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Nikki Haley Disapproves of Anonymity on Social Media

Compiled/partly written by Melvin Durai Email Compiled/partly written by Melvin Durai
January 2024
Nikki Haley Disapproves of Anonymity on Social Media

Presidential candidate Nikki Haley made a proposal recently that would be welcomed by many on social media, but would also be as impractical as building a wall and getting Mexico to pay for it.

“Every person on social media should be verified, by their name,” Haley said on Fox News, adding that anonymous accounts were “a national security threat” and banning them would get “rid of the Russian bots, the Iranian bots and the Chinese bots.”

Two of her Republican opponents, Vivek Ramaswamy and Ron DeSantis, promptly dismissed her proposal as a form of censorship, with DeSantis pointing out that the Federalist Papers were written anonymously.

But anyone who has been on social media knows that anonymity is a double-edged sword. It allows many people to freely express themselves in positive ways, but it also provides a shield to trolls and others who traffic in hatred and misinformation.

Even so, Haley reacted to the criticism from her Republican opponents and others by softening her proposal. “I don’t mind anonymous American people having free speech; what I don’t like is anonymous Russians and Chinese and Iranians having free speech,” she said.

As Politico writer Jack Shafer noted, Haley’s proposal is just not feasible. Not only would it be impossible to verify everyone’s accounts, how would you give Americans anonymity, but not others?

“In order to prove that you’re an American worthy of anonymous speech under her regime, wouldn’t you have to … identify yourself, thereby losing your anonymity?” Shafer wrote.

More of ChaiTime here: 


Compiled and partly written by Indian humorist MELVIN DURAI, author of the novel Bala Takes the Plunge.

[Comments? Contributions? We would love to hear from you about Chai Time. If you have contributions, please email us at melvin@melvindurai.com. We welcome jokes, quotes, online clips, and more.]

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