[linux-elitists] Your name could be CENSORED

kmself@ix.netcom.com kmself@ix.netcom.com
Mon Sep 18 19:34:46 PDT 2000

On Mon, Sep 18, 2000 at 03:29:08PM -0700, Aaron Lehmann (aaronl@vitelus.com) wrote:
> Hmmm
> For a school assignment today I had to post an essay in HTML format to
> a bit of webspace that my school provides me with. Since it was an
> AbiWord file, all I had to do was ssh into my home computer and export
> the document to HTML. I posted the file.
> My teacher requested that I change the "Lehmann" in the document to an
> "l.". He said it was a rule. After he refused to understand that this
> rule was stupid when I told him that my name is mentioned on literally
> hundreds of HTML files around the web, I grudgingly removed the
> "ehmann" and put a note at the bottom stating that my name had been
> censored but could still be obtained by looking up my Contact handle
> with network solutions, and provided a link for doing so.
> The teacher still wasn't happy. I finally put my full name in an HTML
> comment. That shut him up :).
> This is definately an angle of censorship I have never experienced
> before: forced anotimity. Any thoughts?

This sounds like secondary (high) school, not college?

First problem is having a publicly accessible website on which they want
to preserve student anonymity.  Their technology and goals are at odds.

I have to somewhat agree with the school's intent, however.  It's a big
world out there, and small leaks can have large consequences.  In one
case, I found an aquaintance whose first name I remembered, but not
last, by knowing two colleges she'd attended.  It was pretty easy to
weed out the duplicate email entries at each school and identify her
(now distinctive) first and last name.  A couple more directories and I
had a home address.  In this case, a bit of friendly snooping, but it
could easily have been otherwise.

I have my own identifying data -- name, photo, and other information --
slathered across literally tens of thousands of web pages myself.  As an
adult, it's something I believe I'm better equipped to handle than a
child of 10 or even an immortal 16 year old.  Yes, it scares me
sometimes too.

Karsten M. Self <kmself@ix.netcom.com>     http://www.netcom.com/~kmself
 Evangelist, Opensales, Inc.                    http://www.opensales.org
  What part of "Gestalt" don't you understand?   Debian GNU/Linux rocks!
   http://gestalt-system.sourceforge.net/    K5: http://www.kuro5hin.org
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