Monday, January 10, 2022

Strange little security problems

Something odd has been happening with Facebook/Meta for me. Since I've not given FB permission to take all 'cookies', and since I do not accept the prompt asking me for permission to use my display picture instead of my password, it has been putting me through a 3-step login security process. Ordinarily, I wouldn't mind the extra security, but this has been disconcerting lately. First, I sometimes find that the security code shows up as wrongly. Second, I keep getting the message that this 'device' is not recognized, no matter how many times I log into the same device, and clear 'security'. 

Third, and most disconcertingly, I am offered the option of clearing security by identifying my own recent comments. A few times, I do so successfully. More often, FB informs me that my choices are incorrect even when I can swear those are the only correct choices possible. Worse, this has the effect similar to cognitive dissonance: I see a generic comment like 'many happy returns' and sure, that could be mine, but also, maybe not? Did I, or did I not, remember to wish a particular FB friend this year? It makes me very uncomfortable too, seeing comments made by other people on the walls of mutual friends, people I don't know and whose comments I would not otherwise have read.

A fourth reason I have been annoyed is that FB keeps telling me that my access is restricted when I try to comment. I am then prompted to click 'disagree with decision', which I do. I am also encouraged to go figure out why this is happening, but when I go to the relevant page, I see 'no violations'. There is no explanation for why my reach or access should be restricted when there are no violations. There is no clear and easy way of figuring out why these things happen, and I am getting very sick of 'disagreeing with decision' each time I have to say congratulations, or happy new year, or even respond to someone's comment on my own page.

I know, logically and through reading investigative news reports, that we users of social media have very little control over what we see, or how it impacts us. Knowing doesn't make it less distressing. We have all noticed already that posts involving links, or things that are shared, get little or no traction. The whole point of being on social media is that you get to share stuff that matters to you. Photos matter little to me, sharing ideas, articles, etc matter a lot. So this limited reach for 'links' is doubly infuriating. 

Anyway, what I am trying to say is that, if my reach is further restricted, please know that I have not violated anything. Or, if I decide to deactivate the account myself, as I have done before, don't be too surprised. I have zero desire to live in the metaverse and a sub-zero desire to embed fb/meta deeper into my life.

I do maintain this blog/site, and while it is no longer so active, I shall be making more of an effort to keep it updated viz my work.

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