oda: monochromatic field of blue-violet (Default)
[personal profile] oda
On the topic of government workers, here are the guidelines for IRS workers taking on pseudonyms. They do have to get permission and prove expectation of harm, but I suspect that is not an uncommon expectation for an IRS case worker, and they can use past history of threats or violence.

When I worked at an ISP we had a more informal policy for this; we simply used our first names, or if we felt we were at particular risk, or if two people had the same first name, chose a unique first name. We also each had a numbered email account for work only. This kept us accountable for what we said and did, but protected us from a customer base that did indeed often threaten us with physical harm, among other things. That and the locked garage were both a relief, given the kind of vitriol we used to get on a regular basis. Most of the threats weren't credible, but it was still rather disturbing.

Internal Revenue Manual - 10.5.7 Use of Pseudonyms by IRS Employees

(Crossposted to https://plus.google.com/u/1/102376799902430080799/posts/7psEX2nBpUE and https://joindiaspora.com/posts/391588)

Date: 2011-08-19 01:40 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] space_dinosaur_blue
Just another reminder that pseudonyms and screened deployment of identity are very common.

Really, the majority of the people who support a policy like Facebook and Google's on names appear to merely be naive. They've no idea that anyone ever uses a name outside what's on their birth certificate in what they consider real life - outside of maybe some person in the witness protection program they heard about once.

I've also noticed in the Internet-wide discussion over this, that every single person I've seen, so far, who says "good! Save us from those scummy anonymous people, everyone should have their real name and photo online!" have been men.

Now, I'm sure there's got to be a self-righteous and naive comment from a woman *somewhere*. But so far, I literally have not seen one.

July 2012

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