Members of Alcoholics Anonymous make a point of carrying the message about their own recovery in A.A. on a person-to-person basis — but never disclose the membership of others. In this way, they may serve as examples of recovery and thus stimulate active alcoholics to seek help.
In the public media, however — such as TV, radio, films, press and the Internet — A.A. Traditions urge members to maintain strict anonymity, for three reasons;
- We have learned from our own experience that the active alcoholic will shun any source of help which might reveal his or her identity.
- Past events indicate that those alcoholics who seek public recognition as A.A. members may drink again.
- Public attention and publicity for individual members of A.A. would invite self-serving competition and conflict over differing personal views.
Anonymity in public media guards the unity of A.A. members and preserves the attraction of the program for the millions who still need help.