Sites Take Away Comment Anonymity in an Effort to Raise Discourse

By Rory Lidstone December 27, 2013

You may have noticed in the last couple of months that something’s different about the Internet, but you might not have been able to quite put your finger on what. Well, if you haven’t figured it out, try scrolling down to the bottom of, say, a Huffington Post article, or a YouTube video. Yeah, it’s the comments.

More specifically, it’s that a growing number of websites are attempting to rein in the typical level of discourse — the bigotry, the poor spelling, liberal use of the caps lock key — found online by forcing people to use their real names. Other sites, like Popular Science, have decided to do away with comments altogether.

Unfortunately, though, there are a few issues with the assumption that anonymity is the source of all nastiness online. For starters, it’s been proven time and again that some people just aren’t deterred from bad behavior even if everyone can plainly see who they are. Take, for example, the fact that people still need to be warned to think twice about what they share on Facebook since it can affect your employment.

More to the point, sites have had integrated Facebook — generally meaning non-anonymous — comment sections for quite a while now and they still get their fair share of awful comments.

Meanwhile, YouTube’s Google+ integration hasn’t done much to make comments more constructive; in fact, it actually made it much easier to post spam on videos, at least initially, which many users did quite freely — using their real names. That said, YouTube’s new comment system does put more emphasis on comments from people you know, so at least it’s easier to see which of your friends behaves boorishly online.

In all seriousness, this is an interesting change in the way the Internet works as anonymity is slowly fading away — saying that this means the Web is ‘growing up’ is a bit of a stretch, though.




Edited by Cassandra Tucker

TechZone360 Contributing Writer

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Related Articles

Is 5G a Spectrum-eating Monster that Destroys Competition?

By: Fred Goldstein    6/15/2018

To hear the current FCC talk about it, 5G mobile service is the be-all and end-all of not only mobile communications, but the answer to most of the co…

Read More

FX Group Makes the Red Carpet Shoppable with Blockchain-Based mCart Marketplace-as-a-Service

By: TMCnet News    6/14/2018

mCart by Mavatar announces the launch of the world's first blockchain-based decentralized mCart marketplace by the FX Group.

Read More

Judge Gives AT&T-Time Warner Deal Green Light

By: Paula Bernier    6/12/2018

Federal judge Richard Leon gave the $85 billion deal the green light today - and without any requirements to sell off any parts of the company. He als…

Read More

A New Foundation for Evolving Blockchain As a Fundamental Network Technology

By: Arti Loftus    6/12/2018

There are now thousands of blockchains, and unless you are a cryptophile, you won't recognize most of them.

Read More