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to think name change doesn't really make a difference?

(36 Posts)
Somethingfantastic89 Sun 03-Dec-17 15:23:14

I keep seeing people saying they've name changed for a thread etc. but surely the story they tell is outing anyway?
Or is there something I'm missing?

PringlesSmoothie Sun 03-Dec-17 15:25:32

It's so they can't all be linked. Like I might recognise julie from work has posted about her neighbours cat.

But I can't then name search her and teas about her bum warts, infertile worries, cheating husband and debt.

(Poor Julie!)

RJnomore1 Sun 03-Dec-17 15:26:09

Yep you're missing something.

You mighty read and think "oh that's Sarah" but you can't search and find sarahs other threads about her six days of constipation /how she hates her sil/her dh likes wearing her tights to work.

fricative Sun 03-Dec-17 15:26:56

You can't put details together.

On one thread (username) I'll give my job title and experience, on another I'll use DH job, children's ages etc, on another any hobbies, on another geographical knowledge in reply to 'what to do on holiday in xxx'.

Of course we're all one more MN-hack away from being outed but it makes it more difficult for amateur advanced searchers.

PringlesSmoothie Sun 03-Dec-17 15:27:25

Julie and Sarah have unfortunate lives grin

bananasaregood Sun 03-Dec-17 15:30:12

Yes, exactly. I can’t really be arsed to try to keep my identity secret or whatever (I’ve probably posted enough that people could find my real name from googling, if for some reason they desperately wanted to). I don’t really care. But I do name change when I post really personal stuff because if someone did know my RL identity I don’t want the two linked.

Apileofballyhoo Sun 03-Dec-17 15:30:39

I wonder if Sarah is accepting of her DH's cross dressing, or whether he just finds the office cold and wears tights at her suggestion?

Somethingfantastic89 Sun 03-Dec-17 15:32:52

but you can't search and find sarahs other threads
Oh I didn't know I could do that in the first place, but if that's possible then yeah, name change could help.

Somethingfantastic89 Sun 03-Dec-17 15:34:12

I should've name changed for this thread to hide that I'm a computer/internet dummy grin

ThisLittleKitty Sun 03-Dec-17 15:34:37

I was wondering the same. So glad this thread was posted as it makes sense now.

Somethingfantastic89 Sun 03-Dec-17 15:41:29

Thanks for replies flowers

sirfredfredgeorge Sun 03-Dec-17 15:44:06

Of course we're all one more MN-hack away from being outed but it makes it more difficult for amateur advanced searchers

If you write a lot, and have a fair bit of text under the name change, there's a good chance that it wouldn't even take a hack, it would be a very interesting privacy test on mumsnet.

People are of course developing the software:
www.researchgate.net/publication/310807961_Application_of_Stylometry_to_DarkWeb_Forum_User_Identification

Of course a mumsnet hack would be worse as it would reveal emails and other stuff which has a more direct link.

thecakefairy Sun 03-Dec-17 15:44:56

Professional footballers wear tights, so Sarah shouldn't really worry!
Julie, on the other hand, has got some serious issues to work through! shock

cathyclown Sun 03-Dec-17 15:45:06

The fact that people actually search a username and connect things up is something that disturbs me. Why would anyone do that? Stalking comes to mind.

I have never done this. I take posts as I find them. And I hope others will do the same for me too.

But because it CAN be done, I suppose it makes sense to NC wrt to very personal stuff, or potentially outing information.

SaucyJack Sun 03-Dec-17 15:46:00

Did you find a fingerling for your nephew in the end OP? wink

Apileofballyhoo Sun 03-Dec-17 15:47:41

I suppose Julie is lucky in one way that she hasn't had DC with a cheat.

Mummyoflittledragon Sun 03-Dec-17 16:01:59

cathy
I search sometimes if a thread sounds suspicious. Also when I recognise the poster and want to remember details as they are follow ones. Or if other posters recognise the op and start talking about previous threads. Searching previous threads isn’t necessarily for nefarious reasons.

Mummyoflittledragon Sun 03-Dec-17 16:02:37

Follow ons

Codlet Sun 03-Dec-17 16:03:03

Cathy, if you thought you recognised a very specific situation, would you not feel a little bit curious to know whether you were right and you knew the person posting? And if so, wouldn’t you feel a little bit tempted to check their other posts to see if it really was the person you were thinking of? I wouldn’t call this stalking but natural human curiosity.

JuliesBumWarts Sun 03-Dec-17 16:06:10

I think it is very unfair that you are talking about my posteriorial protuberances

cathyclown Sun 03-Dec-17 16:07:47

OK already, I am retracting the "stalker" reference now!

Each to their own. I enjoy it here and love all the different views, but I am not that invested to do a search.

If it turns out that a post is mad or bad or whatever, so be it. I am sure I have made some right mad posts in my time too!

DancesWithOtters Sun 03-Dec-17 16:11:50

There are a couple of MN posters I always recognise despite NC.

The Christian woman who's husband believes in domestic discipline and was horrible to his gay son who came from America to live with them as a teenager.

And the poster who's husband is NC with her alcoholic crazy parents who ripped him off and yet she's always asking for advice about how to deal with him them and won't go NC. She gets the exact same advice on every thread, never listens to it, and then posts again a few weeks later wanting different responses.

Iprefercoffeetotea Sun 03-Dec-17 16:18:52

I change my name on a regular basis, but I suspect my posts could be linked fairly easily if someone was that interested.

I did an incognito* google search on a couple of characteristics I've mentioned on MN last week and came up as the 9th hit, so I suspect I could be found quite easily, even if I wasn't specifically recognised by anyone on here.

*apparently Google tailors searches to your interests, so I thought I should search as if I wasn't me.

bananasaregood Sun 03-Dec-17 17:23:14

Sometimes people post so much and so floridly about their lives, you remember them. And sometimes things don't pass the smell test. If someone says something and you're certain it contradicts something they've said before (like if someone starts a thread complaining about how their mother treats their sisters better than them, when they've previously had multiple threads talking about their mother's death and how they're an only child) it makes sense to have a look back to double check that the person is lying, rather than relying on what could be faulty memory. Unfortunately there are trolls and people who enjoy living a fictional existence on MN, and an awareness it's all just role-playing helps prevent emotional involvement.

Otoh sometimes there's a background that's useful to help the poster. If someone starts a thread complaining about a relatively minor marital issue, but they've previously posted that their husband is abusive, it'll change the answer.

MongerTruffle Sun 03-Dec-17 17:25:59

Oh I didn't know I could do that in the first place
There's a big purple Advanced search button at the top of the page.

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