Saturday, February 16, 2008

'Anonymous' commenting - a rant

Well, more of a 'policy statement', I hope.

I am repeating a comment I made the other day on my Valentine's day post, because there has been quite a bit of commenting under the tag 'anonymous' just lately - AND IT'S GOT TO STOP.


Commenters labelling themselves 'anonymous' bugs the crap out of me; I would disable the facility to do so, if I could.

Now, there are three people who have quite commonly commented on one or other of my blogs as 'anonymous' - and they are all very dear lady friends of mine, and I try to be as tolerant of their foible in this regard as I can be. But please - it's not that goddamned difficult to give yourself a distinctive tag.

You don't have to sacrifice your anonymity, you don't have to use your real name, you don't even have to use a nickname that would identify yourself to me alone (although if you're one of my friends, I can't see why you wouldn't!); but it is useful - essential - to have some label by which we can differentiate your comments from other people's. If, as has recently happened, we have more than one person commenting on the same thread as 'anonymous', it becomes impossible to work out who's saying what.

Also, of course, there is the problem that if you are going to make needling remarks or 'jokes' about me, they appear far more hostile coming from an 'anonymous' source. A certain intimacy is necessary for you to take the piss out of someone without causing offence, and you lose that intimacy if don't identify yourself in any way at all. In fact, as one of these unfortunate 'anonymous' commenters has recently experienced, you will appear to be just a random stranger having a go, and may thus risk attracting counter-invective from my other blog-buddies (the pugnacious 'Mothman' wades in to defend me, with his bloodcurdling battlecry of "I flame, so you don't have to!")...... and possibly even from me, if you get me riled enough.

So, PLEASE, pretty-please-with-fucking-sugar-on-top, all you 'anonymouses' out there, give yourself a 'name' when you comment on here.


I think from now on I am just going to automatically delete any comment labelled 'anonymous'. It's not about the content: you can say anything you damn well like to me - but you do need to give me a handle I can 'recognise' you by.

If you find yourself inadvertently posting a comment labelled 'anonymous', just cut & paste it into a new comment with a 'name' on it. This is not hard. TRY.......

12 comments:

homeinkabul said...

I really did want to leave a comment by 'anonymous' (though I never have before)...but that would just be childish and I am a mature and reasonable adult.

Mothman said...

We had a bit of a 'discussion' concerning the plural 'octopuses' (and indeed 'octopi') versus 'octopodes' some years ago, my learned Froog friend. You are quite right, that - applying the principle that you should always use Anglo-Saxon words wherever possible - the plural should be 'octopuses'. However, I hold out for 'Octopodes' on the simple basis that it is more fun :-)

Similarly, I hold out that the plural of 'anonymous' should be 'anonymi'. 'Anonymouses' just sounds a tad - well - murine doesn't it? Or is this just some Mickey Mouse reasoning on my part?

Either way ban the fuckers! Oh, yes...

Tulsa said...

I'm with HiK.

I resolve to behave more like a mature and reasonable adult.... as long as it doesn't interfere with my usual shenanigans.

Definitely Anonymi... Anonymouses conjures an image of mouses (yes, that was on purpose) making a hole in the Great Fire Wall... and if you don't get that image, you don't live in China.

Froog said...

Nice to see you're all taking this so seriously.

homeinkabul said...

We are all nodding in agreement and looking quite serious.

Well, Tulsa might be stifling some giggles but there is nothing I can do about that.

Anonymi - totally. It sounds like a japanese snack. You know, the kind that they sell at fancy stores and you buy it, thinking it will be tasty but it's so totally not. Anyway, I vote for the japanese snack as opposed to the mouse burrowing word.

Mothman said...

Stifling giggles? Surely not! This is a serious crusade against The Anonymi I'll have you know :-)

The Japanese snack idea grabs me. Let us exclude these pestilential identity-challenged people by ridicule. My only concern Re. the appelation 'Anonymi' for Froog's tormentors was that it had an air of sinister splendour about it (shades of 'Knights of the Anonymi')...but who can take 'The Society of Sushi' seriously as a threat to world blogdom?

Definitely the way to go...

Froog said...

Yes, this is all starting to sound a little too Dan Brown-ish for me.

Mothman said...

Another guy who made a fortune out of purveying unadulterated crap... There is hope for us yet, dear Froog :-)

homeinkabul said...

Organization for the Eradicating Anonymi

- I like it. Mothman, you can be chairperson.

- I will be the heckler in the corner

- Tulsa can be anything she wants.

Mothman said...

'Chairperson' sounds a little ambitious to me, HiK - besides, this is Froog's blog so maybe he should carry that dubious responsibility...

Besides, I wanna be a heckler. Wah!

The only slightly annoying thing is that if we are to feel that O.E.A.'s worthy campaign is being effective it would be nice to know whether any anonymous comments have actually been blatted by mein host. Does anyone know if, when you exterminate a post on a blog, it leaves any evidence of its twitching little corpse behind? A plaintive note to the effect of "This post has been terminated with extreme prejudice for being in violation of its terms of existence - so long sucker!" would feel so very satisfying would it not? Another notch on the jolly old keyboard. A blow for the suppression of anonymous speech (yadda yadda).

Just curious. I guess that der F├╝hrer will enlighten us concerning this point on his return from the frozen north. The place-name 'Harbin' sounds exotic, but anywhere that hosts an annual 'ice festival' isn't really my bag, I have to say. I prefer my ice in my rum and coke down on the beach. I know that you are a self-confessed arctic gnome, my genial host Froog, but Manchuria in February?!

Tulsa said...

Thank you for organizing HiK... And Mothman, don't be shy, take a hold of that chairmanship and give it a good whirl... it doesn't prevent you from heckling.

And Froog has abandoned the blog for icy treats, so i figure we can do as we like. so Tag - your Chairman.

First item on hand, motion to have The chairman's "twitching corpse behind" language ratified by all parties and passed by the house and the hecklers.

The British Cowboy said...

How to tell Froog has been away from Oxford too long...

Never, ever, ever tell people something like this annoys you that much. It is just setting yourself up for future misery.