(Dis)connections in anonymous communication theory: exploring conceptualizations of anonymity in communication research

Craig R. Scott, Stephen A. Rains

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Anonymity has sparked the interests of scholars studying a broad and diverse range of communication phenomena. The collective body of research that has accumulated, however, remains fragmented and largely disconnected. We synthesize existing attempts to theorize anonymity, focusing on how it has been conceptualized within the field of communication. We consider the perspectives, dimensions, and tensions that mark conceptualizations of anonymous communication in empirical research. We then evaluate how different conceptual approaches to anonymous communication have enabled and constrained existing scholarship using research on anonymity in the subfields of journalism, health communication, and organizational communication as exemplars. We conclude by sketching paths forward for researchers studying anonymous communication.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)385-400
Number of pages16
JournalAnnals of the International Communication Association
Volume44
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2020

Keywords

  • Anonymity
  • anonymous
  • anonymous communication
  • theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of '(Dis)connections in anonymous communication theory: exploring conceptualizations of anonymity in communication research'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this