Category Archives: Identity

Quick Link – Protecting your identity online

Hat tip to BeSpacific for the link to this article posted at PC World by Rosemark Haworth entitled “A Guide to Protecting Your Identity Online.

Among the tips include:
– Letting people within your networks search your profile in Facebook may not be such a good idea.
– Know who your friends are, and know if they truly are friends of your friends before you make them your new friend.

Cyberlaw Central Commentary
These are good tips and may make people more careful when online. For example, people on Twitter commonly post details about where they are *now*, which may not be the house or other areas you may not want the masses to know are unwatched. Certainly something to think about as we become so interconnected and online. Apple’s new version of .mac is entitled “Mobile Me” for a reason – it’s a tool for people to use and stay synchronized across devices as their lives go increasingly “into the cloud.” We just need to be careful and consciously choose what we make public as we use these networked tools.

Niro posts reward for blogger identity

Raymond Niro, principal of Chicago firm Niro Scavone Haller & Niro, has posted a $10,000.00 reward for the identity of the anonymous patent blogger, “Troll Tracker.” For a discussion of the issues, here’s a link to the ABA Journal article on the subject. Full disclosure – the “Kevin A. Thompson” who posted in the comments is not me.

For the record, while I support anonymous speech, harmful speech cannot be supported. Until the “Troll Tracker” reaches that level, he or she is entitled to keep posting. And, until then, Mr. Niro’s reward is one of the few options he has to determine who the anonymous blogger is. But, when he or she does reach that level of harmful speech, then Mr. Niro may have more legal options to compel the disclosure of the identity. I just hope that the reward doesn’t have an unfortunate consequence – the “Troll Tracker” points out that his site is being hacked, which is itself a crime.

That comment from another “Kevin A. Thompson” is what made me want to write about this topic – I thought long and hard about how I was going to prove it wasn’t me. That’s the nature of identity on the internet – it’s hard to prove one way or the other. Essentially, we’re all judged by what we post or link or otherwise comment upon. While there can be an appeal to the ABA Journal’s records for some indicia of who made the post, there’s no link to wherever the poster claims as his own site. It’s just a name, posted online, in comments on a freely available site. And, it’s not me. For the record.