Using Real Names on the forum

overscan (PaulMM)

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I've decided to change my name displayed on the forum to my real name. Its no secret that "Overscan" is Paul Martell-Mead, and it feels more mature.


What do other people think about doing it as well?


I'm not thinking about making it mandatory at this stage, but Chris Gibson has mentioned before that having a user called "Skybolt" makes searching for the Skybolt missile difficult.


You could always use a real sounding name that isn't yours if you want to conceal your identity.
 
I have no problem with that. In fact it will spare me the trouble of asking people: "who exactly are you on the SPF forum?" when I chat with people on social networks... ;)

Only trouble is: I'd hate to have hundreds of results in Google when typing my name...
 
Everyone has always had the option to use their real name, and some members do. Those who choose an avatar probably have an excellent reason, although I can't remember what mine is.

If real names become mandatory, I'll have no problem with it, although I do miss "Overscan", which had a benevolent-master-of-the-universe ring to it.
 
Well that's definitely a consideration. If you google me you can find things I posted at University in 1993.

Its kind of important to let Google index the forum content in order to get users arriving here in search of the content, but that would then indeed include your real name.


"Overscan" was a video graphics term for extra video at the edge of a CRT TV that made sure there were no black edges (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overscan) and was used by a friend and I when we used to do computer graphics on Amiga computers at raves and nightclubs back in the 1990s.
 
Stargazer2006 said:
Only trouble is: I'd hate to have hundreds of results in Google when typing my name...

That's an important reason for me, that still yet I don't use my real name on fora, but just a short form
of my forenames and surname. When googling my name, I'll already get hundreds of results, but it isn't
me, but a German politician, and if the media are right, it's a typical example of that breed... Really
don't want to be mistaken for him !
 
Sure - but in that case you could just a shortened version e.g. "PaulM" without revealing your surname.
 
my family name is too long for that.
in Internet early day, i used my real name only to got several mails by Forum Moderators and administrators.
With demand: shorten your name PLEASE !


so it became Michel Van...
 
I've used my initials (Sean O'Connor) on pretty much every forum that will take a three-letter screen name. Doesn't bother me if people figure out who I am. I don't mind the idea of using initials or names for forum screen names either (obviously), I've always thought that being willing to use some variation of your real name makes you seem a bit more credible.
 
Aye, well, um...the problem I had using the search engine was with user names that were the same as hardware/projects. Mind you I do have some very odd searches.

The only benefit I can see in pseudonyms is that posters can write cobblers and be controversial with impunity, but that's just my view.

Chris
 
Michel Van said:
With demand: shorten your name PLEASE !

I'm thinking of shortening mine to ".". Hard to get shorter than a single pixel.

Of course, with systems being so much more capable these days, I think going the other way with usernames might work, too. How about Johann Gambolputty de von Ausfern-schplenden-schlitter-crasscrenbon-fried-digger-dingle-dangle-dongle-dungle-burstein-von- nacker-thrasher- apple-banger-horowitz-ticolensic-grander-knotty-spelltinkle-grandlich-grumblemeyer- spelterwasser-kurstlich-himbleeisen-bahnwagen-gutenabend-bitte-ein-nürnburger-bratwustle-gerspurten-mitz-weimache-luber-hundsfut-gumberaber-shönedanker-kalbsfleisch-mittler-aucher von Hautkopft of Ulm?
 
Orionblamblam said:
Of course, with systems being so much more capable these days, I think going the other way with usernames might work, too. How about Johann Gambolputty de von Ausfern-schplenden-schlitter-crasscrenbon-fried-digger-dingle-dangle-dongle-dungle-burstein-von- nacker-thrasher- apple-banger-horowitz-ticolensic-grander-knotty-spelltinkle-grandlich-grumblemeyer- spelterwasser-kurstlich-himbleeisen-bahnwagen-gutenabend-bitte-ein-nürnburger-bratwustle-gerspurten-mitz-weimache-luber-hundsfut-gumberaber-shönedanker-kalbsfleisch-mittler-aucher von Hautkopft of Ulm?
And I thought "Orionblamblam" was already quite long for an avatar name ;) . And just for the record: "bratwustle" is not a part of Mr. Hautkopft of Ulm's name - it's "bratwürstel"! How could you forget the name of that great composer?! ;D

Anyway, back to topic. There are valid reasons for and against real names. I use my real name here (technically at least - not that I post a lot these days ;) ), and a nickname on other forums. But I think I'd be a bit irritated if real names were mandatory (or even "strongly suggested") on a forum.
 
Andreas Parsch said:
There are valid reasons for and against real names.

Indeed.

In a forum like this, I don't think there's an overwhelming reason for mandating real names. Now, if someone tries to calim from authority that they know something, and don;t provide data to back it up, then their actual identity would be valuable. But nobody needs to know that "OBB" is actually "SL" to appreciate - or not - comments and scans and such. I have no doubt that there are Serious Authors and Researchers who value the ability to look in and ask questions with a level of anonymity.
 
I think for those who might not want their employers/governments/BFFs to know they were involved here, which might enable participation for some folks who would be unable to do so otherwise, a level of anonymity is useful. For the great unwashed like myself, I have no problem using my full name. My username is just my first name and my last initial anyway (Allegrezza, for the record).
 
I actually use Sundog because that's how I'm registered damn near everywhere on the internet. Well, actually, Sundog_DD. When I first became active online I became a part of an online WW2 fighter squadron, the Devil Dogs, hence the DD. Everyone online knows memore by that name than my real name, Ken. However, I have no problem adding my name to my description under my screen name. I think there's a space to add a message there, where I could put my real name, anyway.
 
For a lot of users their virtual name is something like trademark with all the consequences related to it. Thus its hard to change it. Its obvious that I don't have problem to use my real name :)
 
I agree - it really came from setting up a Facebook page - its hard sometimes to figure who people are on the forum.


I'm not going to make any existing users change their name - but I have considered putting some rules on new user registrations. Not least, this would make it very easy to identify automated bot signups as they are unlikely to read the terms of the forum :)


If anyone wants to change their display name - see below. It doesn't change your logon name.
 

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How about this?

On my forum, users have to option of having both a public screen name, plus their real name. For security, the real name can only be viewed on their profile, and only registered users can see profiles.

Is is possible with this forum's software to have this kind of setup?
 

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Who is this PaulMM running around here, thinking he is the boss?
Wait until Overscan hears about this! :mad:
:p
You could use firstname'avatar' lastname as a possible solution.
Something like Paul 'Overscan' MM.

Just my two cents :)

Rob
 
I started using UK 75 on this and similar sites because it reflected my starting point "RAF order of battle in 1975 with TSR 2 etc" and "The Boeing SST in service in the 70s as originally planned". However, on some sites where the subject matter is just straightforward discussion of new aircraft models I did use my own name-ralph morton.
I will carry on using UK 75 for the time being as most of you know what to expect (or avoid for those I bore or annoy too much) from my pet subjects.
 
For me, whilst starviking was initially a tribute to a game I was, and am heavily into, it has also become a useful way to maintain a presence on many fora, without the worry that my opinions will leak out to employers, society etc. A bit paranoid perhaps - but it's my security blanket.
 
I am taking this opportunity to use my real name as opposed to using my young son's toy dog (fudge) as my identity on this forum.

I am not a very frequent contributor to this site but can often be found lurking near to TSR2, P1154 and P1216 posts.

Alan
 
I prefer to be semi-anonymous after years of having an employer that might, uh, grumble at my 'fringe hobbies'. They considered me odd enough as it was, and HR was prone to over-reacting aka 'getting in a royal snit'. At first, I even had to submit my letters to electronics magazines for prior approval. Fortunately, HR would promptly route same back to the engineers, to whose department I was effectively attached...


Also, I wrote an off-beat on-line novel about plausible vampires, and didn't care to put my entire name to it...


Since then, the habit has stuck.
 
I find this discussion quite a revelation, with very valid arguments either way. I imagine that most of the more senior members know each other's true identity, anyway (?) There are times - more often than not - when I wonder if I might recognise the person by their real name as the author of numerous books that I have purchased with much pleasure & a greedy lack of self-control.
I must admit, I do also wonder sometimes who is behind the occasional unkind retort or unpleasant argument, but I usually get on line after the dust has settled and I wouldn't know the pugilists anyway.
I automatically used my usual pseudonym because the site - like most - leads one in the that direction, if I recall correctly. I rather like 'foiling' because it has an air of mystery about it, making me seem more important & knowledgable than I really am. And, it is an anagram of my name: N F Giloi; but you can call me Neville.
 
I've generally avoided using my real name, but also been clear about who I am - largely because, as Matej indicates, a username is basically a "brand" - I've had RP1 as a nickname since the age of 11!


Paul; I never twigged that that was the source of "overscan". For some reason I thought it was from the phenomenon with airborne weather radars... The line "I when we used to do computer graphics on Amiga computers at raves and nightclubs back in the 1990s."


implies an interesting backstory...


RP1
 
I agree with the 'brand' concept, if I used my real name it says nothing, my id and avatar, on this and other aviation forums, is more imformative. Its easy enough to work out who I am if you really felt the need to know, or you could just ask. However if the policy were to use real names I would not object,

SM
 
If you mean it and are willing to defend your position, sign it!

David
 
Back when I first got online in the early 90s my first ISP used the first letter of the first name and the last name. I've pretty much used the same everywhere since then.
 
I have no problem putting my real name on the profile page for example. But would like to keep my user name, as i've been using it for years everywere...

But there are some countries were talking openly about military aviation subjects online, even if historical, or even showing interest in mil aviation, can cause their citizens a lot of trouble. There are things that in the west we wouldn't even think could cause trouble talking about publicly. For citizens of some countries , having their full name displayed is not the best idea to be safe.
 

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