Archive for November 7, 2022

Meta Plans To Do Large Scale Layoffs This Week

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 7, 2022 by itnerd

The word on the street is that Meta who owns Facebook is planning to lay off thousands this week. This story has the details as we know them:

Meta is thought to be considering making thousands of employees redundant with an announcement planned as soon as Wednesday, the Journal reports.

Sources told the outlet that employees had been instructed to cancel all nonessential travel beginning this week.

At the end of September, Meta reported that it had a total of 87,000 employees.

Meta declined The Independent’s request for comment.

The company’s shares fell off a cliff as they had a weak quarter. Thus this isn’t all that surprising. It will be interesting to see what parts of Meta get affected as that will give a lot of insight into what Mark Zuckerberg thinks is important, and what he thinks he can dispose of.

I’ll be watching closely.

Maple Leaf Foods Pwned In Cyberattack

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 7, 2022 by itnerd

For those of you outside of Canada, Maple Leaf Foods is the biggest packaged meat producer in the company. If you go into any supermarket in the country, you will see their products. And over the weekend, they apparently got pwned in a cyberattack. Here’s their statement:

Upon learning of the incident, Maple Leaf Foods took immediate action and engaged cybersecurity and recovery experts.  Its team of information systems professionals and third-party experts are working diligently with all available resources to investigate the outage and resolve the situation.   The Company is executing its business continuity plans as it works to restore the impacted systems; however, it expects that full resolution of the outage will take time and result in some operational and service disruptions.  The Company will continue to work with all its customers and suppliers to minimize these disruptions in order to continue delivering the nutritious food people need.  

That’s literally all their statement said. I’ve been poking around the places that I usually look for this sort of thing and I don’t see any mention about Maple Leaf Foods being pwned. But it will be interesting to see whom claims responsibility for this, and if this affects the food supply in Canada.

Watch this space.

Canadian Government Told To Pause Advertising On Twitter

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 7, 2022 by itnerd

CBC News is reporting that the Canadian Government has been told by the agency Cossette” to pause advertising on Twitter:

Cossette, which is the government’s “media agency of record,” issued guidance Friday to “pause activity immediately and monitor the situation over the weekend” due to “unknown continuity plans for moderation” and a “heightened risk of brand safety,” according to an internal document seen by CBC News.

Cossette helps with “media planning and strategizing, media buying, ad serving and trafficking, ad verification, reporting and reconciliation services, to support a variety of government initiatives.” It works with numerous government agencies and departments.

I pinged a couple of clients of mine who are in the advertising space and asked them how common this sort of guidance it is. Their answer was that it’s not all that common. In fact they also said that it is also surprising that this guidance has been made public. If you’re Twitter generally or Elon Musk specifically, this has to get your attention as your message of “nothing to see here isn’t working. Maybe he should take this as a big hint that his behaviour and how he manages Twitter needs to change. Otherwise he’s going to be in big trouble. Though I suspect that he’s going to take a different path. As in throw a temper tantrum on Twitter. Thus I am waiting for him to rage Tweet at any time.

Such is the world that we currently live in.

The IT Nerd Is Now On Mastodon

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 7, 2022 by itnerd

On Sunday, I spoke about feeling like I needed to be someplace other than Twitter because of the fallout from Elon Musk simply destroying the platform because of his incompetence and child like behaviour. Starting today, I’m going to be trying out Mastodon. I’ve established an account on a Mastodon server called And my handle is I have just finished setting up my WordPress instance to cross post over there. That way I have an escape plan if Elon really causes Twitter to crash and burn.

In order to help you sign up for Mastodon if you want to flee Twitter, and to help you understand what it is, I will be doing a story on that in the coming days. Stay tuned for that.

Thin Skinned Elon Musk Goes After Verified Twitter Accounts That Parody Him

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 7, 2022 by itnerd

Over the last few days, a number of verified Twitter accounts have taken shots at Elon Musk because his take over of Twitter isn’t exactly popular. These accounts going to the lengths of changing their account names and profile pictures to look like Elon Musk’s Twitter account. Here’s a couple of examples:

Now the account of Chris Wallcraft got suspended by Musk Twitter. But clearly this is getting to Musk. And as a result he posted this late on Sunday:

While I admit that what these people are doing violate Twitter’s terms of service, you have to ask what happened to free speech Elon? Is your skin so thin that you can’t take a joke. Especially when you are looking like a big joke in terms of how you’re running Twitter?

What quickly followed was the hypocrisy of this pronouncement by Musk being pointed out:

And it also points out what’s wrong with his Twitter Blue pipe dream:

This is another example of Musk being unable to deal with critics in an adult manner. I cited an example in this post where he’s blocked people who question him in ways that he doesn’t like. The thing is that if he thinks that this will stop people from taking shots at him, it won’t. It will not only encourage more of this, they will also change their tactics. And then what are you going to do Elon?

Oh wait, it’s already happening. Via a reader of this blog:

That fits the pronouncement that Musk put out in terms of what is allowed. Until he moves the goalposts because he doesn’t like how that’s working, or not working for him. Of course you can always just meme the guy instead:

Is he going to ban any meme that he doesn’t like? And then there’s this:

A simple search finds that there’s lots of these around. Is he going to ban anyone and everyone?

What we’re seeing is Elon melt down in real time on Twitter as it’s becoming increasingly clear to anyone watching that Musk is way over his head and doesn’t know what to do and is likely reconsidering his life choices. That on top of the fact that he’s incredibly thin skinned.

Sucks to be Elon Musk right now.

Guest Post: Nearly 30% of ad traffic on Yandex and Opera browsers is bot-generated, a study reveals

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 7, 2022 by itnerd

With the last quarter of the year in motion, advertisers are frantically trying to spend all their ad budgets and meet their annual goals. However, many ad managers run into the issue of fraudulent traffic, which generates clicks and spends their money, but brings no results. 

Threat actors use computer-generated bots to replicate the activities of actual customers and fool advertisers into paying for ad traffic. 

A variety of approaches are utilized to produce false traffic, such as infecting customers’ personal computers and mobile devices with malware that loads websites without their knowledge or even infecting cloud services. 

To get a clear view of the current ad fraud landscape, the research by Fraudlogix, an ad fraud prevention company, evaluated 42 billion ad impressions to determine the severity of the non-human or bot traffic problem in Q2 2022.

The findings reveal that, on average, 21% of traffic advertisers pay for is generated by computers and scripts, not real people. 

The most noteworthy finding is that certain browsers send through significantly more fraudulent traffic than others. 

For example, the highest percentage of illegitimate traffic comes through the Russia-based Yandex browser. The analysis reveals that nearly 1 in 3 ad impressions coming across Yandex were non-human.

The Opera browser is also one of the favorites for fraudulent traffic. Over 26.3% of ad traffic coming through the Opera search engine was labeled as “non-human”. 

Google Chrome (19.5%), Apple Safari (19.1%), and Microsoft Edge (17.9%) are relatively similar in terms of the percentage of bot traffic. 

Finally, the most favorable browser to target your ads towards is Mozilla Firefox, as only 13.5% of traffic coming through this browser was computer-generated. 

To read the full article, head over to: