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Anonymity versus openness of identity in forums

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  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 10:51am

    #63
    Zojo

    Zojo

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    Re: Heroes in Action: Michael Höhne

Chris

I understand and sympathise with your desire to have people reveal their true identities.  However, I think the real reason for anonymity on Blogs is not some paranoid fear of government, but a more genuine concern that the internet is not a safe place.  There are plenty of crooks and fraudsters looking for identities to steal and email to spam.  A financial website would seem a prime target for such undesirables.

As an IT professional I always warn people NOT to post their real email address on the ‘net, and to post under a pseudonym.  It is not complete protection, but it makes life a lot easier and attacks less likely.

So the motive for most people is likely to be

A) cyber-protection

B) They feel freerer in expressing views

The second of these is a two-edged sword, as people are more likely to be abusive, provocative and down-right offensive.  That is why fora need moderators, and rules.  The plus side is they are more likely to express their real views, rather than what they think others want to hear.

That said, I do value people who are open and post as themselves.  It takes courage, and it shows commitment.  It is wrong for anonymous posters to attack or denigrate this.

Anyway, respect to Michael, and to you, and also to Erik.  He might not be everyone’s cup-of-tea, but he seems well-intentioned, which is the most important thing.

Anon.

 

 

 

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 01:12pm

    #11

    Nichoman

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    Re: Anonymity versus openness of identity in forums

Everyone’s situation and background is different.   Don’t do too much blogging (less than half dozen sites).

 

Prefer not to  use real name because as scientist going to conferences and doing presentations, these can be distractions.   Leave it at that.  Chris is correct, probably wouldn’t be hard to find identity…but circles deal in folks too busy to care.  What our field is though full of focused, introverted folks, bringing in outside views can’t help.  It’s nature of my job…opinions weaken you in my circles, not strengthen and can skew my associates acumen to my presentations and issues pursuing.

 

That’s primary reason.  Have couple major projects working on in my field that requires assistance from several colleagues.

 

Participate here because: 1.) Subject impacts me and my family; 2.)  Agreed on dire consequences BEFORE Chris’s Crash Course as long as 5+ years.   He’s taken initiative and effectively trying to do something that helps all of us.

 

Nichoman         

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 03:48pm

    #12

    halliho

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    Re: Heroes in hiding I guess?

Here’s an "average reader’s" opinion of the present flap..

I did not appreciate the focus on money..That’s the very root of the present problem.

I do appreciate the neutral reporting of Chris.

I feel sad about Krogoth’s posts being deleted.  He has been a tremendous source of information, and I have come to value his opinion. 

 It is VERY sad that all opinions are not respected here.  We have enough division swirling around our world already.

I did post my real picture.  But I have no heavy political or govt involvement; I feel I am not a valuable target.  I DO respect Krogoth’s anonymity,  He sees and knows too much for comfort, perhaps.

Please rethink your radical censure.  Please stay with us, Krogoth.

 

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 03:55pm

    #13
    switters

    switters

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    Re: Anonymity versus openness of identity in forums

I go back and forth on this one.  I’m in favor of the transparency and accountability that comes with using a real name and picture on online forums.

However, I’m in the health care profession and have contact with patients on a regular basis.  I’ve historically chosen to protect my privacy online for this reason.

At this point I’m considering using my real name and picture for this site.  But I’ve already developed an "identity" with my avatar and username here, so I wonder how switching would effect that.  Perhaps it doesn’t matter at all.  

I suppose I could be "[my name], a.k.a. switters" for a while?

Maybe we should think of a "transition" program for those considering switching to their picture and real name.

It’ll be fun to see what everyone looks like if that happens.  I have pictures of people in my mind that I’m sure are completely wrong. Smile

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 04:24pm

    #14

    tom.

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    Re: Anonymity versus openness of identity in forums

[quote=switters]

 

I suppose I could be "[my name], a.k.a. switters" for a while?

 

[/quote]

You could just create a "sig" with your name. I was thinking about doing that. Oh wait a minute, I already did … and while that’s not my real picture, I do have a hole in my head.

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 04:59pm

    #65
    Headless

    Headless

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    Re: Heroes in Action: Michael Höhne

[quote]jrf29 said: "The water level will always rise to meet you. If the people are timid, then the elements in society which would take away their liberties will simply grow stronger and more bold. If they are not confronted in the bilge, then they will be confronted on the bridge."[/quote]

I will choose where I am when the "water level" rises; I will choose what level of self-deception "the elements in society" achieve; I will choose "the bridge" on which I "will be confronted."

When considering what level of participation one is willing to risk when confronting an out of control government, two concerns should predominate:


How do I really feel about this?
When conscience calls, what will be my strategy?

And the shame of it all? If the time comes when "the pen" and the opposing voice are, in effect, suicidal with continued use, it will be just as seen above; that is to say, citizen against citizen while the "King" hides behind the ranks. Thus, winning this particular confrontation will take a new approach if those whom have been most abused are to not become even more the victims. Don’t expect conventional solutions to extraordinary problems; don’t expect a naive abiding by some arbitrary rules of frankness and honesty that are the equivalent of Civil War skirmish lines.

Of course, merely by posting to this board I render myself an impossible participant in any strategy that might be employed by those who would seek a better form of government in any of those unconventional ways…right?

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 05:19pm

    #67

    Michael Höhne

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    Re: Heroes in Action: Michael Höhne

I hoped to see another discussion starting here, but I’m not too surprised it headed into the current direction. But it’s not bad at all and being somehow involved in the topic, I want to share my own opinion. The real topic of this discussion is whether or not to use screen names and it turns out that many people have fears about their own government. This is bad. Man that is really really bad. On the other hand it’s exactly this feeling that’s needed to stand up and fight for your rights. See what happens in Greece. It’s out of control now and who knows what happens in the next weeks. Who knows what happens in the US and Germany? Nobody really knows. So it comes back to your personal plan (chapter 20) and you may have to do another assessment of your personal risks. I don’t blame anyone for not using a picture and real name. My personal feeling though is that most don’t want to hide their thoughts from friends and colleagues to not being treated as an idiot. This is contradictory to building a community.

  

I for myself have a community and many people are following my blog. Totally different content, but I gave them a chance to register though it’s not needed to access anything. Astoundingly there are 336 users and most of them added their country, city and even company. Some people may argue that showing a real name and company could eventually make other people think that they have to consult my web site in order to find solutions they weren’t be able to find themselves otherwise. And exactly these feelings lead to information hiding, thinking that the more you know personally and don’t tell others raises some personal value. It does not. Before I started my blog, there were roughly a few dozen people knowing me. In the last 3 years I got in contact with about 1,000 people, mostly by email. Most of them don’t know me personally, but it doesn’t really matter. I was able to use this momentum to start a new business and people started telling friends and colleagues about it. That only worked because I shared my knowledge instead of hiding it.

  

The content on PeakProsperity.com is very different than what’s available on my site, on so is the community. Most people only consume, very few do actively participate. But some do tell their friends and help getting the message out. Most will wait until it’s too late though. The one thing that many reader may not recognize is the fact that if millions know what’s going on instead of thousands, then there is no way of controlling the message anymore. You can’t jail millions of people for telling what they think. But that needs a change in your mindset to accept, otherwise the motivation is "let them die first and hope to get through this". And maybe it’ll even work, but the world won’t change then. It will just repeat itself over and over again. There are a few people out there wanting exactly that to happen, while the majority is kind of a modern slave.

 

It’s exactly as said in the Crash Course: debt equals future work. And this means a lot of work for us, our children and their children. And if resources are depleted, it will be us facing the consequences. You can go as far as saying that food shortages are a really good way to get rid of the problem of exponential population growth. I’m denying such thoughts as good as I can, but sometimes it seems like exactly this is going to happen. Most people deciding on it won’t be affected, so there’s no need to hurry. The only way to change this setup is sharing information, like in Germany, where WW2 and the Nazi regime is put back on our minds over and over again to not repeat the story in the future. The reason for showing pictures and names is giving other people a way to ask about the problems if they recognize you. This is an essential truth for any kind of community. I totally respect the concerns though, but it also tells that some fundamentals are entirely wrong.

  

The way to change things is spreading the message as fast as possible and that means really fast. And that’s the main reason why I donated and encourage anyone out there doing the same. It’s totally possible that things get really bad in the future, but it doesn’t have to. If carefully planned, then we can get through the crisis without major impacts. And we could have a chance afterwards to build a better world.

  

@krogoth: I read your posts and you are contributing a lot of valuable information. I don’t want you to leave. I don’t want anyone to leave. It’s natural that discussions sometimes get personal and decisions are made that don’t profit anyone. So if my donation and the following discussion was the reason for you to leave, then take my deepest excuse for making it public. But please stay.

  Michael

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 05:21pm

    #15

    Michael Höhne

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Re: Heroes in Action: Michael Höhne

My personal feeling though is that most don’t want to hide their thoughts from friends and colleagues to not being treated as an idiot. This is contradictory to building a community.

should of course read

My personal feeling though is that most want to hide their thoughts from friends and colleagues to not being treated as an idiot. This is contradictory to building a community.  

 

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 05:30pm

    #66

    jrf29

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    Re: Heroes in Action: Michael Höhne

[quote=Nonzeroone] I will choose where I am when the "water level" rises; I will choose what level of self-deception "the elements in society" achieve; I will choose "the bridge" on which I "will be confronted." [/quote]


That’s fair enough.

[quote=Zozos] I can understand and sympathise with your desire to have people reveal their true identities.  However, I think the real reason for anonymity on Blogs is not some paranoid fear of government, but a more genuine concern that the internet is not a safe place.  [/quote]

I can see this, too.  After sleeping on the subject, its occurred to me that likely most of the people on this site (including myself) would not hesitate to discuss anything openly and non-anonymously in a living room with other members of the community.  The problem is that posting things on the internet is not like talking about a subject in a living room, where the recipients of your comments are known to you.  It is more like publishing your views in a newspaper.  Your comments can be viewed forever, by anybody in the world, searchable by keyword.  Not everybody has the luxury of publishing half-polished ideas in what is essentially the largest newspaper in the world. 

[quote=Davos] [Can we]…move the anonymous subjects in the article and the comments to another post? [/quote]


I agree. While the discussion on the subject of anonymity is certainly important, it should have its own place, and the post dedicated to Michael Hohne should have its own and be dedicated to a discussion of how contributions to the spread of economic intelligence may be facilitated.

 

  • Sun, Dec 14, 2008 - 05:54pm

    #16

    jrf29

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    Re: Anonymity versus openness of identity in forums

[quote=joe2baba]  it was a mistake to bring up the issue the way you did chris and erik. this fact should be quite obvious by now. i would hope that you would in the future use as much care in the the crafting of future posts as went into the crash course. if you felt that it was important to have a totally open forum then that should have been stated a long time ago in a separate post. [/quote]

I don’t really think that you can properly blame Chris or Erik for mentioning a topic in a post.  To claim that every one of their posts ought to be as well crafted and carefully worded as the crash course implies that they ought to act like politicians, carefully wording every statement so as not to offend anybody in the world.  That also implies that the readers are a mass of ignormauses with no self control, and that if they happen to be provoked, it is solely the fault of whoever or whatever provoked them.  Baloney.  People have responsibility for their own actions.

 

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