20 Things I Learned About Doing A Clinical Rotation in Tokyo: Lesson #4

One of the highlights of my rotation actually took place outside the hospital, when Dr. Eigo asked Tauseef and I if we wanted to eat sushi for dinner.

“Every Tuesday I go to English class at night. But I told my teacher I would be absent today. Because dinner with you is like a class anyway!” Dr. Eigo told me.

We thought we were just going to eat some fairly good sushi at a small restaurant, but man were we wrong. So wrong. In the brisk Winter night, we walked down a narrow road into a gray building; on the first floor, the restaurant was empty save for one diner and the sushi chef. Maybe these neighborhood sushi restaurants are like the Japanese themselves — they’ve nailed down the art of disguising excellence within quiet and unassuming exteriors. Because that night I had some of the best sushi I’d ever tasted in my life.

We were led to a private room on the second floor, where a large solitary table waited. I sat down thinking we were gonna rock this big table with three people, but then one by one all six of the NICU doctors walked in. They’d just completed evening rounds. I couldn’t believe it — these were NICU attendings who’d reported to the hospital at 7 in the morning. It was 7pm and they were still down to kick it. Maybe it was really a one-time obligation for them to host the clueless gaijins, but who can say no to omakase and drinks? It was an amazing feast — complete with lots of sake and loud stories — and in the end, our attempts to pay for our share were waved away. Needless to say, with a private room on the second floor, and what looked like a four course meal, every bite delicious and super fresh — that dinner was pretty expensive.

Lesson #4: Always accept invitations to eat sushi.

Sparkles included!

Day 9: I need some advice, and why does no one drink coffee in this country?

The first day in my new pad started well. I awoke amongst mountains of pillows, and fluffy duvets. I breathed in the crisp English air and looked at the view into the garden complete with apple tree (will promise to take a photo tomorrow). I had a skype call at 9am so I wafted around the house and went to make coffee — and then……. ARMAGEDDON no coffee. Well that is not really true, a small bit of coffee at the bottom of the bag, but not enough for a proper cup and definitely not enough to get me through the day that lay ahead of me. I searched high and low — there must be coffee somewhere in this house. But no. Because no one in the UK drinks coffee!!!!! Or they drink that horrible instant stuff that removes my will to live. And when you go to a café they charge you the equivalent of $5 for a pathetic excuse of a coffee. I really like this country but seriously I am going to have to carry coffee on me at all of the time (I do already travel with an Aeropress).

Anyway I am getting sidetracked. Today I got some good news — my Vayable account has been approved and I am now officially a London tour guide. You can check out / and book my tour here. I am having an inaugural tour on the 19th at 3pm so if you are London bound or know anyone who is then please share.

I also got a few orders through my new shop — which it seems like is a bit easier for everyone. So I am also going to put the book up on the store. I know a lot of people had trouble with GoFundMe so this way you can fund me for something (delivery before Xmas I promise).

Now onto the advice I need. A strange thing happened earlier this week. A guy from Sydney read the Huffington Post article and got in touch through the site. He is coming to London and wanted to buy me lunch and hear about my adventures. I gladly accepted (who said there is no such thing as a free lunch). But then he mentioned that I should meet a guy who runs an agency for, for want of a better word ‘thought leaders’ or people who have ideas and want to spread them. His sister is also one of the most famous voices in the sharing economy, and he was there when she wrote the book. We met at a café in Shoreditch and over an hour and a half jammed about the possibilities and pitfalls of the sharing economy and about what I have been discovering. He thinks it’s interesting. The stories, the investigation, and some of my somewhat rambling theories.

Then he gave me an offer — he would represent me, work with me to get my thoughts out there. To hone my scope. To help me score opportunities to talk about what it is I am passionate about to more people. But, as he put it, his is a commercial business — there is no sharing to be done here. The cost £500 for a plan of attack and at least 5 high profile contacts.

To be honest I don’t really know what to think? I’ve had an ‘agent’ before when I was a director but I never had to pay anything. That said a friendly intro to his sister might be worth the £500 even if nothing happens, and defining my path forward might be priceless. I don’t know, and because this is a sharing experiment, I am looking to all of you for help. I have shared my life for the last 9 days, it’s time for you guys to share some wisdom and advice — I will really appreciate it.

But for now I’m going to make some Mexican, and ponder my future. If this experiment has taught me anything so far it is that life is unpredictable when you let go. I knew it would be an adventure and it certainly looks like it is becoming one.

Facebook’s Adgate

The thing is…I’m still not wrong.

It started here.

Awkward Conversation With Facebook
What Happened When I Caught Them Defaulting Us Back Into Behavorial Ad Tracking and Targetingmedium.com

The thing is, I’m the only voice in this conversation who doesn’t have an incentive to slant it. Even journalists with tremendous integrity — they’ll say that I’m at least somewhat wrong on this. They have to sow some doubt. That’s their move here. That’s all it takes.

You Should Go Check Facebook's New Privacy Settings
Last week, Facebook introduced a way to show ads across the web to everyone, not just its own users. At the same time…www.wired.com

All I’m doing is making sure there is at least one person talking to this industry and taking it to task, because otherwise there won’t be any voices completely independent from the issues being heard. In this very special instance, the journalist confronts the conflict of interest that they are trying to cover the business model that supplies their own income. They’re starting to disclose this in relevant articles, as we see first in USAToday.

Status with Facebook 'interest-based' ads is complicated
A. A blog post called " Awkward Conversation With Facebook " about this issue has gotten intense attention on Facebook…www.usatoday.com

But most journalists have also bought into the notion that behavioral advertising is legitmate, defensible, even desirable. It literally helps pay their bills. How much can they question it? That’s like me trying to discuss the student loan bubble. I’m professionally conflicted on that subject. But not this one.

These polls aren’t scientific at all. But like the Twitter activty itself, it’s directional evidence that I’m not wrong.

Experts Confounded, Journalists Conflicted

The thing is…me being confused on this doesn’t look good for Facebook. If I can’t easily figure this stuff out and tech reporters exert new mental muscles figuring this out, and make of point of saying so in their articles, then this new setting is “too opaque and difficult to understand.”

If we can’t understand it, then what’s going on here?

Facebook is looking good in the articles where they have been reached for comment, but not so great in the pieces where they haven’t been granted an opportunity to spin it: That ‘this is simple, everything is fine.’ But the journalists so far haven’t yet come close to “going there.”

PSA: You Need To Update Your Facebook Privacy Settings Again To Opt Out Of New Targeted Ads
Facebook announced in recent weeks that they're expanding their advertising empire. With that change, came a stealthy…consumerist.com
Facebook just introduced a really scary new setting – and opted you in
Facebook has added a new option to let people choose whether they want to be tracked and shown ads. The new setting was…www.independent.co.uk

Investigative reporting on the broken privacy policy link hasn’t yet made it into the articles. This is a crucial link in this whole debate, still being ignored, the “Learn more” and “control” links on the Facebook Data Policy have been broken for months. It is still not fixed as I file this post, even as this controversy only stirs wider, very publicly in the media. No one has told me otherwise. I don’t get it.

Still. Not. Fixed. unreal.

Facebook’s privacy policy is literally still broken. Specifically, the part where you’re expected to read the fine print on all of this stuff. This company is under a twenty-year FTC consent decree for privacy violations.

We are letting them get away with it.

How can this be legal?

This can’t be legal in the EU? Can it?

The company isn’t even providing the most basic tools for its users to Learn More about its admittedly complex ad policies. You can’t read about it on your iPhone.

So I don’t misunderstand, I am not confused, and I’m still on the right side of this issue.

All I’m doing is calling it like I’m seeing it and being a lone, loud voice of the consumer. But there’s a chorus backing me up on my Twitter. But not so much on my Facebook. Wonder why?

MANIFESTO

A new deal on data. We’re all-in or we’re out.

No more new undisclosed controls.

We do not have to put up with this. We just have to decide not to.

No more broken links in the privacy policy.

No more surprises.

We demand support of the Do Not Track standard.

We admire @Twitter, Medium, @Pinterest, @Hulu, and @Adzerk for working on supporting it.

We question why @Facebook and @Google refuse to.

We will adopt and support tools that help enforce it.

It’s what we want.

We’ll tell you how we want relevant ads from now on.

You do not know who we are, better than we do.

You do not know what we want.

You insult our humanity by thinking we are anything but unpredictable and irrational animals. And yet you tag us and sort us like livestock, doling out feeds. And it’s worth pennies. It’s subprime, junk mixed in with the AAA, fraud-filled, out-of-control and has caused injury to individuals and society as a whole.

Rethinking John Wanamaker
[This is adapted from a post I made to a list I’m on, and then put up on my blog. Other parties are in italics. I’m not…medium.com

We’re talking about it now.

Anti-Choice Groups Use Smartphone Surveillance to Target 'Abortion-Minded Women' During Clinic…
Women who have visited almost any abortion clinic in the United States have seen anti-choice protesters outside…rewire.news
When the Most Personal Secrets Get Outed on Facebook
AUSTIN, Texas-Bobbi Duncan desperately wanted her father not to know she is lesbian. Facebook told him anyway. One…www.wsj.com
Facebook Settles FTC Charges That It Deceived Consumers By Failing To Keep Privacy Promises
The social networking service Facebook has agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it deceived consumers…www.ftc.gov

The Real Ad Choices

The time has come for us to set the terms of our own lives, our own identities and recapture them, before two companies mostly own them completely.

Privacy is not a policy to ignore. It’s you.

This is a war of words over what privacy even means. They want us to use their words. They don’t like the way we describe it.

What’s the formula for calculating your ad control settings per Facebook’s policy again?

ON(OFF (IN / OUT (IN / OUT))) – DISCLOSURE – CONSENT

Are you setting aside some leisure time to go through your AdChoices this weekend?

No.

Either I’m in or I’m out. No more negotiation.

One opt-out once, or none. Otherwise, we block.

That makes everything different.

It’s the idea that they can dictate our lives with subtle, obtuse distinctions (between 1st and 3rd party data, to be precise) or the claim that obscuring our PII (Personally Identifible Informtion) is even sufficent protection — This is what is holding up this house of cards right now. Facebook is becoming the 1st party here, and killing off the 3rd parties, slowly but surely.

If this embed is blocked because you have Do Not Track enabled, then you are seeing how we solve this.

In the process of consolidating the market, they will more and more fully own everyone’s everything. Combine Google and that’s not really an exaggeration. I’m just pointing that out. Many voices will vociferously defend these companies and their practices against what I’m saying. Most of those voices will be stockholders but you’d have to violate their privacy to find out for sure. We should ask them.

Data Rights is a Political Movement

We can demand more control of our data rights. We should take back our data while we still have the last fighting chance to do anything about it. They have to offer it to us if a broad-based data rights movement forms beyond government, law, media, and academia. World-changing movements have sprung from between media, academia, and activism before. It can again.

The EU and US are not harmonized on the issue of data privacy. In fact, they use their own words to assert their voice. They call it data protection instead. They get it better than we do.

Just keep talking about it, keep debating it among your friends (but not on Facebook).

Do you check your Facebook ad settings? Do you think you know what they know about you? Do you think it affects your life in any ways? What about unexpected ways, the unintended consequences and conspiracies? Did you hear about…

Like the one about how Facebook is now used for politics in ways that could radically reshape politics as we know it while building a new commercial business for itself that swallows up the political advertising market along with everything else. Campaigns now mobilize armies and conduct voter surveillance with Facebook and mobile ads. Adtech is now used to track people at polling stations reading content on their smartphones with the ads. Data protection is political issue that affects all of our lives.

Ted Cruz campaign using firm that harvested data on millions of unwitting Facebook users
Ted Cruz's presidential campaign is using psychological data based on research spanning tens of millions of Facebook…www.theguardian.com
Cruz app data collection helps campaign read minds of voters
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz is testing the limits of siphoning personal data from…www.yahoo.com
How this company tracked 16,000 Iowa caucus-goers via their phones
On Thursday morning, I listened to an interview with the CEO of "a big data intelligence company" called Dstillery; it…fusion.net

The reaction to this is adblocking that makes the fragile journalistic practice all the more imperiled. Everything is at stake here. Everything is connected to this. This is what Facebook and Google is built upon — this idea, these two empires don’t want us to talk about it.

Google as a Fortune Teller: The Secrets of Surveillance Capitalism
Surveillance capitalism does not erode these decision rights — along with their causes and their effects — but rather…www.faz.net

These edifices are built upon their words. So all I’m asking is that we continue to use our words, our ways of describing the situation, and not totally give in to their commercial vocabularies, because their words not only limit the discourse, they frame it.

We can see that the framing of advertising privacy with words shapes how people perceive them and that’s why they insist on controlling the words, the terms. It also why they change those interpretations, at any time, without warning or notice, and without any regard to users and their data rights.

They prefer to call it “interest-based” advertising so it sounds like we requested it. But we didn’t and even if you repeatedly demonstrate a lack of interest in “interest-based” they’ll ignore those signals when they add new settings.

That’s why they all say I’m confused or wrong. Because they don’t like my words to describe the situation. I opted out. Facebook put me back on and took two years to quietly let me know so I could re-opt, again. This isn’t acceptable.

When we probe the premise that targeted ads are even necessary or desired against the more honest and ethical articulation that involves privacy-positive language, it reveals the great contradiction and myth of targeted advertising.

#1 Masjid Syaiful Islam

okey, ini Masjid yang pertama saya masukin blog di hari pertama Ramadan 1437 H, Senin (6/6/2016).

Karena dekat dengan rumah, itu alasan mengapa jadi yang pertama :D.

Masjid Syaiful Islam beralamat di Jl Tabrani Ahmad, kalau dari Jl Husien Hamzah tepat di belakang Komplek Harvin Indah. Masjid ini sedang di Renovasi, jemaah semakin banyak sehingga ditingkat jadi dua lantai dan diperlebar.

Tampak depan masjid Syaiful Islam yang sedang di Renovasi. Galih Nofrio/ Senin (6/6/2016)

tampak dalam jemaah seusai salat zuhur. Galih Nofrio / Senin (6/6/2016)

Tampak Dalam, bila ada yang ingin membantu pembangunan

Tampak Dalam
Map

Why Black People Did Not Watch Roots

Let me preface this post with a few points. I watched the re-imagined Roots and I am a black person. I also watched the two accompanying episodes on the historical references in the mini-series and the behind-the-scenes footage. In elementary school we watched the 1977 version of Roots over several long hot days, in the auditorium. I had not remembered much of the original, beyond a few characters’ names and faces, so I was particularly interested to see this updated version. Of course, the big question is why even do an updated version? Is an update necessary? But then I wonder, are any remakes necessary? The Karate Kid? Fame? Annie? “Old” movies are remade all the time, and more so now, as Hollywood seems to be lacking in the original ideas department.

The History Channel’s Roots remake has gotten a ton of backlash and negative comments from black people, who made a conscious choice not to watch it. And this is what I want to explore. I decided to ask black people on Facebook why they aren’t watching it. Here are some of the responses…

I’m not entertained by the new slave marketing explosion.

No interest in seeing the same themes rehashed over and over again. The story has been done, is mildly over hyped, and semi-fictionalized and plagiarized. Doesn’t really appeal to me to have my emotions twisted as a means of entertainment.

I get tired of slave reminders… If I want to watch racism in full swing all I have to do is go to work…

I’m tired of slave movies. It’s making me mad.

What these kinds of movies do is subtly strike conviction in us and our youth to be afraid of the white man. We are not in the mindset to use our plight for empowerment as Jews do their holocaust. Shit like that resonates in us when we see what the white man has done to us. See, they not gone show us movies with us being entrepreneurs or business men/ women but what they will do is give us a healthy dose of us being hung and lynched and show the people who had the power to pull it off.

I’m over the ‘look how far we’ve come’ theme of slave movies… Where are the films and mini series that focus on our people’s first doctors, lawyers, inventors, etc.?

Its a myth portrayed to be a biopic or teaching tool… Roots is microwave scholarship…

The new cast is inferior to the original…

We have conquered more than slavery… we didn’t start that way… we were/are Kings, Queens, Inventors, Doctors, Teachers… Also, I’m sure I will have a straight attitude after watching it!

Confession: I didn’t completely watch the first one soooo I’m just skipping this one… Edutainment never did it for me…

I’m angry enough watching images of black bodies dead in the streets due to another persons fear of nothing. Don’t need more chaos in my heart.

I have never watched the original in its entirety. I have very little desire to watch the remake.

So, there’s a collective of black people that did not watch Roots for a variety of reasons: tired of slavery movies, it’s too painful, never saw the first one and don’t care to see the new one, tired of slavery being a focus of our history, it will bring about angry emotions.

My mother made a good point when I asked if she would be watching it. She said she feels like there’s been a sort of movement to get blacks to be ashamed of slavery. The idea being that if we’re ashamed of it, we’ll erase it from our minds; act like it never happened. If we’re ashamed, enough, we’ll just live in our glossy present and forget about the past.

One person mentioned Jews and the Holocaust, and it made me think of a moment I’ll never forget.

When I was around 13 I participated in a Rites of Passage class and ceremony, through my church. We were each given a mentor. Mine was this very cool woman named Diane. Diane loved going to movies, so that became our thing. Diane was also Jewish and took me to see Schindler’s List. I remember the line at the Avalon movie theater was wrapped around the block. I didn’t know much about the Holocaust, beyond what was taught in school. The film gave me an honest, brutal, glimpse into the struggles of the Jewish people and the tragedy of that horrible time. When the film was over, the packed crowd stood, in emotional applause, for nearly 15 minutes. I remember being very struck by this. Nothing had ever impacted me in that way. I know I was just a kid, but this was a collective experience for them.

I think I was finally impacted, in as an emotional way, when I saw 12 Years A Slave. It too was honest and brutal, but also really beautiful. Though, I finally felt a similar, emotional, connection to my ancestors, something about it still wasn’t the same as Jews response to Schindler’s List. I think it has to do with time. Slavery ended almost 200 years ago, in 1865. The Holocaust ended in 1945, only 71 years ago. While I was in the theater, watching 12 Years A Slave, crippled by the hardships of my ancestors, I was thinking, ‘Wow. Look at all they went through.’ “They” being very definitive, in that it shows how far removed I am from my ancestors. But, Jews watching Schindler’s List are thinking, ‘Wow. Look at what my parents or grandparents went through.’ Their attachment to their history is much closer to home.

In the behind-the-scenes episode, of the re-imagined Roots, one of the executive producers, Mark Wolper — who happens to be the son of one of the producers of the original Roots, David Wolper — said he tried showing the original Roots to his children and they just weren’t engaged. This is the digital media generation. So, he knew he had to present this story, almost like an action movie, for it to appeal to this new audience; for the message to resonate with them. The producers purposely showed the brutality of slavery, in a way the original had not, to present the most accurate depiction of what happened; what the slaves actually endured. They also worked to clean up inaccuracies they found in the first min-series. I really appreciated all of their efforts and thought the new Roots was remarkable.

I want to end with two points. First, when my mother brought up the shame we sometimes feel, when it comes to slavery, it made me think about this phrase: “You have to crawl, before you walk.” I have watched my daughter grow, fast, over the past two years. It’s been pretty amazing watching this person grasp so much in so little time. One day she will be 18, and she will look at her baby pictures and videos and be completely taken aback. She’ll listen to the adults who’ve raised her talk about her drooling, her thumb sucking, her tantrums. She won’t be able to comprehend the fact that there was a time when she could not speak, could not pick things up, didn’t know her left from her right, and could not walk. She might even be embarrassed by what she’s unable to remember; embarrassed about who she once was. But, my hope is that her village will help her to appreciate her past, who she was, and embrace it as significant to all she will become. Slaves crawled, so that we could walk.

And lastly, dreams. We all dream. Some we remember, some we don’t. Some dreams we create out of hopes and goals for the future; things we badly want. I have very hopeful dreams for my family, friends, the people I love. I dream for my community, things I hope will change. Black people, you and I are a slaves’ dreams, realized. They imagined us, so let’s never ever forget them.