Thursday, January 29, 2009

Open Letter to Uptown Update: Expose Yourselves

This is regarding the current subpoena from the attorney of a Chicago developer, the goal of which is to discover the identities of some anonymous bloggers in Uptown (see "Developer Targets Bloggers in Chicago"). Uptown Update is one of those blogs, but this could apply to almost every blogger who does not use his/her real name. Dear Uptown Update: I believe that you have the right to be anonymous. However, it would lend much more credibility to UU if you did not hide behind a veil. While I honor your anonymity, I frankly have less respect for anonymous bloggers than I do for those who have the courage to name themselves. Imagine, if you will, how you would feel about the Chicago Tribune if none of their reporters used their real names. Suppose the editors did not identify themselves. It would lessen their credibility, and properly so. Let me give you some unsolicited advice. You and your staff should seriously consider revealing your identities, and doing it as soon as possible. Why? It would make Holsten and the Johnson subpoena look ridiculous. Furthermore, it is only a matter of days before a lot of Uptowners start wondering what you're afraid of by using your real names. You should have considered this possibility before your first post. The anonymity that you thought would protect you has, ironically, become a yoke around your necks. Remove it at your soonest possibility. You will be hailed as brave heroes if you do. If you don't, some will question your credibility - and you will be forced to continue fighting to protect an anonymity that will soon serve you no longer. I wish UU all the best in this fight, and I'm on your side in the struggle. I could be subpoenaed by Joe Moore or God Knows Who, for all I know. But if I am, I will have one less battle in that potential war because I will not have to work hard to protect, or lose sleep over, some secret identity. CNB RSS Feed