meanwhile Cronin attack bloggers “all anonymous”?

More on the Blaise Cronin/blogger back and forth. Apparently the story of Cronin’s lambasting from the blogger community has taken on legs of its own and is quoted in this Christian Science Monitor article about anonymity.

when Blaise Cronin, dean of the School of Library and Information Science, posted an essay lamenting the lack of civility among writers of personal Web logs (blogs).

“He was viciously attacked by people [from] all over the world – all anonymous,” says Center director Alice Robbin. “These people would never have made these awful remarks if they had to show their faces or give their real names.”

She says being anonymous provides an emotional rush that shapes the content of what someone says, as evidenced in responses to Mr. Cronin.

“They were so thrilled, and it was associated with antiauthority,” she says. “They were taking it out on a dean.”

so you call me crassly egotistical and then get huffy when I call you a fool?

It’s becoming a bit of a tired meme. Insult all bloggers using overgeneralizations and snarky language, closely track posts about your article in the blogosphere, report back, quoting nasty remarks and say this proves your point that all bloggers are just the way you said they are. I’m as worried about civil discourse as the next person — the lack of it on Council lists sometimes disturbs me — but I’ve also always thought that the best way to ensure that things stayed civil was not to call total strangers names in a public forum in the first place. Perhaps it’s just me. [thanks rikhei]