Respectable papers avoid printing anonymous letters

After all, such remarks will raise a Website’s hits and hits interpret to higher placement in search engines and so forth and so on, blah, blah, blah.

“In theory, it’s a fantastic thing. We’re giving the people a voice! But the reality is that commenting either pulls loathsome individuals or somehow causes ordinary people to express themselves in a way that’s loathsome,” writes Lev Grossman, discussing anonymous blogs in his Time Magazine column, “Post Apocalypse” (July 21).For proof, one has only to go online, find a site with news articles and read the opinions posted by readers. Many comments are cruelly perverse if not completely depraved. The anonymity of a website gets average people post messages that are extremely abhorrent and if Grossman is appropriate, then there is a darkness lurking inside individuals that these blogs unleashes.

Respectable papers avoid printing anonymous letters the letter is significant enough to publish and unless shielding the writer’s identity is a security matter. Unfortunately, those same newspapers have website comments websites where any muttonhead with a keyboard can rant and rave until frothing at the mouth.

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In truth, power is given by these anonymous posts to cowards who unexpectedly feel that they have license to say whatever drivel that is malicious and, frequently, totally asinine pops into their small heads. Concealing at home or in an office or at an internet café, safe from any reprisal, they covertly blather on, hurling invectives and cruelties without worrying about a friend, acquaintance or coworker and identifying them as a miscreant.

The ideal storm is created by these posts that are anonymous; the gutless have a forum to exhibit their gutlessness.Real people with real ideas, sound and reasoned, are never afraid to possess their views. They write what they submit and believe it knowing full well that some, perhaps many, will disagree. If the opinion is fair, well-imagined and nicely delineated, then having one’s name attached to it should not make anyone fearful.

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On my Website, the Colorado Higher Ed News, I do not have to take anonymous rants composed by cringing cowards too frightened of the world to place their name on their thoughts – And, really, how much more cowardly can many people get? Refusing to own their views is like attempting to distance themselves from their face. Not having a forum where readers can comment is preferable to having an anonymous post where HarryNads, Dickman10 or any Tomcat99 can post whatever stupid thought pops into what is laughingly known as a mind.

Doug Hawk, editor and writer of the Colorado Higher Ed News, is a retired public relations manager and novelist. His novel, The Devouring, was named one of the 10 Best Horror Novels of the Year by Science Fiction Chronicles and his short story, “Plane Scared,” appearing the the Horror Writers Association anthology Under the Tarmac, won a Top Hand Award from the Colorado Authors League for Best Adult Short Fiction.


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