MetaFilter users exposed Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams as an anonymous poster on the popular discussion board on Friday. Using the screen name Plannedchaos, the cartoonist had defended his work against critics on the site.
UPDATE: Adams has responded in a blog post that actually quotes our headline. An excerpt: “Did you see the reports of my scandalous behavior on the Internet? The headlines say ‘Scott Adams Caught Defending Himself Anonymously on Metafilter!’ … There’s no sheriff on the Internet. It’s like the Wild West. So for the past ten years or so I’ve handled things in the masked vigilante-style whenever the economic stakes are high and there’s a rumor that needs managing.”
On Friday morning he wrote: “I am Scott Adams” on MetaFilter and Gawker confirmed the story with MetaFilter’s founder. Later Adams followed up with this comment: “I’m sorry I peed in your cesspool. For what it’s worth, the smart people were on to me after the first post. That made it funnier.”
MetaFilter moderator Cortex responded to the revelation: “Scott, if you wanted to sign up for Metafilter to defend your writing, that would have been fine. If you wanted to sign up for Metafilter and be incognito as just another user, that’d be fine too. Doing both simultaneously isn’t; pretending to be a third party and high-fiving yourself by proxy is a pretty sketchy move and a serious violation of general community expectations about identity management around here.”