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August 07, 2012


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Thanks for a great post. I have a few Ginas and I share your reasons for not unfriending them. I have a theory that this filtering of the world that the Internet facilitates is creating a wider divide between left and right, nerd and jock etc. I've seen my actual friends begin to be more polarized and single minded in their views. It frightens me to think that there's a generation of people who are becoming accustomed to their world view never being challenged. In view of recent events maybe we should reevaluate the concept of a news cycle that is tailored to each individual.

What a great post! I now have a greater understanding of why your Mother was so incredibly proud of you!
All the best with your new home, new job and of course with Hector.

If you haven't read "The Filter Bubble", you should. you are essentially writing the core idea out here.

It improves my life to read this.
I deal with careless offenders all the time. And I choose to stick with them because I love humanity. And this post increases my love.

Oh My God! Your message is very instructive. You are a perfect main line person. You fit so well in the 'western' society.

"I am Canadian. As such, I tend to have fairly left-leaning political opinions and moral convictions."

So... all Canadians are "left-leaning"?
Ca va bien dans ta tête ? Are Canadians all socialists? Looks like some people are waking up in your country with all the demonstrations going on.

"She questions the legitimacy of Obama’s birth certificate. She opposes gay marriage. She opposes more stringent gun control laws. She is against health care reform. She supports the Tea Party."

That's a fact that "Barak Obama" (not his official name) is not who he says he is. No US birth certificate. He abandoned any right to the US nationality by embracing the Indonesian one (no double nationality in that country). He comes from a family of CIA employees. And so much more you won't know or believe (like his sexual orientations) if you keep on playing Call of Duty instead of reading books, articles, and cross checking information.
Tip: look up for the work of investigative journalist Wayne Madsen. One of many links

"The beating heart of Facebook is the idea that you can connect with people who you otherwise would never know"
Let's reword it 'The beating heart of Facebook is the idea of knowing all about everybody'. Facebook was f(o)unded by the NSA. And be assured they run it because all the data (including pictures uploaded by members) is a gold mine in term of intelligence gathering.
When I was still too green, not aware of what was really going on, I registered on Facebook but found utterly isturbing to have to provide such a degree on details on my person (eg all religions were listed).
Later my Google account asked me for my phone number. Not only they read and store our emails, and thus have access to most of our provate information but they since prompt us... for our "security". Patriot Act style.

"I didn’t come to this country because I wanted to be around a bunch of people who looked the same, acted the same, sounded the same"

But what I read so far from you is just the standard thinking of most of the people!!! Don't you comprehend this?

"but it does mean coming to understand how and why you hold the ideas you hold"

I have to state I know what you mean. It take more or less time to people to see the light, to wake up, etc (call it what ever you like).

"the end of this story unfortunately starts with the recent shooting at the theatre in Colorado. I didn’t read too much about it, frankly"

Woh! You dare mentioning this. Check this up urgently: James Holmes, LIBOR, DARPA, etc...
Many other points. Listen yourself to Aurora police tapes. Who believe James Holmes was able to acquire military-grade explosive and set it up in his appartment? Disturbing, two types of pictures: James Holmes himself since arrested looks like a zombie and the people on the scene, the "witnesses" look weird
And people swallow all that's on CBS, ABC, FOX, NBC, SKY, TF1, ZDF... What a world of zombies.

"another mass shooting by a person with a legally owned firearm"
Sihk temple shooting? Investigate for yourself. Four hitmen were hired.

All these sounds familiar? More lone gunmen under mind control: Sirhan Sirhan., Mark David Chapman, Mohamed Merah, Lee Harvey Oswald...

"since most of my own friends, and most of the people who come to my blog, are self-selecting and will be inclined to agree with me"

I don't on most points you raised in your message and I want to help you to dig into stuffs, then you can set your mind. Never too good when the only reference is the official propaganda. From my experience it requires to check as many sources as possible. Of course many people come to the same conclusion why on Earth so many blunt lies in the "mainstream" media?

"she has cut herself off and further isolated herself"

That's true. In another hand, people who understand what's going on in the world and particularly in the USA have hard time explaining it. It's already tough seeing our world implode, talking about it to sleeping people can be complex, they are likely not to comprehend the explanations and will call us lunatics.
So, how to introduce them to the true nature of our society? That's why I'm replying to you. Not for some sort of bashing but because if I had you face to face I'd tell and show things that you'd make you cogitate. I went through that myself.

"live in the most enlightening society in human history, and we have access to the most powerful connective technology in the history of the world"

You really scare me. Homework urgently needed.

"I invested a lot of time and energy into this pseudo-relationship with this person I never met"

That's why we call it virtual world. The depth of a conversation on Facebook or Tweeter usually equals the garbage you find in the celebrity section of a magazine.

"I’m sad because sometimes it seems like it doesn’t improve my life, or the lives of those around me"

Yes, that's sad. Look around you, look further, why people with tons of things are not happier than let say a century ago. Earth is dying, humans as well... why?

It's up to you to open your mind.

PS: That said, I believe I need to add this note otherwise you you and perhaps the reader will think I'm selling you a religion, a political stance, an ebay item, a new age movement, etc. None of those.

Email me if you want.


That's sad.

Maybe it all comes down to how you want to use Facebook. Some people use it as a window to the world, some people as a comforting filter bubble. I tend to use it more as the later rather than the former. For me personally, I don't think Facebook is a good place to have well though arguments about serious topics. There are better vehicles for that like blogs and forums for example. I wouldn't want to have all my friends and family and colleagues to follow all my philosophical, political all economic point of views, and I'm glad most of my FB friends don't treat this way either. I tend to gradually remove or hide all people whose point of views diverge too much from mine or at least who are too vocal about them, and I head to other venues for serious debates.

I am really proud to write on this blog to say to you FarCry 2 was a great game.

I can relate to how 'sad' feels. I was very sad when you didn't reply to a personal Facebook message I sent you some time ago, considering the openness of the subject :) I have quit facebook since (not because lack of your reply), I have realized there just isn't a clear global definition of what a 'friends list' means anymore on in social media and this can create certain level of confusion. Some of us accept people to our circle of trust after knowing them just for few hours in a bar, others after years or trust situations. If Gina was a 'real' friend she would have respect your opinion as much as you respected hers, what's what friend's are for, a random person off the street isn't required to do this since they don't share platonic friendship or understanding with your character.
For example, I might look up to you because of your level of expertise, knowledge, experience etc and because of that I am able to overlook and ignore our indifference's of opinions, I know I can learn allot from you. Where as for you there is no real interest or gain in our friendship so there is less reasons for you to put up with my shit. We got accustom to use 'friend' terminology over the years, but there is much more to it and sometimes we take it for granted.

"The beating heart of Facebook is the idea that you can connect with people who you otherwise would never know – never mind share ideas with – by way of something else you have in common."

That's an admirable view of Facebook's potential. It generally seems to be used more as a virtual representation of your real-world, face-to-face social life - i.e. people don't accept friend requests from folks they don't know, unless they are using FB primarily as a broadcasting platform for their own content or brand or whatever else.

This is the reason I always found Twitter more interesting - as aside from the interesting (but problematic) metrics and their meaning, Twitter can be aspirational. You can follow people you're interested in and communicate readily without them needing to follow yours.

Since most people use FB as that reflection of their real social life, its not at all surprising that she unfollowed you. And it makes your tolerance all the more admirable. It's not a good thing that she has retreated into her bubble by one more step, it is sad to be sure, but - it is not a loss that you should be losing sleep over, I think. It's just people.

Be happy Clint. No matter how small the impact, simply by gravitational pull, you will have had an effect on Gina. Even the process of unfriending you will have been Needed an assessment and judgement. Our position is to affect, not to effect, and she in turn has had an impact on your thinking which you share now for us all.
Keep the faith do it for us.

In my life, worrying about things like this will just confuse and clutter your world and your life. For me, the easiest way to live is to stick to your way of life. I've been there, where you were at. It's damn frustrating, but you've only got one life. Forget everything else, and everyone else, and just live for what you believe in. That's what I did.

In my experience, trying to change people is a huge waste of time and energy. You won't, and you can't do it. But, I think that living your life to the fullest, will be very inspirational to other people, and in turn, if the time is come and they are at that point of their lives, then they will change themselves. But you can't change people, their minds and ideas.

In the end, it doesn't matter a bit. Your ideas or their ideas, we all have differences, in everything, you just gotta stop caring about what other people think and just live based solely on what you think.

Anyway, good luck figuring out your life.

Gina was certainly not aware that you had been observing her political outbursts, and rightfully so. For why should we be conscientious for each and every individual that may potentially read our material before it is posted? That could lead us into diverging and thus filtering our opinions and beliefs for the satisfaction of others. In an extreme observation, this could lead to a strong feeling of identity loss.

So whilst Gina knew the opportunity for you to read her material was always existent, there was no telling for her that you were indeed scouting her political opinions, and studying them for your own personal information.

When she removed you due to her disagreement with your political standpoint - it obviously felt more personal for you. Acknowledging that you had the benefit of the knowledge that you were observing her material: her inability to tolerate your political views would have felt a lot more personal to you than it in fact was for her.

Remember that.

It's indeed upsetting, in a number of different contexts. Most have been addressed by other comments for this blog of yours, and some addressed by yourself. But please remember that this feels almost more like a personal betrayal for you, because you had given her the modesty of remaining on your news feed for the sake of inviting a difference of opinion.

She obviously didn't have the same tolerance as yourself, but by no means is this a betrayal or an insult. Gina probably has no idea that you were even aware of her Facebook presence. I certainly doubt Gina thinks removing you from her Friends List would have made any impact on yourself.

Ultimately, I feel - a person who is willing to remove all (potential) further contact with another individual due to a difference in political opinion is probably not one you should be holding on to.

If Gina's consistent political 'status updates' didn't suggest that she may be a little over-indulged in politics in the first place - then removing you for a differing political opinion to hers certainly suggests such with loud volume. She should not be distancing herself from people who have different political opinions. Facebook is indeed about connecting, and politics is not the only thing we have in this world. She certainly can base her friendships around politics, but there are plenty of other subjects in the world to consider. She shouldn't be burning bridges for one factor in a person.

Provided that you had the modesty to accept her opinions, whilst she did not have the same respect for your opinion - I don't think you would have been successfully compatible as people. I wouldn't worry too much about it. You seem like a deep thinker, Clint. Don't let yourself slip too far into unnecessary thoughts and feelings. I do the same and it's not healthy. In your blog announcing you'd handed your resignation to Ubisoft - You talk about picking up unhealthy habits. Deep thinking over destructive topics would certainly be an unhealthy habit we both share. Train your focus into more productive and worthwhile things :)

Thanks for the great read, Clint. Keep going strong, let us know how you're doing!

Totally not related to your post...
This made me smile and remember the good time we had on FC2

Hi there,
Don't feel sad, it's the way it is.
It happens in our life and with everybody.

I know it has nothing to do with your post but it's quite similar about what I felt yesterday when I smiled at a stranger but they never smiled back, it's like this that people unfriend you when you expect them to support and respect your opinion.

I hope you ignore and learn from these things and not everyone in the world are like that.

I am sad because it's increasingly clear that you cannot publicly announce what you are working on! Inquiring minds want to know what you got brewing!

This is remarkably thought through. That said, yes, Gina's DO eliminate social relationships based on stereotype.

Stereotype one of the basic instincts of human survival. Eat things that are GREEN. Don't have too much SUGAR. People that use CERTAIN KINDS OF PHRASES will usually behave in a certain kind of way. GORILLAS attack if you provoke them. LEFTISTS/DEMOCRATS will say things that will annoy me. etc.

You're interested in the situation where the stereotype isn't 100% accurate. Gina fits a stereotype you normally avoid associating with (so you're inclined to dislike her), but you're interested in exploring the relationship with her for other reasons.

Maybe her filter is less tolerant than yours. Her digital life is a revolving door of digital people. Some may or may not be real. She adds them fickly. She removes them if "misbehave".

I have a few people like this on my facebook, however in the form of anti-vaxxers. They're usually pretty entertaining. The main guy likes to post all of his i assume knowledge from basically 3 websites. I like to argue with him, usually in humorous ways. I find it pretty entertaining. Sadly however, doesn't seem to do any good, as it's hard to argue with someone who has no original thoughts on the matter and doesn't really use any sort of evidence.

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