When I first started the Blog I did so under a pseudonym…I did it for a number of reasons. The main one though was that I knew that no matter what I said or did people would say it was my father speaking or that I was doing his bidding. Likewise I used the pseudonym so no one would hold him accountable for what I had to say or did. So when I started blogging it was under the pseudonym Whaleoil.
Eventually I registered a domain name and people then found out who I was and as I predicted the accusations started. To this day whenever there is something that I ahve said that upset the more sensitive types they suggest that my father put me up to it or that he somehow can control a 43 year old man who lives his own life with a family of his own. It actually says a great deal about their sad little life that they believe the father is the man or the man is the father.
Whale quotes from elsewhere:
There’s something freeing, to be sure, about being able to say anything you want. You can engage in unfounded name-calling, or intentionally hurt someone’s feelings, or just generally behave like a twelve year old. And no one will know it’s you. And that’s why I don’t read many blogs that are written by people who prefer to remain anonymous or who write under pseudonyms when there isn’t really any reason for them to do so. In fact, I don’t think there are any blogs I read on a daily basis whose authors are anonymous. The anonymous or pseudonymous blogs are often just filled with cruelty, name-calling, and bad arguments. Indeed, there are a great many people who choose to write under an assumed name because they want to harrass or offend others.
He concludes that if more bloggers came out, there would be a better more honest, reasoned, political discourse in the NZ blogosphere.
My views are similiar, but not identical.
I do read some blogs where the author is effectively anonymous, such as No Right Turn. I don’t think for his blog it matters hugely whether he is publicly known or not, because while I disagree with much of what he says, generally he is debating policies and issues, and not denigrating people. Occasionally he does, but for that matter so do I sometimes, despite my best efforts. But overall an (pseudo) anonymous blogger such as No Right Turn I have no real issue with.
My issue is with those who cower behind anonymity and use that to slander and abuse those they disagree with. They do it to journalists, they do it to other bloggers, they do it to anyone. And the hypocrisy is that they are prepared to have the reputations of others be pilloried for comments they make under their name, but won’t take accountability for their own words. They say things which (if someone took them at face value) can actually damage careers of other people, yet refuse to let their words affect them.
The irony is that blogging under your own name does force you to be a better blogger. Every post you make, you think “Am I comfortable with this being associated with my name”.
Tags: anonymity, Blogosphere