Jun 15, 2008


‘Join a social networking site and be welcomed by hundreds – nay thousands - of likeminded sharing folk, all wanting to link hands around the world with you and line up in droves to visit your website/blog.’ Or words to that effect.

Lovely! Should be easy. Lets see… Click the ‘sign up now’ bar.
Choose a Username: *****
Fill in email: Done.
Think of a password: ***** Confirm password. *****.
‘This program can potentially harm your computer’.
Oh…er…shall I go on…? A little wary but all right – carry on.
‘Click to add tags to your toolbar’.
Toolbar? I thought I was going to be presented with a bit of code to copy and paste a cute little button onto my sidebar? Shall I go on? … Might as well - have come this far.
O.K. click on ‘Add Tags’. A box appears with instructions to click ‘Open’.
Computer whines loudly! What’s happening? The screen is now showing my hard disc…(I think) and good lord (!) it wants me to download 70 killer(?)bites of software?
What on earth for? All I want to do is join a little club of happy people and play virtual ‘pat-a-cake-pat-a-cake’ and it’s looking more like Geri’s going to ‘atishoo-atishoo’ and fall down on her virtual arse!
No no no, this is not what I expected.
Click out of this social networking site - and forget it!
Read email instead.
Ten minutes later…what’s this? An email from the social networking site, is beckoning me with subliminal chanting to finish the process of entering their golden portal.
Shall I? Shan’t I? Oh g’waan! Stop being a dithering old mardy cat. Take a chance – walk on the wild side! Pull on the crampons and dig in the axe!
O.K. I click on a blue link in the email.
A box appears. Do I want to ‘Run’ or ‘Save’? Er…Run, I think – but what's this bit underneath? A red shield announcing that this software program has no license?
Oh no, I am not going on. This is too complicated. Perhaps this is a hack site, masquerading as the real one and if I let it in it will spam my computer, molest googlebot, corrupt antivirus and assimilate what’s left of my mind!
Quick! Click on ‘cancel’ and close the site. Go back and delete the email. Go to start/ settings/control panel, to remove the social networking site – if it got that far. Ah good, it didn’t. Seems I stopped it just in time. Phew! So much for social networking clubs!

Perhaps I should try a senior citizen’s blogging forum instead? One with lots of old folks sitting around farting and chewing the fat. Armchair politics. Sex after sixty. The pros and cons of complete body makeovers. Sounds good!
Now lets see… Click into Forum Homepage…choose a Username… and fight off that little computer gremlin called Deja Vu….

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