I wonder about the effect of Instagram on our minds

I have been having a discussion with Tim about Instagram recently. Interestingly its also the launch of Ingrid Goes West.

From tmdb

Ingrid becomes obsessed with a social network star named Taylor Sloane who seemingly has a perfect life. But when Ingrid decides to drop everything and move west to be Taylor’s friend, her behaviour turns unsettling and dangerous.

It doesn’t sound great, something like Friend Request and Unfriended.

Anyway…

I don’t use it because I have issues with the whole setup of instagram. Without going into too much detail, here’s the main points.

  1. I don’t agree with Instagram’s end user licence, which includes using your photos in almost anyway they like.
  2. I don’t like the creation of instagrams is all within the same app (for example I use a Plume on Android and Corebird on Ubuntu) to access Twiter and I create, edit and post to twitter not within twitter (it a important distinction)
  3. I don’t like the fact Instagram isn’t really public, indexable or accessible unless you are on instagram.
  4. I have a problem with filtered views of real life. Its bad enough that every photo you see has been doctored/photoshopped/filtered/algorithmicilly messed. But I don’t want to see them everyday.

Photoshopping

And the last point is a key one, as its clear there are serious problems with seeing this level of fakeness everywhere. Like it or not, it becomes normalised.

I hear some of you say this is no more than what Twitter or Facebook do/enable? and I would somewhat agree… but I have built ways to deal with this partly due to being able to use other apps or types of behaviours which run against the way it was engineered.

For example I don’t really look at the Facebook timeline, as I know its trying to lock me into a filter bubble, somewhat of my own making. Yes I could do a Robert Scoble and manage it into a better bubble, but I just don’t think its worthy of attention; plus Facebook doesn’t share this data in their data portability exports meaning all that work isn’t transferable at all. I know being without Facebook makes things very tricky but I can manage my activity within it right now, this might change of course as FB gets more greedy

Its easy to blame Instagram for all types of ills but its not solely them. Its a combination of Instagram and its share holders, the silicon valley push for winner takes all adoption of everything (dare I say anything about Uber in London) but most of all; ourselves for being suckers to peer pressure, advertising and patterns which are so established others are telling us exactly how they work!

We blindly follow suit without thinking about the long term effects. Mark Manson suggests the smartphone is going to be this generations cigarettes. When thinking about most peoples experience of the smartphone with Instagram, Facebook and Whatsapp preloaded, I can’t help but think actually he’s got a good point. Its the perfect Black Mirror episode, total fantasy as Rachel said!

Black MIrror s3ep1

We seem to be playing with fire without a true understanding of the consequences. Even if we do, how do you make this clear to others who are suckered in? How do you make this clear in the face of peer & social pressure? How do we make this clear to the next generation, the ones born with visions of a unattainable perfection all around them?

I’m not a sucker and won’t be joining to be a poster or lurker just so I can scroll through my friends fake reality pictures.

Graceful degradation of apps via permissions under android 6.0

Android 6.0 Marshmallow has a very nice feature, something I have been wanting to see more across all services and applications. Granular permissions, which can be applied and revoked by the user at anytime.

It was obvious that iOS had it right as far as transparent, granular app permissions were concerned, and Android Marshmallow admits as much, because it now has a very similar system. Permissions are asked for as and when they’re needed, rather than all at once during installation.

That gives you a better idea of what’s going on and also let’s you, for example, give Facebook access to your camera but not your contacts. If you want to check which apps have what permissions (and edit them), go to Settings: tap Apps then the cog icon, then choose App permissions.

Android 6.0 permission system
Why does BBC iPlayer Radio need access to my phone?

Since android 6.0 marshmallow, i’ve wanted to try out the app permission tweaker. I’m interested to see what happens when I block certain apps from key permissions. Will they explode will they gracefully handle it and still operate without it?
For example could I run facebook app and deny access to the internet, or local storage? OK that might be a little too far but what about facebook without access to the mic and camera? Surely that would work right?

So I tried it with the Amazon kindle app, which I always thought had too many permissions anyway. I mean why does the kindle app need access to my contacts and my telephone?!

Android 6.0 permission system

Haven turned them off, I thought I’d better see if the app still actually worked?

Android 6.0 permission system

It did! So I started revoking permissions from apps which I felt didn’t need the permissions. For example Fitbit, which I refused to upgrade in the past due to the permissions.

Android 6.0 permission system

Why does Fitbit need so many permissions anyway!

Android 6.0 permission system

Andorid warms me the app may break as its not written for Android 6.0. But it still works as I want it to., so this has to be a case of them over reaching with the data they want to consume?
Say hello to your new permissions Fitbit, and it works fine when syncing data from the Fitbit.

Android 6.0 permission system

Fitbit better get use to the sandbox I put it in, and they are not the only one!

Android 6.0 permission system
Android 6.0 permission system

This for me is a key part of the VRM infrastructure as Adriana said

If you cannot reject them, if you cannot actually say well, I’m fine with that but not with that, what’s the point?

Great to see it working as expected, graceful degradation of applications based on permissions. I might be able to install Facebook again.

Update

I installed Facebook messenger again with the permissions I felt comfortable with.

Then decided actually I want to break FB messenger as its meant to be written for Android 6.0, so denied it access to my location too.

Installing Facebook messenger under Android 6.0

I can say everything  works, and I haven’t seen any problems so far with my permissions. I did notice you can start to mess with the data usage too, which maybe a way to restrict network usage.?

Share a minute, vulnerability, humanity with a stranger

iOrgins

Frank told me about this great thing he’s involved in tomorrow (Sunday 4th October). If you ever wanted to get over your fear of rejection this would be ideal…

Let’s share a minutes eye contact with strangers in public to rebuild our sense of shared humanity in Sheffield! This is part of The World’s Biggest Eye Contact Experiment – http://on.fb.me/1NnGcQ0, coordinated by The Liberators International in cities all over the world and your participation will help create a global video message for peace and human connection for years to come.

The idea is simple

  1. We will have clear signs that say “Where has the human connection gone? Share 1 minute of eye contact to find out…”

  2. Then we sit down on picnic rugs with 2x pillows each and invite members of the public to come and share a moment of eye contact with us.

Interested? Meet on Sunday 4th of October. At Barker’s Pool outside the city hall between 12pm-3pm. What you need?
For setting up your eye contact space please bring a picnic rug and 2x pillows/cushions to be comfortable.

If its not raining I think I may pop over on the scooter and check it out. It reminds me very much of Marina Abramović at the international festival which I had the joy of going to, but less intense.

I also said to Frank, it reminded me of iOrgins in a roundabout way… This also speaks volumes with some of the things I talked about at BarCamp last weekend and generally talk about regarding lost of our humanity. But I’m always fascinated by strangers and the connection which can happen.

Anybody interested in joining me in Sheffield? (Facebook link)

Facebook is the village campfire?

M. Night Shyamalan's Village
M. Night Shyamalan may have lost his movie mojo but the village is a apt example.

Got to love Oli… He wrote about his return to Facebook and yes I did reply to his thoughts in a blog. To which he replied to in a new blog, stipulating Facebook is the campfire

Imagine living in a village, in your own cottage, doing your own thing. You wave to your neighbors, see them at the odd social event and maybe gossip when you meet. Nice huh? One night somebody builds a fire and a few people drift out and sit round the fire, singing songs, telling tales, toasting marshmallows, all the stuff you’ve seen in American summer camps that probably never actually happens.

Over time, more people join in the evenings, and the quality of the chat drops off a bit, and a few people are a bit arsey, but it’s nice, warm and social. You don’t have to do much if you don’t want, but you’ll get the odd beer or marshmallow and hear the little bits of news, a pregnancy, a holiday, who’s been snogging who etc etc. There are claps on the back when you crack a joke. Everybody faces into the fire.

Not going out to that fire is tough. It’s not that people forgot about you, or don’t want to see you or hear your news, but they do forgot that they haven’t seen you, or told you their news. They shared it round the campfire after all. You might still have people round to tea occasionally, or pick up the phone to speak to them but that easy comradery is missing. That warm glow doesn’t reach far either, in fact it’s very much a walled garden.

When I think of the campfire, I think little village and nice for a while but then its time to get out. Time to leave, explore and move forward. Maybe thats what bugs me a lot about using Facebook. Its all people I know and its too comfortable. I can talk about the filter bubble and data ethics and facebook messing with the news feed. But its all too comfortable. Theres nothing challenging your views, nothing making you explore (except the occasional event).

I would go as far as to say Facebook is making you a boring old sod. Remember, when I wrote how to be interesting ages ago. I wrote…

Talk to someone new at least every week

Good luck doing that on Facebook…  Even with a massive number of friends on Facebook, Facebook will filter out most of them. Yes welcome to the village campfire.

As I said above, M. Night Shyamalan may have lost his movie mojo but the village is a perfect example.

The population of a small, isolated countryside village believe that their alliance with the mysterious creatures that inhabit the forest around them is coming to an end.

If you not seen the film, you are not missing anything and I’m going to kind of spoil it for you right now for you. The mysterious creatures are other people and they exist in the outside world of the internet. That campfire keeps pulling you back but sometimes you just need to get out discover the milestones of freedom by getting out of the village and that super comfortable campfire.

Its nice to visit every once in a while, catchup, get warm and decide to leave. Do you want to hangout there and be known as the one who never leaves?

I thought not… Moderation Oli, limit your time at the Facebook campfire!

 

 

On returning to facebook…

Twitter makes me like people I’ve never met and Facebook makes me hate people I know in real life
Twitter makes me like people I’ve never met and Facebook makes me hate people I know in real life – agreed!

Interesting to see my friend Oli returning to Facebook after his decision to erase himself from it. It almost sounds like he’s returning home?

Nearly 4 months later, I’m returning, in fact there’s a good chance you’re seeing this on Facebook. This is however not without careful thought.

Oli then outlines some good points including…

The feelings of being disconnected and isolated, are well founded, but its also very easy to get sucked into the timeline and up yourself. Its something I have avoided as I can just imagine how much time gets lost there. I wonder if the  Timeline is the new and even more destructive farmville?

As I said previously I removed Facebook from my mobile devices and only look at it every 2-3 days mainly for booking my place on Volleyball sessions (Yes so popular volleyabll is in Manchester that you can’t just turn up on the door). I also found the ical option useful for keeping me a breast of event/calendar invites. They show up on my calendar but then I have to go to Facebook to actually accept, decline or find out more.

I prefer to subvert Facebook than ignore it, which means I still don’t post photos or write new stuff there. Its certainly a dumping ground for things available else where online.

Oli isn’t wrong but there is a pragmatic way which involves having a account and using it in a smart way understanding the issues which come with it. Something like a drunk uncle at a family party, the one which nobody wants to be left alone with after dark I joke of course but if you ask me if facebook is equivalent to a creepy uncle? I would say that’s only the start of the comparisons. In years to come, (15 years I say) it will seem much like a crazy period of time where we didn’t think about what we trust so much?

It wasn’t so surprising to see him back… Although I still (currently) prefer Twitter (even with all the nonsense they have done to support their revenue growth).

Blame tinder or the sick people

Killer Prom Date - Dig The Grave Black & White

Jody sent me a link on Facebook, to this horrible story of a women who was gang raped after meeting a guy on Tinder.

This is horrible and shows the sick and twisted people who hopefully nobody will ever come across. However I do find the advice the detective says a little difficult to take in one go.

Detective inspector Haddow said: ‘It’s absolutely vital that people using dating websites and apps remember that how a person portrays themselves on the internet can be very different from their real life persona.

‘With this in mind, we strongly advise people that if they decide to meet a person they have been introduced to via the internet, then ensure the meeting is in a public place and take a friend along with you.’

I have been on dates with women who have brought a friend along and its been a slightly surreal experience. Now to be fair one was sitting on the same table as us and another one in the next booth. If you are going to bring a friend, for goodness sake don’t bring them to the table!

The story is so horrible and I can’t imagine much worst but its really hard to give advice on what to do before going on a date besides the usual stuff like meet in a public place, text your friend to say you’re ok, get them to call you at a set time. Most of these things the lady in question did and she still ended up meeting these sick people.

I guess the point I’m making is, its not great to put hard rules down, they may help but its not bulletproof advice. Its a matter of judgement,  if you feel somethings not right, get up and go. Heck climb through the toilet window if you have to. But the only person who really knows what to do at the moment is yourself, which is another reason not to drink too much on dates.

Its too easy to say she should have done this, she should have done that (blaming the victim for something so horrible is also a stupid thing to do – don’t look at the comments!). Frankly love and dating are very risky, you can do much to minimise the risk but at some point you need to open yourself up or you never will know.

Do you really think Facebook will be around in 15 years?

me on facebook

I still have this strange relationship with Facebook. I don’t really like it but I end up using it because lots of friends are on it and for them its a core part of the Internet (rightly or wrongly). My volleyball teams also use Facebook to book sessions (yes so popular is volleyball in Manchester) and I do get comments from many more friends when I post things into  Facebook.

In the past I used Facebook as massive dumping ground and didn’t really care to login. My view that Facebook is the modern equivalent of the walled gardens of AOL. Although I still stand by this, I have also noticed my usage increasing too.

So when I read the piece titled I Left Facebook, And You Can Too. I reflected on my own increase usage.

Imagine, for a moment, that you must quit using Facebook forever, starting right now. No more posting to Facebook or checking Facebook for the rest of your life. But don’t worry, you can still e-mail all those friends. Does that make you feel panicky? If you’re panicky, it’s a clue. Maybe you’ve been on Facebook for most of your life, so this kind-of-addicted feeling seems normal to you. It’s not normal. I was talking with a woman in her 50s this weekend, who said to me, “I wish I could quit Facebook but it’s so addictive: ‘Oh, this person said this, that person said that, and oh, this person is taking boating lessons, let’s look at all the pictures of the boat,’ and then before I know it two hours have passed and I don’t even KNOW the person taking boating lessons!” This is what it feels like when your connections with a platform are being strengthened, as opposed to the connections with the people you love: you can spend two hours on Facebook looking at the boating lessons of people you don’t even know. This is very convenient for Facebook.

I barely look at the timeline/newsfeed as I’m generally just looking at the notifications. I can feel the lure of the notifications in facebook, this is why I removed Facebook from my mobile phone and only had it on my tablet (plus it was a massive battery hog). Then very recently I removed Facebook messenger from my phone too.

One of the things I have been thinking about recently is, Facebook as a dating site? The evidence is lots of people meet through facebook and lets be honest, its not any worst than the dating sites? The same sites which say they don’t really know what they are doing

Anyway the question I pose, is if Facebook will be around in 15years? Their move to split up the mobile app is frustrating but I can imagine a Facebook dating app in the next few years. Along with their photos app (I said it first!).
The next 15 years, I expect it will still be around but I’m expecting the innovators dilemma to come into effect at some point. And even splitting up the experiences into more niches won’t save them.

Aviate your phone?

A while ago I tried out Facebook Home but in the end gave up on it.

The open power of Android does mean it can have a totally different user interface like what HTC, Samsung, etc do. I’m currently running CynaogenMod’s Trebuchet 1.0 on my Samsung Galaxy Tab 7+ and Nemus Launcher on my HTC OneX. So I’m already using a non-standard UI on my devices.

I quite liked FB Home, but I really wanted it to based on my Twitter or Google+ activity not FB. Along comes Aviate and my ears perk up.

Aviate is an intelligent home screen replacement that’s designed to show you relevant information depending on where you are or the time of day. It categorizes your apps so they’re organized, proactively shows you relevant information so you don’t have to look for it, and it looks great in the process.

Many of the home screen and launcher replacements we’ve seen focus primarily on giving you a way to personalize and customize your home screen without focusing too much on utility. That’s fine, but Aviate takes a different approach. If you’re at the gym, it’ll surface your workout apps so you can get to them quickly. When you wake up, it’ll show you what you have going on that day, like the weather, upcoming appointments, and anything you’ve missed overnight. When you get to work, your productivity apps are front and center. Plus, Aviate does all of this by automatically changing your home screen layout so it’s useful whenever you pick up your phone.

The app pays attention to your location, time of day, calendar, and other saved data to adapt to your needs in a proactive way. Each of the “cards” with widgets, information, tools, or app collections can be edited too, so if you don’t like what Aviate is suggesting, you can change it so it suits you. Plus, the app recommends new apps to try that it thinks you’ll love based on the ones you have installed and popular apps among Aviate users.

Sounds good but can I get a invite code? Can I heck…!

Oh well… if you got one, please do send one this way thanks…

Facebook is being used for dating… full stop!

facebook_for_real

Saw “Facebook’s Graph Search Awkward For Dating” over the weekend in Online Dating Insider

Sam Yagan, CEO of both OkCupid & Match.com said, “I used graph search and it showed me people who meet my criteria but that didn’t mean I wanted to date those people. … I dont think Facebook itself wants to be in dating – because its risks alientating the majority of its users that don’t want Facebook to be a dating site.”

Aaron Schildkrout, CEO of HowAboutWe, said the problem is what to do after you’ve found someone you like, “pretend you search for your Bjork loving Cobble Hill 27 year old. You find your match. She looks cool. And then…what? You pay a dollar to message her on Facebook? You friend her out of the blue and wait? To me, these actions all feel just kind of… off. You have the clear sense that this is not quite what Facebook was built to do.”

Markus Frind, CEO of Plenty of Fish, agrees, “Facebook isn’t going to kill dating sites. Its all about intent. If you signup to Plenty of Fish there are millions of people who made the decision to signup because they want to be a in relationship.”

No matter what the online dating sites think or even say (and I’m surprised how short sighted OKcupid and PoF CEOs are on this). They should be worrying about facebook.

Facebook is being used by people for online dating. Simple!

I know a few people who have met up, dated and hooked up with friends of friends via facebook (geez look at that film/programme – Catfish). The friends of a friend (foaf) system is a new type filter which doesn’t exist on any dating sites I’ve seen before. Yes Badoo and Zook (all the other facebook dating apps) have tried to build on this filter but frankly done so so from what i gather? Heck they even have their own mobile platform now 😉

Like it or not Facebook currently rules the roost in connecting people and therefore will become a dominate force in online dating market without ever supporting online dating! And frankly some of the business models I’ve seen or guess others are using, they maybe deserve to?

Not that I’m saying its all tied up, there still major issues but Facebook doesn’t charge and verification of friends really helps

Replacing your home launcher

The news world is a buzz with Facebook’s Home (check out the background video).

When I first heard about Home, I thought wow thats really smart… Now with some more time, I’m actually impressed with Home. The guardian shares my thoughts…

…what did Zuckerberg say on Thursday? “We’re not building an operating system. We’re building something that’s a whole lot deeper.” That’s exactly congruent with what Dediu said. Quite possibly what the Facebookers were told matched what they were already thinking. Google’s Android has the advantage that because Google makes its source code available, it can be tweaked endlessly by hardware manufacturers (such as HTC) and software companies (like Facebook). And so, the Facebook phone.

Back to Zuckerberg again: “The home screen is the soul of your phone. It sets the tone. We feel it should be deeply personal.” And: “It’s putting people first in your phone.” Sure, but it also shows Facebook which people you do and don’t pay attention to, by whether you bat away messages from them (useful for its news feed). And it knows what you’re looking at.

And for some people, the idea of those two being so closely linked will be attractive. Don’t forget that as Sir Tim Berners-Lee remarked to John Naughton recently, “there are 200 million people in the world who think Facebook is the internet”. Some people really love using Facebook.

Facebook Home is a launcher and there is a number of them on Android. Most users stick with the stock launcher aka Samsung’s Touchwiz and HTC’s Sense, but they are easily installed without rooting. Now to be fair, in my experience HTC’s Sense was much more flexible about allowing another launcher. Samsung’s touchwiz still bleeds through when pressing certain buttons. End of the day launchers are a great feature of Android! Although its important to know and realise how much data flows through the launchers and what Facebook could learn about you. Of course HTC, Orange, Tmobile, Samsung, etc already benefit from this data already!

I personally use Nemus Launcher on my HTC one X and Samsung Tab 7+ and enjoy its speed, lightness and simple gui. If you want more complex launchers check out Regina 3D. Windows phone 7/8’s gui is copied in Launcher 7.

Those bloody Facebook like scams

Virtual Bagel Facebook scam

Where ever there is people being social there’s room for social engineering? Welcome to the Facebook Like scams… A little old but still a pain!

As you may have noticed I’m not exactly a fan of facebook but seeing a few of those crappy “do this now” posts in my timeline irritates me even more. As you can imagine these are just social engineering scams. One of the most common is ‘Press Like if you hate cancer, ignore if you don’t’? but theres many more… Heck even the BBC did a scam to prove it can be done.

The ‘my sister Mallory’ scam
This post stated that someones ‘sister’ Mallory has down syndrome & doesn’t think she’s beautiful. It then asked for ‘likes’ it to show her she is. The REAL story about this little girl is something much different: Read about it here

As usual you can tell by the call to action and social pressure being layered.

So how does it work?

  1. A page is created.
  2. This page put out a constant stream of heart wrenching and/or mildly amusing images that are shared publicly with a call to action to click, share or comment.
  3. These posts are initially shared by a big group of people all in the same network who have all built up their edge rank over a period of time that then results in the posts eventually leaking into the newsfeeds of real-life accounts.
  4. These people share, like or comment which then spreads.
  5. Eventually a friend of yours hits that little thumbs up button
  6. It’s in your newsfeed.

And within 3 days a post like this one has 70,000 likes, and someone somewhere is about to make a nice little profit by selling the page to a business wanting some quick wins.

The buyer then changes some of the page details. BAM! Instant fanpage with a big following, lots of likes and an in depth edge rank, capable of pushing out content to a pre-built list of thousands of Facebook users. (edit: Page name cannot be altered after 200 likes, just details of the page).

And there you have it… Facebook scammed

Thanks to my friends who stupidly fell for the scams on multiple times. I’ll be sending them this blog post in future.

Relationship fuss

32/365 Status Update

People who have been in a relationship of what ever kind for more that 5 years are lucky. Yes they are matched with someone significant but they don’t have to go through the fuss or even hell of announcing it on fb.

Recent research suggests that the decisions people make about whether and how to represent their love lives on Facebook can often be quite telling. For example, my colleagues and I found that people who post a “Single” relationship status on Facebook have more sexual partners between relationships than those who opt out of posting “Single” on their profile. We also found that people who disclose that they are “In a Relationship” on Facebook also report being more committed to that relationship. Even among married people, we found that those whose primary Facebook photos include their spouses are less likely to split up 6 months later

With previous girlfriends, it was carefully chosen when to change fb statuses. I usually change mine to prove I was no longer dating.

The act of publicly publishing your status (even subconsciously) has a massive profound effect… going by this study a positive effect?

I believe this also applies to publishing things like your new years resolutions. Which I have done for years.

Other peoples thoughts on the year of making love

Rome visit, June 2008 - 57

Now on my 4th blog entry for the year of making love… Its hard to see how it went from this to this

Others have started blogging their thoughts. So I thought it would be worth sharing them, partly to show I’m not the only one and highlight other thoughts.

Whats love got to do with it

I was number 2004, therefore expecting to be quite early on in the process, however the first few groups came and went and I was still left sat there in my seat.  This happened to Adam and one of the Richards as well.  When my number was skipped a second time, I began to wonder if Miss 1004 was even in the room.   Turns out she wasn’t, and I ended up being paired off with a different girl, who, though being nice enough, was not my type at all, and it was clearly obvious I wasn’t hers as well!  Martyn had a similar story with his match, no chemistry, and Adam decided he would rather not be matched with a random girl, not his perfect match, and dint stay to go up on the stage!

Making love on Camera

It started off fairly promising as some of the couples looked well suited, but as the process was drawn out a lot of the matches seemed completely bizarre pairings, and it didn’t take long before couples were showing obvious signs of disapproval on stage in front of the 1000 person crowd. In fact I half expected Jeremy Kyle to spring up at one point as a lad walked off about 5 paces in front of his ‘match’ to a chorus of boos.

I should point out that this went on for a good 4 hours due to the stop-start nature of calling up couples to the stage, and by this time many had lost interest. I felt faint and tired due to not eating or drinking, but just as my eyes were starting to close Adam tapped me and said ‘they’ve just called your number!’ I picked myself up and headed behind the screen to the side of the stage. Whilst the 5 of us lads waited like lambs to the slaughter, we exchanged a bit of last-minute banter, but this is where the nerves began to creep in.

Interesting to read what a gay guy also at the event thought of the whole thing

I entered this endeavour ready to tell horror stories of how we were herded like cattle (which we were), where no one got what they wanted (one guy left out of frustration of having to wait to be part of the 901st couple to be matched), and where the only people involved were just desperate to be on the telly (this happened a lot – me and the boy in question traded stories from the boys and girls sides respectively), but my personal experience was nothing like the sceptical versions we tell ourselves as an audience member: I found someone I genuinely liked, who seemed to like me back, and who I could actually see as a potential partner. Bollocks.

And now Channel4 are jumping in with there own Dating show… Geez, do I have to say anything more!?

Interestingly a breach of contract seems to be effective, so maybe I can remove the disclaimer? According to one person on FB

my sister is a lawyer and she said if i dont hear anything by the end of the week she will send a stern and threatening letter. they broke their contract by saying we will leave the venue by 6pm i left at 8:15. so i will defo get it back

And from the Facebook group Matthew Stokes said,

TV programes are made for the viewers, not for the people taking part. A few digrunteled people, however justified, are not going to be a big concern to the production company, their parent company, and certainly not to the BBC. Don’t kid yourselves. Sorry, but I wouldnt waste too much of your time ranting, complaining, and kicking up a fuss. You are best turning that into positive energy, meeting some cool and sexy people on here, making plans to meet up, and going to one of the events we have arranged ourselves. Its a great display of the human condition that in adversity, groups like this crop up and we are moving on to bigger better sexier things!

The producers clearly didnt set out to upset people, but their main aim is to make a good TV progamme, not to keep 1000 random people entertained. Yes, they will HAVE to arrange to film specific people, yes some of it will be a little contrived, and yes sadly some peoples time will have been wasted. Trust me, if Saturday could have gone any better/smoother/easier than it did, they would have been far happier too. I for-warned them of the issues they were going to face last Thursday on the phone, and I got the impression that they knew it was going to be a toughie. Sadly, it seems that some programme makers are not the best at people management, time management, or logistics! All of this being said, we were there FOR THE PROGRAM. No one paid anything to be there, no one had any guarantees, and we all knew what the concept of the show was. Anyone expecting a second event to meet matches, or payments, or compensation will be sadly disappointed. The apology that we have received is all that we will get, and I do feel bad for people that waited all day, had bad journeys getting home, and spent money to be there.

And this is where I get very twitchy and slightly on my high horse.

It is great positive things come out of adversity however I reject the fact TV programmes HAVE to be about exploitation of people. There is certainly a reason why I work for the BBC