It turns out, Google — without telling me — went into my account and deleted my profile picture. Why? Because I am giving the middle finger in it. See: above.
As the first point of interaction with a user’s profile, all profile photos on Google+ are reviewed to make sure they are in line with our User Content and Conduct Policy. Our policy page states, “Your Profile Picture cannot include mature or offensive content.” Your profile photo was taken down as a violation of this policy. If you have further questions about the policies on Google+ you can visit http://www.google.com/intl/en/+/policy/content.html, or click the “Content Policy” link located in the footer of Google+ pages.
My problem isn’t so much with the fact that I couldn’t have a profile picture of myself giving everyone the finger — which I can and do on Twitter and elsewhere — it’s that no one bothered to tell me or warn me before they just went into my account and deleted the picture. What if this was the only place I had stored the picture?
Bigger picture: this seems like a ridiculous thing for Google to be policing. At first, they were all about ensuring that everyone was using their real name on Google+. After a shit storm about why that was stupid, they backed off. They should back off here as well because, honestly, who gives a shit? If my profile picture offends people, let them un-Circle me or whatever.
This also seems like a slippery slope. In certain cultures, various hand gestures mean different things. Is Google also going to delete my profile picture if I have my fingers up to my chin, for example?
If I were Google, I would be much more concerned about the rampant spam problem currently plaguing Google+. Flag and delete those fuckers — not the fine, upstanding citizens of your network who just want to have a little PG-13 fun.
Anyway, I’ve fixed my attitude and uploaded a picture (below) which should hopefully be in line with the terms of service no one actually reads anyway:
Wow. Josh Topolsky is mad. And that by itself is fine — he’s clearly passionate about technology, which is great. What’s not fine is the fact that he’s way off-base in his rant. So far off-base that I need to respond.
First and foremost, Topolsky has decided to turn my thoughts on the Galaxy Nexus into full on class warfare between Android and iOS. That is, he twists my comparison of attention to detail into an argument about rich vs. poor people.
I mean, he actually tries to do this.
One little problem.
Congratulations to CNET’s Brooke Crothers for writing one of the most ridiculous things I’ve read in a while — and successfully getting myself (and undoubtedly many others) to link. Even more impressive: he didn’t have to break 400 words to do it. My guess is that he wrote this in 10 minutes. If not, that’s just sad.
You used to see a lot more of these types of posts a few years ago. But once those writing them started getting exposed as fools, they slowed down. You see, the argument used to be that those constantly writing positively about Apple were both morons and brainwashed — Apple was insignificant in the all-important PC market at the time, so those who liked the products were obviously whack jobs on the fringe of humanity.
Then a funny thing happened.
Apple became one of the most successful companies and the most valuable company in the world. They transformed the entertainment landscape, the retail landscape, the mobile landscape, and did something all the naysayers said was impossible: created an actual market for tablets. Now most companies around the world are trying to copy at least part of Apple’s business.
Matt Rosoff’s thoughts on Google becoming more like Microsoft should have been a provocative and effective article. Instead it’s a slideshow. Why? I have no clue.
Well okay, pageviews, clearly. But it’s still weird to see this type of story formatted this way.
Business Insider has taken a lot of shit over the past year or so for pageview pumping by way of slideshows (AND CAPS-LOCK HEADLINES). Whatever, that’s their decision and it seems to be working out for them. All I know is that as an author, I would hate this.
Rosoff’s name is on the landing page and nowhere else. As a result, it doesn’t feel like an article he crafted. At best, it feels like a collage he made. I can’t believe any writer would appreciate this.
3 slides (of 12) in, I have no clue who wrote this. And the whole thing lacks the flow of great writing. It’s a bunch of mini-blurbs instead of one cohesive article making a strong case.
Both the reader and the writer lose as a result of this nonsense. But Business Insider wins, I suppose.