Are You Embarrassed about your name? A serious question?

44 replies
  • OFF TOPIC
  • |
I have an interesting question for some of you.
I won't name names but I find it a little bit odd when I get emails for quotes or for assistance and, even when asked, some people don't want to tell me their names.

Is it embarrassment or some other reason? I think it is just courtesy to share first names if you're communicating about possible work or help.
In fact, in one of my ads in Gumtree, I say that if people don't tell me their name, I won't help them.
That one is for resume writing.

Your thoughts and opinions on this??
#courtesy #names
  • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
    Nope! I love my name...it's very down to earth.

    I have no clue why a lot of people do the things they do, so I'm afraid I can't help you there except for maybe the quality of being anal?

    I understand people fearful and therefore protective of their privacy and some people operate under the guise of pseudonyms and want that protected, but other than that, I'm not sure.


    Terra
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732435].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Dan Riffle
    As long as they're paying you, what does it ultimately matter? I get the common courtesy angle, but it isn't so common anymore. Whether from Jane Smith or SmedlakTheMerciless4956842, the money spends the same.

    Besides, won't you find out their name when they pay you?

    Some services absolutely require personal information for legal reasons. Unless that's an issue for you, I'd chalk it up to privacy concerns and get back at it.
    Signature

    If you want me to go on arguing, you'll have to pay for another five minutes.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732439].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    Maybe I am being anal or simply being old school. I prefer to call somebody Laurence or Fred or Mary than hbqrs567.
    But I do appreciate the broad spectrum of answers as well.
    Signature

    Cheers, Laurence. Writer/Editor/Proofreader.
    Visit my site for more info

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732478].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Dan Riffle
      Originally Posted by laurencewins View Post

      Maybe I am being anal or simply being old school. I prefer to call somebody Laurence or Fred or Mary than hbqrs567.
      But I do appreciate the broad spectrum of answers as well.

      I absolutely get what you're saying, Laurence. And I think it just makes sense to be on a first name basis with your customers and vendors. However, for good reasons or bad, some folks prefer their privacy. I'm sure there are other reasons and I'm sure one of them is that they have a goofy name.

      I'd probably hide my name, too, if it were something like Zoltan Giggleshits or Richard Van.
      Signature

      If you want me to go on arguing, you'll have to pay for another five minutes.

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732502].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
        Originally Posted by Dan Riffle View Post

        I'd probably hide my name, too, if it were something like Zoltan Giggleshits or Richard Van.
        You're assuming that Zoltan Giggleshits and Richard Van are two separate people.
        Signature
        Why do garden gnomes smell so bad?
        So that blind people can hate them as well.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732527].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Richard Van
          Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

          You're assuming that Zoltan Giggleshits and Richard Van are two separate people.
          I'm surprised Dan hadn't realised. I did sign off a number of PM's with him as Mr Shits or 'Zolty', which he liked a lot. He used to tease me about it in a slightly odd way.

          Originally Posted by Alexa Smith View Post

          Fair point: now you mention it, I've never actually seen them in the same room at the same time.
          That's the kind of guy I am. It's all about psychology.

          I can walk out the room as Mr Van, come back in with a totally different personality and no one will notice I've turned into Mr Giggleshits.
          Signature

          Wibble, bark, my old man's a mushroom etc...

          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9751579].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
            Originally Posted by Richard Van View Post

            I can walk out the room as Mr Van, come back in with a totally different personality and no one will notice I've turned into Mr Giggleshits.
            Dan can leave a room as Mr. Riffle, and a few minutes late, come back as Ru Paul.
            Same personalty. Different wig.

            Added later; R-I-F-F-L-E . Sorry.
            Signature
            One Call Closing book https://www.amazon.com/One-Call-Clos...=1527788418&sr

            Terence Fletcher: "There are no two words in the English language more harmful than Good Job." Whiplash.
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9755062].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author positivenegative
              Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post


              Dan can leave a room as Mr. Rifle, and a few minutes late, come back as Ru Paul.

              Where's that f in Riffle gone?


              I always wanted to say that.
              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9755074].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author lanfear63
              Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

              Dan can leave a room as Mr. Rifle, and a few minutes late, come back as Ru Paul.
              Same personalty. Different wig.
              He would be The Ru-iner of everything.
              Signature

              Marriage, For The Best Arguments

              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9755154].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author Dan Riffle
              Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

              Dan can leave a room as Mr. Rifle, and a few minutes late, come back as Ru Paul.
              Same personalty. Different wig.
              And Claude can leave a room as Mr. Whitacre and not come back...and nobody would notice, other than the additional oxygen suddenly available in the room.
              Signature

              If you want me to go on arguing, you'll have to pay for another five minutes.

              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9755235].message }}
              • Profile picture of the author lanfear63
                Originally Posted by Dan Riffle View Post

                And Claude can leave a room as Mr. Whitacre and not come back...and nobody would notice, other than the additional oxygen suddenly available in the room.
                He's always had big breaths
                Signature

                Marriage, For The Best Arguments

                {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9755290].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Jack Gordon
    I would say it is the fear of giving up power/position to a potential vendor before the relationship begins. It is the same reason most people don't put contact info into a craigslist ad, keeping their identity anonymous until a relationship begins..

    It is much harder to negotiate effectively if the balance of power is so uneven. The client seeks to maintain that advantage as long as possible.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732504].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      Originally Posted by Jack Gordon View Post

      I would say it is the fear of giving up power/position to a potential vendor before the relationship begins. .
      I think you may be right.

      Most of us feel powerless. There are few ways to exert power in polite society. Not giving information is one way.

      And some people think that if they give you their first name, you'll end up living in their closet, and scaring them.

      By the way, "Claude" is a name that doesn't make for happy childhoods.
      Signature
      One Call Closing book https://www.amazon.com/One-Call-Clos...=1527788418&sr

      Terence Fletcher: "There are no two words in the English language more harmful than Good Job." Whiplash.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732546].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
        Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

        I think you may be right.

        Most of us feel powerless. There are few ways to exert power in polite society. Not giving information is one way.

        And some people think that if they give you their first name, you'll end up living in their closet, and scaring them.

        By the way, "Claude" is a name that doesn't make for happy childhoods.
        Yeah, I could have been Claude Wagenheim. OH heaven forbid.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732561].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
        Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post


        By the way, "Claude" is a name that doesn't make for happy childhoods.
        Claude Oscar Monet didn't feel that way. I mean he's not the artist that lobbed off an ear.

        Oh, and by the way, I'm glad you didn't either!


        Terra
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732610].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
          Originally Posted by MissTerraK View Post

          Claude Oscar Monet didn't feel that way. I mean he's not the artist that lobbed off an ear.

          Oh, and by the way, I'm glad you didn't either!


          Terra
          I was working at an event one day, and an acquaintance greeted me by saying "Claude Rains"...and I said "Yes, I do".
          Signature
          One Call Closing book https://www.amazon.com/One-Call-Clos...=1527788418&sr

          Terence Fletcher: "There are no two words in the English language more harmful than Good Job." Whiplash.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732630].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
            Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

            I was working at an event one day, and an acquaintance greeted me by saying "Claude Rains"...and I said "Yes, I do".
            Haha! That's funny, but I chose not to use him as an example of a famous Claude because he was nominated for 4 Oscars but never won one.

            Oh, there's your lottery numbers for today ~ 4411


            Terra
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732665].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    Craigslist is different when advertising. I am talking about when you make contact with somebody and are either getting a quote or asking for advice.
    I doubt Richard would worry about your comment Dan but I do agree that Zoltan might.
    Signature

    Cheers, Laurence. Writer/Editor/Proofreader.
    Visit my site for more info

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732513].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author socialentry
    You see, laurence, the internet has this tradition of using pseudonyms. Usually based on video games

    Like for example Darksniper45.
    i_luv_ganking_n00bs

    or notable figures:
    Spartacus24
    Robespierre_pwns_n00bs
    KimJungIl_4_the_win
    Monica_Lewinsky
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732535].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    Well, not having played video games myself, I don't see the attraction. I guess being a baby boomer, at almost the youngest of that group (yesterday actually), I haven't gotten into things that gen Y and gen X and whatever the newest gen is called do nowadays.
    Signature

    Cheers, Laurence. Writer/Editor/Proofreader.
    Visit my site for more info

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732540].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author garyv
    Some people work and shop online because they prefer the anonymity of it. If a person's name isn't paramount to the work you're doing, then there should be no reason to require it. Especially just for a quote. What difference would having a name make in your quote?
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732548].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    Gary, the name doesn't make a difference to the actual quote. My point is that if you take your business seriously, why be afraid of sharing your first name?
    I agree with Claude that if people don't give their first name, that isn't good and you may rethink the deal.

    I also think that a name helps develop trust which is needed from the beginning.
    Signature

    Cheers, Laurence. Writer/Editor/Proofreader.
    Visit my site for more info

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732553].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
    Banned
    Originally Posted by Dan Riffle View Post

    Whether from Jane Smith or SmedlakTheMerciless4956842, the money spends the same.
    Between you and me, you might be well advised to be a bit careful regarding the legitimacy (not to mention the exchangeability) of the currency in which that Smedlak pays his bills: they don't call him "merciless" just for fun, you know. My cousin Jane, on the other hand ... ...

    Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

    You're assuming that Zoltan Giggleshits and Richard Van are two separate people.
    Fair point: now you mention it, I've never actually seen them in the same room at the same time.

    Originally Posted by laurencewins View Post

    Your thoughts and opinions on this??
    Not sure, Laurence.

    I appreciate that with your services, most of your work is perhaps going to come from individuals, and they're going to pay you by PayPal anyway? But suppose someone (like me?) were using a pen-name for a niche site/business and paid you using a PayPal business account, without the individual's name showing in the transaction: you wouldn't necessarily know that it's a pen-name, I think?

    I suspect you're making this point with reference to "transactions in which payment is involved"?

    I use a different pen-name in each niche, but I use it throughout the niche: on the website; in the autoresponder; on the emails I send out to publishers/webmasters offering them an article to publish in exchange for a clickable link (admittedly, there's typically no money involved in that "deal", though), and so on. Nobody ever asks me if I'm using pen-name. I'm not sure how I'd react if they did. Probably I'd say something like "Well, if I were, and told you, it wouldn't be much of a pen-name any more, would it?".

    Originally Posted by laurencewins View Post

    I also think that a name helps develop trust which is needed from the beginning.
    I accept that, but it's just as easy to build trust in a pen-name as in one's real name? Part of the point of it being a pen-name is that people don't know it's a pen-name, surely?


    .
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732568].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author travlinguy
    People ask why I don't use my real name on the forum. Because it's Cecil Deadloaf. Not very appealing, wouldn't you agree?
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732862].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      Originally Posted by travlinguy View Post

      People ask why I don't use my real name on the forum. Because it's Cecil Deadloaf. Not very appealing, wouldn't you agree?
      If that were true, and it was my name, I'd use it all day long. Distinctive name are conversation starters. A funny name can immediately position you as the guy who can take a joke, and isn't a stuffed shirt.

      Some memorable real names;

      Les Smalley. A rep I used to buy from. I never joked about his name, but if it were mine, I would use it in marketing, and joke about it.

      Jason Killbreath. A customer of mine.

      Sally Hogshead. A speaker who sure knows how to get mileage out of her name.

      I used to rent from a Bob Miller. I met him years later, in a bar and remembered his name. He asked "How could you remember my name after all these years?"

      I said "I didn't remember. Your name is Bob Miller. We're in Amish country. I knew if I said "Bob Miller" I had a 40% chance of being right".

      I actually did remember him, but he thought that was funny.
      Signature
      One Call Closing book https://www.amazon.com/One-Call-Clos...=1527788418&sr

      Terence Fletcher: "There are no two words in the English language more harmful than Good Job." Whiplash.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732885].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Richard Van
      Originally Posted by travlinguy View Post

      People ask why I don't use my real name on the forum. Because it's Cecil Deadloaf. Not very appealing, wouldn't you agree?
      I don't know Cecil.

      Trav Linguy has always had me wondering where your original family were from.

      Certainly not Wales, or Honduras for that matter.
      Signature

      Wibble, bark, my old man's a mushroom etc...

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9751903].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Sumit Menon
        I love my name mostly because if I go to a foreign country, there is not a lot of ways one could pronounce it wrongly.

        Originally Posted by Richard Van View Post

        I don't know Cecil.

        Trav Linguy has always had me wondering where your original family were from.

        Certainly not Wales, or Honduras for that matter.
        In a lot of Indian languages.. Ling means dick.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9754621].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
          Originally Posted by Sumit Menon View Post

          I love my name mostly because if I go to a foreign country, there is not a lot of ways one could pronounce it wrongly.



          In a lot of Indian languages.. Ling means dick.
          Linguist takes on new meaning.
          Signature
          One Call Closing book https://www.amazon.com/One-Call-Clos...=1527788418&sr

          Terence Fletcher: "There are no two words in the English language more harmful than Good Job." Whiplash.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9754629].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author HeySal
    First off - my name doesn't embarrass me, but I don't like "Sally", so I just shorten it to "Sal" which is fine, still pretty much my name, and is extremely informal, just the way I like it.

    Second - I get what you are saying Laurence. Even if a person is using a pen name I'd think it's easier to speak with someone when you have something to actually call them. Most of us figure that the percentage of possibility that any name given to us online is not necessarily a real name, but it is less awkward talking to someone when you can call them something that signals that you recognize them as an individual.
    Signature

    Sal
    When the Roads and Paths end, learn to guide yourself through the wilderness
    Beyond the Path

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9732930].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author KimW
    When I was a child growing up I was.
    Kim was either two things, a girls name or an Asian name and I was neither.
    In 3rd grade they made me use my middle name because there was a girl in the class named Kim.
    Growing up your name is your identity. It can be traumatic being made to change your identity at a young age.
    Signature

    Read A Post.
    Subscribe to a Newsletter
    KimWinfrey.Com

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9751527].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    Sometimes when people ask my name and I say Laurence, they say "Warren" or "Lauren" or "what?" So I say Laurence as in Laurence of Arabia and I often get a smile or a laugh then. I have never known many Laurences over the years but my acting agent's name was Laurence.

    I also get people spelling it LaWrence when that is most often a surname, not a first name. But I do like my name.
    I know some people make up names online but at least having something to call them is better than "hey you."
    Signature

    Cheers, Laurence. Writer/Editor/Proofreader.
    Visit my site for more info

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9751531].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rick Rodd
    One thing that amuses me, (me and my scifi leanings again) what if in the year 2122 they have a census for "usernames", which is also would be your given birthname. Would you be comfortable named as example: Richard033210-A?

    The Ood had it worst, remember that. (A Dr. Who reference)
    Signature
    Please follow our Warrior Forum Rules and Regulations!
    WSO Marketplace Rules[/URL]

    Do You have any Questions, Comments or Suggestions?
    Warrior Forum KnowledgebaseWarrior Forum Help DeskSuggestions Forum
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9751584].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author BigFrank
      Banned
      True story. I have dealt with a guy for years and during that entire time he never once, even after my gently prodding, offered his name.

      OK. No problem. Who the hell am I to cast aspersions on the idiosyncrasies of another? lol

      Over the past six months he has been assisting me with a major project. He started reporting that his computer was dying a slow death and it was affecting his efforts on my behalf. I offered to buy him a new machine if he would just pick something out and send me the shipping info, which of course included his name. After a few weeks of declining the offer, circumstances forced him to relent. He sent me the personal info and I shipped him off a new machine.

      It's now months, later. I have yet, in any of our sometimes dozens of emails per day, ever referred to him by his name. The few times I have typed it it just seemed like something I shouldn't do. I erased it and went with his handle. lol

      I think it's just a way that people can maintain some sort of control in a world where nothing is private.

      That said, I maintain an online alter-ego and private email address for when I feel it's better to remain anonymous.

      Cheers. - Frank

      P.S. I HATED being named Francis. Only Uncle Sam and my mom, when she slips up, ever call me that, now.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9751641].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    I don't see any harm in using a pseudonym. BUT I find it weird to have to call someone dy56htr73845. Why not just say John or Fred or something?
    Signature

    Cheers, Laurence. Writer/Editor/Proofreader.
    Visit my site for more info

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9754915].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      Originally Posted by laurencewins View Post

      I don't see any harm in using a pseudonym. BUT I find it weird to have to call someone dy56htr73845. Why not just say John or Fred or something?
      Because the people in the black helicopters will know.
      Signature
      One Call Closing book https://www.amazon.com/One-Call-Clos...=1527788418&sr

      Terence Fletcher: "There are no two words in the English language more harmful than Good Job." Whiplash.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9754953].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author JTBivens
    I would not trust a single person that would not give me their name, contact information,

    At the end of the day. You have to think about your own image. Do you want to be associated with a person or company that seems shady. If people question your decision making, they will question your advice and content.

    I would have a strict policy about this. The other "party" will typically always have their best interest at heart, not yours. So just be careful. If in doubt, screenshot your interactions. Keep a well documented log of everything. You do not want o be at the end of a scam or joke.

    Hope all is well!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9755332].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Philip1008
    I feel that is embarrassing when some one called my name, I prefer being called with a nickname. Perhaps, those people who have such feeling may be shy or lack confidence,
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9766634].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author pjgahagan
    I HATE my real name. Plus nobody calls me it in real life ( so technically it's not my real name, right?) But you also want to build personal relationships with people. Nicknames are cool, pen names are a no-no.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9766714].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author SilentBase14
    Not at all. Any time its required for business I always give my full name and contact information.

    But I've only met 5 people in 20 years that have ever pronounced my last name correctly after an initial meeting. It doesn't bother me all that much. But it does get awkward at times.

    Over the years my friends gave me the nickname "Base" for my voice so I started using that as my pin name \ screen name.

    It just kinda stuck.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9766749].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author seasoned
    Well, for my FIRST name, everyone knows it. It at least WAS a pretty standard name in English speaking countries, and has close variants in several other countries. To the best of my knowledge, it has NO reference to anything bad or embarasing, so I am happy about it. My middle name is the same.

    My LAST name SHOULD be much the same BUT, as a kid, they mispronounced it tying it to a material that, if it didn't exist, a LOT of stuff would change for the worse. So NO PROBLEM! BUT, they tied that to something made out of it that, AGAIN, is not bad. So NO problem. But I guess the spirit and intent got to me as a taunt.

    It used to be that only my family, and people that knew them got it right. NOW, it seems like MANY get it right. I guess it helps that I have so much family in the midwest, and that some of my family owns various businesses.

    BTW without the first name at least, how do you personalize Emails? What if you have a billing problem?

    Steve
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[9766786].message }}

Trending Topics