Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Why the anonymous posts?

I've been wondering why people post comments to blogs on an anonymous basis. Are they afraid of being harassed? Are they shy? Are they uncomfortable putting their names on their opinions?

So far, I've allowed anonymous posting, but most of what I've seen is just nasty stuff, which leads to my conclusion that only cowards post anonymously. If there's another reason for anonymous posting, especially on blogs like mine, please tell me what those reasons might be.


Stephen said...

I've gotten trolls at my blog, but a number of people just don't care to register. My favorites are the people who end up in as "anonymous" but who also sign their names ;)

For many it is just one more intrusion, one more footprint they do not care to leave, given the way that search engines seem to be collecting everything.

Jim Chen said...

Hi Nancy,

Anonymity is one issue. The other is the substantive irrelevance or "Rule 403" unworthiness of certain comments (some probative value, perhaps, but it's outweighed by countervailing and negative factors).

And then there is spam. The Captcha/word verification filter you've installed should block at least the machine-generated version of spam.

I'm not afraid to sign my comments when I post them on your blog, and neither is our mutual friend, Gil Grantmore.


Prof. Osler said...

Almost all the the comments I get from "anonymous" are entirely unoffensive. The one time there is a problem: Finals week. (My blog is principally frequented by my students and Baylor grads, consistent with it purpose). So I turn on the screen for that week.

Of those really nasty comments I get, there is an intriguing aspect to it: It does let me see what or who has really angered my students. Usually I will delete the comment, then think about the anger.

Tor Hershman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Anonymity is useful because it often allows the message to be more thoroughly heard. If someone known to the blogger posts a comment, the blogger will often either embrace or discard that comment based on their feelings for the person commenting.

The content of the message sometimes gets lost in the emotions generated by the commenter.