Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

Flapon! Flapoff! Sorry, It Had to Be Said.

Over in the inbox today, we have a pitch for Flapon, a new “topic-based, life-stream integrated social network.”

Flapon? The name triggers a voice in my head singing the Clapper light switch jingle.

“The name was thought of by one of the founders who had been pondering social media and the butterfly-effect,” says the pitch. (The butterfly effect is the idea that something tiny, like the flap of a butterfly’s wings, can affect the course of something big, like a hurricane.)

Stupider names have happened, and stupider things have happened than someone else starting yet another online forum site. But maybe not today.


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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik