Real ID: Dear Readers, Please Don’t. — 20 Comments

  1. No, no, no.

    If I want you to know my real name, *I'll tell you it*. If I want your friends to know my real name, *I'll introduce myself*.

    Give me the option to hide my name. Or (even better) give me some granular control over it — let me share my personal details on a case-by-case basis.

  2. I found that worrisome too, and it concerned me too. I'm glad I'm not the only one. There is no way I'm using this feature.

  3. Yeah. As someone who is, as far as I know, the only person in the US with my particular first + last name combo I've started being careful ever since I changed from [FirstName] [Middling Common Last Name] to [First Name] [Two Dozen Of Us On The Planet Last Name].

    I think Blizz needs to think this one through real, real hard.

  4. I'm just like you, my first and last name are very unique. I'm the only one I know with this combo. I searched a while ago, there was one but she died quite a while ago.

  5. This feature gives me a bad feeling. I don't give my real name to a lot of people, and even the majority of my guildies only know my first name – not my last. I also like the have the option of playing some alt that no one knows about when I just want to take it easy and not chat with anyone. And I wouldn't want to have to pay for a second account just for that – so in short – I definitely won't be using Real ID.

  6. Even if your name isn't that unique, guildies often already know tidbits about us. Maybe home town, profession… little innocuous things like that which are no big deal by themselves, but with a full (even fairly common) name – all of a sudden you're findable, unless your name is John Smith.

  7. I know what your saying, and I agree. Even if my name weren't unique I wouldn't give up my information that could be accessed by friends of friends. That to me is potentially asking for trouble. I'm just echoing the above poster since my name is unique, well someone that wanted to find me could find me a lot faster.

    Slightly off topic, I remember doing some local modeling for a friends boutique about 13 years ago. A few months later, I remember being approached a few times while I was doing my shopping. They recognized me from photos and a few recognized me from an event. I didn't recognize them at all. Although they were 'harmless' I still found it unsettling.

  8. I was really excited about the cross-server chat stuff until I read that stuff about your real name being exposed :(

    I like Theanorak's ideas of being able to hide our names if we choose – hopefully Blizz will take a leaf or two out of Facebook's, er, book and make privacy settings fully customisable.

  9. I don' t have many cross server friends, so I'll probably discuss such a thing with the one or two people I intend on friending before I ever did so.

    I'm in two minds – because the anonymity also frees people up to act as asshats, because there is no 'real life identity' there is much less accountability for the things one says and does. There has to be a balance between this and the personal safety and privacy that vulnerable people need, and everyone should be entitled to.

  10. Haven really given it any real thought yet. I have no problem that people know my real name. If I (mutually) add them to my friendlist, they know who I am as well.

    To everyone else, I'm just a name. They don't necessarily know WHO that name is.

    The worries seem a bit too paranoid to me really.

  11. Now that I think about it – how can they even make sure you type in your REAL name? There's not really a way to confirm it, is there? Never seen any at least.

    As comparison, you can change your name on Facebook to … pretty much whatever you like. That it matches your ACTUAL real name just makes it easier for people to find you – which most likely mean you want to be found.

    So, my best guess is that, if you REALLY don't want to give your REAL name – you can just write your nick as that real name, or be "John Doe" – who could ever really confirm it?

  12. If I recall correctly, when you sign up for account, you have to put in your real name. You sign the agreement that you are using your real name. And if you ever have your account hacked or compromised, you will need your real name to prove identity. The account name is what is going to be shown.

    I would be more comfortable with showing my real name to people whom I decided to friend. Once it goes beyond that to friends-of-friends, I'm not entirely happy with that, because I have NO CONTROL over whom my friends put on their friends list.

  13. Good point. Just logged in and checked, and I was at least not able to change my name. Pity, I didn't input my middle-name. Not too bad I guess.

    Anyway, in case one of "the bad people" befriends one of your friends, they'd have to know your real name regardless, to tell that you're you. Otherwise you're just one amongst others on a list of names.

    However, if he intentionally befriended a friend of yours, in order to see your name, he probably already knew it. Unless – of course – that friend of yours only had you as a friend.

    I guess we'll just have to see how it turns out.

  14. When I first read about this system I didn't really care if people learned my real name via WoW because I wasn't planning to give out my Real ID to anyone but people I trusted. Hearing that their friends can see my real name as well gives me pause. I wonder if Blizzard really thought that out.

  15. Thanks for the warning, I won't be using it until they change that. I don't want friends of friends knowing that much, not cool!

  16. Yeah, definitely not liking this. I like to keep my WoW and RL identity fairly separate…and even the different servers I play on separate. I don't want to be bothered on Server A by folks from Server B to do something. If I wanted to be on Server B, I'd be on it. I like having anonymous alts I can just fool around on with nobody to bother me and I'd lose that if I signed up for Real ID. The Real ID thing isn't tempting to me at all. I just hope this stays optional and they don't one day decide that everyone has to sign up in order to continue playing Blizzard games.

  17. It seems to me a simple solution would be for Blizzard to add privacy settings options to control the visibility of your name. A "friends-only" sharing option would be ideal.

    Unless they do, there's no way I'm getting involved with this. Thanks for the post!

  18. This is exactly why I killed my Facebook account, or, more directly, the blatant disregard shown for the safety, security, and anonymity of the users of said services.
    If they’d only let me use a chosen handle, such as what I think you can do on X-box’s service, that would be cool.
    But – real name + email address (i.e. your login) is close to all you need to steal my account, sans authenticator.

  19. I also talked about this on my blog, for mostly people I talked about and interview it is not SAFE period. I really dont like the real name stuff and 95% sure the email you use in wow game is the same account on other social sites like facebook, twitter, myspace etc.  It would have been okay if it was just a character names. It is nice to talk cross servers with your friends that you trust but thats about it. if not this feature needs a twink, making sure that the hackers out there are not laughing there ass off. lolx