I find that experiencing social media anonymously serves as a guard that encourages users to be unguarded. There are no immediate consequences to what you say on the internet as far as expressions or physical gestures. Even with the digital consequences in the forms of opposing responses to shared words, it is still only the words that are seen.
Yes, there is a lot of hate in the world of social media, but what I am focusing on anonymity in a positive light. I personally find that I am more open and bold with what I share anonymously, because my words are not directly reflected on my identity. I can be experimental and strike a conversation, feeling out the social waters. When the internet blocks raw, human connection– the kind exchanged through eye contact and touch- there is a barrier that replaces our day-to-day social facades. We don’t feel the need to filter through what we say and how we say it out of fear of seeming unattractive in the least. Ideas can be shared for the sake of putting them out there and observing the responses.
I find that people are more open to discussion when they can’t picture a person whom to hold words accountable. I think this opens dialogue, despite the hate. There are conversations being had that may never had been started without digital mediums.