Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Anonymity, again!

A column in the Tribune (hat tip Utah Policy Daily) talks more about anonymity on blogs and comments.
I still think that posting or writing anonymously is chicken. There are very few times where posting anonymously is truly justified. Does posting or writing with your true identity make you more open to retaliation or criticism? Yep, it sure does.
Does that mean that one should hide behind anonymity? I don't believe it does. When I was an elected official, I did not take anonymous comments into account in any decision I made. I also didn't take comments from people who were not my constituents as seriously as those who were. It is a fact of life. If you want elected officials and even constituents to take your comments seriously, write with your true identity. Don't hide behind anonymity claiming that it is needed to avoid retaliation. Look for a future post from me highlighting just what kind of retaliation I've had to go through because I don't hide behind anonymous writings.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

People have lost their jobs due to retaliation for comments and affliations. If you don't believe that than leave your number and I will call you personally. Until then I remain anonymous.

Thad said...

My phone number is as close as your nearest phone book. Remember? I'm the one who doesn't write anonymously.

Anonymous said...

Some of us post anonymously due to professional concerns. It does not make our opinions less of a contribution. On the flip, too many use the anonymous option as an excuse to disrupt and degrade. I think we just need a thicker skin. I don't like the legal precedent this case sets, as it puts the burden on the site where the anonymous comments might be hosted. Lawmakers and judges obviously still struggle to understand the online world.

Anonymous said...

To elaborate, those professional concerns can be fear of job loss should your employer identify you online (it's happened to me before), and less sinister, the inability to actually log in to a google account or an open id account because of work place filtering.