miss_s_b: (Blogging: Internet forever!!)
There's an election on.
I tweet about politics.
I have over 3000 followers, and several of them RT me on occasion.

This all means that I quite regularly attract... People who wish to engage in debate. Some of them in a less than friendly manner.

Now, sometimes, these people are just asking a question. And sometimes, when I answer their question they say "oo, I didn't know that! Thanks!" and we both carry on our merry way after a positive interaction.

Sometimes they are just outright hostile or insulting, and those people I mute straight away.

Sometimes though... Sometimes they are asking a question in the hopes of trapping me, or pissing me off, or just wasting my time. So I answer their initial question, and then they say "yeah but..." and bring up something unrelated, but still opposing, or they build a straw man (or a battalion of straw men), or employ any number of other tactics designed to irritate me.

Life is too damn short for people like that.

Therefore, from today, I have instituted a Three Strikes and You're Out policy for twitter. If you ask me a question, and you respond with "yeah but...", I'll answer. If you respond to the second answer with "yeah but..." then I will know that you are not debating in good faith, you're trying to irritate me and/or waste my time, and I will simply mute you.

Like I said, life is too short. I confidently expect lots of "yeah but..." replies to this post, btw...

Note to Self:

Tuesday, April 18th, 2017 09:42 pm
miss_s_b: Vince Cable's happy face (Politics: Vince - happy face)
Having a big angry rant on twitter when you're literally drooping from tiredness after a long day's lib demmery including a branch meeting is not the most sensible thing to do...

Off to bed now, peeps. Laters.
miss_s_b: (Blogging: Internet forever!!)
I keep trying to give it up, but I keep drifting back to it.

My mental health has been SO much better the past couple of weeks of tw'oliday, and yet, despite myself, I couldn't stay away and the last couple of days I have drifted back to my usual level of tw'activity, and my usual level of screaming "Oh FUCK OFF" at various screens at various points during the day.

So I'm going to do a pros and cons list to try to decide whether I shouldn't just delete the whole boiling.

Pro: very fast personal news feed.
Con: random attacks from eggs
Pro: get news there that doesn't appear anywhere else
Con: news there is relentlessly depressing, shows the world to be a savage and horrible place, and makes me wonder if there is any point in carrying on
Pro: able to quickly message people who don't respond to texts or emails
Con: even people you love can say things that will upset you all day (recent Lib Dem AWS "discussions" have proven that to the Nth degree)

I liked twitter when it was just you'd say something and maybe it would make people laugh and there'd be fun. Twitter hasn't felt like fun for a long time. There are probably things I could do to make it more fun, but I don't know if I'd end up throwing out the baby with the bathwater... but then if I leave altogether I'm going to be doing that anyway, aren't I?

I dunno. I don't miss faceache since leaving it all those yeas ago. What do you guys think?

(this post brought to you by an utter failure to stop hiding under the duvet and clean the damn house before visitors arrive. YAY for anxiety-caused-procrastination! YAY for the fact that procrastination makes the anxiety worse! YAY for vicious circles!)

State of the SB

Friday, February 12th, 2016 03:52 pm
miss_s_b: (Britishness: cricket)
Item: I'm currently taking a tw'oliday from twitter - there's so much horrific news at the moment, and it's hurting and affecting people I know and love, and it hurts being bombarded by it several times a day, so I'm taking a break. It won't be forever, probably just a couple of weeks. Just to build up my resilience.

Item: I have been incredibly impressed by hp-for-business customer support the last couple of days. Not only did the lady sort out the recalcitrant printer that had proved resistant to both mine and Alisdair's best efforts, but she rang me back today to check that things were still OK and it was still working (it was).

Item: I've taken to instagram like a duck to water. I'm pretty active (user name is jennierigg) and I'm mostly posting pictures of my doggies. The accounts I am following fall into four categories: 1, People I actually know; 2, accounts which post pictures of cute doggies; 3, accounts which post pictures of hot guys with beards; and 4, artists I admire - mostly tattoo and comicbook, but not exclusively. Oh, and there's also the amazing collision of 2 and 3 that is Hot Dudes With Dogs.
If you want to be bombarded with pictures of my doggies, occasional gym updates and photos of food, and comments on your photos do feel free to follow me there.

Item: Mental health has been... Not bad but not great. I have been quite low through the end of January, and the nightmares have been about 3 times a week. However, touch wood, things seem to be picking up. I'm slightly anxious about getting a Case Of The Februaries, but also hoping that the Februaries just came early and I got them out of the way in January. I did write up the nightmare I had the other day, and writing it out helped. I then gave it a cheesy happy ending. If there's demand I might post it.
A thing that's helping mental health a LOT is that I'm getting in a reasonable amount of reading time recently. Current OMG WOW SHE'S AMAZING author is Tananarive Due. Thoroughly recced to all of you.

Item: Physical health is pretty good. I'm not doing much cycling because the canal path is still buggered after the floods in late December - although [personal profile] matgb is on about taking me road cycling soon, despite my nerves - but I'm doing really well at the gym and in the pool, and getting some decent walks in every so often. I've got pretty impressive muscles at the mo.

Item: A week today I am going to go for the first appointment for my next tattoo. I has the excite! This has been ages in gestation; Matt has been sending me rough sketches by email, and it's going to be amazing. He's a genuinely awesome artist too. Really exciting. So that's probably going to go on Instagram; it'll also affect my swimming a little bit, because I'll have to not swim for a week after having it done. Boo. Shall have to do treadmill or something equally dreadful for cardio. :(
Hmm. Maybe rowing machine? Rowing machine is not that dreadful...

Item: Daughter continues fabulous. She's really settled in at the old Alma Mater, and has chosen her GCSE options this month
*pauses to pass smelling salts to those who remember her being born and are now feeling faint with age*
Doggies are also great, and very snuggly. And I'm coping OK with having all my boys under one roof, even if it is a bit crowded and a bit rubbish not having my own room any more.

Item: Job continues pretty good - I honestly think if I'd have still been in my old job I would have had a total breakdown two or three times in the last few months. So yeah, I'm really glad of Job. The work itself is fun, the pay is better than any job I have ever had before, and I'm not overburdened. It's pretty cool. I'm still getting used to not having to scrimp for every penny, and trying not to splurge every payday, which is harder than it looks. But I'm getting there...

Item: LibDemmery... I'm not even going there. Everything is hanging on York at the moment. We'll see.

So, yeah, that got longer than I expected. Um. Sorry. But you're all now updated on everything. I think...

Let me know if you'd like to see my nightmare.
miss_s_b: (Who: Maxil (pillock))
There's a simple reason for that: twitter's misogyny problem is society's misogyny problem. The only way to solve it is to make misogyny have worse consequences than non-misogyny. This is not going to happen any time soon.

The current furore has arisen over a(nother) high profile lady being shocked at the level of abuse women who dare to speak out against misogyny get heaped upon them. Why is anybody still surprised by this? Hell if I know. More saliently, why is anyone still daft enough to blame the medium? Before twitter there were forums, usenet, anonymous phone calls, poison pen letters... probably cave paintings, in which some insecure lonely arse decided that the best way to make himelf feel powerful was to belittle someone else. Humanity has been dealing with hurtful communication since communication began. If "stop communicating" was the answer, it probably would have worked by now.

The problem with the suggested solution is that, like Cameron's porn block, it's not a solution but a sweeping under the carpet. Reporting an abuse to twitter, even if it worked as the people suggesting it hope it might, will not change the mind of the misogynist, nor show him the error of his ways. It merely pushes the problem out of sight, off twitter. It won't stop the misogynist finding other outlets for his poison - email, say, or letters.

Say twitter DID install a "report abuse" button. They're not going to have moderators look at every report, they can't afford the staff. So what will happen is they will set a number, like they have for report spam, when if x number of people report it, the account gets suspended. Now, if you're a troll who is trying to upset someone, all you will do at that point is set up another account. You won't have used an account you are attached to for the trolling because you'll know it could get suspended. The other thing a troll could do is set up multiple accounts, and simply click "report abuse" on every one of the target's tweets until THEIR account, which they are likely much more attached to, gets suspended. You see the thing about trolls is, they see it as a game. Put a challenge in front of them, and it's just another level to work out how to get through.

A report abuse button which is easy to click on is easy to click on for EVERYBODY, not just those who are genuinely being abused. So the EDL will probably click on it for the English Disco Lovers. And homophobes will click on it on the accounts of gay people. And TERFs will click on it on the accounts of transfolk.

If you want to actually stop people being abusive arseholes, making twitter install a report abuse button is not going to do the trick, and will have all sorts of nasty unintended consequences. What MIGHT do the trick is the sort of real world consequences which fell on the head of Paul Chambers after the twitter joke trial, but even that, I would suggest, is a road we do not want to go down. The rozzers would swiftly be snowed under if every abusive tweet were reported and our justice system is already creaking after this government's "reforms".

No, I'm afraid the only solution is to make this kind of behaviour socially unacceptable among the peers these idiots are trying to impress. And that's not easy, and it will take effort from all of us. I'll not be holding my breath.
miss_s_b: (Mood: Laughter)
A conversation on twitter regarding THAT Ed Balls link descended into discussion of the solitary Lib Dem mentioned in the list, one D Alexander:
jpshaddock 18:04
@stackee @AAEmmerson @miss_s_b I'm not sure I'd want to know, either way. Though I'm sure Danny is a considerate lover

miss_s_b 18:05
@jpshaddock even if he's not I'd happily raid his record collection. @stackee @AAEmmerson

stackee 18:06
@miss_s_b @jpshaddock @AAEmmerson Please tell me that's not a euphemism...

jpshaddock 18:07
@stackee Stace, what could that even be a euphemism for? Then again, it is Jennie @miss_s_b @AAEmmerson
I believe my work here is done LMAO
miss_s_b: (Mood:J'accuse)
I'm composing this on my phone so it's going to be quick and dirty, but I have the following things to say:

1, asking someone to consider what impact their words will have is not censoring them or banning anything
2; being told you have hurt someone is not fun; but it's better than hurting people
3, people with privilege are used to not considering other people's feelings and get upset when they are asked to consider other people. On one level this is understandable because considering other people is work. But it's nowhere near as much work as living with total lack of consideration all the time.
4, if you use a word that upsets people without knowing it will upset people that is qualitatively different from knowing it will upset people and using it anyway.
5, you are perfectly free to say whatever you like BUT THAT IS NOT THE END OF IT. Once you have said what you like other people are free to react how they like and judge you how they like in consequence of what you have said.
6; there is NO point 6
7, All words cause reactions. If you don't like the reaction your words cause it might behove you to consider your words more carefully in future, especially if you're getting paid for writing them; rather than railing at people you have upset for reacting in am entirely predictable way.

This post brought to you by today's twitter storm. Further reading:

miss_s_b: DreamSheep/Matrix icon (Blogging: DreamSheep: Matrix)
So you're following me on twitter. I've not tweeted "I am feeling X" but you're sensing a definite pattern and you think you might have detected my mood. If you suspect I might be in a bad mood you might be wondering if I might snap your head off if you talk to me - I do try not to do this, but it does occasionally happen despite my best efforts.

This post will give you some pointers. If my last five tweets are predominantly or exclusively filled with certain things you can draw certain conclusions:
  1. Voluble
    Example tweets: Lots of random things in quick succession on various subjects
    Mood this points to: I am bored and want someone to talk to.
    Appropriate response: tweet @replies at me, about one of the random things I have posted about, or anything else.

  2. Blogging
    Example tweets: "Jennie posted x to y blog" (except for "The Blood is the Life", which posts automatically every morning. If you see THAT one it's not an indicator of anything, except that I found stuff interesting enough to save the links for autoposting the morning after).
    Mood this points to: I am feeling mentally well enough to blog. If it's a happy blog post this takes less mental wellness than if it's an angry blog post - I'll only post angrily if I'm feeling well enough to take the backlash. If I've posted in righteous anger this usually means I am feeling pretty mentally strong, so although not in a good mood exactly, I am likely to be able to interact sensibly.
    Appropriate response: tweet @replies at me, or even better, comment on the blog post.

  3. Retweet Demon
    Example tweets: lots of retweets of other people's political stuff
    Mood this points to: I am busy - either working or doing GT - and may not be able to respond if you tweet @me.
    Appropriate response: Whatever you like. If you want to interact, tweet an @reply. I will get to it eventually.

  4. Sweary
    Example tweets: tweets with an uptick in swear rate.
    Mood this points to: I am getting annoyed either by something online or in real life.
    Appropriate response:Use caution.

  5. Fragile
    Example tweets: Lots of pictures of old horror movie stars/Colin Baker/members of bands I like being pinned to pinterest.
    Mood this points to: I am feeling embattled and am clinging to comforting things.
    Appropriate response: talk to me about things I love being awesome. When I pin ten pictures of Christopher Lee in a row, that's equivalent to "VALIDATE ME! I AM NEEDY!".

  6. Nothing
    Example tweet: I haven't posted for several hours, or even days.
    Mood this points to: Either I am asleep, or I am having a twoliday. If I am having a twoliday it's usually because I am REALLY depressed and can't trust myself to interact without biting people's heads off.
    Appropriate response: if you know me well enough to have my mobile number gentle texting is fine. Everyone else is probably best leaving me alone - I'll only guilt-trip myself for having a twoliday if I come back to lots of concerned @replies.
Of course, this post doesn't cover every eventuality, but I hope it gives some pointers. Any of you lot have any dead giveaway tweet patterns?
miss_s_b: (Blogging: Wrong!)
- Tapjoy, a rip-off merchant embedded in in-app advertising, who have somehow managed to convince big companies like Tesco and Cineworld that they are not, in fact, rip-off merchants.

- Whoever does the customer services for my former favourite podcast app Pocket Casts, who seems to think that talking to irate paying customers like they are fuckwits is the ideal way to pour oil on troubled waters.

- People defending George Osborne and the Daily Mail for their disgusting extrapolation of the behaviour of one evil man to the entire group of people who claim benefits, whether in work or not.

- People mindlessly slagging off Colin Baker, from those who saw his picture with JNT on the front of the papers and now think he's Jimmy Saville in a garish coat; to those who refer to him dismissively as "Fat Colin" as if this somehow encapsulates AND validates their opinion that he's rubbish; to those who use The Twin Dilemma as shorthand for "Doctor Who which is unarguably crap", and then get passive-aggressive at me for deciding that means we're unlikely to come to agreement and therefore it's not worth engaging.

- People who think that I am an evil hater of the poor because I haven't resigned from the Lib Dems yet. I fucking AM the poor, and I'm trying to do something about it! Yes, the Lib Dems aren't perfect, but they're the least awful of a whole lot of bloody awful options.

- party political tribalism, and feeling myself getting sucked into it, and then having the knee-jerk response "but some of my best friends are Tories/Labourites/Greens/Pirates/Kippers", and then hating myself for it.

- Richard Dawkins, and people who hate Richard Dawkins, who as far as I can see are both as bad as each other for dogma, straw men, and refusing to consider that the other side might have a point.

- The Daily Mail, and people who believe their nasty bullshit, in general.

To find something on the internet which has made me really happy, I have to go back to Monday (we're getting ZYGONS! YAY!). This is a worrying thing. The other worrying thing is that all bar one of these things which have pissed me off have happened, at least to some extent, on twitter. I love twitter. I love the facility it gives one for quick and easy interaction, and its usefulness for news gathering. But if it is doing more harm than good to my mental state, which it most assuredly does on depressing news days (and we're getting a lot more depressing news days than not at the moment), perhaps it's worth taking a twoliday for a while...
miss_s_b: (Default)
((updated 16th August 2016))

How to stop twitter swallowing your time

My twitter feed is reasonably tight, and an effective tool for me to communicate with others while not getting swamped by spam. Here's how I do it:
  1. I don't backread further than the first scroll of my timeline. Ever. Twitter is something for NOW.

  2. Tweetdeck is your friend. You can put lists in different columns and then arrange columns so that important stuff is more visible. If you want to be an effective twitter user I definitely recommend it.

  3. I don't track or care who follows me. If you follow me, I won't notice unless you talk to me.

  4. I always check my @ replies before my home screen, and regularly throughout the day, and am happy to talk to people whether I am following them or not.

  5. I only follow people who tweet consistently interestingly, and don't pay any attention to whether or not they are following me. If you're a nice-but-dull person then sorry, but I won't fill my timeline with your tweets.

  6. If someone posts something on my timeline that annoys or offends me I unfollow them, even if they are someone I generally admire, but I don't generally mute or block unless the offensiveness comes in @ replies.

  7. If someone I don't know spams me or sends me an offensive @ reply I mute them immediately. Life is too short to put up with arseholes.

  8. If someone I do know is consistently annoying/offensive in @ replies then I will generally mute them rather than block them. I'll admit that it takes a lot more provocation from someone I do know than someone I don't for me to hit mute, and even then it's sometimes only on a temporary basis if they just won't shut up about something we disagree on and I have no spoons.

  9. I block very little. I have no issue with people I disagree with or who offend me reading my tweets; as long as I don't have to read their responses I don't care

  10. Once a month or so I use Manage Flitter to clear out inactives and/or people I had a fad for a few months ago that I am no longer interested in (last year's contestants on The Voice, for example).
So you can see that the people I talk to on twitter and the people I follow on twitter are two overlapping but distinct groups. I don't think I miss much, because people who post consistently interestingly are bound to get retweeted, so I pick them up eventually. Also, there's no real pattern to the people I follow, other than that I find them interesting: there's politicos and journos, musicians, artists, sciencey tweeps, young folk, old folk... your job or your age or your gender or any other attribute doesn't really matter, as long as you are interesting.

Oh, one other thing: I absolutely do not and never will get offended by people not following me back. Just because I am interested in what you have to say does not mean I will assume that you are interested in what I have to say. If you're not following me then I need to try harder to be interesting.

How to stop twitter swallowing your sanity

Twitter can often be mentally draining, even if it's not draining your time. Tips to prevent a twitter meltdown are as follows:
  1. The most important one: know when to walk away. This is a thing that is useful in all aspects of interacting with other people, and not one I have always mastered. Sometimes people will be dicks. It's not always on purpose, but engaging dicks in conversation is often way more wearing on you than it is on them. If a conversation looks to be getting to the point where it's more bother than it is worth, walk away. Mute if you have to.

  2. Use Wheaton's Law. Seriously, we can all have days when we are less well-disposed to our fellow human than we might be; if you feel yourself starting to be dickish, walk away. Things which count as dickish on twitter include:
    • Starting a dogpile when someone says something you disagree with. Whether you do this by .replying or quote-tweeting, it's still dickish.
    • Sealioning
    • Replying to a very old tweet
    • Continually @ replying to a person who has asked to be dropped out of a discussion.
    ... as well as the usual ad hominems, gaslighting, etc.

  3. Take a break if you need to. Don't be afraid to have a day off, or a week, or a month. Twitter will still be there if and when you decide to go back.

  4. If someone sets a dogpile on you, don't be afraid to go locked for a few days.

  5. If someone starts serious abuse, don't be afraid to go locked permanently.

  6. If someone issues criminal threats, don't be afraid to report them to the rozzers, AND go locked.

About This Blog

Hello! I'm Jennie (known to many as SB, due to my handle, or The Yorksher Gob because of my old blog's name). This blog is my public face; click here for a list of all the other places you can find me on t'interwebs.

Charities I support:

The Survivors' Trust - donate here
DogsTrust - donate here
CAB - donate here


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Miss SB by Jennie Rigg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-No Derivative Works 2.0 UK: England & Wales License.
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Please note that any and all opinions expressed in this blog are subject to random change at whim my own, and not necessarily representative of my party, or any of the constituent parts thereof (except myself, obviously).

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