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  • For young people, anonymity isn't a finite state - it's a flexible, temporary screen
  • For young people, anonymity isn't a finite state - it's a flexible, temporary screen
    Jhaymesisviphotography, Creative Commons (2011) ©
CASE STUDY

Backchat: experimenting with anonymity

Younger generations see anonymity as something that can be surrendered for benefits. Messaging app Backchat initially hides your identity, slowly revealing it as you interact with others.

Location United States

Scope
While Edward Snowden’s revelations have left Gen X frantically feeding document after document into the office shredder, younger generations continue to happily trade their information for products and discounts – 51% of Millennials will give up their data if they get something in return. [1] But as the desire for complete online anonymity moves into the mainstream, why do younger generations treat anonymity as something that is not constant, but that can be surrendered in return for benefits?

Backchat is an ‘anonymous’ messaging app, although it’s not entirely anonymous – the app relies on an existing ...

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