Microblogging as civil liberty
Perhaps the only upswing to this amateur display of hackery is how buttsore some people in the tech media got. Coming from outside of Silicon Valley, I know this can be hard to understand, but try to imagine a world where Twitter is the only communication medium. Twitter is so important that it should be nationalized (which, in fact, might be a good idea because the company can't seem to come up with a business plan other than raising more venture capital), and any intrusion into the microblogging platform is an intrusion on basic civil liberty. As a side note, in this world, hearing the word microblogging does not make your average person pray for a global Ebola pandemic.
Since you're reading about it here, there's a good chance that on Invasion Day, you were busy not caring about Twitter, but here in the Valley, it was pandemonium. The San Francisco airport was closed for two hours and all public transit was shut down until the situation could be righted.
Many bloggers were quick to offer their technical advice to Twitter, that throttling login attempts is a good thing. Others thought that this spelled the end for Twitter, because big companies won't want to risk their brand by having a presence on Twitter. Still others are confident that the authorities will step in to protect the world from this threat.
It's really unfortunate there are people who care so much about Twitter. (Personally, I blame marijuana: it's easier to get and more popular than LSD – and it still allows you to have an opinion about something.) What's best is that the San Francisco rules dictate that the police are able to resolve any situation where somebody has wronged you. TechCrunch failer-in-chief Mike Arrington is confident that arrests will be made.
San Francisco police actually care about Twitter's problems and are, I'm sure, eager to investigate the intrusion. Yes, that borderline-alcoholic detective who ends up eating his gun over a bitter divorce and ensuing custody battle stemming from the psychological damage he suffers at work is going to get right on the case. Indictments are coming any day now. Any day.
What is certain is that the rest of the world will press on - until another hacker breaks into Facebook and lists Barack Obama as "its complicated" with Britney Spears. Or maybe the evil geniuses will crack YouTube and, in a demonstration of original comedic thought, redirect every video to a copy of "Never gonna give you up" by Rick Astley. Ho, that would be quite funny. Whatever it ends up being, the Valley media will have a say in the matter. And by "have a say in the matter," I mean "put space between the ads".
Fuck, the internet got lame. I've tried programming Ruby on Rails, following TechCrunch in my RSS reader, and drinking absinthe. It doesn't work. I'm going back to C, Hunter S. Thompson, and cheap whiskey. ®
When originally published, this column contained two references to Down's Syndrome that were in poor taste. We have removed them. And we apologize for any offense this may have caused.
Ted Dziuba is a co-founder at Milo.com You can read his regular Reg column, Fail and You, every other Monday.
This one is ripe for the closing now. Thanks for all your comments.
@ Paul McConkey
"Down Syndrome" is normal American usage, "Down's Syndrome" is normal UK usage, so it only needs changing if Sarah's going to rewrite the whole thing in British English.
In my role as parent-of-kid-with-Down's, I'd probably have shrugged off the stuff deleted from the article, but some of the comments are downright poisonous. Jemma in particular sounds like someone in need of a punch in the face.
The good, the bad & the find your own style and stick with it
To quote John Payne: "[So many writers are] ruining themselves by trying to emulate Thompson. I last tried that when I was 16, and I left it there where it belongs. Thompson was sui generis, trying to emulate his style will only lead to suffering. In my view, a writer shouldn’t consciously try to ape anyone but instead find their own voice."
Indeed. Fear & Loathing in Silicon Valley this ain't. Also, note that HST did not make a habit of attacking those who weren't capable of self-defence*
On the other hand, it's always interesting to read about the lack of perspective endemic in Silicon Valley. More, please - but next time just write it. Don't go over your prose in an attempt to make it look like someone else is sitting at the typewriter.
* for clarity: I am referring here to disparaging comments directed against Down's Syndrome sufferers, as opposed to your rather more valid observations re: self-obsessed Californians clutching Crackberries and feeding the input-only device that is Twitter...