Updated: 3 July 2018
We have been reporting and lecturing for over 10 years why the internet is NOT your friend. It is a convenient partner, but with any partnership, you have to keep some safety and security issues in mind.
Data brokerage is a BILLION dollar business and YES, most every organisation from Equifax, Facebook and even the government will make your information known to the world and anyone willing to buy it. In the “olden” days of analog landlines and cable, companies purchased “hard lists.” Now, all they have to do is scrub the internet for vital data they can sell about you. YOUR data IS for sale.
If you vote, buy property, get a traffic ticket, go to court, report theft to the police, sign up for offers, include your personal data on social media sites, your personal data is already compromised. Unfortunately, you cannot get a “do over,” once your personal data is out there, BUT you can master the art of complete SEPARATION.
What to do moving forward? Here are some steps we have tested.
I HATE lawsuits. I had the opportunity to join over 30 such lawsuits over the years as a consumer, but decided to join none…UNTIL now. About the Class Action Lawsuit here.
What is at stake in this Class Action lawsuit? The right of ALL consumers not to be PUSHED AROUND by a company, quick to blame others, for their lack of foresight and leadership. The recent changes to this policy was a “knee jerk” reaction to a long standing returns policy they knew nothing about and a long standing failure of executing that policy. This is NOT a consumer problem, it is a failed leadership problem.
DON'T PANIC! BE CALM, COOL, COLLECTED & STRATEGIC
Whilst I am a self-professed "mouthpiece," I am a strategically thorough individual who believes in the evidentiary process. In other words, I examine facts, data and first person accounts before jumping to any conclusion.
Whilst there have been extensive sourced coverages on how to get verified on Twitter, legitimate stories of disappointment and reflection were also posted, along with their verification "rejection" or "denial" emails. In EVERY instance, the denial emails were computerised, duplicate versions that said EXACTLY the same thing, with no explanation of why the account holder was denied @verified. (updated 17 Oct 2017: Please note, we came to this conclusion after examining over 100 such Twitter denial emails, including David Bradford (@dsbradford) who allowed us to link to his personal journey to get Twitter verified. He also provides some interesting insights.)
Our six month investigation concluded that Twitter is using algorithm, similar to an HRIS in human resources that filters through key words and phrases to select the ideal candidates and filters out those who don't "meet certain criteria." It is highly doubtful that Twitter has the "manpower" or funds to hire staffers to do the job of the computer, based on the large volume of requests they receive. Unfortunately, by so doing, Twitter has denied volumes of "legitimate" and worthy accounts.
Most people think of "Data" as digital; but there are other types of data that also needs securing. They are the interpersonal stories you divulge to your "Friends," Family and social media strangers. They could be secrets; disagreements; private conversations and; rumours you help to spread. Regardless, there is a fine line between "Public" and "Private" information.
I am not a subject matter expert on "Relationships." I leave that to the real experts and so-called "Therapists." I am, however, very versed in cultural communications, subcultures and social anthropology. I have been studying the human race, communities, kinships and; the disengaged for over twenty years.
Twitter is targeting this Thursday morning as the trading day for their much awaited and talked about IPO, or initial public offering. They will set the price, estimated between $23 and $25 Wednesday evening. This is more than the $17-$20 originally estimated. This will raise about $2 billion, at the high end. They are offering 70 million shares, indicating a market value as much as $13.6 billion. Their symbol is TWTR on the New York Stock Exchange. Opening bell at 9:30 am.
By industry accounts, this IPO launch is probably the most anticipated since Facebook last year. If you feel you missed the boat on Facebook (FB), don't worry. You can buy up the stock on its way down or up, depending on your risk tolerance and ready cash. It was trading at $50.10 at the time of this report.
INVESTING STRATEGY FOR THE NEWBIES!
Investing in stocks can be fun and rewarding. I would, however, caution, NEVER to use your life savings, emergency fund or funds you don't have. Investing is also NOT for the faint hearted. Stock picking is a game of strategy AND lifestyle. Don't pick stocks in an industry you know nothing about. Speculative investing is a dangerous practice, if you don't know what you are doing.
I have been investing in Technology stocks since 1987, BUT I don't own a lick of shares in Microsoft. I pick what interests me (Facebook), what I use (Apple) and bank on innovative companies (Google) that keep pushing the envelope (Samsung).
Stock picking is part strategy, part lifestyle and a whole lot of patience. I am not a day trader. I sit on my shares for the long haul, occasionally selling for other gains (real estate). I always use money I will NEVER miss. This discipline was the BIGGEST lesson I have ever learned because anyone who has traded will tell you that you WILL LOSE MONEY, somewhere in the process, GUARANTEED!
The great thing about free falling stocks, i.e. Facebook (FB) last year, is you CAN buy MORE of it on the way down. I bought it at $40 and bought some more of it at $24. I am NEVER glued to a stock's day to day performance. I am in-tuned with the company, their business model and executive leadership. I am banking on the people behind the ticker NOT the stock, itself. A company's valuation is also critical to my bottom line.
Contrary to popular MYTH, you DON'T need to be rich to invest. Did you know that one share will get you to the party? That is correct, you will be invited to the annua.l shareholder's meeting. So, if you want to see The Zuck live at next year's meeting, buy one share of Facebook (FB).
On the OTHER HAND, if you want to infuse your retirement and/or lifestyle, typically 1,000 shares might do it. BUT, there is NEVER a guarantee that will even happen either.
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