own fault. FB cannot and should not be depended on. It's foolish for community organisations and gov'ts to do so.


Gov'ts and civil society cannot afford to be dependent (as they have very foolishly allowed themselves to become, worldwide) on a handful of US multinational tech corporations. The problem isn't FB's action - it's the fact that Gov'ts are up-in-arms about it because they've got all their eggs in the Facebook basket. I pity them their lack of comprehension (I've been warning our gov't about this for 20+ years) and the deleterious effect it has on all of us.

@lightweight even Britain isn't quite as bad; some govt departments and public services do use Birbsite rather too much for shorter real time info (I noticed this when trying to find road safety info during the snow/ice a week ago) but they do at least still all have their own independent websites and keep them updated with longer articles/info publications..

@vfrmedia @lightweight they all do that too, its just nice to also have it on Facebook to spark discussion

@LovesTha @vfrmedia by all means they should use FB... as a distant secondary distribution vector, not primary.

@lightweight @LovesTha @vfrmedia People who want to broadcast to the masses will go primarily wherever the masses currently are. So that's Facebook. Anything else will be a distant secondary.

@bob @lightweight @vfrmedia even if they primarily publish on their own website, posting a link on FB is a big way to get people to see it.

@LovesTha @bob @lightweight @vfrmedia Truly adherent neoliberals will always outsource their core communications infrastructure.

@bob @LovesTha @vfrmedia yes, neoliberal gov'ts have, as their primary concern, keeping their plutocrats happy, so they have campaign funds for the next election.

@bob @LovesTha @vfrmedia but they can't reach *all* the people that way, nor can they require it, because FB is technically a user-hostile platform running a foreign jurisdiction, answerable to a sometimes hostile gov't... (US Cloud act, Patriot Act, etc.). As a matter of principle, NZ's democratic processes should *only* be framed by entities beholden to the NZ gov't, and, ideally, not private parties with vested interests.

@lightweight @bob @LovesTha @vfrmedia Ideally perhaps, but this has never been how governments actually worked, even prior to the internet.

@bob @LovesTha @vfrmedia the reason we have a democracy is so that people who know how to do things better can, if sufficiently motivated, influence the system. This is an area where we have to both declare the status quo unacceptable, and provide a better alternative (which I think we can and even have done).

@bob @LovesTha @vfrmedia because if there's an ideal we're not yet attaining, then it's on us, as voters and participants in the democracy who know better than those currently managing (or not) the process, to use legitimate means to move us towards that ideal.

@lightweight @vfrmedia I don't disagree, but there are factors that mean the reaction to FB's actions are reasonable:

Even though it isn't a primary place for government disseminate information it is a primary place many find new information. Cutting them off suddenly isn't good.

Facebook can be more reliable than government services in an emergency, this isn't good, but it is hard to get governments to invest sufficiently in server capacity for those events.

@lightweight @vfrmedia and it wasn't implausible that the changes couldn't have directly led to deaths in fires.

And taking out the good sources isn't going to help the pandemic efforts either.

@LovesTha @vfrmedia here in NZ, I'd disagree. The gov't could engage local providers who are every bit as competent as FB... and they have resources *in the NZ jurisdiction* not exclusively outside of it, like FB. If we lose our 4 overseas cables, connecting us to the world, our coms are goneburgers. Not good risk management.

@lightweight @vfrmedia true, NZ is different to Aus on that though. (I think)

France is. Our canton (not my commune, the administrative commune next door, but we are part of the canton) main info point is on Facebook, as are the department announcements. Although they have separate websites the info isn't as easy to find. Ease of use for updating information now, I suspect is why it's a primary communication means. It's also handy for the audience reach. The people get departmental storm alerts on FB.

@lightweight is it the governments fault that so many citizens use Facebook to gain important information? Ifthey don't put good info on Facebook then those people just get bad info.

@LovesTha I think it's very damning that many gov'ts *only* put some important info out via FB. And I'm not sure all of it's good.

@lightweight oh and nothing produced by a gov should ever only exist in private places

Yeah, and there are extra issues with Privacy and healthcare further out as well. In the more distant clinics, patients photos of their condition ending up on the doctors icloud account as it's easier that way. That's before you get to other privacy breaches. Systems are built badly, and people use what they find easiest. Which is how we got here, with Facebook being critical communications infrastructure 😑

@onepict I would argue that we're in a digital dark age - our information tech policy is being determined by people almost entirely incapable of doing it competently... see

Oh I like that term. Plus we could consider comparing the big five to feudal Lords. Yeah we get stuff for free, but what do we end up giving back? Everything about us. You can expand on that and consider doing comparisons to history. John Wycliffe + Gutenberg started a pull for freedom in terms of dissemination of information with the English translation of the Bible, and Gutenberg printing. Being able to read the bible in your own language really was challenging the status quo.

@lightweight @onepict it's willful ignorance on the part of the lawmakers - they have advisers if they choose to listen to them, but instead they listen to corporate lobbyists and their brown envelopes. Corruption is normal, not exceptional.

Sign in to participate in the conversation
Mastodon - NZOSS

The social network of the future: No ads, no corporate surveillance, ethical design, and decentralization! Own your data with Mastodon!