Saturday, March 29, 2014

Secrets of the Related Story

As Facebook morphs again, the new feature of related stories after you click on a news item from a friend intrigues me.  Anyone figured out what drives it, and how we get our content into those hoppers?

Meanwhile, we return to a world in which the click interaction of our followers becomes the prime metric.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

UPDATE: The Judge Steps Out

Michael Maggio issued a statement that he indeed is "geauxjudge" on Tiger Droppings and exits his judicial race in Arkansas.

 “I take full responsibility for the comments that have been attributed to me. I apologize deeply for my lapse in personal judgment and for that, I have no excuse. The comments posted were not acceptable. These comments are not a reflection of who I am.”

Call it the disassociation effect in reverse.  Just because I used a pseudonym it really isn't me.

Some broader things to consider are how did Maggio end up in this place? Granted, a run though all of geauxjudge's posts made it fairly easy to conclude it was either Maggio or someone extremely close to him.  He opined on too many things that only he would know from his professional life (first rule of message board - no personal details).

Yet on a board the scale of TigerDroppings, seeing this forest for the trees . . . well you wouldn't just need a road map, you'd need Google Earth to back up that far.

Unless you were tipped.

And that is what Maggio hinted at in his statement. That Blue Dog Report, one of Arkansas' more notable political blogs, didn't just accidentally sift through the website.

Regardless, we are once again reminded of the permanence of the supposedly ephemeral digital trail we leave behind.

If you want a recap, Arkansas Times has one here.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Once Digital, Never Anonymous

Mike Maggio is learning an old school lesson today. You can give yourself a screen name, but that is no guarantee of anonymity.  The Arkansas judge, and his wide ranging opinions on the LSU message board Tiger Droppings, are now political fodder.

Rule number one of message boards: they have your IP addresses. If you work for a public entity, you  are toast. Just an FOIA away from having your desktop IP revealed. Triangulate that with what survive provider you use for mobile and home service and the "well, that may be my work computer but anyone could have accessed it" excuse is done.

Rule number two: too cute by half screen names.  Geauxjudge. Really?

For these and many other reasons, I've operated under a very simple guideline on the sports message boards: be yourself.  As a public spokesperson, any and everything is on the record, so you've always found me as "BillSmith" where I have gone.

Not everyone can get away with being Ranger77. Maggio sure didn't.