One of the nice things I like about Citizendium is learning the identities and backgrounds of the people with whom I’m collaborating with during the course of developing an article. Because all of our authors have registered with their real names, and have provided a short biography of themselves, I never have the feeling that I’m working with strangers wearing masks, hiding their identities for reasons unknown. They are real people. Soon you get to know them as colleagues with their particular talents and passions.
I find it difficult to imagine how I could develop a sense of community, of common goals, with a group of anonymous entities. Yes, ‘entities’, machines, say, ghosts of some kind.
Collaborative writing inevitably takes on a social aspect, warming the project, a little family, usually happy, and if not, always uniquely so. What a lonely cyberworld it would otherwise be.