THE EFFECTS OF ANONYMITY ON JOB PERFORMANCE IN ONLINE INFORMATION CONSULTING
 
Zhao, X. Y., Giessen University, Germany
 
Anonymity, as well as its positive and negative impacts on individual and group dynamics, has been studied intensively in many different contexts. However, what is anonymity? It seems that no one has ever tried to define it. In this article, the researcher gave an exploring definition as following: Anonymity should be viewed as a kind of perception that is related with both specific context and a belief about whether oneself can be perceived by other people. On Internet, the degree of anonymity is maybe one of the most crucial factors that influence people's mind and behavior. In this paper, the researcher examined how anonymity would influence people's job performance in online information consulting. 38 consultants and 331 ordinary internet users attended a correlation study and a quasi- experiment study respectively. In both studies, job performance was found to be highly negative correlated with the degree of anonymity. As a master thesis, this paper combined the two sides of knowledge on Internet and Psychology together: one is the Internet as a new object how to affects people's mind and behavior, another is the Internet as a new tool how to influence psychological methodology. Especially, the second part of this paper should be viewed as the first few psychological experiment based on Internet.