Well … it is hard to do anonymous blogging nowadays. There are many things that will reveal a blogger’s identity. For example, writing your own name in the blog will reveal your identity! Just kidding.
A common one is, writing your real name during an email communication. I did that a few times — I wrote my name in some emails that I sent to a few fellow bloggers. I am not worried about that because bloggers have their codes. I know that my fellow bloggers will not reveal my name.
Not that I am a famous person hiding under the shade of Settle in El Paso; it is that I do not want my boss to know I blog during office times. Yes, I am so efficient that I can blog during my office hours, plus I can manage my six figure income job. I could say seven figures but you won’t believe me. Humor has to be close to reality. Not that I am joking here…
Actually, I was kidding in the last paragraph. As I said earlier, I am seriously introvert. This is the main reason why I prefer anonymous blogging. Sometimes we prefer anonymous blogging and at the same time we use a self-hosted blog. Do you know that a domain itself, when purchased but not protected, may reveal our identity?
The whois command
In linux command-line (on a linux or mac terminal or Cygwin with Windows command line), if you type
and hit the enter key, you will see a lot of text among which you will get the registrant of the website hillaryclinton.com. The registrant information is provided below for that website.
Domain Name: HILLARYCLINTON.COM ……………………… Registrant Name: Hillary for America Registrant Organization: Hillary for America Registrant Street: PO BOX 5256 Registrant City: NEW YORK Registrant State/Province: NY Registrant Postal Code: 10185-5256 Registrant Country: US Registrant Phone: +1.16468541122 Registrant Phone Ext: Registrant Fax: Registrant Fax Ext: Registrant Email: email@example.com
Notice that the organization Hillary for America is the registrant of the website hillaryclinton.com.
On the same terminal, if you type
whois settleinelpaso.com and hit the enter key, you will find the registrant information of our website.
Domain Name: SETTLEINELPASO.COM ……………………… Registrant Name: Domain Admin, C/O ID#10760 Registrant Organization: Privacy Protection Service INC d/b/a PrivacyProtect.org Registrant Street: PO Box 16 Registrant City: Nobby Beach Registrant State/Province: Queensland Registrant Postal Code: QLD 4218 Registrant Country: AU Registrant Phone: +45.36946676 Registrant Phone Ext: Registrant Fax: Registrant Fax Ext: Registrant Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
That is, Privacy Protection Service INC is shown instead of us as the registrant. If we did not protect our privacy, our name and contact information that we used to purchase our domain would become visible here. Of course, we have to use a valid name or organization name to purchase a domain and there is an option to protect our privacy.
A website to find who is who
There is a website https://www.whois.com/whois/ where you can simply type a domain name, for example, settleinelpaso.com, or hillaryclinton.com, or barackobama.com and you will be able to see the name of the registrant of that websites. You can check if your domain is protected using https://www.whois.com/whois/. Your name or your organization’s name and the contact information that you used during domain purchase will be displayed here if you did not include a privacy protection plan.
How to protect your privacy for anonymous blogging
This is the burning question of this post. If you purchase a “Domain Privacy” along with the domain name, then your name will be replaced by the company name that will protect your privacy. For example, our website’s registrant organization is Privacy Protection Service INC. If you plan on anonymous blogging and use a self-hosted site with a domain name you prefer, it is essential to purchase a domain privacy plan. Cost of domain privacy plans may vary from $10 to $20 per year. Ours is just $10 per year.
Settle in El Paso team