The ability to conceal your identity by anonymously utilizing the web is a strange concept modern society is struggling to grasp. The separation between a person and their internet persona may vary. Some are soft spoken in their day to day life, but highly opinionated online with an anonymous internet persona. In contrast others are socially motivated and their online presence is an extension of their identity. Whatever the case is, the ability to be anonymous and partake in anonymous speech is an unregulated aspect to society. Considered to be an extension of freedom of speech, identities are able to be concealed. The conventionalities of the human condition are apparent when the reactions to behaviors induced by anonymous actions occur.
There are billions of users on various online platforms making it difficult for moderation of content. Anonymity is what protects the identity of users to ensure the sanctity of free speech, however on a political level it has been challenged by policy decisions. Laws, rules, and social norms apply to users’ communication as their livelihoods may be at stake. The separation between identities is less intimidating as there is no preemptive judgment. Feedback is not immediate so it gives the illusion that the interaction was not serious. Toxic behaviors may manifest through cyber bullying, trolling, harassment, and poor communication. However, taking away the ability to be anonymous online may not solve the problems it creates.
Leave a Reply