Monday, January 16, 2006

Meta: Choose a Pseudonym

One of the strengths as well one of its weaknesses of the blogosphere is the ability to post something anonymously. On Say No to Pombo, we get a multitude of anonymous comments. Sometime it is difficult to determine the relationship between multiple anonymous comments, both on the same thread and on different threads. So one thing I encourage my regular readers to do is to pick a pseudonym and leave a comment under that name. Nobody needs to know that you are Peter Griffin of 12 Spooner St., but it does help to know whether you have posted a comment on the site before, and if so, which comments were yours.

It might be interesting if those people who responded anonymously to the reader poll “claimed” their answer to Question 5 (“In five words or less, describe yourself politically”) as their pseudonym. In other words, if instead of posting anonymously they used their answer to Question 5 as their name. This way, we will be able to track their opinions about the race as both their views and the race itself develop. (Alternatively, they could post using another name or pseudonym, but simply post a comment here letting me know which new pseudonym goes to which anonymous response to the reader poll).

I will not demand that people do this, but I think it would be an interesting experiment. Besides solving the problem of which anonymous user said what, the use of pseudonyms based on short political self-descriptions would also help orient the new (or occasional) reader to where the commenter is coming from.

By my reckoning, this is the set of pseudonyms that would fall into the category I’m discussing:

Regardless of whether you choose to use one of these pseudonyms or not, let me explain the easy way to post under a pseudonym for those who do not know.

You can always comment on a post by clicking on the either the “post a comment” link or the “X comments” link (where X is a number), depending on which page you’re looking at. Clinking on either link will take you to a comments screen where all the previous comments for the post will be on the left half of the page and a box for new comments will be on the right half of the page. Underneath the comment box there is a “Choose your identity” heading. Under that heading there are three choices, “Blogger ID,” “Other,” and “Anonymous.” A lot of people do not realize what Other is, but it allows you to enter a name to post under and a homepage, which will be linked to your name when you post the comment. You can enter anything you want into the name field, including a pseudonym.

By the way, if anyone has been posting anonymously but feels comfortable posting under his or her own name, do not let anything I said above discourage you from doing so here. You can follow the same steps as above.


Blogger Dan Spomer said...

Matt, with all due respect, and I DO mean that:

This is exactly why the left can't gain an inch of credibility with the center, and probably why the Kos crowd is devouring their young today. (Which I am enjoying immensely, incidentally)

Instead of paragraph after paragraph of "this 'n that, forgive me, and please don't be offended," you SHOULD have simply stated;

Put your go*da*n name on your post or don't waste my frigging time; your post will be deleted.

I mean, really... what can anyone be ashamed of SO MUCH on this blog that they can't post an identity- even a fake one?

Acting "SNTP" Senior Republican Whip


6:38 PM, January 16, 2006  

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