back to article Brits: We can stop trolling if we know where they live - poll

The Great British Public want an end to anonymous registration for social media accounts in the aftermath of high-profile online abuse cases, pollsters have claimed – and the older and more conservative they are, the more likely they are to want it. A YouGov survey found that 72 per cent of the British public want social media …

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  1. HereWeGoAgain

    The older...

    "the older and more conservative they are, the more likely they are to want it."

    And the less likely they are to use the internet full stop.

    1. Lobrau

      Re: The older...

      ..or indeed know what a troll is.

    2. Fibbles

      Re: The older...

      When surveyed, 73% of older Tory voters from the Home Counties demanded extra police patrols around 'cyber bridges' in order to crack down on 'international trolls'.

      When surveyed, 84% of 'the yoof' thought the suggestion that the police could hold people to account for their online actions was a 'top laugh' but also that the researcher should 'be real, innit'.

    3. LarsG
      Meh

      Wonderful

      Anyone using the web must also publish their full name, date of birth and address that must be verified by PDF copies of a bank statement, utility bill and passport all accessible to any user of the web.

      Not withstanding the only too obvious implications of this, imagine the rise in violent crime when any slighted moron appears on your doorstep demanding an apology after having been put in his place on the web for his moronic, idiotic opinion. Pretty much sums up the population of this country, get the idea?

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Happy

        LarsG

        " imagine the rise in violent crime when any slighted moron appears on your doorstep demanding an apology after having been put in his place on the web for his moronic, idiotic opinion."

        I saw that movie. It's called "Jay And Silent Bob Strike Back."

        But IRL it's kind of stupid.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Wonderful

        Don't be silly.

        You identify who you are when you sign up.

        Your identity is not disclosed to all and sundry. Your comments to the world an still be published under a pseudonym.

        But your identity is available to the relevant authorities if you're naughty boy or girl.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "the less likely they are to use the internet full stop."

      Is there an internet full stop?

      1. VinceH Silver badge

        Re: "the less likely they are to use the internet full stop."

        Yes, but it's a bugger to find amongst all the other full stops that are to be found on the internet.

        Searching for it on Google, I am told there are "About 453,000,000 results"* - and you can be sure that there will be more than one full stop on the overwhelming majority of those pages (unless any of them are written by certain people I know who don't bother with such niceties as punctuation), so finding the internet full stop is a tough challenge.

        * I honestly thought there would've been more - but they may have been filtered out on the grounds that they're pornographic full stops. Or seditious ones. Or trolls.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Pint

          Re: Yes, but it's a bugger to find

          I'm very much indebted to you for your research, which, patently, I had failed to do. And much more indebted for making me laugh!

          Have a beer, with a side dish of up-vote.

          Having stopped laughing now, I'm seriously worried: what happens if we stumble across the internet full stop by accident? It could be anywhere. It could even be here ---> .

      2. P. Lee Silver badge
        Headmaster

        Re: "the less likely they are to use the internet full stop."

        Yes, its located at the end of a DNS name.

      3. Scorchio!!

        Re: "the less likely they are to use the internet full stop."

        "Is there an internet full stop?"

        Yes, and it is especially for politicians who do not know any better. Here it is: http://www.turnofftheinternet.com/

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The older...

      What a load of <redacted>

      Not eveyone over the age of 30 is a Daily Fail/Sun/Mirror reader.

      Some of us have very open minds and don't suffer from dememtia. That is why I have never found a compelling need to sign up for Twatter/FaceBlock/etc.

      On the subject of using pesudonyms, I'm all for it. In the majority of forums I post, I do not use my real name but I am ok with using it when you sign up to a site.

      I guess I'd better shut up now, as I'm getting my bus pass next week and I'm obviously far too old to comment here.

    6. Anonymous C0ward

      Re: The older...

      Trolls? The toys with the funny coloured hair?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

    GCHQ need to be able to know who you are and where you live instantly otherwise it would normally take them 10 minutes to get the answer form the NSA.

    Also we all know just how secure webservers are with our our personal data right ?

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

      and in other news well known libel lawyers Carter-Ruck announced their intention to buy Surrey

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

        Damm right.

        That list of crap that's blocked that's blocked by Clare Perry pron filter has nothing to do with smut.

    2. JonP

      Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

      Yeah and once they've got everyone used to lack of anonymity online they'll suggest removing anonymity offline - get your er, Facecard and make it easy to sign up to social manipulationmedia and other services...

      1. Richard Jones 1
        FAIL

        Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

        Several posters have already commented that anonymity on the web is something of a red herring as it can and has been busted quite readily. However, can anyone please explain how being anonymous is a part of being sociable?

        We are not talking about a site where people complain about injustice, maltreatment or failures of people to do what the law says they should. If I complained that my hospital is more death camp than a place of healing, (which I am NOT) I might want to be anonymous; but in this case are talking about people allegedly being sociable, or in many cases being antisocial.

        Death generates strong emotions. Then emotions run ahead of the facts. In at last one case it has been reported that many of the so called 'anonymous posts' to an (anti)social site have been traced back to victim's own IP address. Being anonymous was 'oh so useful' in that case

        I may be the only one to say this, but I really hope that GCHQ are doing something a great deal more useful than chase the silly fluff that is the so called social network users.

        Maybe there is something useful in having a list of 10,000 'friends' that you never see, do not know and would not recognise if you bumped into them in the street, but is that really being sociable?

        The survey does no more than record the knee jerk reactions of those who have been manipulated by the 'news' organisations. Hopefully some more mature processes can be brought to the situation

        Do not forget those who sell news are interested in making the sale; sometimes as history tells us, they also make the news to sell the papers/mags/etc. Judging by the falling circulations interest is waning.

        1. Robert Helpmann?? Silver badge
          Childcatcher

          Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

          We are not talking about a site where people complain about injustice, maltreatment or failures of people to do what the law says they should.

          I think recent history would contradict you pretty thoroughly. Do a quick search for the role that social media sites have played in the Arab Spring. Explain why some countries such as [redacted] and [redacted] are very interested in monitoring and censoring these sites. These are just the sort of uses to which these fora get put.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

            I am amazed that twats r us has so many who think it is the best thing since doing something useful. I cannot be bothered to look up the details of the teenager's site. But if that is what caused the 'Arab Spring', no wonder it is now off the rails.

            I feel sorry for those who feel that 'profits for me' sorry facebook and its ilk are the pinnacle of social engagement. Someone somewhere get a life before we are all doomed.

          2. Arnold Lieberman
            Unhappy

            Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

            Ah yes, the Arab Spring. How is that going now?

        2. Suricou Raven

          Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

          Because being sociable includes complaining about the family member who can barely find the on-button and screams 'The Internet is broken!' every time a page takes more than five seconds to load.

          And such complaints depend upon the family member not finding them.

        3. Fink-Nottle
          Thumb Down

          Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

          > However, can anyone please explain how being anonymous is a part of being sociable?

          There's a world of difference between a sociable network and a social network.

          A sociable network is the online equivalent of a few mates who meet up in a pub and I agree that anonymity is not needed in this context.

          However, a network that is used by politicians to further their careers, used by employers to vet future employees and used by commercial interests to market their products may be social, but it is definitely not sociable.

        4. h3

          Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

          It is the equivalent of forcing people to wear name tag's if they go to pubs or nightclubs.

          It should be completely separate what people do at work and out of work using your real name is just crazy.

          What is more you have no control over what other people link to you.

          (Plus it makes identify theft a hell of a lot easier for thieves surely the Daily Mail reading element of society doesn't want to do that. Or maybe they do for another thing to complain about).

          1. Richard Jones 1
            Happy

            Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

            OK, I am convinced the antisocial sites are a waste of time and could be career limiting, though at close to 70 career is no concern. Why the heck stick your head in such a noose and invite everyone and his dog to kick your rear end?

            Never touched them, you have all convinced me that I never will.

            Thank you for helping me to avoid the mistake that is so called 'social networking'.

            1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge
              FAIL

              Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

              "Never touched them, you have all convinced me that I never will."

              In other words, "I don't know anything about it, but I sure as hell will have an opinion on it anyway."

              In thi situation, it is always best to base such an opinion on facts and first hand evidence, rather than shite spouted by politicians and the press. That way, you can avoid looking like a complete idiot. I believe the adage is, to paraphrase, "It is better to keep quiet and risk looking like a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt."

              1. PJI
                Thumb Down

                Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

                So, by your reasoning, just let your children stroll across the motorway because, as you've never tried it, you are hardly qualified to express an opinion on its advisability.

                Intelligent people learn from others' mistakes or just their own assessment. Fools have to try everything themselves until it is too late to realise this was not a good idea.

                Why are you on a "technical" site? I imagine you are in your garden shed inventing the internet as, after all, who are you to make any decisions based on information?

                No need to reinvent the wheel or try every drug on the grounds that, without the experience, you can not make a grown-up judgement.

                I know many, highly technical, able informatikers who avoid social sites, based on their knowledge, experience, that of others and simple, common sense.

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

                Seems to me he knows a lot more than you do.

        5. ecofeco Silver badge
          Paris Hilton

          Re: Anyone see a Trojan Horse here ?

          >sometimes as history tells us, they also make the news to sell the papers/mags/etc.

          Sometimes?

  3. Chris G Silver badge

    YouGov? Funny smell!

    Personally I find the name of the Company suspect and the fact that the current CEO and former CEO are both Conservative Party Members with politcal aspirations even more suspect.

    Add to that the fact that survey results are very massagable in many ways and I think you may find that suddenly one or two True Blues will start saying things like ' If that's what the people want then I will give a bill to that effect my full support in Parliament.Blah blah'

    1. Tom 35 Silver badge

      Re: YouGov? Funny smell!

      So Conservative Party trolls.

  4. Mtech25
    Trollface

    Troll trolls

    they see them here

    they seem them there

    the media cries foul

    and let the masses moan

    for a new target has been found

    in a bid to give parents a fright

    but are they doing what is right

    or trying to expand there media might?

  5. Graham Marsden
    Big Brother

    Right...

    .... and this is *really* going to stop someone from using fake registration details unless they're also going to require you to provide credit card details and a copy of your passport and a DNA sample and...

    ... oh, hang on, *NOW* I see where this is going...

    1. JediHomer

      Re: Right...

      The trouble is, this doesn't even guarantee access... Google+ has a real names policy, I signed up with my real name.. not long ago the account was suspended due to it's names policy. The appeal process required URLs to verify you known by your name and I even supplied a scan of government issued photo ID proving my name. The result, still failed. So now I have a Google+ account under a false name...

    2. jonathanb Silver badge

      Re: Right...

      Sign up and they send a password through the post? That would verify the address.

      1. David Pollard
        Joke

        Re: Right... send a password through the post?

        What is this 'post' of which you write?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Right...

        Google+ has a real names policy

        I have been using Google+/Gmail/etc since launch under an obviously not real name, never had any problems.

        Anon because I don't want that to change.

      3. Gav
        WTF?

        Re: Right...

        You mean you actually really sent Google a scan of one of your own, actual, real, identity documents?

        Wow. I would have told them where they could stick their Google+ long before doing that.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Right...

        And is your real name in fact "Jedi Homer"? If so, I can sort of see how Google may have jumped to a conclusion.

        1. Jedihomer Townend

          Re: Right...

          Yes it is.

          I can also see why it triggered filters. Which is why I was ready with documentation. The problem is that even with documentation they still refused it. So the only way to re-activate it was to change my name to something 'acceptable' which now means that anyone who knows me or interacts with me in real life will now find it harder to connect with me on Google+

          Although I suppose with my new Identity; I'm free to wonder Google+ trolling away ;)

      5. Annihilator
        Thumb Down

        Re: Right...

        "Sign up and they send a password through the post? That would verify the address."

        Who's going to pay to post mail all around the world? And FFS why?

        Consider two sites - one demanding full proof of where you live and your identity, one that doesn't. What do you think would be more popular? Consider if this site were a domestic abuse support site.

        1. jonathanb Silver badge

          Re: Right...

          Well of course. When websites ask for my address, I give them the address of the local rubbish dump, so they can send the junk mail directly to them rather than have me redirect it via the recycle bin outside. That's when I don't pick Afghanistan as it is the first country on the list. In any case, by the time the password arrived in the post, people will have forgotten why they wanted to visit the site.

        2. Jamie Jones Silver badge

          Re: Right...

          "Who's going to pay to post mail all around the world? And FFS why?"

          The old 'freenet' (the bbs thing, not the java based anonymous network) used to do that.

      6. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Right...

        Well, to be honest, JediHomer is a fairly unusual name. I suspect you were a hit at school, though.

        As for me, most people tend to look away as I waddle my way through life.

        1. Jediben
          Joke

          Re: Right...

          You tell 'em Homer. That said, we don't get it half as bad as cousin Jedibinladen...

          1. Jedibinladen
            Trollface

            Re: Right...

            funny enough I've had no trouble with google+

            I just linked them to my youtube channel, twitter, facebook, pinterest, instagram and of course ask.fm and prove to them that my parents have zero interest in my well being and are happy for me to do whatever I like on the internet so longs as it keeps my quiet.

  6. ToggleMaudlin

    The Great British Public

    ...has no bloody idea what it wants.

    Either way, it's seeming increasingly unlikely that any resolutions to the various tech-related issues being discussed in the media at the moment are going to be subject to informed decisions.

    Why is it that everyone seems obliged to have an opinion on things they know nothing about?

    1. Suricou Raven

      Re: The Great British Public

      That would be the Dunning–Kruger effect.

      People's self-impression of competence in a field and their actual competence are not well correlated. Those who possess some knowledge, but not much, tend to vastly overestimate their true ability. With further education they will be able to look back on their earlier selves and see just how arrogantly overconfident they were.

      But that only works if they get that further education. The typical self-confident internet commenter, believing themselves to be a perfect expert on social media policy, has no reason to study psychiatry or sociology or political theory. So they continue to babble their half-coherent ramblings, unable to understand why others laugh at them.

  7. DrXym Silver badge

    It wouldn't make any difference

    No social media website has the capability of verifying a person is real or not. They might ask for a mobile phone number or email address but that's about the extent of what they can do. And even if the UK were to implement some surefire way of verifying a real person, all the troll need do is Tor / VPN from some other place in the world where the sign up process is easier and roll an account from that.

    Also, just because trolls are "anonymous" doesn't seem to stop them from being arrested with seeming ease by the cops. This is because trolls, as a rule are idiots. They leave their IP address all over their messages making it relatively straightforward to find out who they are in real life and arrest them. Assuming they aren't encouraged to use Tor / VPN by draconian and ill-thought out government measures.

    There are plenty obvious downsides to such a system, since it will deter people who might use anonymity to report crimes, abuse, corruption etc. or to comment on controversial subjects without fear of harassment, or who simply like to their online persona to be separate from their real life persona.

    So I don't see any benefit of requiring people to use real names, or verifiable identities. It's just the latest in a series of dumb "campaigns" of late (another being ISP filtering) which suggest a government which has no clue and reaches for the unworkable solution rather than thinking of more practical but less headline catching measures that might work or reduce the problem.

    1. JohnG Silver badge

      Re: It wouldn't make any difference

      "They might ask for a mobile phone number ...."

      Authenticating users via a working mobile phone number may be a reasonable compromise. It doesn't necessarily give the website/social network companies concerned users' real identities but it is a good way to prevent trolls or spammers from opening multiple accounts (unless they are prepared to get a new SIM for each new user account). It might be easier for law enforcement to identify a user via a mobile number than an IP address though.

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