The Value of Anonymity on the Internet
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As anonymity has both positive and negative effects at the same time, it is arguable whether or not anonymity is worth preserving. However, there are few studies that seek to clarify the effects of anonymity on the society as a whole by integrating individual behaviors and macroscopic models.We propose an opinion diffusion model that introduces a ‘conviction’ dimension to represent behaviors of an anonymous agent,and investigate the way anonymity can affect the society using simulation method. Results indicate that anonymity is more effective in a society with a higher similarity threshold. In addition, increasing anonymity resulted in increasing the time to reach consensus and increasing the number of agents in the biggest cluster.
Keywordsanonymity opinion dynamics agent-based model privacy Internet
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