While reading accounts of E2 get-togethers, I noticed that at the point when noders meet one another for the first time they often wonder: Do I call this person by their E2 handle, or by their name?. When Roninspoon and I met, I hailed him as such without a second thought. But as he was visibly uncomfortable with this, I immediately switched to his real name. (I later found out this was because the lovely young lady on his arm was deeply suspicious of this Everything stuff and he was trying to keep the gathering as normal as possible.)

But generally, unless they call themselves something really cumbersome, I like calling people by their nicks. It's a habit I picked up during the lunchtime games at my old job, when I and my co-workers would log into the game server as Lobo, Madness, Denrage, Feldar, and of course Quizro. Some of these were actual real-life nicknames which the participants had gotten back in the day, while others were new identities created for online gaming.

This somehow spilled over into the real world; when we'd pass in the hallway we'd holler, "MADNESS!" "QUIZ-ROOOOO!". At our weekly meetings, our boss would call on "Lobo, the Lone Wolf" to give his report on a project. It made me feel like we were in a really geeky street gang.

So I answer to both "Wade" and "Quizro" with equal alacrity. But I certainly understand if someone doesn't want to constantly be greeted as "Cow of Doom".

I have met several noders IRL, best guess was 6. Sarcasmo insisted that I call him Sarcasmo, though he did tell me his real name. He also made me promise not to tell anyone... I tried, but I hid it in one of my nodes, but I can't remember where. Easter Egg Hunt!

When I talk with noders, I tend to use some form of their nick. But when I have to say something with weight, i'll take a note from mothers and use their real name. It's more personal, and well, it's (usually) more a part of who we are. Studies have shown that hearing one's name releases anti-stress chemicals in the brain, both improving our moods and making us more receptive to the speaker. I know it makes me feel good when someone who probably doesn't remember me does greet me with my name.

At the Florida New Year's bash, 2002, whilst inder the unfluence, I continually called Phyllis_Stein by the first half of his nick. Now, I don't think most guys would appreciate if you called them "Phyllis" all night. He finally flat out asked me to stop calling him that, and reminded me what his real name is.

Names are power. Be careful who you empower.

I've been using this "name" for a several years now. Everywhere I go on the internet I identify myself in this manner. Every system I create or admin has a user with this name. I had gotten used to being Roninspoon. It seemed like this moniker had become a part of me, but I had never voiced it. Indeed, until I met Quizro, I had never been addressed by this name.

It felt weird.

Before I was Roninspoon, I was The Pigeon king. Previously I was Necron. Before that I was Drunken Raven. In the way back days I was called BEE (A name that I assumed because it has easier to input into the high score lists on arcade machines). All of those names I had heard voiced and occasionally even insisted that others use them when referring to me.

I use this name in a medium that does not require vocalization. I chose the name by combining two words with little relation, almost at random, because I had started to feel that my previous names were a little pretentious and gaudy.

It doesn't really roll off the tongue. It sounds a little awkward. It may even be unsuitable for normal conversation. I'm also a little uneasy about lending some credence to my online alter ego by speaking his name aloud.

This will not be a problem if and when you ever meet me, my user name *is* my real name. Lame according to some, but there you go. I am who I am and don't worry overmuch about 'cool' usernames unless the situation demands it. Mainly games of varied types, to my way of thinking E2 is a community, not a game. Of course, I'm not over consistent about it, my home email adress is an old roleplaying name, and my business adress (before the @) is the name I was going to rename the store to.

As far as calling others by their usernames, or being called by my own, I don't have a problem with that. From my experiences in the SCA and the US Navy, I'm quite used to having two or three different 'names' that I need to respond to, and to thinking of others by multiple names. Standing watch on my submarine I could be called 'MCC Supervisor', 'Supervisor', 'Petty Officer Lyons', 'Lyons' or 'Derek' depending on who was addressing me and in what context.

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