Something I've noticed on HP over the last few years. Certain people (like myself) use their own names to be identified as hubbers. Some use some cloak and dagger terrorist/CIA codename as their hubhandle. I sometimes feel kind of strange making myself so recognizable and identifiable in a room full of anonymous spies and covert authors. If you're like me and use your given name as your hubname, do you feel exposed at all. And if you use some codename to provide yourself and others with anonymity, what is your motivation for such?
Not that I'm ashamed of anything I post on HubPages or other revenue sharing sites, but I really don't want real life association. I have my own reasons for that, so I use screen names that are kind of close to my real name, but vague enough to obscure my identity.
The nice thing about using a cloak and dagger terrorist/CIA codename (lol) is that I can always change my mind about anonymity here and include my real name in my profile. It's nice to have options, you know?
If you use your real name as you username, well, you're kind of stuck with that forever since the urls are on subdomains that correspond to our usernames. So if you ever decide that you don't want your real name associated with your hubs anymore, there's not much you can do about it.
Writer have used pseudonyms for years, it's been accepted practice and no one saw anything suspicious or underhand about it. So what's changed?
Marisa Wright is not my real name. I, too, am not ashamed of anything I post online, but I'm also very conscious of issues like identity theft and invasion of privacy, so I prefer to keep my online life and my offline life separate.
Having been on the web since 1993, I use pen names as a precaution and wince at those who are using their full names.
There are many sound reasons for using pen names:
-- Stalkers, predators and past abusers can't track you quite as easily.
-- Employers, exes, banks, health insurance companies, and lawyers looking up dirt on you to use against you in a messy civil suit can't dig up things you wrote 20 years ago and turn them against you.
-- Search engines and commercial enterprises can't gather personal information about you quite as easily.
-- I differentiate between my professional and private life. My friends are my friends. My hobbies are my hobbies. Each of those social circles should know different things about me, rather than all knowing everything about me. The internet tears down all barriers between people, barriers that used to protect us and differentiate social interactions between peers, colleagues, and intimate friends. Using online handles is a way to reestablish those levels of friendship. My close friends and my friends in various social circles know my pen names, and can see everything I talk about, but others are not privvy to personal information that's not their business. The act of writing should not strip me of all rights to decide who knows what about me, and how much of my life I share with strangers.
People are very, very naive about the amount of information strangers can piece together about you through your name posted online. In countries with oppressive regimes, this is actually dangerous, but even in a free country, you can be denied health coverage if an insurer looks you up and finds you wrote about migraines. There are documented examples of things like that already making the news every day.
And most of all:
I am a writer. I prefer to be judged on the content of what I write. The writing speaks for itself.
It's fair to want your privacy online. And there are plenty of people that can make life difficult for you if they know your real name, no question. But I think it's fair to point out that there are probably several million writers online that use their real names. For a multitude of different reasons, including that some of them are published authors, they like their work associated with their real names.
I dont want the warden of the prison I am currently residing in to find out I am not using my laptop for rehabilitation purposes
If you want to presume that I'm a cloak-and-dagger terrorist/CIA operative, that's your prerogative. Since I happen to live nowhere near Westford Drive, I'm pretty sure you're in no danger from me.
I have a Hub that includes the story (and pronunciation) of my screen name so I don't have to rewrite the story multiple times per year whenever someone posts a thread like this in the forums.
I wish I'd chosen Zoltar the Magnificent, but it's too late now
That would make an amazing name. But you'll have to live up to its title
I tend to make code names, I can spend hours deciding on a nickname/code name.
I used the name of my business, it was just a natural progression. I really didn't think about it too much but it has worked for me. My name is Marie for anyone that's interested.
A lot of great replies folks. Thanks for the feedback and definitely some justifiable reasons. I guess I have so many deliberate guards up in real life that I dont think to put them up here.
David here. Just didn't sound terribly 'mystic'. DD is just temporary, anyways.
I'm really bad with coming up with aliases, etc, plus I just like my own name well enough that I have no problem using my first name. I might have used a different username if I'd joined this site originally with the intent to stay, but I didn't think I would end up staying when I joined, so I picked my first name and added an 11 on because that was the year I graduated high school.
My motivation for using a "cloak and dagger terrorist/CIA codename" as you call it, as well as not using a real pic of myself, is self-protection. Going on the internet, and HubPages is no exception, makes one accessible to all kinds of people, not all of whom have the best intentions. Just because someone says they are for real, doesn't make it so. You never know what is real or not out here. I don't even use my real name in the real world, nobody ever pronounces it correctly.
I use my real name but have just changed where the spaces are...
I use my real name because I'm used to it. I started as a reporter in the 70s, and since then, I have always taken responsibility for my work. I do freelance work, and I don't care to send my 2 clips under a pen name. For all the reasons listed here about taking a pen name, it's not me. But I can understand why people do it. It's not that I'm putting them down. If you really want to know, I used to work as a prison guard, and in the business, people were always scared to be tracked down. The thing is, anyone can find you for $14.99 through online sites or the grapevine. And, I've been tracked by an inmate who has been locked down forever. Yes, it happens. My only pen name that I could live with is WhoopWhoopWhoop. But I've never made the transition. I can picture an editor going over my work and watching her eyes roll to the back of her head. Yeah, WhoopWhoopWhoop and her manuscript made in to the nearest circular file.
Maybe I'm naive too, but it seems there is more to online security than the name you use.
In my professional life it was nescessary to draw a firm line between business and personal info. I guess I feel that writing online is no different.
I understand, your POV, Michael, and I would not call you naive. Pen name/real name is all about a writer's choice. I'm retired, and since my writing has always been a part of me and earned me some money over the years, I will always be working for my byline. Call it a pride thing or an ego thing or a dinosaur thing. I like taking credit (good or bad) for my writing, and when I'm receiving/leaving comments or taking part in a Forum, I do like being addressed by my real name. I did not grow up with Facebook, fancy tech gadgets or have someone scrutinizing my personal life. Maybe I'm way too trusting for some people, but if I had a job right now, I would probably lean towards a pen name. That is, if it was so important for me to hold onto a particular job that may not involve writing. But that byline has been more important to me than chasing the pennies online. I can't explain it because I come from another writing era. It just is.
Klara Wieck (Clara Wieck) was the most famous pianist during the 19th century. She married Robert Schumann and became most famous as Clara Schumann. I use her name because I'm a pianist and she's an inspiration to me. But I would love to use my real name, except I teach public school and could get in trouble for speaking my mind openly. Posting my real pic is as far as I go.
well sorta the same idea....and it's almost friday......that kitten is too cute KL!
that is what i look like when i am heading to dinner )
How are you, Kimberly. How's the writing thing going?
Hey really good thank you just came to blow off steam thanks for asking, what's new with you?
Not much. How's the photography gig? Last I looked, you seemed pretty pro. (Yes, I'm diverting your question).
You see, I'd like you to tell us that your last publishing went so well that you don't need us anymore. If you need us, we'd be there.
I love avoidance! Is like a superpower when done well. The books made more money in my first week than a year on Hubs. However I was never here for the money. It's hard I am finding as I work on this novel, no feedback it's nice to come back here and chat like I do now in a longwinded way. I feel like a drinker with a writing problem. Question 2-how is it going on hubs?
That's good news. Forget the feedback, let it stew, sleep, wake up, fix, move on.
I love hubs, but I'm in the transitional period of morphing from a great author into someone from Mad Men. I'll update soon. Love you much, sister.
My motivation for not providing my name and photos of myself is simply an online security tactic. However, I conduct myself with respect and do not say or do things that I could not say to others face to face. I agree with Greekgeek wholeheartedly.
The reason I use my real name online came about when I was pensioned off from MI2407365. My handler said to me, "Pseudonym van Dopelganger, the only name you have never used in your professional career is your real one. Use that from this point onwards."
And here I find myself...
It wouldn't be hard to find me. If you do find me, bring your cooking or gardening equipment, and I'll put you to work.
I use a combination of my real name, and a pseudonym. I won't put out my full name on anything that can be accessed by anyone, but my first name isn't enough to find me by. In some places I use a complete pseudonym, though. It depends on my comfort level.
Vicodin! Might as well work on the left hip joint, too.
I debated about using my real name vs. pen name when I started the account. I chose the pen name, because I'm a cautious girl. The, about two months after I began publishing hubs, I wrote a hub that caused some hackles to rise on some very OCD necks. I had to actually cut off further comments, and to block some senders from my email. I'll never use a real name online for my writing again - the lake has too many predators, just under the surface! And, yes, I do pull my blinds at night. Like I said, I'm a cautious girl.
by Elisabeth Ellis 8 years ago
Actually it is my name, but now I'm hoping that song is stuck in your head. Uh... HP's changed my name on my profile page. Kinda weird. Im not sure how it happened or why, but the name on my account is "Sed-me" and in that little fill-in-the-blank-real-name-spot, I had my real name which...
by Barry Rutherford 13 years ago
I know I there area number of hubbers who use their real names if you are one of them post here !
by Amelia Griggs 8 years ago
Hello fellow hubbers, I have 2 questions:1. I have decided to reveal my "real" name here on Hubpages, but I haven't found the setting yet which allows me to put my name, like some hubbers have done, on their profile page, next to their pen name. For example, fellow hubber billybuc has his...
by pjdscott 14 years ago
I'm always interested in online identify (real or perceived) and have been reviewing the names or tags of various hubbers. Top of my list for the most useful name is:Mark KnowlesYou may provide suggestions, except you may not suggest yourself/your own name. I also believe Inspirepub and SunSeven...
by Jane Simmons 13 years ago
Okay .. I have another question I just received an email from someone through HP (not sure if the person is a hubber or not) asking for my real name because the person said he/she was gonna use my hub for a report for class. Should I be suspicious of this? Would you give the...
by Neha Sadana 10 years ago
Why some writers don't use their real name for online writing? Is there anything wrong in sharing our real name with others?
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