facebook, myspace etc = computer viruses

I read that the definition of a computer virus is: “…a software program capable of reproducing itself and usually capable of causing great harm to files or other programs on the same computer; “a true virus cannot spread to another computer without human assistance”…”

Now when you come to consider the way that now millions of office workers are using facebook during work time, and the incredible speed of growth as the virus gets into more and more systems… facebook sure seems like a bit of malware.

The Times quotes Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos, who said: “Websites like Facebook, Bebo and MySpace fall into the category of websites which can easily gobble up hours of worktime and distract from the employees’ real duties. Facebook is a procrastinator’s paradise”

The Sindie says: “In London, two-thirds of companies are banning or restricting use of the famous website, while some have made it clear that visiting the sites at work is a sackable offence. City firms, including Crédit Suisse and Dresdner Kleinwort, have taken the lead in the crack-down, following similar bans in America and Canada.

“British Gas, the Metropolitan Police and Lloyds TSB were among organisations named as having installed internet filters preventing access to the site.”

Why are they doing this?  Because this pernicious site is gobbling up the capacity of workers and their computers, like a nasty little worm virus hidden on the system.  A worm after all is defined as: “an independent program that replicates from machine to machine across network connections often clogging networks and information systems as it spreads.”

Or perhaps its more like a Trojan, which I found was defined as: “An apparently useful and innocent program containing additional hidden code which allows the unauthorized collection, exploitation, falsification, or destruction of data.”

And with the recent revelation that  Myspace had deleted the accounts of 29,000 sex offenders – who were (it is implied) collecting information and exploiting opportunities, falsifying identities and engaging in destructive behaviour, there is clearly a link.

The disposable heroes of hiphoprisy said that TV is the drug of the nation, and Michael Franti later added that Sattelite is immaculate reception… and it seems to me that just like TV, ‘social notworking’ is eating away at the heart of the collective psyche.

The lyrics from that excellent song could easily be replaced: for example…

‘(T.V./Bebo) is the reason why less than ten percent of our nation reads books daily’

‘(T.V./Facebook) is the stomping ground for political candidates’

‘remote control over the masses’

‘(T.V./Myspace) is the place where the pursuit of happiness has become the pursuit of trivia’

So we have facebook as: Virus, Worm, Trojan, and opiate.  Told you I didnt like it! I dont think much of TV either.


2 thoughts on “facebook, myspace etc = computer viruses

  1. Great rant, Simon. Really enjoyed it! I agree that Facebook is a procrastinator’s paradise. But then, the existence of alcoholism isn’t an argument against wine. I dunno. More rants of this ilk, please 🙂

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