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Meeting Guide. Regional Forums Information. P - Understanding Anonymity. What is the purpose of anonymity in Alcoholics Anonymous? Why is it often referred to as the greatest single protection the Fellowship has to assure its continued existence and growth?


If we look at the history of A. When using digital media, A. When we post, text, or blog, we should assume that we are publishing at the public level. When we break our anonymity in these forums, we may inadvertently break the anonymity of others.


From its earliest days, A. Because its founders and first members were recovering alcoholics themselves, they knew from their own experience how ashamed most alcoholics are about their drinking, how fearful they are of public exposure. The social stigma of alcoholism was great, and those early A. Over the years, anonymity has proved one of the greatest gifts that A. Without it, many would never attend their first meeting. Although the stigma has lessened to some degree, most newcomers still find admission of their alcoholism so painful that it is possible only in a protected environment.

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Anonymity is essential for this atmosphere of trust and openness. As valuable as privacy is to new members, it is noteworthy that most of them are eager to share the good news of their A. Such a disclosure, however, is always their own choice: A. After its first few years of success, the Fellowship attracted much favorable attention in the press. Articles praising A. With each new article, the ranks of A. As public awareness concerning alcoholism increased, the stigma decreased, and soon some A. One of the first to do so was a famous ballplayer whose comeback was so spectacular that newspapers lavished attention on his successful struggle against alcohol.

Believing that he could help A. Even the founders of A. Then other members decided to break their anonymity in the media — some motivated by good will, others by personal gain. Some members devised schemes to tie in their A. It did not take long for those at A. And they saw that if one person was made an exception, other exceptions would inevitably follow. To assure the unity, effectiveness, and welfare of A. It was the guardian of all that A. More recently, the arrival of new forms of electronic communication such as social networking offers fresh vehicles to carry the A.

Modern communication flows in ways that Aa seeking aa friends high-tech, relatively open ended and evolving quickly. Protecting anonymity, is a major concern for A. In stressing the equality of all A. Back inBill W. Subtly but powerfully, it reminds us that we are always to place principles before personalities; that we have renounced personal glorification in public; that our movement not only preaches but actually practices a true humility.

Some of the most frequently asked questions about both personal anonymity and anonymity at the public level include:. After I tell my loved ones about my A. This is entirely a personal matter, but it is usually best for all concerned to let the A. What should I do if I meet old acquaintances at A. You need not ask them to protect your anonymity; they are there for the same, or similar, reasons. They will generally respect your privacy and you, in turn, should respect theirs. What should I tell my loved ones about protecting the anonymity of the A.

Explain Aa seeking aa friends anonymity is extremely important to A. Each A. Accordingly, it is hoped that family members and other friends of A. This includes not disclosing to others the fact that a person is an A. In addition, let loved ones know that when an A. What if I see public figures at a meeting?

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Like everyone else, public figures should have the protection of anonymity to the extent that they desire it. I know that I should not reveal the names of members that I hear in A. It is understood by A. For example, if friends outside the program are acquainted with some of your A. Should I tell people who seem to have a drinking problem about my A. This is a personal matter. However, the spirit of the program is one of sharing and a recent study of A. Before reaching a decision about such matters, most members find it helpful to discuss them with sponsors or A.

Should I reveal my anonymity to my boss so that I can attend early A. Asking for special favors because of A. I maintain an Internet Web site and a personal on a social media site.

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I also belong to an online meeting. At what level should I protect my anonymity on the Internet? Publicly accessible aspects of the Internet such as Web sites featuring text, graphics, audio and video can be considered the same as publishing or broadcasting.

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Unless password-protected, a Web site requires the same safeguards that we use at the level of press, radio and film. Simply put, this means that A. Should I be concerned about the anonymity of others who view my sites? When we use digital media, we are responsible for our own anonymity and that of others. For more information on anonymity online see the A. Guideline on the Internet at www.

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What if I appear as an A. Is this considered an anonymity break? Yes, if full-face photographs and other easily identifiable photos of A. Why does A. Those Traditions developed out of the experience of the early members. At first, they too felt that well-known A. But it soon became apparent that, if one anonymity breaker stepped forward, others would follow; and if members were to strive for public acclaim and power, the spiritual unity so essential to the work of helping fellow alcoholics would soon be lost.

What about making or posting video recordings of talks and meetings? Are these considered to be anonymity breaks, since people are seen full-face and clearly identify themselves as A. Realizing that anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, it is recommended that talks by A.

As per General Service Conference resolution.

Aa seeking aa friends

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