Cleolinda Jones (cleolinda) wrote,
Cleolinda Jones

Two major issues: pingback and full names

Well, this is fantastic.

To recap: I cross-posted test comments to both Twitter and Facebook; screencaps and discussion are over here.

You do have to opt in to cross-post, because if you don't connect your LJ to either of those services, it won't know where to post. People have been seeing banners at the top of their journals mentioning this--but I didn't, maybe because I have a permanent account, and the code is treating the banner like an ad? So I hadn't seen that. But it says that if you've already done the Facebook Connect thing, you're going to have to go back in and reactivate it, which also sounds like an opt-in.

Problem: I connected my Cleolinda Jones account--i.e., a pseudonym with no sensitive personal information, which makes me a better guinea pig than most people. For Science! What LJ did not say anywhere in the FAQs was that it will then announce on your user info page (the page strangers are most likely to see, other than your latest entry), under "External Services," that you, Full Name, are on Facebook. The only reason we even found out was because maetang just happened to notice.

If I had used my personal Lauren Lastname account, I would have been screwed. If your full name being on the page that Unwelcome People are most likely see is a problem for you, REMOVE FACEBOOK CONNECT NOW.

Guess what? There's also ANOTHER PROBLEM. The pingback thing is automatically turned on, according to that banner. My understanding is that if it's on, it sends you emails that someone has linked to you and emails to someone else that you have linked to them. People link to me a lot. Not unreasonably, they have linked to that last entry with the "Here's what cross-posting looks like" screencaps. So I've gotten a couple dozen in the last twelve hours, as well as--weirdly--two-year-old links to Breaking Dawn recaps and Troy in Fifteen Minutes.

Obviously, it told me who linked to me. But four of them were to locked entries that I wasn't supposed to know existed.

It sends you a sentence fragment--in theory--of what they linked, and a link back to the entry in which they did it. At first, I was getting emails with quotes like, "...shows what crossposting looks like here." So, wondering what else the entries said (even though I could guess), I started clicking the links back. That's when I realized I was being linked to (but unable to access) locked entries. Multiple times.

Then I started getting longer and longer excerpts, much of which had nothing to do with me at all. I got a pingback from maetang, for example, on an entry where she talks about all of this business (linked and quoted with her permission). Here's what the bot emailed me, just to give you the visual impact of it. The part referring to me is in bold:

A bug whereby "/" in tags isn't working. This is an actual bug, and should be fixed. For now, you can manually correct the URL when you select any tags with a "/" in them, and it will still work. It's labourious, but can be done.

Of course it's particularly irritating for all of fandom, to suddenly discover they can't sort through their slash.

Meanwhile, there's also problems with the implementation of pingbacks. Some users in are saying that since it's been reintroduced, they got pingbacks even though they had previously turned those off. Others are saying they got pingbacks from F-locked posts. This is in direct oppostion to the LJ FAQ on how pingbacks are supposed to work:

Pingback notifications include the name and URL of the page that is linking to your entry as well as a brief quote from the text where your entry is linked. Pingback comments to your journal will be left as screened comments. Please note that pingbacks only work for public entries. Friends-Only or Private entries cannot receive pingbacks. [Emphasis mine.]


Not bugs, but just dumb effects of the implementation of the crossposting to Twitter/Facebook "feature".

If you connect your LJ to Facebook, your Facebook name will be listed on your LJ profile page, under "external services". helpfully tested what happens if you do crosspost comments (including long comments with a lot of text), and also has a screencap of her FB name appearing on her profile page. You can check out the screencaps here [...]

What if you had written a locked, very personal entry about something upsetting? But then, at the end, you had switched gears and said (to use the most recent example), "But reading cleolinda's Breaking Dawn recap really cheered me up"? And then it sent me five paragraphs about your personal business?

Or, what if, blithely assuming I couldn't read the entry because, you know, I'm not on that filter, you gave out your full name and mailing address for, say, Christmas cards?

Or, worse: what if you were writing an entry to vent about someone who pissed you off, and you linked to an entry of theirs as an example?

Yeah. You're probably going to want to turn that off.

And you know why I linked to my own recap up there? Because I'm curious to see if it'll send me a pingback to myself. And if it does: how much of this entry will it quote back at me?

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Tags: bad ideas, facebook, for science!, livejournal, this is going to end well, twitter

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