Question about Pen Name

6 replies
If we using Pen name, is that considered as cheating? is it unethical to do that?
#pen #question
  • Profile picture of the author BumMarketingT
    What exactly do you mean?
    I think not.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kevin Marshall
    Absolutely not! I always use Pen Names. Many authors throughout history have used pen names. There is nothing wrong with using pen names.
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  • Profile picture of the author PSM
    Paul Myers spoke about it recently, can't find the link and must be over 3 weeks ago as it is not in my history.

    Lots of people use them but just watch you are not trying to deceive people with them. If you pretend to be a woman to persuade women to buy something off you... when they wouldn't buy if you were a guy recommending it... or you use a pen name and a made up life story to persuade people to buy...

    Think about what the FTC would say if you were sat in a meeting and told them what you were doing...

    I only ever use my life stories and experiences, but with different pen names, and only other genders for articles, never on my money pages.

    I am sure others would disagree, but better safe than sorry right - at least I don't have to keep looking over my shoulder this way
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    • Profile picture of the author bizideas
      Hello Paul Becky,

      People use pen names for all sorts of reasons.

      Here's a few ethical usages:
      1. The writer absolutely hates their natural born or married name but is a great writer nonetheless so needs an alternate.
      2. Privacy concerns. There's plenty of people, thieves, nutcases, and governments alike, that want to get in your business. Some people don't want an open door policy into their personal life.
      3. You've got a cool alter ego that reaches out to people...and that other person inside has an equally cool name.
      4. You've established a reputation and a pen that sticks and has a definite connection to a specific audience...ie "Sonia Verb".
      and a few unethical ones:
      1. Steve is a pretty common name. So is the last name Jobs. Now if you're a writer in the automotive or employment industry okay fine..but in the computer industry or high end mobile phone industry? You'd be better to re-think using Steve Jobs as your alternate.
      2. Using someone else's alternate to ruin their reputation.
      3. Using someone else's alternate for monetary gain or notoriety.

      I could brainstorm a few more but that's my POV.

      Eric
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  • Profile picture of the author abelacts
    I think it's okay to use pen names as long as you don't use them with ulterior motives (or cheating) but for privacy. Many singers and authors use pen names.
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Becky
    That's pretty nice POV Eric.

    Thanks guys for great opinions.
    I get all your points.

    Paul
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