Online Pseudonyms

In real life, we have the legal right to say pretty much whatever we want, but we are enmeshed in a network of social checks and balances that keep us accountable for our speech. Nobody can force us to shut up, but lots of people can make their displeasure known to us. It’s a good balance that allows people to share ideas freely without rending the fabric of the community.

This is hugely important in my opinion, and the thing that is missing from online pseudonymity, turning people who are typically governable by social constructs into antisocial beasts running amok online…and none of us are immune.

Michael Brutsch, ViolentAcrez, and Online Pseudonyms – Duly Noted.

Why isn’t anyone talking about the misogyny involved in Amanda Todd’s life and death? | The Vancouver Observer

The weapon that this man was able to rely on was the judgment of our society. Under our unequal social and economic conditions, the stakes are higher when a woman falls out of favour with her community. For a girl or woman, falling out of favour with her community can mean a sentence to a nightmarish cycle of distress. If we diffuse the judgment, and look at the behaviour of the attacker, we can weaken the attack. We need less focus on “the mistake” and more on the sexism in our society that this man wielded—successfully—to rid the planet of another young woman.

This is so good and I completely agree that we need to change how we address bullying to speak to the underlying bigotry, biases, judgments and misogyny.