4chan founder: Zuckerberg 'totally wrong' about anonymity

During a keynote speech today at SXSW, 4chan founder Chris Poole (or "moot" as he's known online) addressed two things: for one, he spoke about his currently upcoming new venture, Canvas; and secondly, he called out Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook, on privacy.

4chan is notoriously known for going against the grain during this digital age and keeping its users anonymous. In accordance with that, or not, it has become one of the most popular image boards on the Internet and is credited, or blamed, for countless of Internet memes — all of which are now part of pop culture.

Poole agreed that the reason for that is because "we value content over creator," according to The Telegraph. So it's no surprise that Poole doesn't exactly see eye to eye with Zuckerberg on privacy. In fact, in an interview for The Facebook Effect in 2009, Zuckerberg said that the idea of having different identities for yourself "is an example of lack of integrity."

Poole spoke back today: "Anonymity is authenticity; it allows you to share in a completely unfiltered way. It allows you to play in ways you might not if people knew who you are,” as reported by MSNBC. As for Zuckerberg correlating anonymity with cowardice, Poole said he was "totally wrong."

He continued that anonymity allows people to make mistakes and losing that is "a kind of loss of the innocence of youth." He said that if you ever make a mistake on the Internet, it's with you no matter where you go. However, on 4chan, if you make a mistake, it's forgotten an hour later and everyone just moves on.

Ironically enough, Poole closed by saying Canvas will use Facebook Connect, though your profile won't be shared with anyone else. As for what Canvas is, Poole stated that it isn't 4chan.

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18 Comments

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Anyone that's *Totally* authentic is either 1) Very rich, 2) an outcast, &/or 3) Very bland. :-)

We all have our different sides, or behaviors if you will -- you're not going to say the same things to your parents as you are when/if you're in a bar with friends... you probably don't want your boss knowing you laughed when a co-worker mocked him or her. It's not just survival but the essence of society that keeps us from smacking folks on the head from behind. ;-) with a baseball bat. ;?P

Off-line we try to watch what we do & say depending on who's around to see & hear us -- "what they don't know can't hurt them". Take that away on-line & you have 2 choices -- be nothing, say nothing, or offend. If you're rich you may get away with offending whomever you like -- Zuckerberg could really care less if I personally think he's a saint or a demon... if you're not rich you become outcast. And of course if you don't offend anybody, BORING.

They're both saying the same thing. Zuckerberg's advocating owning up to all your content, mistakes and all. Moot is advocating taking responsibility for none of it

Not really all that convinced by either augment. That said i find Zuckerberg assertion that not posting under my real identity shows "an example of lack of integrity" somewhat odd.

I post under other identity's since i cant see what value there would be in linking my professional profile to one i use to argue about the relative merits of bacon/narwhals/memes/etc o.0

The guy is just as biased to his point of view as Zuckerberg is to his own. The fact is, complete anonymity can be bad too. As we've found out. I'm sorry, but the guy hosts a freaking links board. He made it lucky out of a board filled with junk. Not exactly a pioneer. This doesn't mean Zuckerberg is either ... hell, he just copied what had been done before and made it tighter and slicker. Nothing amazing about either men. Nothing at all.

I agree with keeping anonymous keeps discussions more interesting, and undiluted - to many people worry about what others think and there conversations are altered on the back of that.

xXTOKERXx said,
I agree with keeping anonymous keeps discussions more interesting, and undiluted - to many people worry about what others think and there conversations are altered on the back of that.

That's also what's bad about anonymity - people do and say what they want without repercussions. It can bring out discussion sometime, and for others it can bring out the worst in them.

~Johnny said,

That's also what's bad about anonymity - people do and say what they want without repercussions. It can bring out discussion sometime, and for others it can bring out the worst in them.

Its the internet.

~Johnny said,

That's also what's bad about anonymity - people do and say what they want without repercussions. It can bring out discussion sometime, and for others it can bring out the worst in them.

So what?

Glassed Silver:ios

Glassed Silver said,

So what?

Glassed Silver:ios

Generally makes it more entertaining! and glassed what's with the signature on news posts?

xXTOKERXx said,
and glassed what's with the signature on news posts?

He/she has been doing that for as long as I can remember.

KavazovAngel said,

Its the internet.

I would disagree with you, it does not bring out the worst it brings out the truth in many cases. Some people enjoy just mixing it up. Look at what the Obama blogers did.