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Re^3: Anonymous Monk?

by JavaFan (Canon)
on Jan 17, 2011 at 18:08 UTC ( #882720=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Re^2: Anonymous Monk?
in thread Anonymous Monk?

Actually no one has suggested doing that. My hunch is most of us are adults here and can come up with good solutions to the issue.
Wait. Either one is an "anonymous monk", or one uses some picked name. Assuming that people posting anonymously because they don't want to use a name that links them to other posts. If one needs a name to post, but one doesn't want to said name to be linked - people can easily use throw away names. And that can trivially be automated. For instance, by using a prefix and the node ID as a suffix.

Of course noone suggested that. But that's not the point. Apparently, the OP thinks the site can be improved if there's no anonymous monk. I describe a situation where there's 1) no anonymous monks, and 2) people who have reasons to post anonymously still do so. I'm just asking how that's going to improve things.

You're JavaFan. That's ALL I know about you. For all I know you could also be Jim, having a great time playing games with all the Monks by posting a 'hot button' issue under one user name then coming in a day later completely against it under another name. That option wouldn't change if you were Anonymous Monk, Jim or Guest198.
Yes. I'm glad we agree. For me, that's an argument that having or not having an option to post anonymously doesn't change things in general (except for the mechanics of the poster).
You realize this is a big part of the OP's whole point — right? Anonymous Monk can't be filtered out and many times becomes a major part of a thread (let alone the originator).
And my point is, the content of such posts will not change if there's a name above the post. If you get annoyed by a post, does it really matter if the top of the post is "Anonymous Monk", or "Jim882693" - a name that may not top any other node?
[About voting] You seem to enjoy it. You should.
I don't. I don't vote often. If I want a game where mindless clicking results in some numbers increasing, I'd play Farmville.

It's all great to say "I don't like anonymous monks", but I haven't seen a single posts that shows that whatever anonymous monks do to anger them will not happen if there are names (which can be as anonymous as the user of that name wants it to be) above the posts. However, if the post is made by "anonymous monk", I know it's done anonymously. But if the post is done by "Foo1234", and I go through the trouble of going to his userpage, and find he just signed up, and has no other writings, what do I know? Is it someone wanting to post anonymously, or just the first post on a fast track to sainthood?

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re^4: Anonymous Monk?
by luis.roca (Deacon) on Jan 17, 2011 at 18:31 UTC

    First, thank you for the well thought out response. After posting my reply to you I regretted the tone in certain parts but you've kept it about the subject at hand so — kudos.

    I still disagree with you. :)

     It's all great to say "I don't like anonymous monks", but I haven't seen a single posts that shows that whatever anonymous monks do to anger them will not happen if there are names (which can be as anonymous as the user of that name wants it to be) above the posts. However, if the post is made by "anonymous monk", I know it's done anonymously. But if the post is done by "Foo1234", and I go through the trouble of going to his userpage, and find he just signed up, and has no other writings, what do I know? Is it someone wanting to post anonymously, or just the first post on a fast track to sainthood?

    Which is why I don't think it's a good idea to give a guest all the benefits of an account. I suggested a model similar to news sites where you provide a name, email (hidden from public of course) and probably one of those "are you a human" questions to avoid form spam. There would still be an option to post anonymously but if they sign in as a guest they would receive ONE email inviting them to sign up to the site. I think that maintains a low barrier to entry for new visitors while keeping Anonymous Monk intact.

    I'm not saying that addresses all the concerns just as is related to potential new Monks.

    "...the adversities born of well-placed thoughts should be considered mercies rather than misfortunes." — Don Quixote
      I suggested a model similar to news sites where you provide a name, email (hidden from public of course) and probably one of those "are you a human" questions to avoid form spam. There would still be an option to post anonymously but if they sign in as a guest they would receive ONE email inviting them to sign up to the site.
      I understand what you mean. What I fail to understand is which problem it solves.
      I think that maintains a low barrier to entry for new visitors while keeping Anonymous Monk intact.
      IMO, asking for an email address is a high barrier for many. I don't like to give out my email address just so I can respond to a query. And if I were to get spam in the form of "please, join our site, pretty please with cream on top", I'd likely never return. One question though, how would you know the email address you got actually belongs to the person giving it?

        What this addresses specifically are new visitors who do not wish to try out the site by interacting anonymously (yes I believe they exist). I also think it's good to clearly see who is new other than checking the bottom of the Newest Nodes page.

        When I first discovered Perl Monks it was through the major Perl Books and Perl.org. I already assigned it a significant level of legitimacy and trust by the time I came here. I reviewed some of the tutorials, posts and chatter in the CB before signing up. (Maybe an hour at most) I can't believe I'm the only person who found Perl Monks and signed up in a similar manner.

        I wanted to sign on with my name (fill out my user page) and say: "1. This is who I am. 2. Why I came here. 3. Here are my questions" It took me months to actually do that. "Why? If I could just use Anonymous Monk to ask and say whatever I wanted?" Because Anonymous Monk is not a way (IMO) to build a place in a community. So I waited until I got the hang of things while reading a lot of posts, tutorials and — yes — voting.

        It would be great if there were something else between the Anonymous Monk who's actually a new visitor testing the waters and someone like me who didn't participate for months.

        I think it would add to the site if I could easily see if someone who posted is new here and welcome them. This is a great community that I value and being encouraged to post from the start as myself (even if I get corrected for not knowing the rules) that would be completely in line with how well I've been treated here.


        "...the adversities born of well-placed thoughts should be considered mercies rather than misfortunes." — Don Quixote
Re^4: Anonymous Monk?
by Jim (Curate) on Jan 18, 2011 at 02:45 UTC
    Apparently, the OP thinks the site can be improved if there's no anonymous monk.

    I said I think the Anonymous Monk generic username "doesn't jibe with the monastic ethos." The monks-in-a-monastery metaphor doesn't naturally support the notion of allowing visitors to participate as equals in the lives of the brethren. A real monastery doesn't permit laypersons to walk in off the street and join the monks in singing Vespers or brewing ale.

    In hindsight, perhaps I was suggesting we abandon the current conceit and adopt a new one. How about we pretend instead to be politicians in the government of a representative democracy?

      The monks-in-a-monastery metaphor doesn't naturally support the notion of allowing visitors to participate as equals in the lives of the brethren.
      Oh, you're so wrong.

      Over here, it's quite the hype to "retreat" to a monastery for a weekend, a week, or even longer. And you're expected (but not forced) to join the monks in Vespers (and other prayer services), but not in brewing ale. Just like anonymous monks here, they can join the prayer services (participating in discussions), but they cannot brew ale (vote, frontpage, approve notes, ...).

      But if your complaint is that Perlmonks doesn't actually "jibe with the monastic ethos", there's a lot more to complain about. Monks are not supposed to have an individuality (anonymous monks would actually be closer to a monastic "ethos" than high profile users are). There's a strict hierarchy. Monks must obey their superiors. Up to very recently, in many monastries monks (and nuns) had to break all ties with the world outside the monastery, including close family. Not even allowed to go home if their parents were dying. I know a nun who, when she joined her order, was only allowed visitors once a year - and she and her family had to be separated by a fence. Monks have no or little worldly possessions. They are celibate* (well, at least Christian monks are supposed to be celibate). Monasteries would not mix genders (though it used not to be uncommon to have a male abbot as head of a nunnery).

      Perlmonks doesn't come anywhere close to any monastic ethos. Christian, Buddhist, or anything else. "Perlmonks" is just a name, probably a play on ".pm". But for the rest, it looks and acts as much as a monastery as a it looks and acts as a bike or a fish. Besides, with all the recent child abuse scandals surfacing, I don't think I even want to pretent to belong to a monastery.

      In hindsight, perhaps I was suggesting we abandon the current conceit and adopt a new one. How about we pretend instead to be politicians in the government of a representative democracy?
      How about we stop pretending that we are pretending to be anything? We're just people who use Perl. Nothing more, nothing less.

      *Yeah, yeah, in practice, many programmers are as well. One wouldn't be posting in nerdy forums if one had a life, now would one?

        JavaFan,

        This is a very rigorous analysis of the metaphor—a metaphor that I agree with you probably originated as little more than a play on ".pm" or some such. My more casual and much less deeply thought out perception of the monks-in-a-monastery pretense is that PerlMonks is a fraternity and its participants feign brotherhood. You see this every day in posts that begin with monkish salutations.

        My only point—the one I made in my original post—is that the PerlMonks' Anonymous Monk username, which is so often used here, doesn't seem to me to be very (How shall I put it?) brotherly-loving. You and others have explained various reasons why the generic username is useful and desirable and I accept those rationales on their merits. I make no specific argument against them.

        I'm outclassed by the rhetorical skills of others here who write better and more persuasively than I do. I cannot win an intellectual argument with people who are much cleverer than I am. Nonetheless, I believe the downsides of the generic Anonymous Monk username likely outweigh its benefits. That's my gut sense of the thing.

      Actually, Anonymous Monk cannot really take part in many things of the Monastery. Anonymous Monk has no /msg feature and can only read the Chatterbox. They cannot visit Worst Nodes and other such nodes, and cannot see the content of reaped nodes.

      We permit Anonymous Monk to ask questions and give answers, which I consider akin to allowing them at the table, where they can eat food and can also bring their own food.

      In hindsight, perhaps I was suggesting we abandon the current conceit and adopt a new one.

      If you want to change it, you should point out exactly what goes wrong and how your new concept would solve this. And discuss about the drawbacks of your concept. Simple stating "anonymity is bad" and "we need change" is not enough.

      and btw.: I like the current way the monastery works

      How about we pretend instead to be politicians in the government of a representative democracy?

      You mean we should pretend to be incompetent in all areas? Except in filling our own swiss bank-accounts by selling the interest of the public to well-paying lobby-groups? I don't see how this can improve this site...

      (posted as anonymous monk, so this posting cannot be connected to me in case I decide to start a political career in the future ;-)

      A real monastery doesn't permit laypersons

      Once again, says you

      I don't know where you get these ideas about monasteries, but they just don't jibe with the history of this place

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