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The End of the Anonymous Internet is Near

February 1st, 2014

The launch of Google+ has caused an old issue to boil to the surface: should you be required to use your real name when signing up for Facebook, LinkedIn and other social networking services? The Big 3 think so and whether you agree or not, you’re witnessing the beginning of the end of the anonymous internet.

We’ve all seen how presumably normal people, combined with an anonymous profile, can become “comment trolls” of the worst type. Discussions over heated topics quickly spiral into name-calling and curse-word-filled rants against the other side, resulting in the equivalent of an online riot where nothing gets accomplished.

It’s amazing how real names attached to real profiles make the discussion civil and polite. When we turned our comments over to Facebook on several sites about a year ago, the quality of debate and discussion improved immensely.

Everyone understands that when your online reputation is at stake, the cursing, screaming and personal attacks drop significantly.

Some will argue that it is in the best interest of the social networks to to have real profiles associated with real people. That’s true, but I think we all get a better online experience when people think twice about what they say online.

Their online reputation depends on it – as it should.

  1. July 26th, 2012 at 14:07 | #1

    Personal information displayed to the public will stop people from ranks and raves. These days people are getting more and more used to sharing personal information and I believe Facebook had a huge role to that effect. They have been desensitized with all the sharing site that we coexist with.

  2. September 15th, 2012 at 05:16 | #2

    Anonymous Internet was over long ago. Just because some social networking sites want your real name does not mean its over. How about the simple fact that Google knows almost everything you do on the internet. They even know when you use a different search engine! If you thought you were ever anonymous on the internet with out setting up a lot of privacy protection with custom made applications, someone lied to you.