I was on my way home from work and heard an interesting discussion on NPR. A caller dialed in and started talking about how frustrated he is with the local newspapers accepting online submissions of comments from people who are anonymous. It was interesting because not long after that call another person called in to say that someone he knew was fired for posting something on a newspaper web site. Being an “anonymous coward” as some web sites would call unnamed users allows people to freely speak their minds.
Of course there is right and wrong on what people should say, but that shouldn’t impact what people could say.
I guess what I am saying is that just because you don’t like what you are reading doesn’t mean that someone shouldn’t be able to post what they feel in a comfortable way to them. The thing that is really ironic is that unless you know how to spoof your ip and other identifying factors, you can be found anyway. If someone who really wants to post without being identified they could create an alternate identity. The thing that struck me though was how angry this first caller was at the newspaper. Honestly, it speaks to “the dumb” of some people.
One thing anonymous could do is help businesses by allowing staff to openly and honestly say anything. Wouldn’t you rather hear the cold hard truth? I know that I may not like what I hear but I would want to hear it. I think the same can be said for businesses. I think “Anon” can be helpful. What do you think?