first, i think that having these discussions is really important to the web community process. as a newbie to this board and as a pre-newbie to taiwan (will be there in a month), i’ve found perusing the postings on this board has been incredibly helpful, and i’ve felt a degree of candidness and community on this board that i’d say is rare on message boards.
however, call me green, but i feel that having guest postings on this webboard might be counterproductive, creating an air of untrustworthiness rather than increased candidness and openness…
me personally: if an individual wants to say something provocative or perhaps offensive but doesn’t want to take credit for it, then i think he/she should consider what lies at the heart of that feeling. to me, if i felt unsure of how something i’d write may come across, it’d mean that i felt that the web community here isn’t safe enough for me to share what i’d like to share and still be respected/accepted in the community. but to me, if everyone could go swimming in anonymity any time they were going to rock the boat, i might not be bothered to hop in the ocean, so to speak. at least now i frequently wade in the pool.
i appreciate this web community because i (perhaps blindly) trust in the fact that when people post they’re speaking their mind truthfully. when i peruse other web boards where one can post as a “guest,” i find myself less trustful of the sentiment and spending more mental energy trying to figure out who’s post i can trust rather than trying to learn more about the community in taiwan.
to me, honesty and candidness are the foundations of the community. i think that perhaps miltownkid would like more of the candidness; i agree wholeheartedly. i just don’t think that the “guest” option would increase that.
all that being said, if guesting or anonymity is still seen as a good option to have, i suggest an option where a poster’s alias could be made private for individual postings. therefore, if they wanted he/she name out there, he/she could do that; if he/she wanted to stay private, it’d show as “anonymous” on the boards…the mod’s would still be able to trace back to the actual poster, yet others in the community wouldn’t know who it was…just my thoughts