If you’re like me and love collecting achievements, then foursquare will be no exception. You will not be able to collect them all as many of the badges are geo-specific and event oriented. However, most of the Active Badges can be achieved in a short amount of time.
As with any social media experiment, earn awards often and early!
Wifebeater is a band without regrets. The Outlaw Trio wanders the known world looking for scraps of mercenary work to pay for their instrument’s upkeep. Weathered wanted posters serve more as a warning than apprehension request. Either way, housewives whisper tales of the modern day sirens luring kids into the wilderness of imagination.
Louisiana natives tell tales of days lost in the bayou. Each story follows a similar pattern of events. While trudging through the murky waters, an upright bass captures the heartbeat. Two female voices entangle leafs with an eerie radiance. Eventually they would enter an enchanted campsite of lost boys and crust punks. The victims would awaken with the fire’s last ember. The only thing left were the songs etched onto their souls.
Locals call it, The Endless Night.
Kimi, Joe, and Reba, were once like you and me. One faithful day, they became love struck mid-performance, driven mad by a straightedge muse. Immediately after that performance, they vanished into the boxcars of a local train yard. Their names and instruments were all they retained.
Mad with music, Wifebeater rejects society. Legislators see them as a scourge on the rolling plains of existence – kids living beyond the law of civilized man. As they traveled the United States their legend grew. Women started throwing bread at passing boxcars as tribute for vagabond deities.
While adventuring in the Great White North, Wifebeater was cornered in an icy cave by the famed Inuit Bounty Hunter, Keelut. He commanded hellish chimeras, polar bears crossed with huskies. Permanently snow blind, he used his heightened sense of hearing to locating the three rouge musicians.
The fight was as bitter as the cold that surrounding them. Joe wrestled half the unholy chimeras through sheer force of will. Kimi morphed into her animal spirit and accepted the challenge with a boisterous roar. Reba dauntlessly faced Keelut’s onslaught. Even Reba’s blessed guitar of relentless fury could not overcome Keelut’s poisoned soul.
Close to death, Wifebeater sang out to collapse the icy tomb. The crystalline roof crumbled and the floor gave into the breathless waters below. What happened after that moment is unclear. Three weeks later, polar bear like creatures were spotted on glaciers in the Hudson Bay and Wifebeater appeared in Pittsburgh.
I met Wifebeater in the cellar of an ancient church. The Code Orange Kids were playing, and The Edukators were negotiating the surrender of Comrade Kangaroo. There is little documentation of that night, but I assure you of the following:
A death glare from Wifebeater can kill three flies, two birds, and a 1986 Ford Taurus. I survived, but a parked Nissan Sentra had gone to a better place. The car was promptly replaced with a bicycle, and nothing of value was lost.
The local shows after that blurred together. Wifebeater became local heroes with their soy-based leather tannery. Additionally, they unionized the bees to produce vegan friendly honey. Our paths often cross, for adventure’s muse never sleeps.
Wifebeater reminds us:
We are all vagabonds aimless and free.
December 2009 brought the Copenhagen 15 Summit and protesters trying to incite real change. Meanwhile, Iran took to the streets which meant certain death for a few, but the opportunity for the next generation to be scientists, thinkers, and teachers. Greece was in riots over their severe governmental distrust. The Gaza Strip also saw another round of violence. Locally, Pittsburgh City Paper held their awards ceremony and WYEP had a Holiday Hootenanny.
Demonoid is a private BitTorrent tracker that only accepts new members referred by a Demonoid Invitation Code. Unlike The Pirate Bay, private trackers often require a minimum Upload:Download ratio making sure you’re a productive member of their community. The hope is this will result in higher quality material and file sharing.
Haven’t gotten into Demonoid yet? No problem. I’ll generate codes and send them out when I can.
userXjehe9rudesputreb8edrabrezaru5e userXya8at6brafes96nu6wubrupufratam userXdruneke88br724uqejevahufru74bu
Please comment with a valid email, I can send the invitation code to.
Total Invitations Sent to Date: 240+
I’m looking for a What.CD invite if you’re looking to trade.
There was a day not long ago, the heavens stood still. The clouds shook with thunder and shattered into fragments. Through the Soul Forge’s flame, a figure of perfection streaked down unto the world leaving an amber sky. Legend has it, a punk angel received her wings on that day.
As I wandered aimlessly, going on such adventures required of a punk prophet, I was visited by Mercury, messenger of the gods. He was in one of his many forms, a bicycle punk. His messenger bag was filled with heavenly items: PBR, Show Flyers, etc. From his bag he delivered one particular item, The Last Hope Manifesto CD.
The Last Hope’s CD Release Show was over a week away. If it had been delivered by anyone else, I would have simply concluded it was the work of the devil and burned it. The mere fact that Manifesto had come to me before it’s release could only have meant two things. This is destiny, or it was from the future.
Receiving a CD before it’s released is a tricky situation. If you tell the band about it, their creativity process could be impacted thus resulting in a different cd, time paradox, or parallel universe. Erroring on the side of caution, I decided to wait until the CD Release party before ever listening to The Last Hope. Time Paradox resolved.
Photos of The Last Hope CD Release Show
TheSixtyOne, Demonoid, and bands sending me mp3’s is where I get my music. (Ask me for Demonoid invites here.) Originally, I wasn’t sure what a CD would do. Googling it revealed that in the before times, CD’s were used much like the Edison Phonograph Cylinder to store music. Digging further, I found Apple hid a CD/DVD reader in my iMac.
I was surprised to find out that The Last Hope’s Manifesto was non-organic and non-edible. We can finally put the myth to rest that Manifesto is made of candy. The drool proved the CD to be surprisingly water resistant. Field tests show that rubbing The Last Hope’s Manifesto on SUV’s won’t immediately set them ablaze as one would hope.
Contrary to popular belief The Last Hope doesn’t prevent winter. I left Manifesto in my garden over night to see what effects it would have. My parsley and cilantro did not become ‘herbs on steroids’. Most everything was still killed by the frost. Manifesto survived the winter night’s frost to look pretty bad ass.
The Last Hope’s Manifesto is a refreshing roundhouse kick of ember punk. A panda might be able to eat more bambo, but this album delivers a consistent row of chaos spikes.
Their lyrics are emotionally revealing, highlighting the spiritual struggle and symbolizing the evolution of world mythology beyond the sword birthing into new social theories on autonomism in a post colonial world; Indeed, Manifesto impeccably meshes Emma Goldman’s anarchist romanticism with Noam Chomsky’s polished rhetoric exemplifying DIY Culture and reminding each of us in our hearts:
This post starts out in a convenience store where it faithfully ends.
Surrounded by expired snack cakes, she belches the typical clerk’s complaints: “Not suppose to be here”, “Better than these people”, and her primary sin “When my art career picks up” Little does she realize that ringing hipsters up for American Spirits does not count as contributing to counter-culture. The closest she has come to art is her attempt of collecting artists in the bedroom.
One day, a journalist made the tragic mistake of publishing her critique in a weekly periodical. The Beehive Coffeehouse has yet to recover. She started proclaiming her criticism on every speck of design that passes through. Never mind offering a divergent point of view because “You don’t understand.”
Even I was interrupted by her faux criticism when she said, “Why do you have a camera? You don’t do art.”
@JonKranz came to that realization. He had spent years in art school and subsequent horrible jobs before discovering his art career was another rebranding of the Emperor’s New Clothes. His real talent was in marketing, copywriting, and archeology. He’s now documenting a mysterious civilization that limits itself to 140 characters.
You should listen to his NPR Commentary about fantasy selves:
In the same coffee shop, I came across the enhanced edition of the CP Holiday Guide. By enhanced I mean an anonymous punk offering social commentary through picturesque alteration. So effective was the message, that I instantly took it home to create a hero’s homage.
The secret behind hipsters, is they are great consumers at heart. Rather than attempting to actualize their dreams, the paint brush and skateboard become conversational props of prefabricated lifestyles.
This girl, bought into the art rhetoric. Her plans of opening up a coffee shop, art gallery, or professionally modeling is her attempt of imitating a life less ordinary. The lie of solidified acrylic tubes beside an empty canvas hinders her from opening the world with her own fruitful career.
I Didn’t Pull the Trigger: I Designed the Gun
Wife Beater, an magnificent band, needed a poster. Hipsters needed told.
In producing art, you’ve already crushed the hipster productivity curve. Patches, cardboard cities, digital imagery, and writing are usually beyond the philosophical calling of the typical hipster. In this case, a photoshop tutorial and three hours of work can accomplish amazing result.
As Gandolf forgot about the Giant Eagles in the plan to get The Ring to Fire of Mordor, I had completely forgotten about the poster once finished. A month passed before The City Paper Best of 2009 Awards revived it.
The poster took on a second life. A secret task force sprung into action. The laser printers spun, sleeper agents were activated, and on Carson Street copies were distributed despite the rain. The street was the canvas for the message. Whatever that was.
Oddly enough, I was inside at the event. My friends had congregated to receive their accolades and I was photographing their prize moment. The night went smoothly except for a few whispers about the graffiti outside.
Nothing of Value was Lost
Behind a counter of an unmarked convenience store, another pack of cigarettes join the countless cartons that have come before it. The spread sheet of stale snack cakes are a long call from the accounting books of the independent bookstore dreams. A customer with white headphones asks her, “Isn’t that flyer outside awful?”
Unaware of the poster’s origin, she answers, “It’s no Warhol.”
Max up at 222 Ormsby are doing a special one-off show with Bomb the Music Industry, fresh back from the Gainsville Festival. Playoff Beard, a local favorite, will be there as well as Fezz-Wig. I’ll be hanging around to help dismantle to music industry.
Before Netroots Nation ’09, I always considered myself apolitical. I had relentlessly avoided the two-party system and the politics that accompanied it. Even during the G20 Conference, I objectively tweeted and posted photography. Music is my primary function as an activist.
G20 was a celebration of Independent Media. My flickr account exploded with traffic and my twitter account was widely retweeted and critically praised. NPR, YES Magazine, and others picked up on my work. Yet, on the heels of the celebration came the unexpected.
After a night of hanging out with friends, I received a phone call at 2am.
“We know where you live boy.”
“Fuck you, you liberal scum.”
The conversation happened briefly. I spoke firmly that I never claimed to be an anarchist nor liberal. Then, I started to ask them questions between their cursing. The best I got was they were Alabama conservatives.
Later, I had found out it was because of this tweet:
Stability is a pleasure for the conservatives.
I had meant to say “Conservative” not “Conservatives” trying to suggest people should try new things outside of their routine. A simple mistake had put me in the firing line of a long-standing battle.
Another threat came in over a different matter:
You have 24 hours to take it offline or we’ll fuck you up.
During Netroots Nation, I vividly recall a conversation about hate mail at the DailyKOS booth. Apparently, they receive such an unreasonable amount of hate mail. So much so, they parodied it at their DailyKOS after party. DailyKOS staff read hate mail into webcams as if they were the source of the emails.
What I take out of these experiences:
People are attentive. No matter the message or response, there are readers on both sides.
There is importance in the message. Enough so there are those who will resort to threats physical violence silence speech.
Role models are crafted out of courage. Freedom of speech is an easy forfeit for perceived safety. Silence should never follow intimidation.
And it continues to this day. Most of them are passive-aggressive social networking messages. Some appear as comments to my blog; some appear as insidious Myspace messages. I can’t help but think, it is a sign of doing something right.
On October 13th, 2009 Jelsoft, now owned by Internet Brands, sent out an email to all vBulletin customers announcing vBulletin 4.0:
[…]Over the last 12 months, we have been building vBulletin 4.0 to be the most powerful forum and social publishing software. Today, we are proud to introduce the new vBulletin 4.0 Publishing Suite product that includes the power of the vBulletin 4.0 Forums with a seamlessly integrated content management system (CMS) and blogging platform.
As a preferred customer with an active license, we are excited to offer the vBulletin Publishing Suite at a pre-sale discount price of only $130 (over 50% off regular price). This is a truly limited one-time special offer giving
you $120 off the upgrade price but will expire on Friday October 30, 2009. […]
Beginning today, we are introducing new a license structure. vBulletin is changing to a one-time owned license fee for each major point release. That means no more annual renewal fees. Once you purchase a major point version, you’ll receive maintenance, security and minor point releases for the life of 4.x.
You have the option to keep your current active license until it expires (according to the 12 month term and conditions). For the remainder of your active license, you will continue to receive support and have access to forum software updates, including vBulletin 4.0 Forums. Once your license expires you will only be able to access the 4 Series software updates by switching to the new one-time owned license. […]
The vBulletin Team
Essentially customers had about two weeks to purchase an upgrade to their license at a discounted price or practically pay for a new one. Their email even suggests I have an active license, when all three of mine are inactive but owned. vBulletin has confused a lot of customers with the new prices. A majority of threads on their Pre-Sale forum express confusion. Here is a chart that tries to simplify it.
vBulletin 3.x (old)
vBulletin 3.x (March 2008)
$40/yr if active
$60/yr if expired
vBulletin 3.x (New Structure)
vBulletin Blog (Add-on)
Included in vBulletin License
vBulletin Project Tools
Included in vBulletin License
vBulletin Forum 4.x (Pre-Sale)
But not really.
vBulletin Suite 4.x (Pre-Sale)
*With Active License
vBulletin Suite 4.x
(Pre-Sale Expired License within 12 month)
vBulletin Suite 4.x
(Pre-sale Expired License over 12 months)
What Jelsoft has just told users is their $240-360 investment in software is now worth a $20 discount, $35 if they decide to go with the vBulletin Suite, and maybe $105 if the stars align.
They’re ignoring new users who purchased vBulletin in the last 30 days asking them to pay the upgrade. And have completely disregarded anyone who purchased the Blog or Project Tools. vBulletin would also like you to forget that your yearly fee went into the development of vBulletin 4.x. This equates to nothing more than a price scheme forcing users basically buy new licenses.
Free*, But not Really
On their homepage, vBulletin says that vBulletin 4.x is a free upgrade to existing customers. They then changed the second page to say it was free only until your license expired. If the license expires in April, you’ll be able to download the current revision until then. Another thread said “owned” licenses would be able to upgrade until 4.2. There is confusion over everything except the fact it isn’t free.
“So, what? I’ll just stick with vBulletin 3.8.x!”
Not according to vBulletin. There is no option for the classic security update subscription. Meaning unless you spend $175 for the vBulletin 4.x upgrade, you no longer have access to those necessary updates. This leaves your vBulletin site vulnerable to a number of attacks known and undiscovered.
Let’s not forget the communities are involved.
Each license of vBulletin is tied to people beyond the owner. There are millions of users behind those licenses. One only has to look at Big Boards to see how many people and posts are affect by vBulletin’s new decisions. We care about our users and especially their experience.
My father and I went on a trip around the East Coast last year. We met many of our forum users. One of them had lost his foot and the ability to work. He found release in being able to instruct others on our forum. Day in and day out, he spoke with people across our forums. We met him in person, and it was instantly emotional. That’s when I realized, our site, our forum… mattered.
Why the title of the Article?
In essence, Jelsoft/Internet Brands has taken our favorite puppy hostage. The ransom is virtually the price of a new puppy. Yet, they’ll cut you a deal and upgrade to the puppy suite and include a red collar. That red collar is vBulletin’s new Content Management System (CMS). This would be a great thing if it weren’t for two things:
vBulletin users who needed a CMS already have one. (vBAdvanced, Joomla & jFusion, etc) If they were to switch, it would be a huge and manual migration process.
vBulletin’s CMS is untested, unproven, and strictly unreliable.
The upgrade to vBulletin 4 was rushed, and a disaster. I was one of the first ones on the board and it took over 5 minutes for pages to load and almost 12 minutes to navigate and post a thread.
As many skeptics pointed out, it looks eerily like Joomla 1.5.
vBulletin didn’t even upgrade their own forum until October 23nd leaving consumers 8 days to make their decision. There is still no vBulletin Suite demo out in the wild, two days before the pre-sale ends. “THE END IS NIGH!” Jelsoft/Internet Brands has preached. “Trust us. Buy now, before it’s too late.”
The vBulletin Disaster and Controversy:
Sing out, be banned. Sing Loud, license revocation.
In essence, they banned me because I said I was not going to be spending any more money on their software. They also banned me from vb.org which effectively ends my license…
Consumers quickly noticed threads being “closed” and more often than not, “deleted”. Among the Chosen, several were banned and some even had their license status revoked on vBulletin.org – their community site for plug-ins and modifications. There has been an exodus to third-party forums:
I was being silent until I did more research – deciding if was worth loosing my licenses. I read each tale of woe from anonymous users who felt if they spoke out, they’d loose all their investment in vBulletin too. The question is now, where do we go from here?
Oh, phpBB. I forgive you for Gaia Online. Things were great back in the day. Then you let yourself go and let Invision and vBulletin sweep the market with nifty features. I left you. It was me, not you. I swear.Will you forgive me?
PhpBB 3.0 reclaimed some of the market when it actually added features. The 3.0.6 release is adding features instead of general bug fixes. One can only hope the developers keep that pace this time. Otherwise, PhpBB is a solid package. It’s free and open source. The community is great. It’s beyond reliable. Go for it, you won’t be disappointed.
Hi there. How are you? Wait… What’s that? You like communities and music too? I love communities and music. You heard I lost my girlfriend? It’s very sad. You broke into my house to “get to know me better”? But you flood me with compliments… Thanks. I don’t know where you came from. It’s kinda creepy. I guess we could give it a go.
Many administrators on Twitter and in the comments have referenced MyBB. Oddly, I haven’t had any experience with it. It says it will do everything I need. It looks refined. Most importantly, it has the GPLv3 License. According to the Wikipedia article, MyBB replaced DevBB which was forked from XMB. Woah. They’re also looking at version 1.5 coming up. It may be worth the try.
You had once been so giving. I remember when I could hardly take a drive on the super highway without seeing your mark everywhere. No one blames you for InvisionFree, but we did miss you when you started charging and doing those Vegas shows.
Invision Board swept the Internet when 1.x was free. I switched from PhpBB to it. Then they started charging, and that’s where my relationship with vBulletin started. Both were virtually the same. With version 3.0 Invision Board has pulled ahead, say my administrative friends. They’re diligent too. They’ve been watching this entire thing play out and offered their community suite at a discounted price of $250. (Gallery, Blogs, Forum). Even if I just want the forum, it’s only $150 $125 until November 2nd. They also have been a pretty consistent company.
Yum. SEO, Reliability, and probably the best vBulletin transition out there.
I would instantly convert my main license to Invision Board if I didn’t need a Nikon SB-800. Maybe next month.
Content Management System
Joomla may not be perfect, Drupal may be on its heels, but with jFusion, it’s an amazing CMS that hooks seamlessly into vBulletin, PhpBB, or Invision Board. It’s flexible, solid, and the core developers are passionate. For God loved us so much he gave his only son… For they loved it so much they forked from the Mambo project it became a commercial mess.