Study: Why anonymity makes players cheat, but can still be good thing
J Thoendell stashed this in Video Games
If accurate, that means those seeking to solve issues of online misbehavior should stop focusing on anonymity and instead work to get those groups to rethink what is and isn't appropriate behavior.
"In the long run, establishing healthy norms, cultures and attitudes in the gaming community will help prevent deviant behavior," Chen told Polygon in an email interview. "Just as this particular study showed, social norms under anonymous conditions will enhance cheating in games.
"To get rid of anonymous gaming obviously is a big challenge and may or may not combat cheating. Therefore, to establish a social norm where the online groups no longer view cheating as the thing to do may reduce the likelihood of cheating."
Not only does Chen believe that anonymity isn't a contributing factor to behavior like cheating, she believes that requiring real names in games and online could have a detrimental effect on those communities.
Anonymity on Reddit leads to both wonderful things (sharing of information) and terrible things (bullying).
So it is with gaming -- wonderful things (teamwork without prejudice) and terrible things (cheating).