I’ve always considered myself a law-abiding person and have tried to walk the straight and narrow. This is partly because I believe in doing what’s right and also because I’m a little short fat guy, and I don’t think I could outrun an amorous Sweaty Eddie in the close confines of a prison cell. But as it turns out, in spite of my best efforts, the other day I went to jail.
No, not real jail, where you have to associate with criminals and drug addicts and Sweaty Eddie, but Facebook jail. That’s where Facebook sends you when you’ve been bad, and it can last anywhere from days to forever, I guess. Fortunately for me, it wasn’t that long, just 24 hours. But how I got there was actually kind of dumb.
I belong to several online authors’ forums. They are great places to network, exchange ideas, talk about book projects, ask questions, and help support each other with announcements of new books and such. There was a discussion in one of those writers’ groups about the characters in our books, both the ones we love and the ones we hate. As part of that discussion, I said that sometimes I am tempted to kill the obnoxious little mayor in my Big Lake series.
The next thing I knew, I was in Facebook jail for hate speech against a government agency or official. Can you believe that? I got a message saying my account had been suspended for 24 hours, but I could appeal it if I wanted to. I did appeal, but it didn’t change anything.
I didn’t think it would do me any good because there’s not a real person making these decisions or reviewing them. It’s a bot that only sees words and has no idea of context or content. This happened to me once before, when I shared a link to a blog post about an Army museum in South Dakota. Among the items on display was a KKK hood. The exhibit was about how the Klan tried to spread their brand of terrorism in Sturgis and how some members of the black Buffalo Soldiers stationed there sent them scampering out of town with their tails between their legs. That time around I was in trouble for promoting racism and hate groups. Go figure.
Sometimes I’m tempted to dump Facebook completely, but it is a great resource for connecting with my family, friends, and readers, and for promoting my books.
The least Miss Terry could have done was to send me a chocolate cake with a file in it. Or even a chocolate cupcake. Maybe two, so I could have shared one with Eddie.
On another note, we picked up the Laramie from Global Mobile Detailing yesterday afternoon, and they did an amazing job applying the ceramic coating. Every bit of the truck gleams and looks better than it did the day it came home from the dealership. I left the Mustang with them so they can work their magic on it next.
And finally, here’s a chuckle to start your day from the collection of funny signs we see in our travels and that our readers share with us.
It’s Thursday, so it’s time for a new Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Gone The Next, the first book in my friend Ben Rehder’s Roy Ballard mystery series. Ben is one of my favorite authors, and if you aren’t a fan yet, you will be after reading any of his books. To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.
Thought For The Day – When one door closes and another door opens, you are probably in prison.