Bleats

A Council Has Banished Its Instagram Geese And Already People Are Calling Conspiracy

"Hey, take a *gander* at this story!" - your Dad.

Daylesford is a lovely little town a bit over 100kms from Melbourne. It’s very picturesque – downright Instagrammable, you might say – to the point where you’d assume that some terrible ancient evil lurks beneath its charming façade.

Or, more accurately, in its lake.

Lake Daylesford has become home to thirty-odd geese who have become both a local tourist draw and an intimidating mob of jetty-poopers.

The council met to weigh up a a proposal to relocate the geese to an “appropriate property on the Mornington Peninsula”.

Hey, that’s where mum said our dog went to recover after it was hit by that bakery van! Finally, Scraps will have some friends to hang out with!

Anyway: as the Guardian reported, there are good reasons why the council might want to get the geese gone. For a start they’re pooing all over the place, with cleanup costing $5k a year. They’re also increasing the risk of algal blooms which would affect native wildlife, such as swans.

On the other hand, there’s the “repetitional damage” of the town.

Biodiversity office Brian Bainbridge’s report elegantly captured the contradictory yin-and-yang nature of the mysterious goose. “Interaction with domestic waterfowl on the lake is an attraction for some visitors and residents while negative interactions with protective geese may reduce the appeal of the lake in the short term for others,” he wrote.

On top of that, local tourist destination the Lake House issued a statement explaining that “enormously popular with guests [and] bring a vital sense of ‘country’ to the lake environs essential in continuing to attract visitors wanting to escape the urban jungle”, adding that “there are literally thousands of photographs of them over all social media platforms.”

The fate of the geese was decided by Council: they’re getting a new home, friends.

And the public are not well pleased with the decision…

…even suggesting that there’s more going on than meets the eye!

We at GOAT strongly advocate a third option: simply move all the people out and leave Daylesford to the geese.

Heed their honks, puny humans. They are your masters now.

Can You Catch Herpes From Chugging An Influencer's Rancid Bath Water?

It's not a question we imagined answering today, but here we are.

It really didn’t take long for the news that an Instagram star was selling her bathwater to be accompanied by the (ahem) viral news that said bathwater had infected 50+ people with herpes.

And TL;DR version: it was a hoax. Or, less kindly, fib.

Now, some of the story is true: Instagram gaming identity Belle Delphine did indeed announce that she was selling jars of her bathwater via her online store, and it would appear that some was genuinely shipped to fans.

However, the claim that the water was infectious was made up by Twitter user @BakeRises who mocked up a fake Daily Mail avatar and headline above.

And said account has been suspended, although fact checking site Snopes reported that it wasn’t before they tweeted the astute “It seems the best way to grow on Twitter is to impersonate a company and say things about a celebrity that legally can be considered libel and I could potentially be sued for”.

And for the record, you can’t get herpes though bathwater.

The herpes virus can only be transferred via skin-to-skin contact, as it can’t survive for long without a living host. They’re pretty specialised things, viruses, krazy little not-quite-living things that they are.

That’s the GOAT difference, friends: come for the tea, stay for the epidemiology!

Instagram's Latest Update Will Force You To Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself

It's like a best friend saying "hey, how about you *don't* post that?"

Cyberbullying is one of those wicked problems which have baffled legislators, parents and people who know nothing about the internet but have opinions they like to express regardless.

How can we restrict bullying while not accidentally blocking legitimate speech? How can an algorithm tell a joke from a threat? Is it better just to burn down the internet and return to the sea? No-one seems to know, beyond that Something Simply Must Be Done.

And now Instagram – aka The Legacy Social Media Platform Young People Actually Still Use – are taking active steps to make things less fraught in a move which deserves widespread and sustained applause: one using A1, and one in the hands of users.

First up, there will shortly be a new option: restrict.

It’s a softer alternative for young people who are worried that blocking, unfriending or reporting bullies is a great way to make things escalate IRL.

Messages from restricted people will be moved to Message Requests, meaning that people can more easily ignore them, and they don’t see whether you have read their message or interacted with their post, or be alerted when you’re on the platform. Also, you’ll be able to delete comments and messages without having to read them.

And that’s great, but there’s also the A1 powered Comment Warning, which gives people a chance to reflect on whether the thing they’re about to post is actually worth posting – and hopefully you haven’t attempted a flamewar yet because it’s already been rolled out.

These are small changes with potentially huge positive effects, and seems like something Facebook (who own Insta) should be adding to their platform asap.

Twitter, obviously, doesn’t need it since it’s already a textbook example of genteel good manners.

Twitter, today.

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