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Anonymous

More about names, labels and associations
    #3629683 - 01/14/05 09:07 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

I remember a while back, someone here made a comment wondering what it would be like like if this forum was completely anonymous, and how different things might be. I think it was jiggy who said this but I could be wrong. Whoever it was, the idea's been stuck in my mind ever since.

Whenever you see a post here, you're always, either consciously or subconsciously, thinking of that post in the context of the profile or character that the poster has created for themselves, from all their past posts collectively. You look at their screen name, their avatar, their post count, their location, their description, and their ratings, and then you sorta look them up in your mental database. You immediately think of what their past posts have been like, their pattern of thinking and behavior. You think, "I know this person is a Christian/Buddhist/atheist/skeptic/whatever." This whole thought process tends to be subconscious and takes less than a second, but even so it'll "taint" the post content in a particular way.

By the time you've reached this third paragraph, I'm CERTAIN that if you recognize my name you've already gone through these thoughts and judged my posting "quality" accordingly, if only at a subconscious level. So what would happen if we had no names or labels at all? Firstly, there'd be no way to identify who posts what, except for the admins who can look at IP logs. There'd be no quick judging of posts based on character or ego. You may find yourself taking posts "as is" without comparing it some preconceived notion of what to expect from a particular poster.

Some of my favorite posts are from the newbies constantly popping in here, because while I'm reading their posts, there's this feeling of uneasiness because you don't know what they're about yet, what they believe, or where they're coming from. It's exciting and interesting. I also find I'll read these posts very carefully from start to finish to get the gist of what they're saying, whereas with a poster I "know" I may skim over some words because I'm already putting together the idea they're trying to convey, using past knowledge of their posts.

Do you see what I'm getting at here? Familiarity breeds assumptions and associations. This can hinder our ability to think in an open-minded but critical way that promotes learning and skepticism side-by-side.

One last thing: One of the biggest advantages of the internet is (almost) complete anonymity, yet people still desire to extend the physical world into the non-physical by creating an identity. Isn't that strange?


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InvisibleSclorch
Clyster

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Re: More about names, labels and associations [Re: ]
    #3629848 - 01/15/05 02:52 AM (11 years, 10 months ago)

Anonymous posting...

Hmm...

My guess is that every thread would deteriorate into OTD very quickly.


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OfflineZekebomb
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Registered: 08/24/03
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Re: More about names, labels and associations [Re: Sclorch]
    #3629879 - 01/15/05 03:03 AM (11 years, 10 months ago)

our ability to think in an open-minded but critical way that promotes learning and skepticism side-by-side

that is the state for which to be stroven, but the balance is sooo wobbly


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Invisibleredgreenvines
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Re: More about names, labels and associations [Re: Zekebomb]
    #3630209 - 01/15/05 06:50 AM (11 years, 10 months ago)

getting to know the characters here is kinda fun, fake names but real people in a fake context with real typing and silly pictures ....


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OfflineGomp
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Re: More about names, labels and associations [Re: redgreenvines]
    #3630211 - 01/15/05 06:56 AM (11 years, 10 months ago)

""you don't know what they're about yet""

just don't think, you know what I'm about, yet, and wop? I'm a newb? he he
:grin: :thumbup: :heart:


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Disclaimer!?


Edited by Gomp (01/15/05 06:57 AM)


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