Correcting a Facebook post: the drummer girl is from Taiwan, not S Korea 13

The video in question: JISHOU, HUNAN — So, while I was noodling on Facebook last month in the USA, I came across this video of a young street performer playing a mean drum cover. I was impressed, so I shared it on my timeline. The originator of the post said she’s Korean, which I found out today is wrong. The drummer is 羅小白 Luó xiǎo bái, who goes by the stage name S. White (小白 xiǎo bái), 20. She’s from Taipei, Taiwan, not South Korea. Here’s her Facebook page. [ADDENDUM. Hold the phone, Al! Commenter Jim Shreve has pointed out that both the original poster of this video and I probably have misidentified this drummer. First of all, I had her Chinese name wrong — now corrected — and worse yet, now I am pretty sure Jim is right and the drummer is not S. White, but her buddy, Vela Blue, the stage name of Chén MànQīng 陈曼青.] Here the same drummer performing another cover. The OP identifies her as S. White, but now I think she’s really Vela Blue. This one is definitely S.White performing. S. White and Vela Blue (who now has blue hair) sometimes perform together. Vela ...

Testing out a new Facebook app 1

JISHOU, HUNAN — As often happens in the land of open source applications, the developer who created Wordbooker has abandoned the project. So, now I’m trying a new WordPress plugin called Facebook Auto Publish. If you can see this post, it’s working. Wordbooker allowed me to automatically post from this blog to my Facebook timeline, but occasionally it would fail because FB would require re-authorization of the app, or FB would change its APIs, breaking the feed. Facebook Auto Publish promises to do the same thing. I have just set it up. So here goes! — Twenty-five minutes later, I believe I have it working right. We’ll see if it takes this update and pushes it to Facebook.

Runaway plugins re-send my blogs to Twitter, Facebook

JISHOU, HUNAN — Today’s website weirdness is the simultaneous flooding of my Twitter and Facebook feeds with “edits” of previous posts from this blog, some from as far back as 2006! I was sleeping at the time, so I know it wasn’t me! I have two WordPress plugins that link to my Twitter feed and Facebook timeline. If they are behaving themselves, as I post something in this blog, WP-to-Twitter sends out a tweet with a shortlink, and Wordbooker puts a snippet in my Facebook timeline. Some weeks ago, I added another plugin from AtContent, a blog sharing service. Last night (China time), I decided to re-post an interesting article from another AtContent user, and activated the plugin. Then I went to bed. In the morning, I found an urgent email from my friend, PK, telling me my blog had run amuck. And sure enough, my Twitter feed had tweet after tweet of blogs, in somewhat random order, and my Facebook timeline contained blogs from years ago. So, I pulled deactivated all three plugins, and went about cleaning up my Twitter and Facebook feeds. Right now, only the Twitter plugin is turned on. I’m going to turn on Wordbooker just ...

WordPress to Facebook feed working again, but for how long?

JISHOU, HUNAN — There’s a new plugin for WordPress — Wordbooker — that once again restores the connection I had between my blog and my Facebook timeline, at least until the wonks at FB change their code again. A previous plugin just stopped working, so I resorted to a kludge: automatically tweet my posts, using a functional WordPress plugin, and link my Twitter feed to my Facebook status. This worked fine, but also meant anytime I (rarely) tweeted, those tweets would end up on FB, puzzling anyone who was not following that particular Twitter thread. Wordbooker solves the problem, so I’ve turned off the Twitter-to-FB feed. The new plugin may also make it possible to once again transfer comments between FB and the blog, a neat function that another obsoleted plugin had provided. The kludge also tended to post random images in my Facebook timeline if there was none in the post: the Akismet graphic and the TigerDirect sales logo in the righthand sidebar, for example. Those thankfully have gone away, making the feed look somewhat more professional.

Facebook does it again

JISHOU, HUNAN — Facebook readers, after Nov. 22, if you want to read my blog, you will have to come here. Facebook in its ineffable wisdom is shutting off external feeds to Facebook Notes. Here’s what I read today as I opened FB: You currently automatically import content from your website or blog into your Facebook notes. Starting November 22nd, this feature will no longer be available, although you’ll still be able to write individual notes. The best way to share content from your website is to post links on your Wall. Well, that’s just great if you have 24/7 access to Facebook, but I don’t. So, thanks for nothing, Facebook techs. Maybe some clever coder will work up a WordPress plugin to at least post links to my FB status, but it seems FB is trying to close off all external access, except for approved apps and moneymaking links. [Correction: I found Status Updater, a WP plugin, that can send a link for each post to my FB Status. Setting it up is not very straightforward; you have register it on FB as a new FB application. If it works, it will update my status every hour. We’ll see.] ...

Some website tweaks 1

JISHOU, HUNAN — I’ve belatedly gotten around to allowing readers at the website to share posts with friends using Google+, Facebook and Twitter with three WordPress plugins. The buttons to click will be at the end of each post. Since all three of these fine services are blocked in China, I need some feedback to see if the buttons look OK and their functions are working. My proxy connection comes and goes randomly. One of the plugins also allows sharing with services like digg, and reddit. Pardon the dumb question, but in this Facebook-Twitter-Google+ age, does anybody really use those services anymore? I don’t want to clutter things up with lots of superfluous buttons.

I’m without Facebook … again

UPDATE 1/9/11 5:30 am ET — Nevermind. As soon as I wrote this post, by a corollary to Murphy’s Law, everything started working again. JISHOU, HUNAN — My favorite method to climb the Great Firewall of China seems to no longer work. So, my only access to FB right now is eBuddy on my cellphone for Chat and this blog’s feed into Notes. I do get emails whenever someone comments on a note or sends me a message, though. I had been using Ultrareach‘s Ultrasurf, a 1-MB program that sets up a proxy connection to “climb the Wall,” as they say here, and evade China’s Internet censorship. It establishes a proxy connection as before, but as soon as I enter a URL, the connection is lost. I suspect the Net Nannies here have gotten wise to Ultrasurf and figured out a way to block it, as they did the Tor proxy network two years ago. So, if you’re expecting me to learn about news from family and friends via FB, think again. Ya might just have to write me an email once in a while. Oh, and FB recoded their site again, so the plugin I have that pulls comments ...

Facebook comments pull is working again!

JISHOU, HUNAN — No more manual copy/pasting of comments from the mirrored posts on my Facebook Notes! I’m sure it will work until the wizards at FB jimmie the code and break everyone’s plugins again.

Facebook comments fix on the fritz 4

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY — I bragged awhile ago that I finally had a plugin that would automatically post Facebook comments to my cross-posted entries here on the blog. Thanks to the wizards at Facebook (may they forever rotate in a rotisserie), the plugin stopped working about two weeks ago. The developer is working on a fix to the plugin, but knowing FB’s habitual tweaking of, well, everything, the code will need to be revised — again — in the near future. Grumble, grumble.

Facebook Comments problem solved! 6

JISHOU, HUNAN — A while ago, I linked this blog to my Facebook account. My posts here are automatically imported into my FB Notes. Once upon a time, I had another plugin that extracted comments to the imported Notes from FB back here. But it stopped working, and its developer gave up working on it. But another developer stepped in to restore the functionality. Facebook Comments TNG works! I installed it just now, and it pulled comments from FB perfectly. Now, I may have to go through them and edit out duplicates, but that’s a minor irritation compared to having to manually copy-and-paste FB comments myself.

Great Firewall now blocks Tor proxies: bye-bye Facebook 3

JISHOU, HUNAN — It was bound to happen someday. I am now completely shut off from Facebook. So if you want to communicate with me, either use my blog here, IM me or send me an email. China started blocking Facebook (and other sites) about a year after I arrived. Until recently, I had been able to use the Tor proxy network to “climb the firewall” and access Facebook. China’s net nannies had been blocking the IP addresses of public Tor connections, but I was able to get private bridge IPs by email. Now even the private bridge connections don’t work. My Tor’s log reports “problem bootstrapping. Stuck at 5%” and there it stays. Apparently, China’s censors have found a way to render the Tor proxy network ineffective, thereby shutting us netizens in China out of the wider WorldWide Web. Internet restrictions here typically get more severe as we approach significant anniversaries, such the Tiananmen Square protests by university students on June 5, 1989. In fact, I just discovered that just trying to visit sites (wikipedia,, etc.) that discuss the events is useless. It seems those are being blocked, too. Sigh. Perhaps the blocks will be removed after the ...

The Great Firewall now blocks Facebook 4

JISHOU, HUNAN — Sometime in the last week, China’s Internet gatekeepers decided to block Facebook, thereby cutting off my students (and thousands of other Chinese users) from communicating with their Facebook pals. I can still use FB, but now I have to go through the Tor proxy network. Whatta pain. China’s net nannies have been on a campaign recently to lock down the Internet, obstensibly to shut off access to pornography, but coincidentally to limit access to sites critical of the government. Given the recent riots in Xinjiang between Muslim Uighurs and local Han (the ethnic majority in China), one can only guess why Facebook has been banned here. The media site,, is now also blocked, too. Danwei’s writers are openly critical of Internet censorship in China, and provide links to news sites that are less biased than the official government sources. For example, if you believe CCTV-9, the international arm of the state TV media, everything is just peachy keen in Xinjiang, where more than 150 people were killed earlier this month and where the army is patrolling the streets to prevent more outbreaks of ethnic violence. CCTV-9 interviewed a Westerner who teaches at a university in Urumqi, ...
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