Real or Fake Identity?

lampshadeAs a communicator, I’m accustomed to using my real name. In fact, I use my real name everyday. It’s who I am.

Several years ago, if I remember correctly, there was a push to ensure that you had your own name on your social media accounts such as Twitter, with LinkedIn and Facebook being obvious.

As I sat in a safety meeting this morning, the topic was about being safe online – how to protect yourself against identity theft, stolen bank and credit card accounts, etc.

IT showed this video: “Amazing mind reader reveals his ‘gift'”.   This video reveals the magic behind the magic, making people aware of the fact that their entire life can be found online. And by doing so urging everybody to be vigilant.

They then went on to say don’t use your real name when blogging or commenting on posts. Doing so will result in your identity being stolen or people attacking you online (we call them trolls).

I’m not sure if I agree with them. Here’s why: We know that everything we put online is available to hackers and trolls. Privacy and anonymity ARE illusions, as Rob Biesenbach so eloquently shared on his blog today. (Go read it!)

On the flip side, one’s name can become your brand – see Gini Dietrich, Seth Godin, Peter Shankman – amongst others.

Do you attempt to hide behind a handle or do you take responsibility for your comments, actions – yourself?

I was raised to do my best because at the end of the day it was my name on the project. There are mean and bad people out there. But I don’t think I should hide my light under a bushel. I am who I am.

What do you think? Should your “handle” be your name or a fake?

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Susan Cellura is a marketing communications professional with over 20 years of experience. She is a dynamic communications professional and enthusiastic team-builder, with a progressive history of success in designing and implementing communications programs for global organizations. A strategic thinker with the ability to understand the needs of multiple audiences and deliver solutions, Susan is a results-oriented problem-solver with exceptional interpersonal and negotiation abilities. Having worked in a variety of global industries, she has grown business communications in her current position via a strong mixture of strategic resources, including social media.

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