Sat, 30 Apr 1994 14:17:30 -0500

To follow up on a message by James Carrier:

There exist some disadvantages and advantages of anonymity on the
email. The one which worries me most, however, is that deriving from
the lack of accountability. People who do not sign email messages,
I suspect, oftern feel that they may make derogatory comments about
others, because they know that tracing the messages back to its source
is very tedious and requires a real computer guru to manage successfully.
For the same reasons that I exhort reviewers to sign their reviews,
I exhort email posters to do the same. If you are not willing to have
your name associated with your posting, then it should not be said
in public (or in private for that matter). I have seen too many
reviews in which anonymous reviewers trash the article they are
reviewing, yet to those same people's faces they are salutory about
their "great science". This is simply dishonest. If the comment
is worth making (and valid, defensible, and just, and preferably
couched in positive terms even if extremely negative), then put
your real name to it.
Bonnie Blackwell