Dr Michelle Tempest has written an interesting post on bloggers and anonymity, or lack of. When I set up my blog I didn’t even consider the possibility of not being anonymous, maybe because one of the great attractions of the internet is the ability to hide who you are.
So why am I anonymous on here? I don’t need to hide because I express controversial opinions as I don’t think I do and the things I say on here are the same things I say in the real world. A good reason for anonymity is to preserve the anonymity of my colleagues and hospitals. Sometimes I talk about them and they might not want to be exposed on the internet; maybe worse, they might think I’m talking about them when I’m actually talking about somebody different. Anonymity for me and my colleagues is a solution to this. Either that or naming all names so there can be no misunderstanding but that’s hardly acceptable.
Another reason for being anonymous is that it’s a bit of fun. Sometimes I wonder if anybody I know in real life reads this blog (actually they probably don’t!) and has realised who I am, or if somewhere, somebody is erroneously suspecting one of their colleagues of being me. It ‘s also a play on the slight stigma attached to being a pathologist. Sometimes it’s easier not to be specific about what you do because of the comments you might get. It reminded me of the stereotype of the Alcoholics Anonymous meeting where new members stand up and say: ‘I’m K and I’m an alcoholic’ – being honest about what they were. That’s where the name of the blog came from, and it kind of follows on from the name to be anonymous as well.