identity

In my ten minute break from grading (yes, I know, at 11 pm I’m still grading….but next Thursday I go to Australia for Christmas holidays! I’ll grade now, knowing that very soon, I’ll be in the summertime) I read my blogs and found dozens of posts by pseudonymous bloggers about why they blog pseudonymously, although they know their identity might be revealed. Dr Crazy and Waiting Room talk about why they like being pseudonymous. Kottke remarks that nobody, five years ago, would have predicted people would publish their secret diaries online because they were safer that way. (That’s password-protected diaries, of course, not pseudonymous and social blogs)

Then last of all, I read Stephanie’s post on her current linguistic forensics – last night she successfully used linguistic identity markers to match pseudonymous weblog authors to their real name writing. Stephanie’s conscious of the ethical concerns involved, but really, once this is out of the bag, it won’t take long for someone to write a script more conclusive than those IP matches that can track down an anonymous Wikipedian (NY Times: username jilltxt/password jilltxt).

Right. Another hour of grading, then I can hit the sack.

12. December 2005 by Jill
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