Name Changeability

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Name Changeability

Postby Kinetic II » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:56 pm

One of the features that was recently disabled was the ability to change one's user name. As much of a pain as that was...is there a way short of creating a new account to get a name change?

I'm asking because I am considering a name change and I'm sure others would like the option from time to time.
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Postby technopatra » Wed Nov 05, 2003 4:51 pm

We made a conscious decision to disallow name changes based on user feedback. Name changes allow a great level of anonymity, and a user can feel less responsibility for the effects of their posts. Why should they care if they go around pissing everyone off when they know they can just change their name and not have to face those consequences?

I'm open to more discussion about this, but at this point I see no compelling reason to re-activate this funcitonality.
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Postby Kinetic II » Wed Nov 05, 2003 5:52 pm

I was curious if we could ask the admin to make a change every so often. I don't want to have the ability to change it 5x per day like some people did. But once in a while is good, right?

You know that this question is going to come up so I might as well ask.
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Postby III » Wed Nov 05, 2003 6:40 pm

>But once in a while is good, right?

???

from http://www.shirky.com/writings/group_enemy.html

If you want a good reputation system, just let me remember who you are. And if you do me a favor, I'll remember it. And I won't store it in the front of my brain, I'll store it here, in the back. I'll just get a good feeling next time I get email from you; I won't even remember why. And if you do me a disservice and I get email from you, my temples will start to throb, and I won't even remember why. If you give users a way of remembering one another, reputation will happen, and that requires nothing more than simple and somewhat persistent handles
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Postby Kinetic II » Wed Nov 05, 2003 7:28 pm

Trey, you raise a good point but now that the psychopathic bitch from hell...sorry the term fits, anyway now that she's in jail on meth charges for a long time, I'd kinda like my original name back. Everyone knows me as K anyway, and the 2 crap is like what's up with that. So I thought about asking. Anyway others might wonder about name changes and so I wanted to ask.

Again, a very good link there.
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Postby herself » Sat Nov 08, 2003 8:49 am

I like the idea of not permitting name changes. I used to cause mischief (or at least try) on the old board by playing w name switching. But it allows for too much ducking, as technopatra says. I say don't allow name changes. Extreme situations can be considered individually by Emily or whoever and if you really fucking need a clean start, make a new user.

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Postby Bob » Sat Nov 08, 2003 4:50 pm

I use my real name because it was customary on the first boards and ngs I frequented. In my experience this is generally the practice on forums in which there is an expectation of honesty and responsibility for one's words.

It's also the practice on some of these forums to accept occasional pranking by trolling under a hand-puppet identity, as long as no one is truly harmed.

WRT Burning Man, using an alias for event-related interactions has been customary for a large percentage of participants, for whatever reason. Most people I know who use aliases keep them in the long term, but my experience is mostly with staff who need to be known by unambiguous names, whether made-up or real.

I'm not sure how this translates to the eplaya -- I know of a few people who have kept two or three screen names going at the same time, with no harm to anyone. You could say that practice has been customary, and by itself should not constitute abuse of the board. Until registration requires verifiable real names for permission to use the board, I don't think a logical case can be made for either preventing users from logging on under any name under the sun, in the context of being able to set up free email accounts to access the board under a number of aliases.

In any case, citing the opinions of people who currently use fake names entered on whim to access the board does not, in my opinion, constitute a valid survey for setting Burning Man's board policy. Not by itself, anyway.
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Postby Badger » Sat Nov 08, 2003 5:12 pm

This brings up a few ideas and issues which bob states (and Harriet in another thread). The question is this: Who owns the words that I post on this board? The Well (a local long-time board) has the following statement as part of their user agreement. The Well has always championed and upheld this idea for several reason - one of which is noted below. As a member a while back I remember one person who'd been a part of the community for quite a number of years who one day systematically removed every post that he'd ever written. The board in a lot of ways was diminished because he'd contributed greatly during that time. And though people were annoyed/bummed/pissed/grateful that he'd done it no one objected to his right to do so. The words were, after all, his. What this brings up for me in a round about way entails a bigger question. To what extent can I expect that anything I say express or postulate in words won't at some future point, be commodified should this board become a fee-based venture?

You Own Your Own Words
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  One of the hallmarks of the WELL's particular style of interaction is the guiding principle that "you own your own words", commonly referred to as YOYOW. This is merely one element of a full community-forged Members Agreement, but it is often considered a cornerstone of WELL culture. In a nutshell, the most interesting implications of YOYOW are about taking responsibility:

This means that you are responsible for the words that you post on the WELL and that reproduction of those words without your permission in any medium outside of the WELL's conferencing system may be challenged by you, the author.
Since the WELL does not allow anonymous accounts, this YOYOW policy tends to lead to a high level of actual discourse -- a good "signal-to-noise" ratio, if you will.
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Postby technopatra » Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:04 pm

Badger wrote:This brings up a few ideas and issues which bob states (and Harriet in another thread). The question is this: Who owns the words that I post on this board? The Well (a local long-time board) has the following statement as part of their user agreement. The Well has always championed and upheld this idea for several reason - one of which is noted below.


We've been looking at the Well policy's as they very much invented this wheel. I am personally in favor of "your words=your property". This is the current policy for the only oncommunity-fed web offerings - the image gallery and the "Tales from the Playa". NOthing offical has been decided, but I fully expect that we maintain this as an across-the-board policy for community created content.

Badger wrote:As a member a while back I remember one person who'd been a part of the community for quite a number of years who one day systematically removed every post that he'd ever written. The board in a lot of ways was diminished because he'd contributed greatly during that time. And though people were annoyed/bummed/pissed/grateful that he'd done it no one objected to his right to do so. The words were, after all, his.


I remember reading about this in an article about the WELL ( or maybe it was Rheingold's "Virtual Communities"...can't remember off the top o' me noggin)., and got that same impression.


Badger wrote:What this brings up for me in a round about way entails a bigger question. To what extent can I expect that anything I say express or postulate in words won't at some future point, be commodified should this board become a fee-based venture?


There had been some discussion amongst myself and a couple of other web team folks about making some future community features fee-based, but most of us were uncomfortable with that idea. We didn't want to exclude anyone from participating if they didn't want, or couldn't afford, to pay. We also just plain didn't like the bait n switch tactic of making folks pay for an offering they already had. There's no way I'm going to be THAT asshole.

If, by some black magic, that did come to pass, I would imagine that it would be for features that didn't necessarily have creative content, but more for something like personals or job listings, where intellectual property issues wouldn't be prevalent.

btw I use my playa name because more people in the community know me as Technopatra. But I'm not hiding the fact that I am also Nicole.
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Postby Badger » Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:41 pm

Thanks much for the response.

I appreciate it.
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