Wednesday Links -- 7 October 2015

Here's some of the stuff I've read about this week that's worth a comment or two.

In China, Your Credit Score Is Now Affected By Your Political Opinions – And Your Friends’ Political Opinions. A writer for the ACLU sounds the alarm: China’s Nightmarish Citizen Scores Are a Warning For Americans...
- Anybody can check anyone else’s score online. Among other things, this lets people find out which of their friends may be hurting their scores.

- Also used to calculate scores is information about hobbies, lifestyle, and shopping. Buying certain goods will improve your score, while others (such as video games) will lower it.

- Those with higher scores are rewarded with concrete benefits. Those who reach 700, for example, get easy access to a Singapore travel permit, while those who hit 750 get an even more valued visa.

-Sadly, many Chinese appear to be embracing the score as a measure of social worth, with almost 100,000 people bragging about their scores on the Chinese equivalent of Twitter.

Meanwhile, in America: Everyone you know will be able to rate you on the terrifying ‘Yelp for people’ — whether you want them to or not.
Imagine every interaction you’ve ever had suddenly open to the scrutiny of the Internet public.

“People do so much research when they buy a car or make those kinds of decisions,” said Julia Cordray, one of the app’s founders. “Why not do the same kind of research on other aspects of your life?”

This is, in a nutshell, Cordray’s pitch for the app — the one she has been making to development companies, private shareholders, and Silicon Valley venture capitalists. (As of Monday, the company’s shares put its value at $7.6 million.)
Proof that "anti-human tech-douche" is not the sole province of (mostly white) men. These ladies are still very much within the sphere of "punchable faces," though it's not polite to hit a lady. See also Ken White at Popehat: Down With Peeple!
How could you abuse Peeple? Let me count the ways. If they're really going to let you open up a "page" for someone else involuntarily — and they may retreat from that — it would be childishly easy to submit a profile picture that is non-obscene but as unflattering as possible. Peeple limits you to "positive" reviews of people who aren't members, and embargoes negative reviews? That's fine. Let's see how helpful three-out-of-five star reviews are to your professional reputation. Or let's test their negative-review filter against my creativity and mood. "Julia Cordray is more generous and giving to her household catamites than anyone I know." "Nicole McCullough's slow but steady rehabilitation is nothing short of amazing."
 Our cyberpunk future, everyone. Way more Snow Crash absurd than Neuromancer serious after all.

(h/t Syd's Birthday Challenge) Your calendar is a mess—Geoff Teehan, Facebook's Senior Design Director, makes some pretty good recommendations about proactive scheduling and such.

I don't know about other people's experience, but as a mathematics grad student I derived some of those calendar strategies myself: take classes in the afternoon and back to back, try to get a full day without classes, etc. So that's funny.

The other thing is that all the calendar problems he describes are a big part of the complaints I read about workplace management in tech: that the various styles seem optimized against long blocks of work time, and that it's meetings-on-meetings-on-meetings. Teehan doesn't seem to be targeting his post towards managers, but I wonder how big the effect spread would be between grunt-level workers versus managers as they implement his recommendations.