‘Internet’ Category

Jayden K. Smith and His Friends

Jayden K. Smith and His FriendsSource: TKK

In the late 1990’s social media consisted of Web based forums covering a main topic and a subset topics based on the main. The other version was an email based list that you signed up for and you would receive emails 24 hours a day. Due to the sheer volume of emails these email lists were very strict with their rules especially if a thread went off-topic.

I was learning Macromedia Flash at the time and was part of the Flash email list. Due to the volume of threads and the amount of emails it was a very difficult list to keep up with so off-topic posts were pounced upon and repeat offenders blocked and so was born The Flashlounge email list. The Flashlounge was, as the name implies, a lounge for members of the flash community it was full of topics not necessarily Flash related. A variety of topics were covered, it was basically a free-for-all with everything from understanding ActionScript to the colour of the sky to who did what too whom and what the days joke was.

The reason I mention this is that even back then there were hoaxers that would love to post something that was either not entirely true or designed to get a reaction in order to get the longest thread of the day, in Facebook parlance the “thread” is the list of comments on a post and the length of the thread is likened to the number of shares. So in some way or another Jayden K. Smith and his friends have been around a very long time.

Hoaxes are designed to trick and deceive and most often are humorous however sometimes they can be malicious. Hoaxes that come across as malicious may not necessarily be so but they can instil fear in the recipient. Often this fear can manifest a need in the recipient to want to warn their friends and family thereby perpetuating the hoax.

Facebook is an excellent medium for the hoaxer. It has allowed for millions of people with limited internet experience to be on a forum that is designed to facilitate the perpetuation of information, which is exactly what the originator of a hoax wants.

Some examples of Facebook based hoaxes are:

  1. Please tell all the contacts in your Messenger list, not to accept Jayden K. Smith friendship request. He is a hacker and has the system connected to your Facebook account. If one of your contacts accepts it, you will also be hacked, so make sure that all your friends know it. Thanks. Forwarded as received[1]

  2. Message all of your friends list and let them know that a fraudulent company that is using a device to gain access to the Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) Card, which contains all subscriber related data (this is the brains in the phone) in your cellular telephone. The scam artist places a call to an unsuspecting person and the caller says he or she is testing mobile telephone circuits or equipment. The called party is asked to press #90 or #09. If this happens END THE CALL IMMEDIATELY with out pressing the numbers. Once you press #90 or #09 the company can access your SIM Card and makes calls at your expense.[2]

  3. A widely circulated photograph (I wont show the photograph as I am sure most of you have seen a bull that has been stabbed by a bull “fighter”) shows eighteen-year-old Colombian torero Álvaro Múnera (known by the nickname “El Pilarico”). The photograph displayed purports to have captured Múnera at the very moment, in the middle of a bullfight, when he came to the realisation that what he was doing was an injustice to animals and he decided to henceforth campaign against bullfighting.[3]

  4. I do not give Facebook or any entities associated with Facebook permission to use my pictures, information, messages or posts, both past and future. With this statement, I give notice to Facebook it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, or take any other action against me based on this profile and/or its contents. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of privacy can be punished by law (UCC 1-308- 1 1 308-103 and the Rome Statute). NOTE: Facebook is now a public entity. All members must post a note like this. If you prefer, you can copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once it will be tactically allowing the use of your photos, as well as the information contained in the profile status updates. Do not share. Copy and Paste.[4]

Actual scams are few and far between. If you do get a message warning of a scam, a hoax or a hacker simply select the text and copy and paste it into Google and more often than not it will provide you a link to a website such as hoax-slayer.net or snopes.com both of these websites will explain the hoax and usually give you a breakdown of why it is a hoax or a scam. If there is any evidence of the matter being real they’ll let you know as well.

So do yourself a favour as well as possibly save yourself some embarrassment and check the messages out before forwarding them on to your friends. It will also prevent the recipient from being annoyed as quite often you are not the only one forwarding the hoax.

[1] Jayden K. Smith friendship request – http://www.snopes.com/computer/internet/hackermail.asp
[2] Pressing #90 or #09 – http://www.snopes.com/fraud/telephone/jailcall.asp
[3] Álvaro Múnera – The Last Bullfight – http://www.snopes.com/photos/people/munera.asp
[4] Facebook disclosing your information – http://www.hoax-slayer.net/completely-pointless-misleading-facebook-privacy-notice/


Can I use it?

Internet Piracy

Can I Use It?Source: wesd440/TKK

Inspired by Elisha.

If, while walking down the mall, you see a person sitting on a garden wall and beside them on that wall you noticed a loaf of bread you wouldn’t just pick up the bread and walk off assuming it was free would you? No, of course not, you would assume that the bread belongs to that person. You could certainly ask the person if it’s free to take and use it or if it’s for sale and that is exactly the way it is with the Internet. Only the loaf of bread is a photo, a picture, a song or an article or some other item.

Some people may not realise that just because it is on the Internet does not mean it is there for the taking. It does not mean it is free or if it is free it does not necessarily mean it comes without legal conditions of use. Even some things you pay for, such as stock images, can come with conditions of use.

Some may even argue that because it is on the Internet it is in the public domain. The public domain is “the state of belonging or being available to the public as a whole, especially through not being subject to copyright or other legal restrictions.”[1] With regards to copyright law the term “public domain” actually means “belonging to the public” rather than “available to the public.” So therefore a work may be available to the public without belonging to that public.

“In the sense of intellectual property, works in the public domain are those whose exclusive intellectual property rights have expired, have been forfeited, or are inapplicable. For example, the works of Shakespeare and Beethoven, and most of the early silent films, are all now in the public domain by either being created before copyrights existed or leaving the copyright term.”[2] In most of the world, the default length of copyright (copyright term) is the life of the author plus either 50 or 70 years.[3]

Creative Commons

What is Creative Commons?[4] “Creative Commons is a global nonprofit organization that enables sharing and reuse of creativity and knowledge through the provision of free legal tools.”[5] One of these tools, the Creative Commons License, helps you to legally access the knowledge and creativity of content creators thereby allowing a more equitable, accessible, and innovative world. The easy-to-understand copyright licenses make it simple for you to know what you can and can’t do with content from the Internet. A Creative Commons licence does not necessarily mean the creator gives up their copyright. It simply means permitting you to make use of their material in various ways, but only under the specified conditions.

For example, if you were to go to the “About”[6] page on this Blog you would find the following:

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Australia License.

Which means that I license my work, here on The Kritic, for you to “Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format” under the following terms:

Creative Commons License BY NC ND terms

Creative Commons license BY,NC,NDSource: Creative Commons

Creative Commons Australia suite of CC licences version 3.0

Creative Commons Licenses

Creative Commons licensesSource: Creative Commons

What Is Fair Use?

In Australia “Fair Use” is referred to as “Fair Dealing” by the Australian Copyright Council.

The Australian Copyright Council states:[7]

There is no general exception for using copyright material simply because you think it is fair or because you are not making a profit. The Copyright Act allows you to use copyright material without permission if your use is a “fair dealing” for one of the following purposes:

  • research or study;
  • criticism or review;
  • parody or satire;
  • reporting news; or
  • professional advice by a lawyer, patent attorney or trade marks attorney.

Stock Images

There are plenty of Stock photo websites to be found where you can purchase royalty free images. They can supply many formats such as photos or illustrations or even video. Do not commit to a particular stock photo, illustration or video unless you understand the license agreement. There is always fine print for your license so make sure you read it. Some stock photo services reserve the right to revoke your license at any point and this can be problematic if you have built your theme around your purchase.

Actual Free Photos

Yes, there are websites that offer free photos. Most of them offer low resolution and often poor quality photos. Some of the photos may even be someone else’s intellectual property, stolen from somewhere else and offered on the free photos website. Another problem that is often seen with these websites is they come with an unusually high amount of advertising and can often require quite a few clicks through various pages before you get to the promised image.

But in saying that, there are the exceptions and one of those is “Pexels”. Pexels offer their stock of photos with a Creative Commons CC0 license[8], which basically means that the original owner of the copyright has offered the work with “No Rights Reserved” thereby placing the work as completely as possible in the public domain.

Which means you would see this:

Public Domain
This work is licensed under a CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) Public Domain Dedication.

So, Can you use it?

Yes, No, Maybe!

Look, Read and/or Ask!


The information in this article is provided as a general introduction to copyright. If you need to know how the law applies in a particular situation and you do not understand the license then please seek legal advice.

[1] Public Domain Definition – https://www.google.com.au/search?q=Public+Domain+definition
[2] Public domain – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_domain
[3] Copyright Term – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copyright_term
[4] Creative Commons – https://creativecommons.org.au/
[5] Creative Commons FAQ – https://creativecommons.org/faq/#what-is-creative-commons
[6] The Kritic » About – https://thekritic.net/about/
[7] Australian Copyright Council Information Sheet G079v07 Fair Dealing – https://www.copyright.org.au/acc_prod/ACC/Information_Sheets/Fair_Dealing__What_Can_I_Use_Without_Permission.aspx
[8] Creative Commons CC0 license – https://creativecommons.org/share-your-work/public-domain/cc0/