Menu Close

From the Editors

Real names on The Conversation

Today we ran a story by David Glance about anonymity and real names online. This is an issue close to our heart – we’ve required real names from our commenters since we launched – and thought this would be a good time to talk to you about it.

We’ve long thought real names important to discussion: they add transparency to discussion. As such, we want to ensure people provide their names. We’ve started contacting users who don’t comply with our policy, asking them to update their profile information. We’ve locked the accounts of those who don’t.

Now we’re wondering where to go next.

Can we verify people’s identities? Or only let those who provide a certain amount of profile information – say, a profile picture or work history – post to the site?

More importantly, will it make a difference to the site?

We keep coming back to this topic here in the office. As it impacts your experience on The Conversation it’s important that we hear what you think.

Do ‘real names’ add to your experience here on The Conversation? Would people providing more information improve the community further?

Want to write?

Write an article and join a growing community of more than 135,100 academics and researchers from 4,188 institutions.

Register now