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Is it time to get rid of anonymous comments once and for all?

By jasonhiner Moderator ·
Tags: Off Topic
Read this piece from Slate:

Troll, Reveal Thyself: Why we need to get rid of anonymous comments.
http://www.slate.com/id/2287739/

This is a really hot topic among online publications right now. Inside TechRepublic we've been having conversations about this for a couple years. The Facebook phenomenon is moving the Web away from anonymous commenting and toward people representing themselves more transparently online.

There are good arguments to be made that when people have their own name and reputation attached to their comments then you have a lot fewer trolls and personal attacks. The flipside is that you sometimes get less-honest dialog, and you have people who have a lot of reputation on the line in the real world who would be less willing to participate.

What do you think?

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Because I post under my name

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Is it time to get rid of ...

(this may come as surprise), there are some things I won't say.

I don't value anonynimity in this forum, but I see no particular need to deprive those who do.

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Another angle to that...

by AnsuGisalas In reply to Because I post under my n ...

For example, there are very few people in the world with my first- and last name combination... I guess there's a German person with a PhD with the same name tag, but that's about it.
So, if I use my own name, and not this "hostage of the aesir" tweak of it, then it would be very easy for people to find me...
So, with my real name showing I would think twice about standing up to bad guys, like that nazi sympathizer of a few weeks back... they have social media too, you know.
If there were enough John Smiths to do the cleaning, then ok. But there isn't.

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Have to admit my name is more common than I thought, until I googled it.

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Another angle to that...

But telling nazi's they are dumb shits, isn't on the list of things I won't say.

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No it is NOT - and that's from someone who uses their real name on forums

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Is it time to get rid of ...

I register with my real name, and Deadly has been my nickname for over 40 years. I use my real name on the forums, but advocate that people have the right to remain anonymous if they wish to. I know of many cases of cyber stalking and also of ex-spouses tracking people through their Internet activity. If I choose NOT to use my real name, that's my legal right. The only reason forum managers want people to register with legal names and use them is so they can save themselves some trouble by NOT having to moderate posts the way they should where they allow anonymous posts.

In a recent local news item, people were threatened with reduced severance payouts if they spoke to the media about the sackings going on. Plenty of anonymous comments in the papers and forums by employees, comments giving the dirty details on why the sackings, comments that are going to cost the big bosses in the way of cut backs in golden handshake payouts during the sell out. none of that would have been possible to make public if they could not have done so anonymously.

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FIRST!!

by bsharpe37 In reply to Is it time to get rid of ...

FIRST!! ... NOT!!!


Don't you hate seeing these? I would say It's time to give the trolls the boot.

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We don't do that here.

by CharlieSpencer In reply to FIRST!!

Even the trolls don't do that here, although it would be preferable to some of what they do.

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Probably about as enforceable as the CANSPAM act is

by nelson.robert In reply to Is it time to get rid of ...

If people would actually be honest and count to 10(maybe 100 in some cases)before flaming someone they don't (more than likely)even personally know it would make things more pleasant on the web.

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And many do the flaming under their real names as well - nt

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Probably about as enforce ...
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Flaming isn't necesarily dishonest, in fact flame baiting

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Probably about as enforce ...

is useful traffic generating technique. If we waited to know someone before burning them up, it wouldn't happen.
Course there's a difference beween playing the uproar game with a post like
Linux is the greatest OS ever, to a personal attack on someone who points out one or two flaws in your argument...
I don't have a problem with flaming as long the pople doing it are prepared to take what they give...

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When we can speak completely without fear...

by P.F. Bruns In reply to Is it time to get rid of ...

Then we can dispense with anonymity.

Right now, the sad fact is that we can't, not everywhere.

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