For example, Benjamin Franklin used several aliases over his lifetime, including "Poor Richard" of Poor Richard Almanac's fame. Other aliases used by Franklin include the following:
- Silence Dogood
- Caelia Shortface
- Martha Careful
- Busy Body
- Anthony Afterwit
- Alice Addertongue
- Polly Baker
No. We cannot agree.
Below are two views of anonymity drawn from the pages of our local press/blogs over the past few days. First we have the view of Rick Steinhardt of Orcas Island, the husband of Friends Board member Janet Alderton.
The trouble with Anonymous by Rick Steinhardt
To the editor,
We have experience with anonymous blogs in these islands. To some they seem harmless enough. However gossip is like a virus, it goes from the source from person to person. Distortions can occur with repetition and these distortions naturally increase with distance from the source. Soon the original comment which may have been tongue in cheek turns into new "facts" which can be quite harmful.
When one makes an anonymous commentary one is disclaiming any responsibility for the consequences, which is both cowardly and irresponsible. This is specially true in our society where it is easy for unstable personalities to obtain guns.
Responsible editors do not print anonymous letters for very good reasons. If you know of someone putting out an anonymous blog, let them know they are being both cowardly and irresponsible.Together we can restore civil discourse and make real progress dealing with the important issues that face the San Juan Islands.
Sincerely,Next, we have the view of "Peter Smith," an alias used by a Lopezian speaking out against the Lopez school bond measure, which will be on the same ballot as the County Council election in April. "Peter Smith's" posting on Lopezrocks was removed because of the use of an alias. The Trojan Heron feels this amounts to censorship, and nearly every other news or blogging outlet in San Juan County engages in similar censorship behavior. We fail to see how censorship protects our community.
Rick Steinhardt Deer Harbor