Ask Reddit To Ban Fully Anonymous Signups To Help Thwart Cyberbullying On The Platform

Ask Reddit To Ban Fully Anonymous Signups To Help Thwart Cyberbullying On The Platform

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Daniel Rosehill started this petition to Reddit and

Reddit is a valuable online social community but has also unfortunately become a festering hive of online hate, abuse, and cyberbullying with countless hate subreddits on the network remaining completely unchecked.

As one of the most popular social media networks on the internet — with more than 300 million monthly active users — it is also a major online community. There is thus a compelling public policy interest in ensuring that the community protects its members from abuse and operates mechanisms for holding online bullies to account.

If Reddit fails to do this — as is currently the case — then efforts to stymie cyberbullying through national or local legislation will ultimately prove futile, at least as they relate to abuse perpetrated through this platform.

Requiring that Redditors verify their real identity during the signup process would be a simple but massively powerful deterrent to online abuse that would also create badly missing accountability among the user community. 

At a minimum, enforcing such a simple step could drastically reduce the number of actors who sign up for the platform with the intention of spreading hatred and harassing other users. 

A Potential Mechanism For Reducing Reddit Cyberbullying

Signups could be required to provide Reddit with government issued ID which could — perhaps — by verified with AI rather than humans. Those submitting fake documentation would likely be violating their countries' laws, creating a deterrent for bad actors. 

Redditors could choose to remain anonymous to other community members. For the rule-abiding minority, no effort would ever be undertaken to ascertain their real identity. For those that are found to have egregiously flouted the rules — in cases of online bullying and harassment — an internal investigation could be opened which would ascertain their identity allowing them to potentially face real-world repercussions for their online actions.

This simple measure could save countless future targets of cyberbullying and online abuse which can have serious consequences for mental health. 

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