Doxing is the public release of personally identifiable information, and may be used as a tool for activism by removing the anonymity of individuals whose actions or stated beliefs harm others or undermine social cohesion. In this chapter I describe how doxing that deanomynises proponents of hate speech is a form of audience vigilantism. I argue that it is a defensible means of combating hate speech if it has the purpose of beginning a process of deradicalizing the identified individuals through reintegrative shaming. Such doxing must be motivated by a legitimate social need (in that they can be justified using premises and evidence acceptable to all in society), and must remain within socially tolerable bounds (in that it does not lead to physical harm, it is not indiscriminate, and is in response to injustices that are in principle recognisable to those who are not affected by it). I refer to several instances of doxing relating to proponents of hate speech to illustrate my argument and to demonstrate the importance of the legitimate social need and socially tolerable bounds criteria.

This chapter appears in the book Introducing Vigilant Audiences, edited by Daniel Trottier, Rashid Gabdulhakov, and Qian Huang, and published by Open Book Publishers in 2020. The Open Access PDF of the book is available from the publisher’s website: Introducing Vigilant Audiences - Open Book Publishers.