Friday, April 13, 2007

Anonymity

There has been a flurry of posts lately wondering why scriptwriters, who are trying to carve a niche for themselves, choose to remain anonymous and whether anonymity is self-defeating. Yesterday the blogger formerly known as Pillock became the latest to 'out' himself. Update: now back in again.

So is anonymity self defeating?

In Word's online thesaurus, the antonym for 'anonymous' is 'distinctive'. In the virtual world you can be distinctive and anonymous at the same time - which maybe sums up its appeal for certain writer-bloggers.

So no I don't think that being anonymous is self-defeating. I'm anonymous mainly because it suits me. I would never have started blogging in the first place under my real name or revealed any personal information at all. And its not that I've got anything to hide. I'm not a household name. There's no big secret. I don't have (many) axes to grind. When I set out it was never my intention to create a website to showcase myself and my wares or gain work (and I don't really know whether people actually gain any scriptwriting work through blogs but maybe some do.) In fact I'm not anonymous at all to most friends (who I've told about this blog.) I've told other bloggers who I am too (so if you email me and ask me nicely, I will tell you too).

I just prefer it. Anonymity is a protective cloak - like Little Red Riding Hood's - it fictionalises.


When I started not so long ago, blogging was a novelty, fun. I thought a blog would be a great way of storing interesting thoughts and images every now and again. A work in progress. Then it became more of an obsession with tweaking and clouds and add-ons. Then comments - spawning unlikely allegiances across continents and arbitrary dialogue with complete strangers on favourite topics.

Now it is a habit and I'm perfectly happy in my anonymity. I don't see why anyone should be bothered by it.

8 comments:

Lianne said...

I don't understand why other bloggers would be bothered by it either, Far Away. I started using my own name only because I was meeting up with people I 'knew' from the blog, and it felt strange to be introduced as Optimistic Reader. Also I get enquiries about reading work through the blog, and I found, reading between the lines of emails, that people were a bit awkward and uncertain because they didn't have a 'proper' name to address me as. I don't use my full name though because as a script reader, some level of anonymity is good - if companies looking to hire me as a reader decided to google me and found I had a blog about scriptwriting and reading they might not read all of it and just assume that I wasn't capable of discretion, which is a fairly important trait in a script reader!

Andy Phillips said...

I got tired of the old pseudonym. It started to feel silly. Other peoples' 'nyms don't bother me at all.

potdoll said...

I don't want ex lovers googling me and then telling people what i'm really like or what a crap shag i am.

Bill said...

oops that was me. old habits etc.

Far away said...

*titter*

Anonymous said...
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miss-cellany said...

Thanks for leaving a comment, would be great to get in touch via email, if you've the time/inclination to share your thoughts, not least because I'm fascinated to link up with a writer in South Africa.

More than that has been great to read your blog. I tumbled into blogging in a similar fashion, I'm not hiding and "Little Red Riding Hood" explains it all! :)

Had a funny moment in a pub recently when four bloggers met, who knew various combinations of names. Was slightly surreal to be introduced by blogger names, then real names; then we just got on with it and had a drink...

Far away said...

Good to make your acquaintance Miss C,

if you have a Q & A that would be good otherwise I'll have a think etc..