Radio Tysnes International is live

About a week ago the local «radio station» RTI (Radio Tysnes Int’l) went live over at Anchor (make sure to find it at, bringing news and events from the local Tysnes community, as well as Tysnesfest, to the world, in part also based on short snippets of news from local news sites Bladet Tysnes and Tysnesingen.

After a mere week in operation the station ranks among Anchor’s Top 500 internationally, attracting listeners from all over the world.

Also available as podcast

Today also saw the launch of the RTI podcast via several outlets:

There’s a Facebook page, too, should you be inclined to follow.

For yours truly this is a mere experiment, and an attempt at pitching in, as a concerned citizen, of course, even if concerns aren’t really called for.

Late edit:

A quick logo make-over yesterday yielded the following (Ssshhhhh, don’t tell the BBC!):

RTI – Radio Tysnes International

Same thing happens every time someone I know starts acting like a racist asshole in social media.

Unfriended on Facebook

I haven’t a clue what possessed me!

Rise and fall

You know how it is.

Dear Mark, it’s not you, it’s me

Dear Mark,

You will – or more likely not – remember my tireless defence of your right to absolute sovereignty over all content shared by your users, which, in my view, is 100 percent fair, as the service you provide is, after all, yours and yours alone, as I’ve pointed out so many times, last Saturday included, especially during the Norwegian old school media assault on your social network and your very own person in particular, last September, most of which in Norwegian, I’m afraid (but there are translation services, as you may well know):

All pertaining to your removal of posts depicting Vietnamese napalm victim Phan Thị Kim Phúc, and the suspension of users reposting upon removal, causing a collective commotion among the Norwegian journalists, authors, public and editors, lead by the Aftenposten editor-in-chief Espen Egil Hansen, whose desperate cry for attention I’m sure you haven’t even heard of, let alone seen:

Of course I wouldn’t, unlike the above editor-in-chief, even dare to entertain the thought that this blog post does anything to change that, which is why I’m addressing you as a rhetorical measure, fully aware that you’ll never see it – in a hundred years or more. My scant audience, on the other hand, may find it useful.

I’m sure you wonder what this is all about, but it’s all very simple, really, as I woke up to this message this morning:

Shark penis Facebook

Accompanied by this message (my emphasis):

Review the Facebook community standards

We restrict the display of nudity. Some descriptions of sexual acts may also be removed. These restrictions on the display of both nudity and sexual activity also apply to digitally created content unless the content is posted for educational, humorous or satirical purposes.

We remove content that threatens or promotes sexual violence or exploitation. This includes solicitation of sexual material, any sexual content involving minors, threats to share intimate images and offers of sexual services. Where appropriate, we refer this content to law enforcement.

To learn more about the kinds of messages and posts that are allowed on Facebook, please review the Facebook Community Standards.

While my picture (which wasn’t really mine) was indeed intended for humorous purposes, if not educational, unlike Norwegian media I humbly respect your decision, as Facebook is yours to govern as you – not I or any other entity – see fit.

Like you I have from time to time been forced to deal with blog commenters that have been way out of line, posting blatant racism, for instance, and like you I have no patience with that sort. Which is why I not only respect, but support your decision to remove the above picture.

Just as my blog is mine, Facebook is yours and people simply cannot strut around there in the nude, as if they were in their own livingroom.

I will tell you this, though:

I prefer a place where I’m allowed to do as I please. You might even say that I prefer my own livingroom, if I may be so bold as to call my own blog so, seeing as the town square (i.e. Facebook) doesn’t really serve my purpose. Not that nudity or any other kind of indecency is likely to appear in these parts any time soon. Which is why it is with great pleasure I announce that I shall hereafter restrict my use of your otherwise excellent service to congratulating friends on their birthdays, while all other sharing and participation is restricted to this blog – and, possibly, Twitter, for the time being. Fully aware of the resulting drop in traffic figures, which never bothered me much anyway.

It is a far better approach, I think, than complaining loudly, like obstinate toddlers, in all conceivable media outlets, as some seem to prefer, out of disrespect for your undisputed right to manage Facebook as you – not they – see fit.

Also I fear your network’s days may soon be numbered, which contributes to my moving along, too.

But I would like to thank you for close to ten years of good company, assuring you that the decision isn’t about you at all. Au contraire it’s all me. And after all … Contrary to what some seem to believe, it is a damned sight easier to leave you than to fight you.

Respectfully yours etc,



They play on Twitter, too.

Social media algorithms just as dangerous as we let them be

One’s involvement in journalistic, political and democracy-related issues inevitably leads to the occasional invitation to participate, even if it’s been years since I first concluded that solitary rants are much preferred over collective participation – which, I suppose, this very blog confirms, with this piece of information accompanying each and every post (also in my native tongue):

In general comments are not encouraged, as I rarely have the time to engage in discussions, but please feel free, if you so desire.

English: A protester holding a placard in Tahr...
A protester holding a placard in Tahrir Square referring to Facebook and Twitter, acknowledging the role played by social media during the 2011 Egyptian Revolution. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

That notwithstanding I was recently and involuntarily added to a Facebook group discussing the digital media’s – in particular Facebook’s – impact on democracy, which is, in itself, a very interesting subject, even if one must admit to subscribing to the idea that any social media platform, just like any town square, is what we make it, although with algorithms serving as «added value» – for those with an interest in steering public opinion (or customers, as more often is the case) in one direction or the other, which certainly poses a challenge.

Not more so, though, than actualising the question of whether or not we intend to participate. As the blogger I unquestionably am, I have to concede that, no longer than ten years ago, the blogs that used to play a vital part in matters relating to politics, journalism, culture and even international affairs, were indeed replaced by «town squares» the likes of Facebook and Twitter (to keep the list short and sweet), making way for elaborate methods of manipulation – and censorship.

While I consider myself equipped with perhaps a little more than average critical radar (must be the years in journalism), I realise that even I may from time to time fall victim of manipulation. For instance claims have been made to the effect that Facebook algorithms not only cater to, but reinforce our existing biases, by feeding us input to substantiate them, based on what we’ve already liked or shared. Or the other way around; that they may even be used to break them down, should your prejudice be in conflict with parties in possession of the means to influence it.

I may appear to be active in social media. The truth of the matter is, however, that every blog post I share, on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+, are automagically shared by the blog’s content management system (in my case; WordPress) – which is also where I actually am.

Indeed the subject is an interesting one, but speaking as someone who, unlike my fellow bloggers ten (or more) years ago, I find that my daily use of the social media is dwindling, for the benefit of the practically non-existent blogosphere, left unaffected by the social media algorithms, even if Google remains a factor to be reckoned with, even for bloggers – perhaps even more so.

Should we worry?

Probably, but in withdrawing, like I have, I have made the manipulating algorithms irrelevant, nearly obsolete, and can see no reason why you, too, shouldn’t. After all we cannot demand a certain conduct or particular ethic guidelines from a social network, it’s theirs, to do with what they like, but we can decide whether we want to be part of it or not.

Provided you’re worried, of course. I know I’m not.

Concerns like these are usually raised under the premise that we are required to use the social networks we criticise, or at least you should think we are. Since we’re not, the basis for making demands evaporates completely.

Certainly, you may object that this kind of reasoning is highly inappropriate for someone with an interest in the financial wellbeing of the social media, and would, of course, be 100% correct in making that assumption, as I have none.

Dear Mark

Dear Mark,

You need to realise that there’s media – and then there’s Norwegian media, whose privileges surpass everything and everyone you’ve ever known.

I mean, really, Mark …

Sincerely etc,

Not changing my profile pic for Erdoğan

Over the last year or so I have made a habit of changing my social media profile pictures in response to various terrorist attacks. In the wake of yesterday’s most likely Daesh attack on Istanbul’s Atatürk international airport, however, I am not about to, even if I indeed made one, for illustrative purposes:

Jarle Petterson and Turkish flag.
Yours truly clad in Turkish black and white «colours».

Which is not to say that I do not condemn the atrocity and don’t feel sympathy for the Turkish people (and the scores of foreign tourists affected), I most certainly do, but find myself utterly unable to endow my profile picture with the flag of the rogue regime I’m equally unable to endorse.

If there’d been another way, I’d probably take it.

With that matter out of the way, I do sympathise with the Turks, and consider last night’s massacre an attack on us all, which I condemn strongly, albeit without making use of the Turkish authorities’ flag – except, of course, in this blog post.

In spite of last night’s events I take solace in the so-called Islamic State’s continued retreat on all fronts, which is, of course, going to inspire one spontaneous and uncontrolled counterpunch after the other, resulting in the organisation’s ultimate and swift demise.