Category Archives: Deep Thoughts

Season 8 of 24 Still Sucks

Wow…what a piece of *(%#E)987 last night.

Is this what watching a soap opera is like?  It has to be..the over acting, bad camera work, stupid plot twists…this show blows now.  I mean really really blows.  It’s not even watchable anymore, the only reason I kept watching last night was so that I could do this blog post.  How sad is that?

Two good things about last night:  no president taylor and no renee.

Bad Things about last night:

  • Marco’s acting.  God that was awful.  I felt bad for everyone involved in that scene.  What casting director could possibly pick him to play a role?
  • Dana Walsh’s existence…kill her off now.  Toss Cole with her.  No one cares about either of these crappy characters and their whole subplot
  • President Hassan sucks too.  And what was up with that hug with his wife?  Is this an after school special?
  • Tarin and Kayla Hassan.  Fits the soap opera perfectly.  Hey let’s show them having sex for no other reason then that we need a sex scene.   And what a surprise?  The guy you have been showing closeups on is actually the twist in the plot!  He is a bad guy!  Why does 24 have to tip us off on every plot twist.  I’m actually expecting Tarin to be working under cover as a double agent.

Oh yeah one more thing…hey genius Marco…if Jack takes your mom to the nuke site…which would be impossible anyways as they won’t be letting people just walk there…he would die also.  Weak Weak Weak writing.

Let me also tell you who sucks behind the scenes:

Brad Turner who has been directing episodes since 2004.  Milan Cheylov who has directed episodes since 2007.

Brandon Braga who has been writing episodes since 2009.  Alex Gansa who also has been writing episodes since 2009.  Patrick Harbinson who has written 3 episodes in 2010.

Many Coto and David Fury who have produced episodes since 2005.  Ditto Brad Turner.  Brannon Braga and Alex Gansa have been co-executive producers the last two years when this show has gone in the tank.  Blame those idiots.

And Series Casting…which is absolutely horrible:  Debi Manwiller and Peggy Kennedy…Please quit your jobs today.   There was a specialty casting person who worked from 2002 – 2007..bring them back:  Patricia Homan Davila.

Why do they have all these Indian actors playing Iranians?   Is there anyone out there who is enjoying this season?

Impact of Concussions on the NFL

I believe that the new policies on concussions will have a huge impact on the NFL and the upcoming labor agreement.

Specifically:

  1. Rosters will have to increase – there have been grumblings about this anyway
  2. Game Day Rosters will have to increase
  3. Injured Reserve may have to change and allow players to come back after 4 or 6 weeks
  4. A combination of the above will have to take place at some level

Remember the NFL is also looking to increase the number of games per year.  There is no way NFL teams can run under the current roster limits if players are held out longer for concussions and games are increased.  More players in the NFL means that the current dollar splits won’t suffice either.  Could make an already complicated labor agreement even moreso.

Your Hot Facebook Pics

Note:  This is part 6 of the series on the Dangers of Facebook

Part 6 Your Hot Facebook Pics

I bet that got your attention, didn’t it?  Hot Pics!  Well guess what, if you post a ‘hot pic’ of yourself on Facebook…it gets everyone’s attention.  Guys do not take a picture of yourself with your shirt off and post it as your profile picks and girls don’t put a revealing pic up for your profile picture either.  Your friends already know you have great cleavage..don’t let everyone on Facebook in on the secret.

Your profile pic is available for everyone to view…think about that before you decide what it should be.  Potential employers, complete strangers, sexual predators, etc.  If people are looking at friends lists they will always stop on a revealing pic.  Do you want or need this attention?  Go to a dating site if that’s what you are looking for with this pic.  Don’t use Facebook for this.

Let’s talk about that profile pic a little bit more.  I urge everyone to use a pic that is not of your face.  I have seen people use a picture of a stuffed animal, clip art, the sky, nature pics, or an animated character.  This protects your face from people you don’t know.  Once someone becomes your friend then they can see your other pics but why not protect your face from people you don’t know?

If someone from your past is searching for you and they find your name and a picture of the sky for your profile, they won’t immediately know who you are.  Is that a bad thing?  No.  They can send you a message and ask if it is you from Smith High School.  If they don’t want to send that message, if they think that is too hard, then did they really want to reconnect with you in the first place?  Plus, they can still see any mutual friends that the two of you have so they will have a decent idea if it’s you or not.  So what’s the upside to posting an actual pic of yourself in your profile?  We already know the downside.

I get a ton of hits on this blog to the strangest things…and I bet that I will soon be getting hits daily on “hot facebook pics” or something like that…which means there are people searching those things.  All the more reason to protect your privacy.

Part 7 Changing your Facebook Privacy Setting = To Max Protect

Step by Step Instructions for those who want it.

Your Naive Facebook Friends

Note:  This is Part 5 of the series on the Dangers of Facebook

Part 5 Your Naïve Friends

Alright!  Great Job!  You scrubbed your friend list, told your mom not to sign up for Facebook, rejected every fan page request in the world, and removed all your info from your account.  Protected right?  Nothing to worry about?  Wrong.

Even if you have removed all of your friends that aren’t really friends, you still have a problem.  Your current real friends haven’t read this and are naïve.  Their choices affect your privacy and security.  If their account gets hacked into…your information is now available too.  Let’s say ‘Tom’ is one of your best friends and he uses Facebook all the time.  He likes to post on your wall and make fun of you about things in your personal life…your favorite team, where you live, etc.  He also hasn’t protected his account and therefore his account gets hacked.  The hacker chooses to browse your information because it seems as though Tom likes to post on your wall a lot, so he’s got more to work with.  You are now a target because of Tom.  Tom’s not a bad person, he’s a great friend…just naïve.  And now it costs you.

What’s the easiest thing you can do to protect yourself from Tom?  Send him this link of course.  Even if he does a few of these things it will help and lessen the chances of something happening.  It will make him a less attractive target and make you a much less attractive target.

Part 6 Your Hot Pics

Dangerous Facebook Fan Pages

Note:  This is part 4 of the series on The Dangers of Facebook

Part 4 Dangerous Fan Pages

Time for me to scare away your fan pages.  No, hopefully not but there are a few things to consider and certain fan pages to stay away from.

Apartment or Housing Association Fan Pages

Are these necessary?  Do you want people to know where you live?  Becoming a fan of your apartment complex is a pretty clear sign that you live there.

Common Security Questions

Let’s take a look at some common security questions to see how they relate to fan pages.  These are questions used to protect accounts and reset passwords for all types of things like email, rewards accounts, banks, credit cards, health and car insurance, etc

  1. What is your favorite sport?
  2. What is your favorite team?
  3. What is your favorite tv program?
  4. What is the color of your father’s eyes?
  5. In what city were you born?
  6. What is your favorite color?
  7. What is your work address?
  8. What is the name of the high school you graduated from?
  9. To what city did you go on your honeymoon?
  10. Where did you vacation last year?

Ok…that’s enough of those.  Those were just a sample of 10 common questions that are commonly asked.  Let’s say your favorite team is the New York Giants and you have become a fan of them.  You might have given away the answers to questions 1 and 2.  Maybe not.  but maybe.

You’ve become a fan of “The Office” on your Facebook account…do you also list that as your favorite tv program?  Is your father’s pic on your Facebook account..showing his eyes?  Is your high school listed on there and were you also born in that city?  Are you a fan of the place you vacationed last year or went on your honeymoon?

Yes, I know this may be reaching some but just wanted everyone to be aware of this information.  Think about these things when you setup your security questions…whatever it is, don’t use it in your Facebook account.  Don’t refer to it at all.   The more information you make available the easier it is for someone to guess your password or security question answers.

Becoming a Fan reveals yourself to other Fans

You’ve just become a fan of your favorite bar in town.  Now you are getting friend requests from people who have seen you at that bar and are also fans of that bar, which is how they found you.  That’s great if you want to become Facebook friends with everyone from the bar…but obviously very dangerous because you don’t know any of those people.  Fan pages are great for businesses but very revealing to individuals on a lot of levels.

Don’t accept friend requests from people just because you are both fans of things.  You don’t know them…don’t become their friend.  Don’t become fans of things that could be considered controversial if you are looking for or will ever be looking for a job.  Recruiters may use this information to remove you from consideration or it can be used against you by a current or future co-worker.  Also, becoming a fan of political views reveals a lot about your personal beliefs.  This may or may not be something you really want to reveal.

Becoming a Fan of a Venue

I’ve started seeing more and more of these occurring.  Big concert venues are using Facebook to promote their concerts which is a great marketing strategy.  The problem is when you post on that page or confirm that you will attend that event.  If you post on that walls page, you just introduced yourself to thousands of people who you don’t know.  If you confirm that you will attend a concert on Dec 1st…you just confirmed that you will be out of the house that night.

There’s no reason to confirm on a Facebook page that you will be attending an event.  Why are you doing it?  Do not post something on that venue page’s wall either.  It’s one thing to post on a message board of your favorite band.  You create a user name and that’s it.  It’s not directly linked to the actual you…doing it on Facebook links to the real you.  See the difference?   That fan page is not a message board and don’t use it as one.  If you want to find out about events at a venue..sign up for their email list.  Why do you need to do it on Facebook?

Summary

There are plenty of things to think about before you sign up as a fan of something.  Think about what security answers you have out there and whether this fan page reveals that information.  Think about what type of people may also be fans.  What are the chances that a criminal is also a fan of the bar, the concert, or the restaurant that you just became a fan of?

You just introduced yourself to them and they may be waiting to see who divulges more information through wall postings and event confirmations.  And what about the guy who approaches you at the bar on Saturday night and says he remembers seeing you on the fan page…Sunday afternoon you get a friend request from him on Facebook.  Who is he?  What do you know about him?  If you become his friend..did you just reveal your address and when you would be out of the house and attending a function at that bar?

Get Ready for Part 5:  Your Naive Friends

Your Mom

Note:  This is Part 3 of the series on the Dangers of Facebook

Part 3:  Your Mom

Maybe the biggest threat to your security is your Mom.  Hey, we all love mom but don’t let her on Facebook.   Just don’t.  Here’s the problem…she doesn’t sign up on Facebook as your mom…she signs up as an individual using a name from her past.  She’s not just your Mom now…

The Maiden Name

You mom just sent you a friend request as Mary Jones Smith…her maiden name of Jones is now visible to everyone.   And I mean everyone!  It’s in her freaking name…right there in search results.  Who cares?  It’s just a maiden name, I mean no one ever asks for……OH SH**!  NOOOO!  DAMN DAMN!

Exactly…every financial institution I have ever dealt with uses that as one of the identifiers.  “We need to verify your account sir…what is your bday and your mom’s maiden name?”  Both of those might be right there on your Facebook account visible to all friends of friends or friends that you don’t really know.  See part 1.

And another question that pops up:  ‘what is your spouse’s mother’s maiden name’?  Is their mom on Facebook too?

Just Don’t Accept Mom as a Friend

It’s gonna break her heart…but deny her as a friend and you’re ok, right?  Wrong.  She’s become friends with the rest of your family and friends so they will see that maiden name one way or the other.  And every day more and more people are joining and women probably use their maiden name 90% of the time at least.  That way they can reconnect with people who knew them by the former.  Great for them…potentially a huge headache for you and your identity.

What you can do

Not much.  Get her not to join or bury her in the backyard.  Only kidding Mom.  But at least tell her not to join under her full name.  Make sure her settings block friends of friends, etc.  Good luck accomplishing all of that.  Financial institutions are going to have to remove that as a security question on very account.  It’s too easy to find now.  I almost hesitated including this because of it.   The sacred ‘maiden name’…visible to any thief.

Get out from under the covers and read Part 4 Dangerous Fan Pages

What Information Should You Delete From Your Facebook Account

Note:  This is part 2 of the series on Protecting Yourself on Facebook

Part 2:  What information should you avoid putting into your Facebook Account?

Welcome to part 2 of my series on “Protecting Yourself from Facebook”.  In this section we will examine what information doesn’t belong in your Facebook account.  There are certain items that are very useful to hackers and identity thieves..and well criminals in general.

Remove Your Birthday

Do it.  I know…you won’t get all those bday wishes but that is a key piece of information about you that shouldn’t be public.  How many times are you asked your bday to identify you or an account that you have?  You are giving that information away…and easily through your Facebook account.  Consider putting a fake bday on there if you want..move it up or back by 5 days if you just have to have a bday on there.

Remove the Specific City you Live in

Don’t tell the world that you live in a suburb of Houston like Katy…just say Houston.  Or remove it entirely. Giving away your specific city allows thieves to search records and narrow down the possibilities of which Joe Smith you are.  I see 200 Joe Smiths…but only one in Katy, TX.  That presents an opportunity to any thief or criminal.  They know your name, your city; they will have your exact address very soon.  And with your pic…well you get the picture.

Do NOT mention your Pet by Name

This is very common and on the surface it shouldn’t matter if you mention your dog’s name.  The problem is that one of the most common password protection questions is “what is the name of your favorite pet?”  Did you put in your current dog’s name?  You did?  Then I may have just gained access to your account.  So remove your pet’s name or make damn sure you have never used it as your favorite pet.

Protect Your Kids

Are you using your kid’s names somewhere on your page?  Is this information available?  What about their ages or what they look like?  There are some sicko’s out there so don’t let them even get a glimpse of your kids or their information.  Remove it.  You want your friends to see a new picture of your kids…send them an email or message it to them.  Don’t put it up for their entire network of friends to see.   I mean your friends have never dated or befriended anyone they shouldn’t have, right?

Your Employer

Is your place of employment visible to everyone?  Does it really need to be?  What does your employment say about you?  The hours you work?  The part of the city you work?  Don’t your real friends already know where you work?

Your Phone Number and Email

Tell me it’s not on there.  Just tell me you didn’t put it on there.  Is that email a login for any account..maybe your bank account?  Credit card account?  That combined with all of that other info will give a hacker your password or at least let them reset it.   Make sure only friends can see that email address and/or use one you do not use for any business accounts.  And I don’t really need to explain the phone number part do I?  Again, your friends already have this information or they are not friends.  If it’s a friend you are reconnecting with then you can just message that information to them.

Summary

You might have to get creative with some of this to get around Facebook requirements.  The choice is yours as to how far you want to go to restrict your information.  At the end of the day, keep asking yourself “Don’t my friends already know this, who is this information really for”?

Part 3:  Your Mom

Read Part 1 ‘Your Friends’ List