Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Awkward addresses


Do you have a sensible email address?  The one I used to set up this blog in the first place was the result of utter desperation because all reasonable and rational names had been taken, and I didn't want to use a personal address.  I'm not going to tell you what the end result was.  I'd like it to retain its air of mystery, or that's my excuse.

I am a collector of email addresses.  I have a multitude for various purposes, but where once upon a time I could use something that related either to the purpose or to my name, now I find I need to be creative if I need another.  In some cases very creative. 

I ask because the University of Reading is conducting some research into online presence, and one aspect of the research is to determine whether or not all email addresses are considered equal.  Do people demonstrate email address-ism?  Their idea was to create a series of addresses and send applications or CVs to people who are learning about digital identities, to see how they might prioritise them.  The problem was, they couldn't create the fluffybunny {at} whatever {dot} com types of addresses because they were all taken.

I will confess that when I was working with students and they sent me messages from addresses such as Ginge-is-the-man@.., or disco-diva@..., I immediately, rightly or wrongly, formed an opinion of them.  Even the domain name - I prefer gmail to yahoo and both of those above a bizarre "homemade" one.  That is appalling discrimination, is it not?

So, come on all you fluffy bunnies, do you find people discriminate against you?  Tell me your stories.

If you'd like to read about or even join in the research, visit the This Is Me site.


  1. My son is 16 and he tells me at least once a week of some crazy name kids have made up with Hotmail or Gmail to use on MySpace. They are amazing and crazy.


  2. I have a bunch of different email addresses for my various pursuits. My business email address seems sensible enough: lily@lilystrange.com
    It's pretty well to the point, I think!

  3. What gets me is the way the daft names I have attempted to use are all taken!
    Just how many daft folk are there out there?

  4. I have to admit to a number of identities, only because I didn't and still don't always feel comfortable being in my own name on something like facebook... so Sage is my webname but of course the email for that had gone so in my infinite wisdom I took the literal meaning of wise herb and used that as my email address... means I can hide behind my facade for a little while longer.

  5. @Faith&Facts, yes those are the ones I'm referring to mainly. And why do they think they are all right for using in applications to further education I wonder? Because they do.

    @Lily, very true, that is very business-like, and I can't imagine anyone objecting to it.

    @Adullamite, there are quite a few daft folk, it would seem. What amazed me, years ago when I first tried to get a perfectly normal email address, was that someone else had my name. How could that be? It's my name, nobody else's.

    @Sage, ditto, my real name is hidden in the depths. Strangely, people think it's odd of me to use a single letter, but there's no telling that any apparently real name, is really real. If you see what I mean.

  6. I started off hiding my real name but as I have started doing more business online I've come "out" so to speak LOL. I generally use an email address which is short form my real name with my full name redirected to it as well so it looks professional if required. I also recently bought the .com of my name - advantage not being called Jane Smith - I thought I should incase some else did and then set up the email so I could use it!

  7. I have several e-mail addresses as a result of a multiple personality disorder... And since I use only 3 letters as my blogging name, I have multiple user names since short names are seldom allowed. I try to keep a written record of everything because I am afraid one day I am going to forget those important names and passwords...
    My son has a very creative e-mail address and the same applies to his friends, all in their early twens...

  8. I have 3 emails which contain my name, ISP, work and gmail. I created one specifically for the Web since some blogs publish your email. I had a flicker account and they had given me some suggestions how to create a user name, found one that stuck, so I used it for the Web email. I inadvertently created one at Yahoo, setting up another account. I now have 5 email addresses.
    Passwords are a horror.

  9. I have several emails and none of them (I hope) are too ridiculous.. Someone at work surprised me though, she's so not the type to have something like sexybunny2002, but she did! lol

  10. A. I have 6 e mail addresses and all are variations somewhat of the same name. I had to correspond with an attorney and he was insulted that me e mail did not include my real name. I had to set up an account so he would answer my e mails. I wonder how people pronounce my e mail name? It is pronounced billyrose, but of course that spelling was gone.

  11. @Liz, I haven't got as far as coming out myself. :) A good idea to have your own domain if it's available.

    @Mar, I think you and I have the same disorder then. :) And I've also fallen foul of the same problem of needing a username of a certain length.

    @Hathor, I have more than that I'm afraid, mainly because I felt the need for multiple Flickr accounts. To tell the truth I'm not convinced I can remember them all.

  12. I love the X-files. In one episode, Scully called Mulder a G-Man. He, in turn, called her a G-woman.

    So I used GeeWoman as my email address. Not realizing how much X-rated spam I was going to inspire.


    Needless to say, I don't use that any more. My web persona is now "Contrariwise".

  13. @LadyB, yes, the sexybunny probably doesn't notice it any more. I'm guessing, possibly wrongly, that she set it up as a joke, and no longer "sees" it.

    @Ettarose, I did have one work email that was my real name but I didn't have any choice over that. Otherwise, they are all my own concoctions. I do have some sympathy with the attorney. You feel silly sending messages to odd names, as I found when dealing with students. Not that yours are likely to be anywhere as silly as the student ones.

  14. I have obvious email addresses, for the most part. (My name and my business.) My super secret one is a silly name and I generally forget to check that one. maybe it is too super secret?

  15. I would consider very carefully which of my many email addresses I would use for sending in a CV. I DO believe that they are now used as a form of discrimination, just as photos were a few years ago. The requirement to send a photo with a CV has virtually disappeared since age discrimination in the UK, although NOT the discrimination in itself, as I can witness. Here's hoping I can stick my tongue out at all the b*tards who think a 57-year old female with a wealth of IT experience belongs on the scrapheap and make a successful living online!

  16. When I start blogging three years ago: RennyBA's Terella, I also start using rennyba@ almost everywhere. Since then, that nick has followed me everywhere :-)

  17. @Debbie, you have a super secret silly email address? Sounds intriguing :)

    @Jenny, I don't think I ever had to send a photo with a CV anywhere. That does sound open to abuse.

    @Renny, a very good idea to have the same one. Everyone knows RennyBA these days - I see your name everywhere. :)


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