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On the Internet, Nobody Knows You’re a Dog . . . but it helps if they do!

By Brian | October 19, 2009 | Share on Facebook

A colleague of mine just informed me that he joined Twitter. After weeding out the obvious spammers who would follow him if he would just please click this one link, he seems to have settled in at around ten followers.

On a lark, he also created a Twitter account for his daschund, Logan. Again, after weeding out the obvious spammers, Logan seems to have settled in at approximately seventy followers. Mostly women, he says, as well as a random assortment of dog lovers, kennels, and other seemingly legitimate dog-related vendors.

So, it would appear, that in the sixteen years since Peter Steiner first pointed out in The New Yorker magazine the anonymity that the Internet can provide, this very anonymity has turned out to reduce your audience size by a factor of roughly seven-to-one. Not only that, but it’s a pretty good bet that sometime in the next sixteen years, sociologists and linguists will come together to discover that the previous sentence actually does makes sense…

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