Goodbye Facebook

Earlier this month I got blocked from using Facebook

In the past I've lost access for things that I've posted, which has often been frustrating as they were sometimes posted years earlier -- so it felt like I'd been punished for guidelines applied retrospectively.

This time it's less interesting because I was blocked for not using multi-factor authentication (MFA).

I had enough warning to let friends know I was leaving and it was nice that some took my offer of email.

Some friends tried to explain the value of MFA, but I don't have a mobile phone and couldn't see an alternative.

(I don't doubt the value of MFA, by the way.)

So far it's been painless to live without access to the popular social network, although I feel as though I'm missing out on stuff.

However, I'm also missing all the pointless time I spent on Facebook and the stuff I didn't need that I bought on Marketplace.

I think it's a win.

About the Junto

One of my favourite weekly activities is the Disquiet Junto

Recently I contributed a few observations about the creative prompts and the online community it inspires.

Those recordings now appear in the video embedded above.

Gender agenda

Federal parliament is sitting this week amid protests from various groups

The Morrison government is deeply unpopular and the personal apology heard yesterday from the Prime Minister to Brittany Higgins shows how badly he needs to repair his image with female voters.

There's been a perception that Morrison doesn't take personal responsibility for many things, so the messaging seems clear when he identifies oversight of a workplace where Ms Higgins was allegedly assaulted.

Last year Higgins spoke at a large protest by women outside Parliament House and today she'll be addressing the Press Club.

Morrison was so obviously trying to appeal to women with his hair-washing stunt.

So gender will be the topic on many agendas this week.

The debate in parliament of religious freedoms will have a similar focus, particularly the question whether religious schools should have the right to expel trans students.

This subject is interesting to me because it highlights a looming division among voters and it is one as stark as the presentation of gender differences.

Let me recall a local scene around the time of the last election. 

I was chairing a public meeting that was attended by representatives of all three levels of government.

There were a group of candidates for an upcoming election and it surprised me that one challenger quipped that on the subject of gender fluidity they "didn't want any gender fluid in high schools."

This simple gag substitutes sex and gender and, while it's a kind of dogwhistle in politics, it also reveals a fundamental misunderstanding about issues including trans students.

I think shows a generation gap.

One of my majors at university was cultural studies, so I've researched differences of sex and gender in various departments.

Yet I often feel how difficult it is to navigate gender fluidity, particularly in conversations with my children.

Kids today are so much more capable when it comes to recognising this terrain.

Mine seem to have many more trans friends than I do.

So this gender gap that I've observed will be interesting to watch as it plays out in conversations at Parliament House ahead of an election.

Australian voters are on the cusp of an interesting shift, possibly as soon as the next election.

It's simple demographics that the ageing Baby Boomers are losing their grasp on Australian public life and Australian voters will soon be dominated by the upcoming echo of the baby boom they are named after.

Politics is often a series of wedge topics designed to identify divisions and I think the religious discrimination bill has further alienated the Coalition government.

Recommended meeting meeting

Infocouncil is the software used by local government to compile reports into business papers

I found this message when trying to notify a colleague that my report was ready. 

It's these weird little literal messages that keep the job interesting for me!