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Anonymous forum posting may be made illegal

Discussion in 'Podiatry Arena Help, Suggestions and Comments' started by admin, Mar 15, 2008.

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  1. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member


    Members do not see these Ads. Sign Up.
    Action 36 News are reporting:
    Kentucky Lawmaker Wants to Make Anonymous Internet Posting Illegal
     
  2. kitos

    kitos Active Member

    Brilliant idea ~ I'm just filling in my new MSN Hotmail account application in the name of George W Bush 4567890 or Hilary Clinton to cover me for legislation just like that :D

    Nick
     
  3. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member

    There is already a 'H Klinton' ding the rounds of forums as a spammer!
     
  4. kitos

    kitos Active Member

    Are they quoting that they have 'saved the world' as well as the other one?
     
  5. medisrch

    medisrch Active Member

    Uninforceable

    Anon
     
  6. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member

    Nope. That H Klinton was selling viagara
    More enforceable than you may think. I can quite legally track the IP address down to at least city level (sometime suburb) that a message was posted from and can get the name of the company that owns the server the message was posted from (a lot of spammers have been busted here because of that facility). BUT, we also have a privacy policy here as to what we do with that information. ISP's can track down deeper than just the IP address. While this has not happened yet, court orders may force both us and the ISP to hand over logs to track anonymous posters. All forums and ISP's will resist doing so.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2008
  7. twirly

    twirly Well-Known Member

    Currently police forces worldwide have few problems finding individuals who use the internet for illegal purposes. Therefore if legislation was put into place & made law then potentially it could be enforced.

    Remember high profile cases of paedophiles downloading child porn onto their pcs?

    Personally I think most (though not all) laws are there to protect us.

    Usually it is a few idiots that cause problems on the internet. :rolleyes:
     
  8. Admin2

    Admin2 Administrator Staff Member

    Bear in mind that those 'child pornograhers' know what they are doing and know how to cover their tracks by the use of proxies etc and still got caught. What hope is there for the rest of us?
     
  9. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member

    I was just browsing the FAQ's wondering if we needed any changes and found this:
    I forgot we had this policy!
     
  10. kitos

    kitos Active Member

    Thought you all might like to know that here in rural South Devon police are threatening to take fingerprints and DNA from bottles and cans thrown away by youths and after obtaining ID's prosecuting them!:wacko:

    They (the police) can't be bothered to attend burglaries ~ have filled the streets with pretend police officers holding hands so they don't get lost and have forgotten how to arrest people but they can afford to spend money on DNA tracing for litter offences!!!!!!!!!!!! :bang:

    Is this traceability gone mad?

    It seems to me that it either smacks way too much of Big brother or that the lunatics have finally taken control of the asylum :bash:

    I'll now kick my soap-box away and go out into the garden and eats slugs and snails and any puppy dogs tails I can find :)

    Nick
     
  11. admin

    admin Administrator Staff Member

    In an increasingly litigous society, forums are going to be coming under pressure to reveal identities. We and most other forums will resist. A few forums have been served subpoenas that went no where.

    I hang out and learn a lot and contribute where I can at TheAdminZome (a community of forum Admins). There have been a couple of recent discussions on this: UK Libel Laws in relation to forums and Threatened by legal action and defamation and liability and, particlarly: I have been served a subpoena

    Having said that, being able to track IP's helps us keep things under control here:
    * see this thread on new dressings and what happens when new members all start asking about the same wound dressing have the same IP address
    * there were some glowing positive comments in a thread from a new member about a particlular prefab brand ...it was so glowing that I was considering deleting it as self promotional spam ...but there is always that element of doubt it was genuine. What tipped the tables was the IP address was traced down to the same suburb that the prefab company was headquartered.
    * in one the the us vs them threads to do with FHP's in the UK forum, we had a regular member sign up under another username to post in the thread just to beat up on another poster .... we can see in the backend what was going on as we had the IP address. Needless to say the username and post were deleted.
    * etc

    We have a privacy policy we take very seriously. HOWEVER, as part of what you agree to when you join is this statement in the rules:
     
  12. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    CNET are reporting:
    U.N. agency eyes curbs on Internet anonymity
    September 12, 2008 4:00 AM PDT
    Rest of story and follow up comments
     
  13. David Smith

    David Smith Well-Known Member

    Twirly

    Twirly, Naive in my opinion, and again, in my opinion, a very female viewpoint. Laws are made by the rich and pwerful to protect the rich and powerful and control the masses. Especially applicable to the presernt labour government, ironically! And I'm not even paranoid. :dizzy:

    While I don't agree with anonymous posting, I do agree with the right to post anonymously. The point about bullying can be reversed, peolple post anonymously for fear of bullying or persecution for their opinions, beliefs or points of view. How would you feel about not having the right to vote anonymously. What if you you lived in zimbabwe how would your opinion change about that then. What if you lived in an oppressive regimne (in a country or a company or a society or a family) and wanted to let people know about your life but not wanting to be easily identified. Internet cafe's and public terminals allow this to happen without identification. Governments and large companies have enough data on individual already, let us at least have the illusion of anonymity and autonomy.

    Luv Dave

    PS are you now doing this :butcher:
     
  14. blinda

    blinda MVP

    That is true and i support the right to post anon for the reasons Dave outlined. It also includes those who feel that their current/future career prospects could be jeopardised by voicing opinions. Which is of course perfectly understandable.

    However, it is evident (on other unmoderated sites) that some, but not many, abuse this right by posting anon to cowardly hurl abuse at others.

    Cheers,
    Bel
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2008
  15. twirly

    twirly Well-Known Member

    Ah, naive.

    Guilty as charged M'lud. :rolleyes:

    You see Dave I tend to view others through lovely rose tinted specs.

    However, I am very fortunate that I was brought up to have the courage of my convictions & to proudly stand by my opinions but more importantly to appreciate the opinions of others. Also I would hope I am a big enough person to have the ability to happily have my views challenged & even changed on occasion. (DTT you reading this?)

    I disagree with you RE: your comment
    Not all laws surely? There must be a few that you believe are there to protect individuals & prevent total anarchy.

    I also feel slightly unnerved by the following:
    Is this because my world is not black & white but more a rainbow of pastel shades with enchanting frills around the hem? :confused:

    Ah, now here you may have something:
    One of my favourite qoutes:
    We should have the right to our opinions & as such I appreciate what you say RE: anon posting (not that I agree with it either. ;)

    . There are varied definitions on bullying. Those I have experience of are not of those poor persecuted souls but when spineless individuals make comments/accusations on open forums in the knowledge that they can malign an individual without fear of being openly identified. My opinion only of course but to me it smacks of 100% opinion & zero intellect.

    A different scenario entirely. I feel fortunate to live in a country where I may hold an opinion & express my beliefs without the fear of violence. There are limits on this also though. These are uncertain times & there are opinions which are best expressed with caution regardless of where on the planet you may be.


    PHP:
    Governments and large companies have enough data on individual already
    Agreed.

    Is it not an illusion anyway? I feel fairly sure if the 'powers that be' wish to really find out who? What? Where? Then 'they' already have the means to do just that.

    Finally,
    Never ;)

    X Mand'
     
  16. dyfoot

    dyfoot Active Member

    Anonymity

    {ADMIN NOTE: 2 threads on this topic merged}

    Hi all,

    I'm beginning to think that it is not necessarily a good idea for many of the posters on Podiatry Arena to remain anonymous.

    There seem to be a number of non foot health professionals signing up and posting and I also think that there are some posters who hide behind their pseudonyms when posting.....which IMHO is not very professional.

    I think that this is a marvellous site which certainly helps me in my practise of podiatry and there would be more credibility afforded it if all the professional members were not anonymous...

    Maybe this is worth debating...:confused:

    Maybe I'm rambling... (there's a pseudonym in that- the rambler!):dizzy:

    Cheers,:drinks

    Brad Randazzo

    P.S. I know my username is a pseudonym- it is part of my email address which I used for signing up, for some reason the address became my username and I had to ask admin to shorten it.:eek:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2009
  17. Griff

    Griff Moderator

    Re: Anonymity

    Brad,
    I'm going to have to respectfully disagree with you on this point. The truth of the matter is that many people are perhaps slightly anxious of putting their name to a post for all to see, particularly when you know the quality of professional that will read it (Craig, Kevin, Simon, Eric, the list goes on...)

    This is through no fault of their own (this has been covered on another thread) but their reputations demand respect - and whether right or wrong some people are just damn scared to get into discussions with them.

    Another point (which may be limited to the UK) is that the Podiatric profession is a relatively small community and if you got a name for yourself on a forum like this (for being a smart ass, saying ridiculous things or maybe just being a bit of a tit) then believe or not it may be seen to have ramifications in your professional life.

    Just my thoughts of course

    Ian
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2009
  18. Steve The Footman

    Steve The Footman Active Member

    Re: Anonymity

    I have never been a fan of anonymous posting. It seems to bring out the worst in some people when they lack the normal social inhibitions that peer pressure enforces.

    However people should also feel free to post anonymously without fear of prosecution or retribution. Not quite such an important factor on a professional messageboard.

    I prefer not to post anonymously and prefer it when I know whom I am talking to online. I think it does add credibility when you post under your own name. I accept that some people prefer not to do so and consider their posts in that light.
     
  19. LuckyLisfranc

    LuckyLisfranc Well-Known Member

    Re: Anonymity

    I prefer to post anonymously.

    The reason being that a precursor to Podiatry Arena, then venerable Jiscmail (?), was a place where I posted freely under my own name.

    Until one day when I started receiving vitriolic emails from another health professional with an axe to grind against the opinions I raised. This has gone on to cause significant professional issues in the long term - all over a bloody lousy professional discussion forum. Unfortunately electronic discussion boards tend to stay around forever, and can be misinterpreted and cause unintended consequences.

    Since then, I have learned a valuable lesson about the adverse effects of the internet, and I am wary to put my name to anything. If the forum rules were to change here, I would find another place to spend my free time.

    LL (Thanked 67 Times in 53 Posts)
     
  20. Re: Anonymity

    I don't see any reason why "tags" or "fake names" can't be used on a website such as this. If people choose to be anonymous, then it is their right to do so.

    However, as for me, I am much more likely to take time out of my busy day to reply to the poster that has at least given me the courtesy of using their real names at either the top or bottom of their posts. I will purposely avoid replying to posts from those individuals that are completely anonymous (with a few rare exceptions, LL).

    I consider the anonymous poster on Podiatry Arena to be quite analagous to the anonymous phone caller or anonymous speaker standing on a soapbox on a street corner. All these individuals somehow expect us to take them seriously, or want our help or advice, but don't think that anyone deserves the simple respect of properly identifying who they are before they start asking questions or giving us their opinions.
     
  21. drsarbes

    drsarbes Well-Known Member

    Re: Anonymity

    I always use Kevin's name, especially when I'm giving orthotic advice.

    Steve
     
  22. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    The Ottawa Citizen are reporting:

    Website owners ordered to ID message board users

    Anti-hate-speech campaigner seeking source of postings

    Full story
     
  23. Euan McGivern

    Euan McGivern Active Member

    Interesting commentary from the legal blogger Jack of Kent on the possibility of courts enforcing providers to disclose the identity of bloggers (and forum users) who may post potentially damaging comments. :butcher:

    Cheers
    Euan
     
  24. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    AMEDNews are reporting:
    Anonymous posts: Liberating or unprofessional?
    Doctors who tweet incognito like the freedom to vent their frustrations with medical practice. Critics argue anonymity opens the door to posting questionable content.
    Full story
     
  25. RobinP

    RobinP Well-Known Member

    I think that not posting anonymously has done me some favours. I have moderated something that I have written on several occasions and been glad that I have done so. Had I not, I would have looked foolish.

    Moreover, it has forced me to research something prior to posting and this has certainly proved useful on several occasions leading me to review my thinking and knowledge

    Like others, I am more inclined to respond to someone who has used their name but i can understand the reasons for people posting anonymously

    Robin
     
  26. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    The Daily Mash has a spin on this:
    End of internet anonymity to make web even more depressing
    Full story
     
  27. blinda

    blinda MVP

    We WILL get all posters hooked on `The Mash`!:drinks
     
  28. Catfoot

    Catfoot Well-Known Member

  29. blinda

    blinda MVP

  30. RobinP

    RobinP Well-Known Member

    Have to go with Bel on that one, although I did like this one about Mandela

     
  31. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    6
  32. Paul Bowles

    Paul Bowles Well-Known Member

    I've been an advocate of this for years. Although I agree is completely unenforceable, in forums like this it relies on simple professional integrity.

    If you've got something to say then it's worth putting your name behind it. If you don't want to put your name to it then its probably not worth saying. I think some people on these forums over the years could take something away from this.

    :boohoo:
     
  33. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
  34. Catfoot

    Catfoot Well-Known Member

    All,
    This is nothing new and, as others have said, is probably completely unenforceable.

    There are those of us who have genuine reasons for not wishing to be identified.

    There are women who live alone and who would like to contribute to forums but prefer to be "Anon" so they don't fall prey to stalkers etc.

    Many of my single female friends would just simply stop postings if they had to identify themselves.

    In addition those who work for the NHS and do not agree with certain policies could find themselves subject to disciplinary action if their views were made known openly

    regards

    Catfoot
     
  35. Probably the most important reason people choose to submit anonymous postings is that they would be extremely embarrassed if those that read their words knew the source. As well as the legitimate candidates you can also count the spiteful, the agitators, the sociopaths, the insecure and the generally unpleasant.

    If you have something to say make sure you put your name to it. That way we know how to get at you, Heather.....:deadhorse: ;)
     
  36. R.E.G

    R.E.G Active Member

    Mark,

    Usually the consummate word smith I think on this occasion 'Probably' should be replaced with possibly as you cannot substantiate your assertion.

    Even more interesting is the list of people who have thanked you for your useful post. All of whom including yourself if they were being truthful have been guilty of some if not all of the crimes you describe.

    So clearly 'impolite' postings are not confined to the anonymous.

    To take the opposite point of view what is the motivation of posting under one's own name, is it honesty and integrity or is there an element of self promotion and a belief that the name is more important than the message?

    Just a thought you pays your money and takes your choice.

    Yet another thread highjacked by asides.

    Bob
     
  37. Catfoot

    Catfoot Well-Known Member

    Mark,
    Your post is out of order as it contains a totally unacceptable personal attack on me.

    I would like you to modify it or delete it.

    In addition, those of you who have supported Mark's post might want to reconsider your position.

    regards

    Catfoot
     
  38. blinda

    blinda MVP

    I disagree. You are not Heather and I cannot see any mention of `Catfoot` anywhere in Marks` post. His comment is in line with this thread regarding anonymous postings.

    Which position is it that I need to reconsider?
     
  39. Catfoot

    Catfoot Well-Known Member

    Blinda,
    My comments were addressed to Mark, not you, I am sure he can speak for himself.

    Whether I am 'Heather' or not is irrelevent, the post is still out of order.


    regards

    Catfoot
     
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