Thunderf00t: My real name is…

This is disgusting!

Yes, there are some people who abuse anonymity on the internet.

Then there are others who eschew it – they believe that attaching their real-life name to an online communication will add weight and respect to it.  This is, to some degree, true:  if their real-life name has some earned public credibility, attaching it to their online persona will add credibility to the online persona.

BUT!!!

Name is just a label.

If a person has built up his or her credibility using an online persona – truly built up credibility – by time and time again providing solid, verifiable, quality information, then their real-life name is really quite irrelevant.

To the contrary:  it is a very useful shield!

Journalists who publish in traditional media have an organization that stands behind them and offers them at least a modicum of protection should they become threatened by those who wish to silence them.

Online communicators do not have this luxury!!!

But ‘online’ is not the beginning of ‘anonymous protest speech’!

No, nowhere near…  Even the most basic bit of research into the history of anonymous protest speech demonstrates brings us to Colonial North America.  Printing presses were used to print anonymous pamphlets which were distributed and which informed the public of facts that the government did not want known and which fostered the atmosphere necessary for the fight for independence.

In fact, most of the works by America’s Founding Fathers were originally published as anonymous pamphlets!

So, let’s not go down the role of silly posturing:  anonymity is essential for free speech!

(Sorry if I am not particularly coherent in this post – I am so angry as I write this, I can hardly keep myself calm enough to type!)

To hear that Thunderf00t’s real-life name has been ‘outed’ by an Islamist group (which claims to be made up of ‘moderate Muslims’), that his job has been threatened, that his address has been published – and now, that his family members are being threatened with physical violence…THAT IS AN OUTRAGE!!!!

I guess all we can do is spread the word…

…and hope for the best.  Because I am at a loss for what else to do to help him.

 

P.S.:  It took me a second viewing to pick up pn it, but it does seem that the online Islamists just may have attracted the attention of ‘Anonymous’.  THAT would be interesting, to say the least!