Randall, who might have never never heard of the Facebook option to share with "friends of friends" as well, is making a point that there ought to be some option between sharing posts only with your friends and making them completely public. The title text shows that he would specifically like to know when corporations read his posts.
Cueball floating in midair is communicating with a floating screen. Other people and clouds visible in background.
Screen: "Welcome to social media! You have two options: (1) You can make it available to a small set of 300 or so approved friends. or (2) you can share permanent copies of it all with billions of people, including internet scammers, random predatory companies, and hostile governments."
Cueball: "Why would anyone pick option two?"
Screen: "Two is the default."
Cueball: "So those are the only two options? There's nothing in in between?"
Screen: "I don't understand. Like what?"
Cueball: "I mean ... there are numbers between 300 and a billion"
Screen: "Huh? Name one."
Screen: "Pretty sure I would have heard of those."
Certainly true for Twitter where it's either public or private. (Nothing about 300, but the amount of requests one can accept over a lifetime is finite.) As for the "friends-of-friends" option, it's possible that Randall only has ~300 within that wider circle.
188.8.131.52 17:17, 1 February 2019 (UTC)
- The 300 may be in reference to a widely reported average number of Facebook friends of 338 (although not sure where this number comes from). For Twitter it looks like the average number of followers is slightly lower . Both Twitter and Facebook have well over a billion users. 300 friends is also around the maximum number of close acquaintances that the human brain is thought to be able to cope with. AlChemist (talk) 20:27, 1 February 2019 (UTC)
- Dunbar's Number is closer to about 150. 184.108.40.206 11:46, 3 February 2019 (UTC)
Pretty sure the title text is meant to have been spoken by "the screen" vs. Randall/Cueball. The screen is attempting to appease Cueball's privacy concerns by proposing that if a company such as Google, Amazon, eBay, etc. mines a large number of Cueball's social posts for their own agenda, instead of notification of that event, Cueball will instead receive a single "like" to one of his posts at random from the company's CEO. This practice would be deceptive and of little value. Cueball might easily miss the like, not know who the CEO of various companies are, may forget the significance of receiving such a like, etc. 220.127.116.11 19:42, 1 February 2019 (UTC)Pat
- For me, I found the idea enticing because targeted advertising is so creepy, and it would show where it comes from. 18.104.22.168 21:54, 1 February 2019 (UTC)
Shouldn't this be categorised under "Comics featuring Megan," "Ponytail," "Hairy," and "White Hat" as well, even if they're just in the background? 22.214.171.124 00:46, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
Sorry, I'm confused. Why is the explanation "Da da dur dur ma ma hur hur"?
126.96.36.199 02:23, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
- No one bothered to explain it yet.
- A lot of vandalism to the article has been reverted, apparently. That was one of the strings of text that the/a vandal had left.188.8.131.52 17:46, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
New xkcd up!
184.108.40.206 23:57, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
NEVER MIND; I WAS WRONG
220.127.116.11 23:59, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
Actually other than in the cartoon (cartoons always show simplified versions of reality) Facebook offers a 3rd and a 4th option: Set your post to be kind of "private" by default and wait until the default changes afterwards. And share your post with your friends, their friends and I think also the friends of everyone else who pressed the "share" button on it. Yuck!
- Facebook has several sharing options, but they take a bit of time to set up. You can collect your friends into groups and (on a per-post basis) specify that your posts are only to be visible to people in certain groups. Much like the (soon-to-be-gone) Google+'s concept of circles. I used that for years (before I shut down my FB account altogether) to categorize my posts and only show them to friends I think care about the subject (e.g. only show politics and religion posts to those not likely to respond with flames, keep movie and TV reviews from those who hate spoilers, etc.) Shamino (talk) 15:59, 4 February 2019 (UTC)
Why do the clouds have to represent cloud servers? Why can't they just be clouds, because, ummm, I don't know - they're flying?
What the hell is all this business about VR? I just saw the sky and stuff as an abstract representation of social media. What are you guys smoking? 18.104.22.168 16:03, 4 February 2019 (UTC)
- this is true. It's not VR and it's not the future. It's a metaphor and it's the present. When we get to the future where people are using VR, (a) they will have more interesting scenery and (b) option 1 will no longer be available. 22.214.171.124 10:53, 28 April 2020 (UTC)
Why change my "I have cancer" to "I'm in the hospital"? I thought it especially relevant, as Randall's is a cancer survivor. 126.96.36.199 22:10, 4 February 2019 (UTC)SiliconWolf
Grr. I thought I typed that in correct, but I guess not. 'as Randall's WIFE is a cancer survivor.' 188.8.131.52 23:08, 4 February 2019 (UTC)SiliconWolf