Tactical Transparency and Fighting Fair

CNN has an interesting video ("Online campus gossips won't show their faces) about a popular campus website called, Juicy Campus. Long story short, the site allows people to post anonymously and it's allowing a lot of people to be really nasty.  Granted, it does allow some folks to post relatively innocuous items ("what sorority should I join") but if you visit their Most Discussed page the first thread reads, "Who is the sluttiest girl??????" (Six question marks inserted in original post).

This may not be overly original to announce, but anonymity in this setting is cowardice in its worst form, period.  For the few who may genuinely benefit from discussing difficult subjects in an open forum, as the CNN video notes, the site is crippling many college student's experience for no apparent gain.

Here's how I see it--trollish posts like these are the equivalent to grade school bullies who shove you to the ground from behind and then pretend they didn't push you when you stand up and confront them.  Their cronies snort at their apparent victory, but others witnessing the event won't respect the bully, just fear him/her.

I got bullied a lot as a kid and I'm not fond of online cowardice guised in "the right for free speech."  Not putting your name/identity to your posts, especially slanderous or nasty means your speech isn't free--it's costing others the time and energy to wade through the mire of your unsubstantiated drivel.

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