This article was originally posted as part of occasional series “Propaganda for Good” on

Very Kind Dogs

Over the holidays, maybe one too many doors was held open for me by a smiling stranger. It started me thinking about the stickers on automobiles “Practice Random Acts of Kindness.”

And then I thought about our biases. For example, is it easier to be kind to those who are like us or those who we pity? I really got myself wrapped around myself. I started becoming hostile toward the phrase “random acts of kindness.”

In my own head, I started an ontology of kindness…

Flowers from below. Copyright John Gilda 2018.

My mother spent much of her life educating young children and evangelizing for their protection. She was a founder of two schools and a toy lending library for the disabled, a professor, and late in her career trained people who cared for poor mostly loved but sometimes neglected or abused children. I found this writing laminated in one of her files and thought some might find her perspective useful.

She was very concerned in her later years about how to break the cycle of inter-generational violence and trauma. …

The Dillinger Escape Plan Photo by: Adam W.

Bailey was one of our favorites. Unless he was angry. Then, he was like a crazy dark force. And scary. Compact and wiry he could be a handful. His eyes were piercing or darting or weeping and weak. Ice blue.

You could look a Bailey and conjure up better times for him. He seemed like he might have been an engineer running his own firm. Successful, judging from his classic preppy attire and expensive shoes. Bailey was still continent. He said very little.

Bailey was pounding on the key pad that opened the double doors. He said “I want to…

There are existing laws about advertising but the pace and revenue flows of online ads make it nearly impossible to enforce unless the technology industry deploys advanced technology like machine learning to catch itself and reduce revenue flows.

As our earnest representatives looked worried and walked fast through the halls of congress during the Facebook hearing, I decided to investigate what election laws protecting citizens from false claims because I assumed it would be similar to laws protecting consumers from false advertising. My conclusion is that inside the beltway, there has been a blind eye turned toward laws regulating internet and micro-targeted elections communications that benefited Cambridge Analytica and perhaps all mudslinging politicians.

First the consumer case is clear. As the FTC website says “When consumers see or hear an advertisement, whether it’s on the Internet, radio or…

Mark Zuckerberg 1984 Berlin Graffiti by victorgrigas

Given the political nature of the Cambridge Analytics and Facebook revelations over the past few weeks there is a charged atmosphere. There is also a high profile movement to delete Facebook (#DeleteFacebook.) There is a related debate shaping up between those who feel Facebook betrayed user’s trust and those that say we all knew all along how Facebook makes money on the consumers of the free service. One argument says people who are surprised that Facebook is selling their data are disingenuous. Will stay away from that debate for this blog and will focus on the business and technology management…

Or, can Enterprise IT gracefully merge with the “business”

IBM Mainframe from Cambridge University, known as Phoenix. Matt Seymore under CC BY-SA 2.0

When will enterprise IT stop being enterprise IT? The answer is maybe not fast enough, or ever.

Act 1: Wizards of Oz

Since I’ve been in the information technology business, technologists caged and protected fragile technology. Technologists, like wizards, harnessed power on behalf of the great unwashed masses in “the business.” Now with the concept of digital transformation and consumerization of IT some business people have realized IT technology should be easy to manipulate for business purposes. These astute business people see that the wizards are sometimes more like the great Oz than Gandalf.

John Gilda

Am opinionated and often wrong. Writing in a Celtic tradition where stories are the threads that tie together people across time and space.

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