Dear Readers, Followers, Family, and Friends,

Thank you for writing this. It was once the case that almost no one wrote under their own name hence confusion on many ancient sources. We really don’t know who wrote them but only the name to which they were attributed. I think I can understand you feelings on this but it made me realize that I couldn’t do it. In the old days online we all had ‘handles’ due to the limitations of IP naming. When that went away, back in the old days, and privacy/information security was an obscure topic that was only talked about at technical workshops, I realized that it was already too late. Privacy and anonymity was laid to rest about 1996 never to be seen again in the digital and virtual world. So I decided that for me the best approach was to accept and deal with it as part of my life. Assume that anyone with any interest at all will be able to know whatever they want to know about you and our corporate overlords will, whatever they claim, mine and sell that data however they wish. And so it came to be.

In the virtual age we are all transparent to the world, it’s rulers, and technical elites. I happen to have spent the first twenty years of the web working in that world for what that is worth. The irony is that the only people who will respect your privacy and your anonymity are the ones who will hold that respect no matter what. That includes a lot of us here on Medium but not all, obviously.

If this is to make you free and able to write more openly that is beautiful and we will all be the beneficiaries. I would not be honest if I didn’t present the reality. For any of us with a minimum of technical skill the complete book of our lives is online. We seem to want transparency and we have it at the cost of being transparent.

So good luck . . . but remember privacy is no longer something that we can give ourselves, but can only receive, with appreciation, from others.

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