- Facebook Gets a Multibillion-Dollar Tax Break (Bloomberg, Feb 15, 2013):
It hasn’t drawn much attention, but Facebook’s first annual earnings report contains an accounting gem: a multibillion-dollar tax deduction for the cost of executive stock options and share awards.
Even though Facebook (FB) reported $1.1 billion in pre-tax profits from U.S. operations in 2012, it will probably pay zero federal and state taxes—and even receive a federal tax refund of about $429 million—according to a Feb. 14 statement from Citizens for Tax Justice.
- Obama signs cybersecurity executive order ahead of State Of The Union (ZDNet, Feb 13, 2013):
Summary: President Obama unexpectedly signed an executive Order on cybersecurity prior to tonight’s State of the Union address. UPDATED: Links to the Order and “new” CISPA added.
President Obama signed an executive order aimed at bolstering U.S. cybersecurity prior to tonight’s State of the Union address. The Order precedes a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on “new threats.”
It is the government’s latest move in attempting to deal with cyber threats, and the order has not undergone any public technical, rights-based, or privacy review.
The Order “enables the government to share more information with private industry partners and developing a new framework of practices to reduce cybersecurity risks.” Continue reading »
YouTube Added: 11.02.2013
First TRAPWIRE, now RIOT, the new product from the defence company, Raytheon, and which is featured in the above video. RIOT will use GPS and other technologies to track people anywhere in the world. It also boast predictive capabilities (work out the most likely location the target will go to next). RIOT will basically search, analyse and organise all social network content globally.
- UK government plans to track ALL web use: MI5 to install ‘black box’ spy devices to monitor British internet traffic (Daily Mail, Feb 6, 2013):
MPs’ report outlines spooks’ take on the draft Communications Data Bill It shows they are keen to implement nationwide surveillance regime They want ISPs to install ‘black boxes’ that can inspect all internet traffic Spies claim they are only interested in ‘communications data’ Campaigners warn it will give spies unprecedented surveillance powers
UK spy agencies want to install ‘black box’ surveillance devices across the country’s communications networks to monitor internet use, it emerged today.
A report by an influential committee of MPs tells how spooks are keen to implement a nationwide surveillance regime aimed at logging nearly everything Britons do and say online.
The spy network will rely on a technology known as Deep Packet Inspection to log data from communications ranging from online services like Facebook and Twitter, Skype calls with family members and visits to pornographic websites.
Tags: 1984, Big Brother, Dictatorship, Facebook, Fascism, George Orwell, Global News, Government, Internet, Jonathan Evans, Law, MI5, New World Order, Politics, Privacy, Skype, Society, Surveillance, Twitter, U.K.
The loading screen of the Facebook mobile app: The social network is developing a new smartphone app to track the location of users in an effort to target them with localised adverts
- Facebook developing app that will track your every move – even when it’s turned off (Daily Mail, Feb 7, 2013):
- App intended to alert users when Facebook ‘friends’ are nearby
- It will also help the social network target localised adverts
- Privacy campaigners warn it is ‘profit trumping privacy’
Facebook is developing a new smartphone app to track the location of users in an effort to target them with localised adverts, according to reports.The app will help users to find friends who are nearby, alert them when it detects one in close proximity even when the app is not open on the handset, it is claimed.
Company channelled bulk of profits through Ireland and on to Cayman Islands, allowing to it pay just £238,000 to UK taxman
- Facebook paid £2.9m tax on £840m profits made outside US, figures show (Guardian, Dec 23, 2012):
Facebook has become the latest multinational to come under the spotlight for its tax affairs after figures revealed it paid just £2.9m in tax on profits of more than more than £800m.
Filings for Facebook Ireland, through which all of the social network’s profits outside the US are channelled, show it paid the Irish tax authority €3.2m (£2.9m) last year.
- Facebook bans Gandhi quote as part of revisionist history purge (Natural News, Dec 27, 2012):
The reports are absolutely true. Facebook suspended the Natural News account earlier today after we posted an historical quote from Mohandas Gandhi. The quote reads:
“Among the many misdeeds of British rule in India, history will look upon the Act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest.” - Mohandas Gandhi, an Autobiography, page 446.
This historical quote was apparently too much for Facebook’s censors to bear. They suspended our account and gave us a “final warning” that one more violation of their so-called “community guidelines” would result in our account being permanently deactivated.
They then demanded we send them a color copy of a “government issued identification” in order to reactivate our account. Our account was removed from suspension just minutes before InfoWars posted its article on this Facebook censorship, and the Facebook page is now functioning at: Continue reading »
- Facebook Censors Prominent Political Critics (ZeroHedge, Dec 27, 2012):
We’ve previously documented that the largest social media websites censor government criticism.
For example, Facebook pays low-wage foreign workers to delete certain content based upon a censorship list. For example, Facebook deletes accounts created by any Palestinian resistance groups.
Today, Facebook deactivated the Facebook accounts of some of the leading American political critics.
- Biggest Social Media Sites Censor Alternative News (ZeroHedge, Dec 14, 2012):
But at least web news sources are free of censorship … one would hope.
Unfortunately, that’s not true.
Facebook pays low-wage foreign workers to delete certain content based upon a censorship list. For example, Facebook deletes accounts created by any Palestinian resistance groups.
Many accuse Youtube of blatant censorship.
Reddit – the 133rd most popular website worldwide on the Internet – is also censoring.
I’m not talking about censoring specific websites (For example, I was informed today that Reddit’s News category censors all stories from this website. But that’s just an example). I’m talking about censoring entire categories of news media.
- NSA Refuses To Release Secret Obama Directive On Cybersecurity (Infowars, Nov 21, 2012):
Order may allow military takeover of internet
The National Security Agency has refused to release details of a secret presidential directive which experts believe could allow the military and intelligence agencies to operate on the networks of private companies, such as Google and Facebook.
As we reported last week, an article in the Washington Post, cited several US officials saying that Obama signed off on the secret cybersecurity order, believed to widely expand NSA’s spying authorities, in mid-October.
“The new directive is the most extensive White House effort to date to wrestle with what constitutes an “offensive” and a “defensive” action in the rapidly evolving world of cyberwar and cyberterrorism.” the report states.
In response to the move, lawyers with the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request (PDF) demanding that the Obama administration make public the text of the directive.
Tags: Barack Obama, Censorship, Cyber Attack, Cyber War, Dictatorship, Facebook, Fascism, Freedom of Information Act, Global News, Google, Government, Health, Internet, New World Order, NSA, Obama administration, Politics, Surveillance, U.S.
United Nations report calls for Internet surveillance, saying lack of “internationally agreed framework for retention of data” is a problem, as are open Wi-Fi networks in airports, cafes, and libraries.
- U.N. calls for ‘anti-terror’ Internet surveillance (CNET, Oct 22, 2012):
The United Nations is calling for more surveillance of Internet users, saying it would help to investigate and prosecute terrorists.
A 148-page report (PDF) released today titled “The Use of the Internet for Terrorist Purposes” warns that terrorists are using social networks and other sharing sites including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Dropbox, to spread “propaganda.”
“Potential terrorists use advanced communications technology often involving the Internet to reach a worldwide audience with relative anonymity and at a low cost,” said Yury Fedotov, executive director of the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
- National ‘virtual ID card’ scheme set for launch (Is there anything that could possibly go wrong?) (Independent, Oct 4, 2012):
Central online identity scheme ‘will be a target for criminals’
The Government will announce details this month of a controversial national identity scheme which will allow people to use their mobile phones and social media profiles as official identification documents for accessing public services.
People wishing to apply for services ranging from tax credits to fishing licences and passports will be asked to choose from a list of familiar online log-ins, including those they already use on social media sites, banks, and large retailers such as supermarkets, to prove their identity.
Once they have logged in correctly by computer or mobile phone, the site will send a message to the government agency authenticating that user’s identity.
The Cabinet Office is understood to have held discussions with the Post Office, high street banks, mobile phone companies and technology giants ranging from Facebook and Microsoft to Google, PayPal and BT.
Ministers are anxious that the identity programme is not denounced as a “Big Brother” national ID card by the back door, which is why data will not be kept centrally by any government department. Indeed, it is hoped the Identity Assurance Programme, which is being led by the Cabinet Office, will mean the end to any prospect of a physical national ID card being introduced in the UK.
Hundreds of youths gather in Haren, northern Netherlands, on September 21, 2012
- Hell of a hangover: 3,000-strong Facebook party leaves Dutch town ravaged (VIDEO, PHOTOS) (RT, Sep 22, 2012):
A Dutch girl had a most memorable, if unpleasant, birthday party when some 3,000 people showed up in her small hometown. The crowd – attracted by her invitation, which accidentally went viral – looted shops and clashed with riot police.
Six people were reportedly injured overnight in the town of Haren in the north of the country, as violence raged across the normally sleepy community. A car was set on fire, several shops looted and street signs and lampposts vandalized.
Dutch police eventually broke up the crowd, which was throwing stones, bottles and flower pots at the officers. Some 20 people were arrested.
The rioting was the culmination of an online campaign, which started when a girl posted a video invitation to her 16th birthday party on her Facebook page and forgot to mark it as private.
The news went viral, and several sites dedicated to the forthcoming event popped up. The party was dubbed “Project X Haren” by some, in reference to a US-made comedy film about a similarly disastrous incident.
Continue reading »
- Facebook: snitchgate! (Paul Bernal’s Blog, Sep 21, 2012):
A story about Facebook went around twitter last night that provoked quite a reaction in privacy advocates like me: Facebook, it seems, is experimenting with getting people to ‘snitch’ on any of their friends who don’t use their real names. Take a look at this:
- Are People Being Thrown In Psychiatric Wards For Their Political Views? (ZeroHedge, Aug 21, 2012):
Many psychologists and psychiatrists are good people, who are only trying to help their patients.But the Nazi government substantially supported psychologists … many of whom, in turn, espoused extermination of the people they considered to be “racially and cognitively compromised”.
Soviet psychiatrists famously aided Stalin in applying fake insanity diagnoses to political dissenters. The official explanation was that no sane person would declaim the Soviet government and Communism.
American psychologists created the American program of torture which was specially-crafted to produce false confessions to justify U.S. military policy. And see this.
And authoritarian American psychologists are eager to label anyone “taking a cynical stance toward politics, mistrusting authority, endorsing democratic practices, … and displaying an inquisitive, imaginative outlook” as worthy of a trip to the insane asylum. (Those traits may also get one labeled as a potential terrorist.) Continue reading »
Tags: Barack Obama, Brandon Raub, Claire Swinney, Crime, Dictatorship, Facebook, Fascism, Global News, Government, Law, New World Order, Obama administration, Politics, Society, Susan Lindauer, U.K., U.S.
- Face-Off: FaceBerg Groupon’d At Half-Off IPO Price (ZeroHedge, Aug 17, 2012):
“And yay verily it was written that as the moon passes thrice through the sky after providing your funds to the IPO-of-the-decade, thou shalt see said funds smite in two…”Faceberg just touched $19, that is a 50% haircut on its IPO launch price from exactly 3 months ago – but as CNBC’s Simon Hobbs seems convinced…what about the short-interest? Ask JCP or GRPN! Well, easy come, easy go. Just ask Mark, who has lost half his net worth in 3 months. Do we feel bad for him and his $9.6 billion? No. But we will check back in another 3 months just in case.
- Facebook shares fall to new low as lockup ends for insiders (Chicago Tribune, Aug 16, 2012)
- Facedeals checks you in with facial-recognition cameras (Los Angeles, Aug 10, 2012):
A new app is being tested in Nashville, Tenn., that can check in people on Facebook and send them offers using facial-recognition cameras.
Called Facedeals, the new service uses cameras installed at businesses’ front doors to read people’s faces as they enter. If the people who come in are users of the app, they will be checked in, and based on their “like” history, they would receive a customized offer.
To use the app, people first have to sign up. The app will then work with users to verify pictures of them to get a better reading of their face.
In other news:
Social networking site said fake profiles included millions created for pets and a large number of accounts it deems ‘undesirable’
- Facebook quarterly report reveals 83m profiles are fake (Guardian Aug 3, 2012):
Facebook has more than 83m fake profiles, including millions created for users’ pets and a large number of accounts the company deems “undesirable”, it has admitted.
The figure emerged in Facebook’s first quarterly report to US financial regulators since the world’s biggest social network made its much-criticised stock market debut in May.
The company said 8.7% of its 955m global users were not real.
There were 83.09m fake users in total, which Facebook classifies into three groups. The largest is made up of almost 46m duplicate profiles, accounting for 4.8% of all accounts. The company defined that category as “an account that a user maintains in addition to his or her principal account”.
YouTube Added: 01.08.2012
Tags: Adolf Hitler, Al-Qaeda, Al-Qaida, Alex Jones, Bank of England, Banking, Barack Obama, Cancer, cds, Civil rights, Constitution, Derivatives, Derivatives market, DHS, Dictatorship, Drones, Economy, EU, Europe, Facebook, Fascism, FDA, Fed, Federal Reserve, Fertilizer, Genetically Modified Organisms, Global News, GMO, Goldman Sachs, Government, High Frequency Trading, Homeland Security, HSBC, India, Israel, JPMorgan, Law, Libor, Martial Law, Max Keiser, Mitt Romney, Monsanto, New World Order, Obama administration, Police, Police State, Politics, Quantitative Easing, Rainwater, Roundup, Roundup Ready, Society, Suicide, Terrorism, Terrorists, U.K., U.S., Wall Street, Water
- FaceBerg Hits 21 The Hard Way (ZeroHedge, July 31, 2012):
Was it only two months ago that Faceplant was heralded as bringing in the new era of well something… the public markets are a cruel friend it seems as FB just traded with a $21 handle for the first time – down a marvelous 53% from its IPO-day highs… Volume exploded once it crossed that barrier as we suspect Margin Stanley was aggressively defending its new line in the sand (how did that defense work at $38, $37, $35, and $30 – but maybe this time is different).
- Is Facebook’s Ad Model a Scam? (Naked Capitalism, July 30, 2012):
I’ve watched the Facebook phenomenon with considerable skepticism, and have refrained from commenting on it, save linking to stories such as GM canceling all of its Facebook ads because they didn’t see the benefit.
But this item via reader Chuck L was a real eye-opener. It suggests that Facebook may be a large-scale fraud. If not Facebook, who would be running the bots in question? Their second complaint, about the cost of a name change, is merely tacky customer-gouging, but the first suggests that the Facebook business model is a complete fail, whether the clicks are from Facebook bots or other bots.
- Facebook stock plunges to all-time low (CNN, July 27, 2012):
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Facebook’s stock opened at an all-time low, after its first earnings report failed to ease worries over slowing sales growth and its plan for mobile advertising.
Shares of Facebook (FB) tumbled nearly 15% to below $23 on Friday, 40% below the company’s initial offering price from May.
Facebook earnings matched analysts’ expectations when it reported its earnings after the bell on Thursday. The company also delivered a 32% gain in second-quarter revenue, to $1.18 billion. That slightly topped forecasts.
Got gold and silver?
People should, rightly, have fear of having their money in paper instruments, whether it’s in a bank account or a bond. If they had any sense they would be buying (physical) gold and/or silver. That’s the only way to maintain your purchasing power.
- Social Media Panic in Italy: “Enough of this Agony; Give Us Back the Lira” (Global Economic Alalysis, July 23, 2012):
Black Monday messages on Facebook and Twitter have gone viral in Italy as people have had enough of austerity, job losses, and uncertainty. La Stampa reports on Panic in the Network.
What follows is a Mish-revised translation of select ideas and quotes from the article. My specific comments are in brackets.
Black Monday breaks early in the morning on websites across the world and social networking spreads alarm. “Withdraw money from bank accounts” is the appeal of Andrew to Facebook friends.
Pseudo-analysis on the alleged benefits of a return to the lira go around the net. “Enough of this sad agony. Bring back the old money”, Paul insists.
“In 2000 we had the lira. We were producing more, exporting more, and children were living better, the results of monetary sovereignty” says Magdi Cristiano Allam on Twitter.
“We are on the brink of the abyss and the top EU cazzeggiano [slang for F* around],” accuses Ivan.
The tones on social networks are apocalyptic: “This is not a crisis, it’s the end of capitalism.” On the forum of the economics of printing a black player sees: “Folks, we begin to pray, after Greece’s up to us. We are at the end titles, to every man for himself.”
- UBS May Have Facebook Trading Loss of $350 Million (Yahoo Finance/CNBC, June 8, 2012):
UBS is sitting on losses that could be as high as $350 million stemming from its investment in the Facebook initial public offering, and is preparing legal action against Nasdaq as a result, people familiar with the matter told CNBC.
That loss is some ten-times more than the $30 million number that is currently being speculated in the market by others.
The issue has to do with the failure to get confirmations and executions from the Facebook trade.