How Fake Is It?

An old expression in the collectibles world is that anything that has value will eventually be faked or stolen. Art is faked so often that certain types of art have lost all value, because no one can tell the fakes from the genuine items. It’s not just crooks trying to beat the rules of the game. The people responsible for policing the fraud are often the people perpetrating the fraud. The truth is, anything that does not have objective value, but relies on insiders, will be subject to fraud and theft.

It is something to keep mind when thinking about the future of internet properties like the big socials and media sites. They rely on traffic to generate revenues from advertisers and those interested in their traffic data. Twitter does not make much from actual ads on the platform, but they sell user information to those interested in tracking your whereabouts on-line and in the real world. That traffic data is essentially what makes it possible for internet properties to thrive.

That brings up that old maxim of the collectibles business. Who is authenticating the data and appraising its value? There are sites that claim to measure web traffic. Like the ratings services for radio and television, they claim to have a secret way to sample traffic and then estimate over all traffic. Obviously, the sites themselves have their traffic, which they use to pitch advertisers, investors and in the case of politics, the donors that keep these operations running.

Of course, the ratings systems for radio and television have been subject to shenanigans for the same reason art is faked. Those ratings have value, so if you can fake those ratings, it’s like having free access to the bank vault. The ratings themselves are published so the unscrupulous can make bold claims. “We’re number one among left-handed Korean midgets” becomes “we’re number one in our segment.” It is a bandit market and the ratings help facilitate it.

In the internet world, capturing web traffic is a bit more complex. That’s where services like SimilarWeb and Alexa step in to provide hard data. Well, it is supposed to be hard data, but where they get their data is not easy to know. They are a bit cagey about how they arrive at their numbers. Alexa claims to rely on a browser plugin and site owners installing their script. SimilarWeb claims to get data from a panel of hundreds of millions of web users, as well as a sample of websites.

How accurate is the data? Probably not very accurate at all. Consider the British political site Unherd. The Alexa rankings don’t give us overall traffic, but the SimilarWeb ratings tell us they get 1.6 million visitors per month. Is that real? There’s no way to know based on the data provided. It looks like a lot of their traffic comes from aggregators, rather than real people. Then again, how many of their readers would install an Alexa browser plugin? Probably very few.

For small sites that deal in politics, traffic is not that big of an issue, as their donors are not targeting a mass audience. What about other types of data like YouTube views or Twitter followers? If that data real? It’s clear that Twitter is loaded with fake accounts, but how many are their fake accounts? It could be millions by now. How many are used by Twitter to boost users they like? No one can know, but it is not hard to see how that would be something they do for public relations reasons.

Think about it. Twitter is the preferred social media platform of the establishment media, so it is Twitter’s interest to make them happy. That is, in part, why they are feverishly scrubbing anything that vexes the gentle souls in the press corps. How hard would it be for them to ramp up the follower counts and likes on those same media accounts with their army of robot user accounts? Follower counts have value, so it is a safe bet those follower counts are being faked by all interested parties.

It is not just fraud, which is probably rampant in all of these measures of internet activity, but incompetence plays a role. YouTube views will go backwards, because thousands of accounts have been purged. This happens on Twitter as well. Of course, Google breaking its own search algorithm to prevent you from seeing what you like has probably crippled the view counts on YouTube. In other words, One type of deception is colliding with another type of deception.

The big players who make up the bulk of ad buying are starting to figure out that web traffic is not all it is claimed to be. Placing ads on a social media platform is worse than a waste of money. If a company made a video of the executive burning piles of their cash and then posted it on YouTube, they would get more sales from that video than running a regular YouTube ad. Eventually, this becomes obvious to everyone and the ad market on-line begins to dry up for these sites.

The real value in these internet properties, obviously, is in the data they steal from users and sell to governments and corporations. Like the ad business, the fraud in this data will eventually become an issue. We very well may be seeing the high water point for the big social media players. Like the market for certain types of art, the inability to tell the real thing from the fakes will collapse the market. In the end, it will not be public contempt but their own shenanigans that ends their reign of terror.

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Joey Jünger
Joey Jünger
28 days ago

I know next to nothing about finance (a man’s got to know his limitations, as Clint Eastwood said), so someone with more background will have to answer this question for me: how tied up with other aspects/sectors of the economy is Silicon Valley? Because if the answer is “very” as was the case with Wall Street, then my guess is it’s another case of “If you take us down, everything goes down and there will be bread lines again.” There may be bread lines anyway (if we’re lucky) due to the panic over Corona wrecking so many economies (even I… Read more »

DLS
DLS
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

The answer to your question is: not very. It’s all just ineffective advertising. If Google, Faceberg and Twitter disappeared tomorrow, the impact on the economy would be nil.

Falcone
Falcone
Reply to  DLS
28 days ago

what’s strange is that the people the government would want to be keeping tabs on, namely people like us, are not on Twitter or FB. So Twitter and FB are handing tracking info on useless retards.

LOl tracking info, as if people are merely UPS packages

I wonder if/when the government is going to figure this out.

“G-dammit, we don’t care that soccer moms are shopping at Target. Get us tracking data on those crazies over at the Zblog !!!”

Joey Jünger
Joey Jünger
Reply to  Falcone
28 days ago

If it’s gotten to the point where the “Proud Boys” are the biggest right-wing white supremacist threat that our rulers can find, then it’s obvious there are no real white supremacist threats. They should just go back to the secret network of Russians. At least Russians exist. Conversely, they could let some old WN 1.0 Stormfront types out of prison so that the ADL and SPLC can continue to justify their jobs programs and manage to scare more donations out of old Jewish ladies in Florida worried about the Nazis coming for them in their retirement villages.

Falcone
Falcone
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

LOL I can see Christopher Wray in a meeting with ADL talking about the need to release a skinhead from jail to keep up the illusion of Nazi terror in Broward County Florida

The Wild Geese Howard
The Wild Geese Howard
Reply to  Falcone
28 days ago

I’m surprised the swamp hasn’t managed to set up and execute a false flag along those lines to use as a cudgel to beat team Trump with.

greyenlightenment
Reply to  The Wild Geese Howard
28 days ago

why would they. the swamp has thrived under trump.

David Wright
Member
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

By the way, I am three degrees removed from knowing one of the supposed Michigan supremacist kidnappers. My brother knows one of the uncles and told me about the raid on this guy’s seventy something parents. Raided their house by ramming the front door down with a vehicle. Stripped searched and cuffed the old couple for a few hours while searching. After all was done a gaping hole was left and no recourse but to stay somewhere else. The grandpa was in tears describing the incident to his family and how shamed he was he couldn’t protect his wife. All… Read more »

Falcone
Falcone
Reply to  David Wright
28 days ago

But but but Hannity says the 99% of agents the ground are the good guys

Paul Luap
Paul Luap
Reply to  David Wright
28 days ago

“Back the Blue!”

Libertarians have at least one thing right in arguing that “law enforcement”, as currently structured, does not deserve any support.

James O'Meara
James O'Meara
Reply to  Paul Luap
28 days ago

Anarchists, too. That’s why TPTB vilify “vigilantes” and “militias” and “racist neighborhood watch groups” and “lynch mobs”: the people actually taking care of the criminals in their midst, rather than cops paid for enforcing anarcho-tyranny.
“Who elected you?” We don’t need to have the people elect us; we ARE the people.
“Defund the police” is actually a sound idea, just not the Leftist version of replacing them with social workers and snitches; instead, we need vigilantes and militias.

ExPraliteMonk
ExPraliteMonk
Reply to  Paul Luap
27 days ago

Every guy I grew up with and thought would be in prison some day is now a cop.

Alzaebo
Alzaebo
Reply to  David Wright
28 days ago

&#$%!!!!

Wood axes.

Where’s my goddam ax

Last edited 28 days ago by Alzaebo
James O'Meara
James O'Meara
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

The prevalence of “bad guys we’re forced to use” movies, from The Dirty Dozen to Suicide Squad, is probably typical of the way Hollywood plants a false reality to serve as a cover story. There’s actually no need to release “the real bad guys” since the FBI etc. manufacture them as needed, using a few plants and a lot of patsies. Much easier than trying to run down real criminals. It’s like how Hoover invented the “10 Most Wanted” list, where you only showed up on it if they already had you in their sights, so they could then announce… Read more »

tarstarkas
tarstarkas
Reply to  DLS
28 days ago

That might have been true 20 years ago, but it ain’t true now.
The kind of revenue being generated by the big socials is far too great to not have a MAJOR impact on employment. Who knows how many people now make a full time living directly from social media.

Evil Sandmich
Reply to  tarstarkas
28 days ago

The have no real value beyond their make-work component, but as you point out, that’s not nothing. Healthcare is much the same with it’s army of paperwork pushers (there’s one company I have a passing association with that helps insurance companies get Medicare reimbursements, i.e., it’s a paperwork pusher for a paperwork pusher). Even a place like Amazon with real warehouses, trucks, etc. has no worth beyond the grift dollars that flow through the place.

Drew
Drew
Reply to  tarstarkas
28 days ago

Not many, at least outside of the doc al media companies. Most online marketing jobs are basically busy work for self important millennials. In my experience, personal interaction drives social media engagement not the other way around (at least in the business world).

greyenlightenment
Reply to  Drew
28 days ago

make-work for bachelor degree holders

Alzaebo
Alzaebo
Reply to  tarstarkas
28 days ago

Case in point: the NRA has 160,000 employees enrolled in its pension plan.

CompscI
CompscI
Reply to  Alzaebo
28 days ago

I find that hard to believe. But whether true or not, the Annual report last year to membership was that they had $134M in pension liabilities and about $90M set aside. Not out of line for these things, but not optimal. Big deal being made—correctly—is that the guys at the top are rewarding themselves with all types of pension bene’s while the little guys get short changed. That of course is out of line for such an organization. Wayne LaPiere has been around way too long.

ProZNoV
ProZNoV
Reply to  Alzaebo
28 days ago

JEBUS!!! I hope to heck that ain’t true.

NRA may not be perfect, but it has thus far been the sole effective antithesis to O’Sullivan’s Law.

Pew, Pew, and all that. The great equalizer (Pew-pewers) have become insanely expensive, and rare, of late. Red sky at morning?

Truly hope not.

Last edited 28 days ago by ProZNoV
abprosper
abprosper
Reply to  ProZNoV
28 days ago

Supply can’t keep up with demand. The US doesn’t precisely make ammo, it imports components which are getting pricey and basically everyone is arming up and buying ammo by the case.
The issue really isn’t guns though unless you don’t have them or ammo but lack of a goal to achieve using them.
Things will get scary when either the Right or the John Brown Gun Club or whoever decides that its go time.

abprosper
abprosper
Reply to  tarstarkas
28 days ago

Most of the work in our society is make work and with automation even if we clawed back all the manufacturing we wouldn’t have enough jobs. Now mass repatriation would buy us some time as would a 30 hour work week and maybe limiting female employment but it won’t prevent The Gods of the Copybook Headings from having their day. C.F the Azerbaijani, Turkey, Russia, Armenia war brewing in Europe. Consumerism is on its last legs and the enduring lesson from C19 is “we don’t need stuff, we need each other.” No doubt our elite will be pushing “live in… Read more »

Educated.redneck
Educated.redneck
Reply to  tarstarkas
27 days ago

Just imagine the increase in profitability if workers could no longer spend half the working day on social media!
(Sarcasm on many levels there)

TomA
TomA
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

There is rot at the top of nearly all the major social institutions; be it news media, academia, the DC political class, the new tech oligarchies, etc. A wise gardener prunes the rot and pulls the weeds as soon as possible. Wait too long and the only practical solution is to burn the crop and start over again.

Joey Jünger
Joey Jünger
Reply to  TomA
28 days ago

My point, though, is that if the symbiosis is deep enough between the corrupt and the rest of us, then we can’t remove the parasite without killing the host. I would like to see Dimon, Blankfein, Dorsey, Zuckerberg, Pichai, all charged with crimes and exiled, etc., but if the downstream consequence is some normie losing their pension they’ve worked twenty years for, then it’s a much harder prospect. I’d hazard most of the accelerationists/criers to let slip the dogs of war have never gone three days without eating or indoor plumbing. A reset may not only need to happen, but… Read more »

The Wild Geese Howard
The Wild Geese Howard
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

Totally agree about Mad Max/Postman scenarios.

99% of us are not ready and do not want that, even if we claim we do.

MildlyNonPlussedMax
MildlyNonPlussedMax
Reply to  The Wild Geese Howard
28 days ago

The Mad Max / Postman scenario never happened in history. Show me. The state and govts often degraded, or faded away but that never happened – even in the 1200 BC Dark Age. The replacements were lessers, or the lands were depopulated, or genocided but even after the fall of Rome, of the Hittites the Postman did not happen.

MildlyNonPlussedMax
MildlyNonPlussedMax
Reply to  MildlyNonPlussedMax
28 days ago

What did happen in history was say the Bolshevik genocide, etc. Its quite possible here- as we are a leaderless bunch of coward peasants, thought leaders on the Right worst of all. You are correct to say 99% of “us” are not ready. No one cares who is ready; and its exclusively The Left. There is no Right. Nor will any organization come from the Right. The Left has by default the powers of decision – for an anti-left organization to arise, the Left would have to go too far and have existing organizations turn on them. The idea that… Read more »

abprosper
abprosper
Reply to  MildlyNonPlussedMax
28 days ago

Mad Max is fantasy. The Postman novel is a lot closer to reality with local rulers and leaders, some raiders and the like and a general notion that no one, especially the survivalists as Brin called them would accept the legitimacy of anyone from the former state . Also important was that the state was too weak to do much about it. The Postman and the outcome was fanciful though. As for the US right now, local leadership on the Right is strong. Klamath Falls put 10% of its population down as light infantry with little effort and there are… Read more »

Educated.redneck
Educated.redneck
Reply to  MildlyNonPlussedMax
27 days ago

But suddenly, Ghengis Khan.

Ben the Layabout
Ben the Layabout
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

“I’ve watched the dogs of war enjoying their feast
I’ve seen the western world go down in the east
The food of love became the greed of our time
And now we’re living on the profits of crime”
— Black Sabbath, “Hole in the Sky” (1974)

TomA
TomA
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

I agree that the rot has infected our species genome, and the average Joe is not what he used to be. But the solution to that is a return to real hardship and a re-ignition of our ancestral survival-of-the-fitest culling mechanism. You can’t cure DNA pollution with a pill or new government program, just ol’ time competition in an existential arena. And this reckoning is coming, ready or not.

Last edited 28 days ago by TomA
ProZNoV
ProZNoV
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

I hear “Great Reset” and think to myself –

“Well, fudge. All that playing by the rules and amassing a {modest} fortune was for naught”

Then I think – “Fook it. I’ll do even better after the Reset. Because there’s more stoopid ‘gits out there than I can count” .

G. Gordon Liddy ran the prison he was sent to, then made bank when he got out. Age teaches that great unwashed masses are dumber than you’d believe when the thought crossed your mind in your 20’s.

Last edited 28 days ago by ProZNoV
abprosper
abprosper
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

I have gone without food and indoor plumbing and frankly I’d rather not do that again.
Chaos sucks, privation sucks and its little wonder even DR people aren’t enthusiastic for pushing society in that direction, especially for something as abstract as “species breeding” or “society” or whatever B.S we are fed.

Last edited 28 days ago by abprosper
Suburban_elk
Reply to  Joey Jünger
27 days ago

Just how tough are you?

The Wild Geese Howard
The Wild Geese Howard
Reply to  TomA
28 days ago

The rot is the fruit of the wildly successful Long March through the institutions.

WCiv...---...
WCiv...---...
Reply to  The Wild Geese Howard
27 days ago

And what a surprisingly easy, breezy, tiptoeing through the tulips of a march it was at that.

WMburden
WMburden
Reply to  WCiv...---...
27 days ago

Well they were just unseating old New Dealers. Daddy done in by kids, and his accountants and lawyers ((())) kids.

Drew
Drew
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

To second DLS above, big internet firms do two things: collect data on net users to sell for market data, and sell ads. These two things predate the internet, although market research and advertising was more difficult then. However, if the internet companies went broke, research and advertising would just revert to it’s prior methods. Given how ineffective internet ads are, I doubt anyone would miss Google and Facebook outside of those who are currently employed by them.

Joey Jünger
Joey Jünger
Reply to  Drew
28 days ago

You’re forgetting the most important tool for controlling people: information, and I’m not talking about marketing. I’m talking about people’s private lives. Ron Unz used to joke that if you wanted a career in D.C., then you should do something shady and make sure only a handful of powerful people know about it. That way they know you’re susceptible to blackmail and thus can be trusted to play ball. You can’t put a price-tag on a “private” conversation between a senator (his initials are L.G.) and a rent boy, especially if you work for a foreign government (whose name begins… Read more »

Drew
Drew
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

“That way they know you’re susceptible to blackmail and thus can be trusted to play ball.”

It appears that this theory is predicated on a couple crucial assumptions. First, that people will reject someone if they do something shady. Second, that people will accept proof of malfeasance on it’s face. Given how much evangelicals love Trump, it would appear the first assumption is false. Given that Biden already has millions of votes, it would appear that the second assumption is false. Perhaps the blackmail theory is a bunch of bunk.

Joey Jünger
Joey Jünger
Reply to  Drew
28 days ago

The old kinds of “gotcha” tricks might not work because we have new taboos, but if you get caught violating a new taboo, you’re toast. Example: Sure, if you get caught cheating or taking bribes they might not be able to blackmail you. But if you get caught saying the dread “N-word” in a private conversation? Donald Sterling, a Jewish billionaire, begged his mistress in a private conversation to please stop being so obvious about sleeping with black men, and he never used a bad word and qualified his ass off, and he still got axed. If Trump had dropped… Read more »

Drew
Drew
Reply to  Joey Jünger
27 days ago

Trump probably could have lynched a black, yelling the n-word the whole time and still gotten elected, as long as he kept talking about a wall and insulted the establishment. That’s one of the perks of living in a post-truth society: politics is partisan, not personal. Trump supporters now dismiss all criticism of Trump as fake news, whether it’s merited or not. Biden supporters do the same (BTW if you want some lulz, look at reddit threads regarding the Biden laptop scandal; these people are quite delusional). You just can’t have blackmail in a world of moral relativism because truth… Read more »

greyenlightenment
Reply to  Joey Jünger
28 days ago

Big tech came out stronger than ever as a consequence of Covid. Stimulus checks pure top-line growth for Amazon and Walmart. Similar to the 2008 bailouts, it is like a soft form of socialism or central planning but with privatized profits. .

Peter Klein
Peter Klein
Member
Reply to  Joey Jünger
27 days ago

My girlfriend and I used to live on Susan Drive in San Bruno. One day I decided to show someone our old digs in Google maps. Imagine my surprise to see they had torn down our old complex. Can you guess what was built in its place? That’s right…YouTube’s headquarters! The next day there was a shooting at the facility. Ah, clown world is never short on delightful surprises.

Hilltop
Hilltop
28 days ago

Guys who have been in our thing for a while know that it’s overwhelmingly fake and gay, but I’ve always wondered, what percentage of people overall are aware of the fakeness and gayness?

Is that number going up? What is it overall? What would be the threshold for a definitive rejection of the globohomo tech/media?

The fake-and-gayers spend a lot of time putting on a show of authority: those ridiculous spaceship-looking TV sets, the I’m-very-serious faces of the “journalists”. Once you see through it, you never unsee it–but are normies still falling for that?

Falcone
Falcone
Reply to  Hilltop
28 days ago

I bet we could extrapolate from Z’s own experience and his site.

I think he said he had 300,000 unique visits last month. We could figure out comment to unique visit ratio and my guess is that would be the lower end from what we could expect from Twitter.

As for knowing it’s fake and gay? Can’t be much, or more than any other realm of human activity where the number of dupes is always in the 90 percent range

Falcone
Falcone
Reply to  thezman
28 days ago

a site claiming millions of hits with a handful of comments per story is probably lying”

Has to be

Ben the Layabout
Ben the Layabout
Reply to  thezman
28 days ago

And the paying customers are the ultimate voters! Money is the sincerest form of flattery.

ProZNoV
ProZNoV
Reply to  thezman
28 days ago

The Zman’s followers are therefore the elusive 1%?

Fine by me. Quantity does not necessarily = quality.

Member
Reply to  Falcone
27 days ago

The wife had a segment from “60 Minutes” playing on her laptop a few days ago. She turned it off before I could even yell “stop playing that Bolshevist horseshit” but I was able to hear enough that I noticed that my impression of it was different from what it might have been even 5 years ago. The specific story was about a Trump rally. The woman reporter was narrating in what struck me as a breathless, melodramatic, style that was obviously also meant to sound very “concerned”. She didn’t quite say “and then the Trumpenführer rose out of the… Read more »

Hoagie
Hoagie
28 days ago

But public contempt will come in a close second.

DLS
DLS
28 days ago

If they don’t charge you for the product, you’re the product.

Falcone
Falcone
Reply to  DLS
28 days ago

it’s “free” for a reason

usNthem
usNthem
28 days ago

50, 60, 70 years ago, there were far, far fewer producers of “stuff”. Fewer authors, artists etc. Most things produced probably had some sort of utility. Now days, there are whole industries built around producing s*** and whole industries built around copying that s***. None of it has any real utility other than to look at – on a shelf or a wall. The majority is just crap your kids are going to throw away when you kick the bucket because most can’t tell the the difference between the wheat and the chaff. But you’ve got to figure most of… Read more »

Falcone
Falcone
Reply to  usNthem
28 days ago

AI will soon be adequate enough to produce the mindless fodder that permeates the internet

Forever Templar
Forever Templar
Reply to  Falcone
28 days ago

Rumor has been for the past year the big message board sites like Reddit have been driven by “AI” generated comments.

KGB
KGB
Reply to  usNthem
28 days ago

Just stop by your local farmer’s market or Fruit/Vegetable Festival to see the tables and tables of overpriced bric-a-brac. When did the market suddenly conclude that sarongs and beach glass jewelry were in short supply and could underpin the economy of the future?

billrla
Member
Reply to  KGB
28 days ago

KGB: Haven’t you heard? Sarongs and beach glass jewelry help heal the earth. Especially when sold at farmer’s markets.

Last edited 28 days ago by Bill_Robbins
The Wild Geese Howard
The Wild Geese Howard
Reply to  usNthem
28 days ago

Just look at the entire YouTube/Instagram/Only Fans/Tiktok economy that didn’t exist ten years ago.

There are a lot of people making a good, even great living purely on social media. There are more than a few social media millionaires around.

Forever Templar
Forever Templar
Reply to  The Wild Geese Howard
28 days ago

Yeah, but what happens when that bubble bursts? These millionaires you see just got in early enough to establish themselves and reap the idiots who idolize them. Their fan bases will eventually get bored and move on. You used to see this on YouTube all the time. A guy finds a burgeoning scene and does his gimmick early enough to the fans. Lifespan is about five years, max, and he bottom falls out.

Drew
Drew
Reply to  Forever Templar
27 days ago

This is particularly true of comedy channels. They usually only have about 2 years worth of consistently funny weekly drops. It would appear that legitimately talented people can make it in hollywood or NYC, while YT gets the dregs, for the most part.

Drew
Drew
Reply to  The Wild Geese Howard
27 days ago

I forget where I saw it, maybe The Atlantic, but there was a story on how most of the more famous YouTube stars worked low paying gigs to pay for their filming setup. These were people who had hundreds of thousands of subscribers and a million+ views on every video, but still couldn’t monetize their game enough to pay for their production costs. The main takeaway from the article was that maybe a handful of people were making six figures or more, but the vast bulk of even the most popular channels were financial losers.

Ben the Layabout
Ben the Layabout
Reply to  usNthem
28 days ago

You’ve hit an important point. If you have valuable stuff (collectibles), can you bear to give it away to a loved one who actually wants it, knows its true value? If you can’t bear to part with it, as you say, the odds are that the heir won’t know or won’t appreciate its value, monetary or sentimental. Even with true collectibles, like rare coins, don’t get me even started in the horrible bid/ask prices. I’ve had first hand experience liquidating a “rare coin” collection. You’ll get 20 cents on the dollar, if you’re lucky. And that is a relatively liquid… Read more »

Maus
Maus
Reply to  Ben the Layabout
28 days ago

Amen, Ben. I was a collector in my youth. When I started spending real money to acquire coins, I chose foreign types, especially large coppers. When circumstances forced me to sell my ecclectic and eccentric collection, the dealers basically made lowball offers on the silver and rejected the bulk of the collection. I sold what I could; gave the remainder to a nephew; and washed my hands of numismatics thereafter. When my mother died at 90, she left the kids a curio cabinet with hundreds of Hummel and Lladro figurines. None of us wanted these maudlin dust-collectors. They were sold… Read more »

ProZNoV
ProZNoV
Reply to  Maus
28 days ago

Die penniless, and let the last check bounce (because zuck bankers).

Words of wisdom from my father (who otherwise, never bounced a check).

Dying with a huge bank balance is the sign of an empty life.

Last edited 28 days ago by ProZNoV
Maus
Maus
Reply to  ProZNoV
27 days ago

Maybe so; but I sometimes wish assholes like Gates and Soros were simply greedy and hoarded their billions rather than funding all their foolish schemes. It’s not what you have; it’s what you do with it that matters.

Swanson
Swanson
Reply to  usNthem
28 days ago

I was a graphic designer professionally for 20 years. I even remember the days before photoshop. My services and skill would pay a handsome salary back then. Early in my career I noticed the power of Adobe software and got into it understanding thats where the industry was going. After graduating again with more graphic designer knowledge for the digital age my income increased even more. Fast forward to 2015 and I left my graphic design career behind and took up education in a wholly different field. Pre-highschool kids can now operate the software I spent a heavy price to… Read more »

Ben the Layabout
Ben the Layabout
Reply to  Swanson
28 days ago

 “Grandpa please tell us again about the t-square,  the artist pencils and the Gum Eraser.” 🙆 🙇

Nunnya Bidnez, jr
Nunnya Bidnez, jr
Reply to  Ben the Layabout
28 days ago

I’ve got a Keufel & Esser drafting set for sale, if you’re interested.

Maus
Maus
Reply to  Nunnya Bidnez, jr
27 days ago

One of the niceat gifts of my childhood was my great uncle’s complete set of silver-plated brass drafting tools. I took mechanical drawing in eighth grade and it almost displaced chemistry as the thing I wanted to do. I still put ink to paper with an occasiinal tinge of joyful nostalgia; but CAD took the “art” out of it for me. Sometimes the mind clings to the buggy whip even tighter than the hand.

Forever Templar
Forever Templar
Reply to  Swanson
28 days ago

Well, that’s a genuine example of creative destruction. One of the few that’s definite.

Member
Reply to  Swanson
27 days ago

On top of technological change there’s the problem that, in a globalized society, it’s hard to justify telling people to spend time learning anything. Why would they not expect the corporate elite to contrive some new scheme to flood their job market with cheap foreign labor? This is what happened to computer programming after all. There’s also the second order effect where employers won’t train people because they know their employees will expect them to do exactly that. Training employees then is just a way of training people to break away, steal your IP, and start their own businesses, realizing… Read more »

Glenfilthie
Glenfilthie
Member
28 days ago

I got a bookface account in ‘06 but could read the writing on the wall even then. I left it mostly dormant and cancelled it in 09 when it started getting bad. I could have just left it dormant but I wanted to give them the finger when I quit. Never bothered with Twitter. i gotta admit, though… I DO like Gab, though. My feeling now is that those are not public spaces. They’re sites for noggered BLMers and Antifa fags, and I don’t want to be anywhere near those morons unless it’s going to be sporting and guns are… Read more »

Falcone
Falcone
28 days ago

Stands to reason that if someone has 1 million Twitter followers that there would be a certain consistent percentage of replies and/or shares from real users.

I am not on Twitter but it’s pretty hard to swallow that some of these people have hundreds off thousands of followers and their tweets only generate a 100 or so replies from actual confirmable people.

Last edited 28 days ago by Falcone
whitney
Member
28 days ago

Big storm just came through town. A lot of people out of power have been for days. AT&T lost five out of six towers so people with AT&T cell phones only work sporadically. Internet’s been at dial-up speeds. It all feels very foreshadowy

ProZNoV
ProZNoV
Reply to  whitney
28 days ago

After Al “Man-Bear-Pig” Gore lost in 2000, all the networks came out and said they wouldn’t report poll results nationwide until the last polling station closed in California, so as not to depress the vote after Florida was called. Wonder if they’ll hold to that gentleman’s agreement this time around? Or just full on lies about a massive Biden blowout in FL..”No point voting now, rest of America!”? You can be sure that FB, GOOG, and Twat have committed to some predetermined course of actions on election day. We’ll never truly know how much they swung the needle. Other wise…the… Read more »

Horace
Horace
Reply to  ProZNoV
28 days ago

“Wonder if they’ll hold to that gentleman’s agreement this time around?”

They will if they decide it is in their interest and will not if they decide it is not in their interest. Their only metric for decision-making is “will it help us to destroy white Christians.”

Forever Templar
Forever Templar
Reply to  ProZNoV
28 days ago

Say what you will about Gore, I still maintain Bush stole that election. It was as soft a coup as you can get.

ProZNoV
ProZNoV
Reply to  Forever Templar
27 days ago

It wouldn’t be the first time. Pretty much established history that LBJ rigged the election in Texas so JFK would win the presidency. Chicago was also in on the shenanigans.

Ultimately worked out pretty well for LBJ, although in hindsight JFK would’ve lived longer if he’d lost.

TomA
TomA
28 days ago

The gravy train can’t run forever on Other Peoples Money. Sooner or later, the bubble bursts and reality comes at you like a 2×4 upside the head. And that’s a good thing.

Ben the Layabout
Ben the Layabout
Reply to  TomA
28 days ago

Or: John can rob Peter to pay Paul. But the problem is:
(A) Peter eventually runs out of money or stuff to steal; or
(B) Peter buys a gun. 😀

Forever Templar
Forever Templar
Reply to  Ben the Layabout
27 days ago

(B)-1 Peter hordes guns and doesn’t do anything at all.

Lord Jim
Lord Jim
28 days ago

You start to realize that there are people who love the deception, love the fakeness, love the lying.

Apparently to see if they can make society conform to some sort of novelistic story of justice that they have in their heads. A story which was itself cooked up by some of the most malevolent people in human history.

And which will result in piles of bodies. But they don’t really care, because forcing this story of justice on people gave them an excuse to seize and exercise power and that was all they really cared about at heart anyway.

The Wild Geese Howard
The Wild Geese Howard
Reply to  Lord Jim
28 days ago

“Power is not a means, but an end, Winston.”

Severian
28 days ago

I love how fast we’re returning to the world of bastard feudalism, where the local power brokers have their own affinities held in line by mutual dirt and personal relationships govern everything. The ruling class even marry exclusively within their ranks — not just Bushes and Kerrys and Kennedys; look at how many fucking Kagans there are salted through the think tank racket, on both “sides” of the Uniparty. They’re even having trouble producing the traditional “heir and a spare” thanks to their deviant lifestyles – another classic Late Medieval trait. If they knew any history at all, the liberals… Read more »

The Wild Geese Howard
The Wild Geese Howard
Reply to  Severian
28 days ago

how fast we’re returning to the world of bastard feudalism, where the local power brokers have their own affinities

The local power of the out of control governors and mayors has been the most striking revelation of the Beer Flu hoax.

Honestly, it’s a real weakness in the system. Any honest commentator knows lockdowns are far worse than Beer Flu, and are a form of intentional harm.

Because they are a form of intentional harm, there is no good reason the Feds should not declare the lockdowns null and void in the name of freedom and public health.

That would have already happened in a sane timeline, which we are not.

Last edited 28 days ago by The Wild Geese Howard
Severian
Reply to  The Wild Geese Howard
28 days ago

Yep. The main reason we’re lurching from crisis to crisis is that anyone who matters can get everyone else who matters on the phone. So no matter what happens, everyone’s first thought is how to expand the power of his own little fiefdom. Kung Flu panic is good for social media’s business, so they push Kung Flu. But Kung Flu is killing Hollywood, so it won’t be too long before the honchos at MGM call in a favor from their buddies at Twitter, and Kung Flu goes away. (If the rubes need a scapegoat, well, Fauci volunteered – he rolled… Read more »

The Wild Geese Howard
The Wild Geese Howard
Reply to  Severian
28 days ago

Fauci has one of the highest salaries in the entire US government, something like $300-400k and an estimated net worth of $10-20 million.

He also holds patents on remedisvir, which is why he’s constantly pushing it.

Nice work, if you can get it.

ProZNoV
ProZNoV
Reply to  The Wild Geese Howard
28 days ago

$10-$20 million isn’t achieved on shrewd 401(k) planning.

$300-400k a year ain’t bad, but it’s not “FU” money, by a long shot.

Vizzini
Reply to  ProZNoV
27 days ago

$10 million net worth can be achieved on a base salary of $300-$400k easy, over a couple decades. No graft involved.

Not saying I like Fauci, but that particular criticism doesn’t hold water.

WMburden
WMburden
Reply to  Severian
27 days ago

We are lurching from crisis to crisis because we are weak, we are cowards. We are the most heavily armed nation in history and we Gulag from Home. We let our women and the servant classes brats push us around. We really do DESERVE THIS because we are weak, and terrified of action. The NRA, harumph. Why buy guns you know damn well you will never use? When the moment comes they’ll be surrendered, the guns will go quietly like everything else. You can’t save cowards. Better hope and pray one of our own can’t stand to play footwasher to… Read more »

Moe Noname
Moe Noname
28 days ago

I LIKE Google search. It is easier to use than Duckduckgo. Results for general items are better than competitors.

However, I use Duck & Brave & Gab for nearly everything. Why? Because if the Google competitors hate me, they are smart enough to keep it to themselves.

whitney
Member
Reply to  Moe Noname
28 days ago

Yeah I use duckduckgo and gab but switch to chrome in some searches. Generally if I need to buy something or need a map and address. Duckduckgo sends you to apple maps. Horrors!

urbando
urbando
Reply to  whitney
28 days ago

I use StartPage, but I don’t know what their search algorithms are based on. They’re located in the Netherlands, I believe.

The Wild Geese Howard
The Wild Geese Howard
Reply to  Moe Noname
28 days ago

I like Qwant, based in Paris.

May as well try to make NSA work a little bit.

ChetRollins
ChetRollins
Reply to  Moe Noname
28 days ago

Google is useless for anything remotely controversial. For researching programming stuff it’s by far the best.

Evil Sandmich
Reply to  ChetRollins
28 days ago

Or remotely ad driven. After years of pretty reliable results, at some point the cash draw was too great and they turned into a high-watt version of Webcrawler, or that old Tucows search engine.

Johnny muh Pen
Johnny muh Pen
28 days ago

I love those Chinese “click farms” where they just set up hundreds of physcial cell phones in one room, and you pay them to give you a round of likes/clicks/shares on each one.

I’m temped to try it once just to put a shine of respectability on my tiny Twitter and Gab accounts.

Forever Templar
Forever Templar
Reply to  Johnny muh Pen
27 days ago

Years ago I read an article (I think Wired) which said even that innovation in scamming was stolen by the PRC.

ronehjr
ronehjr
28 days ago

If govts and corps are receiving valued data from these sites, won’t they just continue subsidies to these sites?

JR Wirth
JR Wirth
28 days ago

It doesn’t help that the bubble economy is most pronounced in Tech, which started running up again over 10 years ago. We’re now back to the 1999-2000 nonsense, but I think it’s turned lately. Few of these players have had to struggle with such financial tailwinds. It’s when the bubbles pop that the magic happens. That’s also when ad spending declines.

greyenlightenment
Reply to  JR Wirth
28 days ago

Not gonna pop. Look how much $ amazon and Microsoft and Facebook and google make. nothing even close to the 90s. when companies that were not even viable, let alone profitable, were worth billions. It has to to with an economic phase transition to increased centralization of activity within a dozen or so firms.

Forever Templar
Forever Templar
Reply to  greyenlightenment
27 days ago

Oh no way is the Tech Bubble of the ‘90s eclipsing the revenues of today. I’m seriously calling citation needed on that one.

Paul Bonneau
Paul Bonneau
28 days ago

I’ve got a bronze Chinese vase that was pulled out of the dirt on a Hong Kong construction site about 50 years ago. Art objects in China have been around so long that even their older fakes are taking on value. A fake of a 1000 year old original can itself be valuable if it was made 500 years ago.
My general rule is, “80% of the world of humans is bullshit.” That’s probably a conservative estimate.
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B-z-sUu-HpE8OWZmUDAyLW1pWk0/view?usp=sharing

Paintersforms
Paintersforms
Reply to  Paul Bonneau
28 days ago

A 500 year old Chinese knockoff! Of course, I should’ve figured.

Last edited 28 days ago by Paintersforms
G Lordon Giddy
G Lordon Giddy
28 days ago

The TV Nielsen ratings at one time were filled out on paper by nice white people who went to church and shopped at the corner grocery store, donated to charity, and expected honest elections ending on Election Day. The Neilsen data was mostly honest back then. Now data is given by Nare do wells on an I phone or a computer and the data is collected and managed by pink haired feminists and anti white diversity champions led by a billionaire guy named Jack who looks like a homeless person on the streets of modern San Francisco. That this data… Read more »

trackback
28 days ago

[…] ZMan discusses some inconvenient truth. […]

Free Kyle Rittenhouse
Free Kyle Rittenhouse
28 days ago

Social media companies, like all media, have always and will always be fake. As long as we learn how to use and abuse them to our advantage, I’m not too concerned. To me what’s more concerning is when trusted people turn out to be fakes and frauds. And I’m really beginning to worry that Lin Wood might be another faker using Kyle Rittenhouse as a sacrificial lamb in a fundraising grifting scheme. Rittenhouse has gotten no breaks—currently being extradited to Wisconsion for murder—despite constant blather, cheerleading and pleas for money from Wood on social media. Wood is currently asking for… Read more »

JJ Seatac
JJ Seatac
Reply to  Free Kyle Rittenhouse
28 days ago

Last night in Vancouver, WA Antifa/BLM did their usual terrorism: they beat up random people on the street, smashed up houses, cars and shops, and boxed in motorists and shot at them.

No one defended themselves because if they did the cops—who were totally absent during the terrorism—would only rush in to support Antifa/BLM, and anyone who reacted would only become the next Rittenhouse or Gardner.

Last edited 28 days ago by JJ Seatac
abprosper
abprosper
Reply to  JJ Seatac
28 days ago

People don’t want to make war with the cops but it won’t take much more for them to do so. There are plenty of no go zones in ethnic areas and its just a turn of mind for regular folk to decide that their area is also now a no go zone. Its going to be accelerated by the fact that once the sorting is over people are going to bunker down which family and that will build community which is this systems worst nightmare. The only complicating measure is that with exceptions, West Coast people are highly individualistic since… Read more »

Alzaebo
Alzaebo
Reply to  Free Kyle Rittenhouse
28 days ago

A favor, please. Anybody know the page to send money to Kyle’s family? Thanks.

(I kept the law firm tab but closed/lost the family tab for donations.)

Drake
Drake
28 days ago

I thought I couldn’t be any more of cynic – then 2020 happened. Now we’re waiting for a fake vaccine to cure the fake virus so we can all get back to work at our fake jobs earning fake money.

Ben the Layabout
Ben the Layabout
28 days ago

I can’t give a specific suggestion, but one of the oddities of the business or government world: sometimes the cost of preventing fraud or other cheating behavior is higher, overall, than just allowing a small amount of pilfering. Ah yes, here’s an example: office supplies. At one company I worked at, an employee literally had to sign for even minor items like a few ballpoints or a ream of paper. This required, at a minimum, one full time employee (the supply clerk) to be there to approve such minor transactions. On a related note, it’s my hope that Congress can… Read more »

DLS
DLS
Reply to  Ben the Layabout
28 days ago

I agree with your action items, but unfortunately 100% of Democrat politicians oppose them because they are winning, and 50% of Republicans oppose them on free market grounds. You have a few honest politicians like Josh Hawley trying to make changes, but they are just farting in the wind.

trackback
28 days ago

[…] assume all the polls are fake, of course — the only question is, as the Z Man puts it today, how fake are they? He’s talking about traffic numbers for the big Internet sites, especially social media […]

JR Wirth
JR Wirth
28 days ago

Side comment: This is one of those quotes that Z Man would tap dance all over. I never pay attention to this guy but this is being retweeted everywhere.
https://twitter.com/DavidAFrench/status/1321807118811516929

Drake
Drake
Reply to  JR Wirth
28 days ago

That guy is an absolute douche. Yes, we wanted fewer votes counted – only the real ones.

Alzaebo
Alzaebo
Reply to  JR Wirth
28 days ago

Somebody else has been running a meme war for millenia, it looks like, and they’re really, really good at it.

It sure provides the David French dipsticks a nice living, and they go on to make all kinds of jobs for homebuilders, tailors, cathedral masons, broadcast electricians, printers, etc. Top down!

So, we’ve had a virtual economy piggybacking physical goods forever, and call that civilization.

Last edited 28 days ago by Alzaebo
greyenlightenment
28 days ago

The companies buying these ads on Facebook and google, by and large, are not making money off them. it is just to raise awareness. BLM and other nonprofits are big ad buyers. It is part of the fake economy or fake web, as some have called it.

TimothyS
TimothyS
28 days ago

I have a twitter account. It was blocked on my first tweet. That means I am counted as a twitter user, but have no participation in that forum. These sorts of accounts probably constitute a minority of accounts (probably many more are shadow-banned), but should be an additional caveat in assessing the power of twitter over the public discourse.
Liberals like Scott Adams are beholden to the forum, Trump uses it to get out his message, but their role in the silicone valley oligopoly may be more fragile than it appears.

whitney
Member
Reply to  TimothyS
27 days ago

What was the tweet?

WMburden
WMburden
27 days ago

Take up the White Man’s Burden;

Our families, neighbors, community, nation, civilization, race. To Hell with the rest, we take care of our own and they can be left on the wayside.

trackback
27 days ago

[…] The big players who make up the bulk of ad buying are starting to figure out that web traffic is not all it is claimed to be. Placing ads on a social media platform is worse than a waste of money. If a company made a video of the executive burning piles of their cash and then posted it on YouTube, they would get more sales from that video than running a regular YouTube ad. Eventually, this becomes obvious to everyone and the ad market on-line begins to dry up for these sites. […]

KGB
KGB
27 days ago

I thought this was a little Z Man-esque from the PIttsburgh Post Gazette, which endorsed Trump yesterday, the first Republican candidate it’s endorsed since Nixon in 1972:

No one ever asked the American people, or the people in “flyover,” country, if they wanted to send their jobs abroad — until Mr. Trump. He has moved the debate, in both parties, from free trade, totally unfettered, to managed, or fair, trade.

https://www.post-gazette.com/opinion/editorials/2020/10/31/editorial-donald-trump-joe-biden-mike-pence-kamala-harris-presidential-candidate-endorsement/stories/202010310021?utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter#Echobox=1604232731

Bilejones
Member
26 days ago

Nice piece up on Taki’s.

El Jefe
El Jefe
26 days ago

Gab as in Gab.com appears to be down. Blank page loads, all browsers. Coincidence I’m sure.