May. 26th, 2010 10:24 am
egypturnash: (pushy garnet)
[personal profile] egypturnash
The wonderful thing about the furry fandom is that everyone has a half-dozen identities, or more. It's fun to interact with different aspects of someone and have convenient labels for these modes.

The maddening thing about the furry fandom is that everyone has a half-dozen identities, or more. Sometimes I feel like I need a scorecard to work out just who I'm talking to.

Date: 2010-05-26 05:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Especially when they change their account name on FA or LJ, I just get lost.

Date: 2010-05-26 05:59 pm (UTC)
ext_646: (Default)
From: [identity profile]
It's just one of those parts of modern life we have to figure out graceful ways to deal with, I guess. One of these days I'll figure out the polite, yet succinct way to say "I have no goddamn clue who you are and if I've actually interacted with you in a significantly meaningful manner in the past; do you know me by reputation or by actual contact?"

It never helps that half of the part of my brain that's supposed to be filled with social glue routines is full of art stuff instead.

Date: 2010-05-26 06:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
All these strange names keep trying to friend me on Facebook and I might actually know them online as Squigglefox or Muuurrrbear but who can tell??

Date: 2010-05-26 10:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I just treat everyone as a unique identify. If they wish to present as someone else and that someone seems similar to someone else I know, that's fine. If they want me to know who they are, then they are the same identify and should expect to be treated as such. For the most part though, I don't feel a lot of need to objectify an entity with something as limiting as a name unless they throw such a label onto themselves.

I think this is a danger of ideas like TrueNames, only the dead can know their true name for one's true name is the sum of everything they have been, are being, will be, and dream of becoming. Give someone a label and it kills a piece of them. That we of the digital void are nameless and changing is one of the best things in my opinion. That we label ourselves hoping to gain status is sad as it kills pieces of us by doing so.

... I think it worries me that I sound like I need to lay off the pot when I haven't been near any in quite some time.

Date: 2010-05-26 05:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I must be falling behind. I only have three...

Date: 2010-05-26 06:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, hell, I have more SEPARATE CHARACTER EMAIL ACCOUNTS than that. And not all of my alts have their own mail.

Date: 2010-05-26 06:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Well, I can't help it if I am perfectly satisfied being a Deer person! ... or Talbuk... but really!

... Also, maybe I'm not counting right? Do characters who are only for RP's count? If that's the case, I probably have 12 or so... but I don't count them, because I don't refer to myself AS them. They are what I play, not who I am...

Date: 2010-05-26 07:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This doesn't happen anywhere else?

Date: 2010-05-28 03:54 am (UTC)
ext_4968: A heraldric style illustration of a dragon, representing Orion Sandstorrm. (Ptolemy)
From: [identity profile]
...That's actually a really interesting question. One would expect that numerous subcultures would have this trait.

Oh, they do

Date: 2010-05-28 02:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The only two subcultures I've had any exposure to both use handles, and I suspect a big part of the reason for it is that they are or have been stigmatized and persecuted/prosecuted to varying degrees in the past. That makes not being able to tell the authorities who the other people are kind of useful. They are also highly performance-based, so some people may find the acting easier if they are not doing it as themselves. I think most of them are so good at this they don't even realize they are acting...

Hackerdom has handles, which arise from various sources. People tend to get called by the name they use for computer-mediated communication, so I'm Ab3nd to most people, orphrey to others, eleventeenth to a few, and Noam/Gnome to at least one. Aside from that, hackers sometimes pick a handle to use when giving talks, or try to bring a handle that they got somewhere else as their e-mail, AIM, etc. name so that they have a coherent online persona. I think coherent online personae are for suckers, and show up as about 10 different names and throw-away identities.

BDSM as a subculture also tends to use a lot of handles, and often mixes them up with titles of varying degrees of fakeness, so you get people with names like Master Jim, Lady Grey, etc. I'm generally of the opinion that if you are not master of something, then calling yourself "Master" is a semantic null and can be ignored at will. I did briefly flirt with having a coherent online persona in that subculture, but discarded it because it wasn't worth the calories it took to maintain it (No, I did not claim to be Master of anything. Perhaps when I'm done with my graduate studies.).

But wait, there's more!

Date: 2010-05-28 02:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Also, Appalachian Trail through-hikers have "trail names", and Burning Man attendee subculture members (burners) have "playa names" (that's ply-Ya, not plAY-uh). Interestingly, both subcultures forbid choosing your own name (I think hackerdom used to pretend to care about this) and look at self-chosen names as poseurly or fake.

I imagine the anthropological significance of this is that, since anyone can join these subcultures at will (just buy a BM ticket, take a long walk in the woods, find someone who wants you to spank them, or get good at some obscure aspect of breaking shit with computers), the culture needs some form of gatekeeping or "us-marking" to show that a member has been accepted by existing members.

Date: 2010-05-26 09:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
*bats at your tail with a big paw*

Any chance you still have the Hippo King pic somewhere? I can't find my copy!

(sorry for the non-related reply!)

Date: 2010-05-26 10:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Identity work is fiddly. I'm happy at my current equilibrium of two selves, but I am cheating a little bit by collapsing namespaces.

Date: 2010-05-26 10:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
You can call me T', or Kamen if you want to. Hell, there's always Mike! I can't remember my character's name from Puzzlebox...

Even Mike's not my real name, though. It's just the one I use for nearly everything. I love when people come up to me at cons and call me Thomas, though. :"D

Date: 2010-05-27 01:11 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I have a half-dozen identities, but they're all insects unless you count the Satellite. It's painfully easy to pick me out no matter which mask I wear. We so stylish.

Date: 2010-05-27 01:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I hear ya. That's why I only have the one. :X

Date: 2010-05-27 08:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm a bit of an odd-ball in a lot of ways... I've spent a big portion of my life known as Wolf, before I even found this (or any other) fandom. So it never was an 'identity' to me separate from my true being... might be why it took until I ended up buying one fursuit that was not 'me' to finally think of a secondary character name to use... ditto my second fursuit I bought. I still don't have on-line personas for these 'alter egos' and don't intend to beyond picture-galleries.

I think I just missed a large portion of the whole 'adopt a new mask' aspect of things... for me, switching masks is something I do without attachment to a name. It's a literal gearshift in my head I manipulate, mental knobs I feel like I'm turning... and then I just memorize the settings, and come back to them later.

Guess it shows how much of a programmer I am, I even do that to my own mind to position it where I want at times.

Date: 2010-05-27 06:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
pseudomanitou -- one and only one

Date: 2010-06-05 04:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Heck, I never really got around to the first one. All I have is some weird icons on my FA account.

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