More whinging about companies, this time British Gas 

Our boiler developed a small leak yesterday, so we called British Gas, and they sent out an engineer who has fixed it and serviced it. Excellent!

But I've also received an email telling me that apparently I've opted into some “Rewards” bullshit. So I log into my account on the web and opt back out. They ask why, without a free text field. Tickboxes include “I'm not interested in the bright ideas” but not “I never opted into this bullshit”.

Don't trust HSBC UK bank 

When you try to make an online payment from an HSBC bank account, they may ask you to type an email address. If you read the accompanying text carefully, it says they don't actually need an email address; they just want you to type something, so they can collect *biometric behavioural data* (typing cadence), which they send to a company called Callsign, based in Abu Dhabi. I'm astonished this is legal under the GDPR.

Food smells tasty: good ✔
Food tastes smelly: bad ✘

Country toad
Take me home
To your place
In a pond
Wet and boggy
Warm and foggy
Take me home
Swamp biome

Hebden Bridge walk random nature photo thread 

Took quite a few pictures on this lovely walk, here's some from the phone camera

Hebden beck and hardcastle crags here, plenty of bluebells on show in the latter

#florespondence #walking

nano text editor 

I've just discovered that nano has a lot of useful capabilities that are switched off by default:
* “soft” line-wrapping (for display only)
* “smart” Home key (alternating between the start of the line and the first non-whitespace character)
* auto-indent new lines
* constantly display the cursor position (line and column numbers)
* mouse support (click to move the cursor, or use the commands in the help rows)

See the bottom of the `^G` help text, or `man nanorc`

BBC website minutiae 

We're about to release a change to the global navigation header on bbc.co.uk that substantially changes its visual style for the first time in many years. It's going to be quite uncanny valley for a little while.

UK politics, local election day 

If you're considering voting for a party in order to stop another party getting in: ask yourself:

- whether this would be necessary if the election used proportional representation

- whether the party you're considering voting for supports or opposes proportional representation

- why you think they support or oppose it

UK politics, low effort meme 

Corporate needs me to find the differences between the Conservative party and the Labour party

> Some people prefer smaller communities, […] but with Bluesky we want to give users the option to participate in global conversations the way they do on large social networking platforms.

Well there's their problem. Humans can't do sociability at such scale. If *anyone* can chime in instantly, you stop interacting with *people* and start dealing with hordes of strangers. Think about how depersonalised a big city feels. A “global, social” network is an oxymoron.

Never read Dracula before? Would you like to read it.... over RSS? Dracula is entirely made up of letters, telegrams, newspaper articles. Each has a date, between May 3rd and November 10th, Last year, and now this year, Dracula Daily has offered people the ability to read the classic novel "in real time". It just started, so if you add draculadaily.substack.com/feed to your newsreader, you can follow along this year. #rss

> I just learned that the Māori word for autism is takiwatanga, ‘in [their] own time and space’. It’s such an empathic and gentle way to describe the condition I’m trying to come to terms with.

nitter.net/silverpebble/status

#EDPS launches pilot phase of two new social media platforms: #EUVoice and #EUVideo.
Based on decentralised, free, Open-Source & privacy-oriented @joinmastodon@twitter.com and @joinpeertube@twitter.com, they connect EU institutions with users of the #Fediverse
👉Press Release europa.eu/!8x4DBn

I wouldn't be so quick to ascribe malice. I can't see anything highlighted here that is factually incorrect, but even if it was: I know Rabble and arcalinea from their work pre-Blue Sky, and I find it much easier to believe that they're simply mistaken rather than deliberately fearmongering. Their task here is to compare existing solutions to each other and to a hypothetical ideal solution. Inevitably, they'll criticise the existing solutions. It's not an attack.

@jack Well! A fully-qualified username is essentially a domain-specific URL, so it's not making the other person do the work, and is therefore IMO couth. 🦆🦆🦆

@GoatSarah Ugh! Before you know it, they'll be calling audio programmes that are only available via a specific app and aren't available as an RSS feed that indexes freely-downloadable audio files “podcasts” next!

On the other hand, I do like the idea of calling silent movies “Classical GIFs” — for they are GIFs in the Classical genre. See also nitter.net/JohnDiesattheEn/sta

I'm genuinely surprised by how many people joining Mastodon from Twitter seem unfamiliar with using URLs to give the address of a web page, particularly when that web page has their new Mastodon account.

The whole *point* of the web is that every page has its own address, so you don't need to resort to “Look for ‘Grey the earthling’ on the Queer Party website!!!”

Bloody kids these days etc etc

@arefgee @matrix ActivityPub isn't peer-to-peer, and it isn't the only way P2P social networking can work. By default ActivityPub servers pass along messages from anyone — as we can see by the ugly racism in the replies here, which Matrix's Mastodon server is propagating. In Scuttlebutt (e.g. Manyverse), you only receive messages from people you follow (and people they follow), so you only see messages from people that someone is willing to listen to.

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Queer Party!

A silly instance of Mastodon for queer folk and non-queer folk alike. Let's be friends!