I think that this post from Bruce Schneier is a an excellent example of why we have to think different in our group about identity and identifying people.
This is a extremely difficult issue. There’s a tendency in our system to lock people out of processes, to distrust folksonomies and to wrap up the amazing wealth of knowledge that exists at the ends of our system into bureacracy and hiearchy. I would never want identity to lead to that.
But the very last thing we need is for “Victoria” to make its way into publishing and reviewing content without some verification other than an email address or im handle. Flustering college basketball players is one thing – influencing community information is another. That should be easy to stop – but it’s going to absolutely take involvement on the part of our system faculty/staff/agents and for us to build the tools that make that simple and easy.
(easy is of course a loaded term with some system users that struggle with setting up email – but that’s another article 😉 )