Blogging

Blogging under a pseudonym

August 4, 2013
I can assure you I'm not a dog. Or a cat. {Image Source: Here}

I can assure you I’m not a dog. Or a cat. {Image Source: Here}

 

I have been thinking a lot about this lately.

I blog under a pseudonym because of my profession. And also because initially, I liked not having people I know in real life read my blog. But then, slowly and steadily, I bragged about my personal blog to a few people I know. And through that, there are now people in real life {including my mum} who read my blog. This just grew and a couple of people at work know I blog. Yet, my connection to the blog is pretty safe. My friend A at work tried to look for it after learning I blog but hasn’t been able to find it.

It made me feel a lot more secure about using the pseudonym. Because if a client ever decides to Google me, they are unlikely to land on this page.

However, this pseudonym can also be a problem.

For starters, given that I am now open to attending blog events {like BlogChicks and the upcoming ProBlogger Event}, I have to go through the whole process of explaining my real name and why I blog under a pseudonym. Then I have to explain to people to not use my real name if they post something about me. The other thing I have to do is have two Facebook accounts. One where I have people who know me in real life. And one for the blog and the pseudonym. When I add bloggers I meet, I feel like I should perhaps just add them to my account with the real name but then, I don’t promote the blog in any way through that account. Which means, there’s no blog updates there. And I wonder — would it just be easier to “come out” with my name?

Unfortunately, my real name is not a common one either. I mean, if it had been one of the several Annas or Jessicas or Stephanies, my life would have been easier. But no. I had to have an unusual name. A name I love nonetheless. But trust me. I’ve Googled myself and let’s just say you can find out which school I went to, which college I attended in Bombay, which uni I went to here in Sydney and well, where I currently work! Gah!

I still don’t want clients or colleagues or employers in the field of psychology {present or future} finding my blog. It probably would have been different if I didn’t reveal so much of myself on this space. I still intend on blogging the way I do. And I guess, for that reason alone, I will stick to the pseudonym. No matter how annoying it will be to explain it to people I meet.

I had a thought though — should I have come up with a pseudonym that actually sounded like a real name than Psych Babbler {which clearly, is not a name!}

Do you blog with your real name or a pseudonym?Β 

How do you manage it all?

Do share!

Until next time,

Cheers!!!

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77 Comments

  • Reply Whoa, Molly! August 4, 2013 at 5:08 PM

    I can obviously relate! I’m glad I picked a name that is, well… a name! It’s also a nickname I’d had for many years, so it’s not too much of a stretch. I like the privacy of having a pseudonym and persona that’s separate from my real one. My name is kinda out of the ordinary as well, so it helps me feel a little less conspicuous.
    BUT, there’s that whole thing about how I want to eventually publish my writing, and what to do about the whole ‘name’ deal. I guess I’ll think about that when I come to it.
    Whoa, Molly! recently posted…Shame: On sometimes being a total shitMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 5, 2013 at 8:05 PM

      Thanks for sharing your story Molly…I think the publishing thing started to make me wonder too. Some day, I might like to do that…what I don’t exactly know. But it made me wonder about whether I’d be doing myself a disservice. Yet, at the same time, my current profession might not be helped if I do use my real name! As you said, it’s probably best to think about it and deal with it when you come to it…

  • Reply Kaddu August 4, 2013 at 5:22 PM

    At times, even I wish I blogged under an alias, that my blogging life was completely separate from my personal life. But eventually, I decided it was too stressful to maintain 2 accounts on FB. I would either end up not updating one of them, or mixing up the posts by mistake! πŸ˜›

    Just kidding really. I won’t have much to blog about if I were to censor most of my personal life out of my blog. As for being visible on Google, it doesn’t really mean much to me as of now. And I doubt I will ever be in a profession where I might have to hide my personal life completely from my clients or colleagues. True, I can’t blog about a few things in this arrangement, but I can always create a second anonymous blog for that stuff, or write a personal diary.
    Kaddu recently posted…Silly Saturday: Food Map Of IndiaMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 5, 2013 at 8:14 PM

      I think Kaddu if I was in a profession where my personal life didn’t matter so much, I’d have been ok ‘coming out’ eventually. Given that I have blogged about personal stuff around my own feelings sometimes, I worry that people will think of me as an incompetent psychologist or use it against me. Even though in all honesty, I am a human being prone to having difficulties like everyone else! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

      • Reply BJ December 29, 2013 at 1:57 PM

        I am a social worker in practice as a therapist in several agency settings. I am thinking about starting a personal blog and am so glad I’m not in this boat alone! Thanks for the post – I’ll be joining you soon!

        • Reply Psych Babbler January 2, 2014 at 8:46 PM

          Welcome here BJ! I’m glad this post resonated with you! Hope you drop your link once you have a blog up and running! πŸ™‚

  • Reply Janet @ Redland City Living August 4, 2013 at 5:49 PM

    I blog with my real name … but I understand where you are coming from. A very good friend of mine is a psychologist and although she is on Facebook, she asks her friends to make sure they don’t tag her in any pictures etc, and she keeps her account private.

    Don’t worry too much about using a pseudonym, having been to a couple of bloggy things this year I find it hard to remember bloggers’ real names anyway, I remember them by their blog name – eg slapdash mamma, redland city girl, cooker and a looker etc!
    Janet @ Redland City Living recently posted…My Week According to Instagram 18 – LinkyMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 6, 2013 at 7:39 PM

      Thanks for your thoughts on this Janet. πŸ™‚ I honestly doubt anyone will remember my real name anyway…Psych Babbler is so much more memorable! πŸ˜› As for my other FB account with my real name, I do the same as your friend — ask people to not tag me and have the privacy settings so high that people can’t search for me. And that’s why it wouldn’t work using that for the blog because then I couldn’t promote the blog! :S

  • Reply Corinne Rodrigues August 4, 2013 at 6:52 PM

    I’ve sometimes thought of having a blog where I write anonymously, but I can’t seem to pull it off. Instead I write as close to the truth (in my perception, at least) as I can and don’t use names or change gender when referring to people. Of late, I’ve heard that some people hang around my blog looking for anonymous mentions of themselves! πŸ˜‰
    I underdstand why you would do this professionally – but know it can be tough when you meet people offline.

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 6, 2013 at 8:04 PM

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this Corinne…I think it’s harder when you put so much of yourself out there and talk about people in your life and they know it. I mention people too but I tend to stick to initials. Some of them know it’s them but others probably don’t. It’s a thin line I’m walking on at the moment between the pseudonym and real name and it’s blurring as the days go on…

  • Reply Kalpana Solsi August 4, 2013 at 7:42 PM

    I blog under my own name but at times do feel the need to blog under an assumed name. loved your post and the reasons for blogging under a pseudonym .

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 6, 2013 at 8:22 PM

      Welcome here Kalpana! Blogging under a pseudonym with no one knowing it’s you gives you the freedom to voice anything and everything. I’ve noticed the change gradually having bragged about the blog and knowing that some people I know read it…I do censor a few thoughts I probably would have written had no one I know known about this space! Oh well…

  • Reply Ashley August 4, 2013 at 10:23 PM

    I started out using an alias, with two different Facebook accounts: one for people who knew me, the other for people I had met online. I even used a cartoon avatar instead of my real picture. And I loved it. Before blogging I was never too much of a social media person. So I loved having privacy offline. Then, I started my own online magazine and it didn’t seem right using an alias. How could I be a journalist with a fake name?

    Using my real name has been helpful in many ways. I love how all my writing is attached to who I really am, including the ebook I recently published. But, if I could do it all over again I’m not sure if I’d use my real name. I don’t like the fact that anyone can Google me. I actually had an employer, two of them, do that before an interview and they commented on my writing. Blessedly, it worked in my favor (they were impressed).

    If anything, trying using your middle and last name. Or first and middle name only, with your middle name first. It’s still you, but gives you the privacy you long for.
    Ashley recently posted…Godless Deposits β‰  Godly ReturnsMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 6, 2013 at 8:41 PM

      Welcome here Ashley! Thanks for sharing your journey. I guess it’s helpful when your line of work is in the writing field…having a blog then possibly helps. I think if I had a niche blog, I probably wouldn’t mind sharing my name but because I have written quite a few personal things, I doubt I want employers or colleagues to read about those. Unfortunately, I don’t have a middle name…just first and last. So for the moment, I’m still going to have to go with this pseudonym unless I can come up with a proper fake name in the future.

  • Reply Tuhina Mahan August 5, 2013 at 12:16 AM

    I have blogged under my real name and now am blogging under pseudonym. I understand the complication and advantages of both. Using pseudonym is liberating. I can talk about myself without thinking about who might read it (although I still need to test how strong my pseudonym is). But then, I need to take care that I don’t connect it to my real life friends and people I know. It has been a struggle (specially since I have a circle of friends I know through my real name blog). Hopefully I will start feeling a bit more comfortable with time…

    PS: I have strong suspicion that you are a cat! πŸ™‚
    Tuhina Mahan recently posted…PrejudicesMy Profile

    • Reply Vivienne August 6, 2013 at 8:05 AM

      Haha, that post script is hilarious!! πŸ˜€
      Vivienne recently posted…Flower PowerMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 6, 2013 at 8:44 PM

      Oh that’s right…you now have 2 FB accounts too due to the pseudonym. The difference though is you’ve been careful to not connect it with real life. I on the other hand, have friends and family reading stuff. {Entirely my fault!}

      Keep me updated on how you go. I notice you don’t blog as often as you did when you blogged under your real name. Not sure if the name has anything to do with it or well, if you just have a life! πŸ˜›

  • Reply Vivienne August 5, 2013 at 12:16 AM

    I blog under a pseudonym too, although this is the very first time I’m admitting it. This name is very similar to my nickname, so I do feel a connection to it, and it doesn’t sound entirely false. I, too, have a relatively unique name, and don’t like it when I show up on google. (I do -_- ) I don’t have a Facebook page for the blog yet, so I don’t know how I’d handle that. I reckon I’d create an entirely new FB page, as I don’t want my friends from school and college, and my family, to know I blog. I like keeping this space to myself πŸ™‚
    Vivienne recently posted…“Don’t Be So Childish”My Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 6, 2013 at 9:20 PM

      I wondered whether yours was your real name or not…now you’ve answered it. πŸ™‚ I enjoyed keeping the space to myself too initially but I think vanity got the better of me after one particular post got a bit popular and I bragged about it to folks back in India. And consequently, my mother now reads my blog. Sigh. 😐

      • Reply Vivienne August 9, 2013 at 8:40 AM

        I wonder how parents name their children…it was so hard finding myself a name I really liked, because I absolutely love my own! I doubt if I’ll ever tell my parents about my blog…maybe, if I continue doing this for the next five years, I might πŸ˜€
        Vivienne recently posted……That Is LifeMy Profile

        • Reply Psych Babbler August 13, 2013 at 9:04 PM

          Haha…well, some parents obviously don’t think much given some of the weird names that are also around! πŸ˜›

  • Reply Barbara Coleman August 5, 2013 at 9:01 AM

    I started blogging anonymously too. I felt a little less naked on the Internet. People could judge this “anonymous person” but no one would know it was me. Then I decided to drop the baggage I’ve been carrying around and use my real name…it’s scary! I have a Facebook page for the site, but I’m still resistant to share what I’ve written on my own page. Baby steps I guess!
    Barbara Coleman recently posted…“I’m Trying to Tell a Story and Do it Truthfully.” Charlie KaufmanMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 7, 2013 at 4:22 PM

      Welcome here Barbara! I totally understand what you mean by feeling less naked by being anonymous. I think it certainly has given me the freedom to express my deepest and darkest moments but since telling a few people, I do censor a lot! Thanks for sharing your journey!

  • Reply Sheela August 5, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    To be on safe side we start writing anonymously, but the urge to be known after few ‘hits’ brings the real one out…
    loved your post!!!
    Sheela recently posted…Friendship Forever…My Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 7, 2013 at 5:00 PM

      Oh Sheela…I so know what you mean re the urge to be known! I think when I think about the future of my blog, I would like to get into serious writing and that’s where the confusion about the pseudonym comes from I suppose. Welcome to this space and thanks for commenting!

  • Reply R's Mom August 5, 2013 at 1:37 PM

    I blog under an so called pseudoname..but honestly early on when I started blogging, I didnt realise the importance of being anon…I let people my blog..and it became difficult to be completely anon…I would prefer to be completely anon though!

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 7, 2013 at 8:38 PM

      Ah RM, like me you are now on the other side…it’s hard isn’t it? I think at the same time, I like to promote my blog and if that’s the case, complete anonymity is hard!

  • Reply Smita August 5, 2013 at 3:47 PM

    There are days when I want to bitch about some of my reatives but am unable to do so because I am not anony. I even think of opening a blog for that purpose but ahem! controly myself. but yes if u decide to be anony it is really difficult to keep a balance in ur personal & public life…..that is why I didn’t take the headache…

    As far as u r concerned I feel you should be the way you are…u have that independence of being hidden so let it be like that rest all things are not big an issue!
    Smita recently posted…Monsoon Diary of a Gal in Mumbai….My Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 7, 2013 at 9:22 PM

      See that’s the other thing Smita…if there are people I want to whinge about, I can’t do it anymore. Because I don’t know who might be reading it! Argh!! But yeah, at the same time, I do feel safe knowing clients can’t find me. Yet. I feel though that the line between PB and the real name is starting to blur. Slowly and steadily.

  • Reply Scribby August 5, 2013 at 7:02 PM

    You know I used to have two FB accounts to keep blog friends and real life friends separate… but slowly I realized that I’ve been meeting so many blog friends in real and have great connection to their personal life and vice versa…

    so there was no point in keeping two accounts unnecessarily increase my own headache of keeping both… I removed blog FB id and now strictly very carefully I add people from blog world… however, this still does not guarantee that my real self would not be exposed to the blog world.. it will and I’m sure that it has, lot of people know my real name as well as things about my personal life…

    But at least people on my personal list don’t have any clue about my blog url or blog id and that’s what is important for me now.. cause like everyone else I blog about a lot of happenings from my real life circle and I don’t want people to take it otherwise because I wrote about it publicly….

    Anyway, coming back to your dilemma, I too don’t have a particular answer to that and I’m also somewhat in the situation like you… I too attend lot of blog meets and still maintaining the anonymity is a little difficult not only for me but for my other blog friends πŸ™‚

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 7, 2013 at 9:29 PM

      Thanks for sharing Scribby…you are someone who started the other way around though, didn’t you? With your real name and now a pseudonym? I think I created my own problems by bragging about my blog to a few people in my personal life. People know I love to write and I guess some recognition helped especially with my post ‘Racial Row’. I promoted that personally as well and a few people I know read my blog. Some continued, others have thankfully probably forgotten. But yeah, it makes it hard to blog about some happenings because of that! Oh well. We’ll see how things go…

  • Reply Avada Kedavra August 6, 2013 at 3:13 AM

    I blog under a pseudonym too but it was not created because I wanted to hide my real personality from blog friends but to prevent every tom, dick and harry that I know in my personal life to read my blog. I dont want people to read my blog and then judge me in real life πŸ™‚ Now that I keep both these separate, I can blog about anything/anyone without worrying about my blog coming in when people google my name. I removed my blog FB account since people had started realizing that I had 2 FB accounts. There was no point in keeping a separate account and I have kind of stopped promoting blog on any social network.
    Avada Kedavra recently posted…Strategy gamesMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 7, 2013 at 9:31 PM

      Oh my real personality comes through my blog…probably even more through here than to some people in real life Ava! But yeah, I didn’t want people I know to follow me as well…but then I dug my own grave by bragging and wanting that recognition I suppose. I do want to promote my blog for reasons to do with growing this space and I think that makes me wonder about the whole pseudonym thing. Ah well, for the time being I’ll continue with PB! πŸ˜€ Thanks for sharing your journey…

  • Reply Frances D August 6, 2013 at 11:47 AM

    In the beginning I blogged anonymously. There was no real reason either. Then one day I showed my blog to a close friend who I knew would give me their honest opinion. They liked it. And soon after that I came out of the blogging closet. I do totally understand why you use a pen name.
    I found you through Bloggers for Life. Waving at you from Cape Cod, USA
    Frances D recently posted…Find Your Voice Summer Storytelling Workshop: Lesson ThreeMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 7, 2013 at 9:36 PM

      Welcome here Frances! Thanks for sharing your journey! I think if I tweak a few things and password protect a few older and very personal posts, I might just be ok with people knowing about the blog even if I continue under the pseudonym given my job. So confusing! Thanks for popping over…you have a lovely blog!

  • Reply Carly findlay August 12, 2013 at 9:59 PM

    I did my thesis on blogging – a study on my own blog even. The biggest problem I had getting ethics approval was whether or how i could seek permission from the anon/ pseudonym commenters on my blog. Fortunately it all worked out ohm- blogging is a relatively new media and I said my readers’ comments are a lot like comments on a news story – they form part of the publication.
    I think if you’re consistent as your pseudonym, and want to attend blog meets or conferences , you need just introduce yourself as your pseudonym.
    Carly findlay recently posted…When Mum comes to town (we eat a lot of great food).My Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler August 13, 2013 at 9:06 PM

      Oh wow! A thesis on blogging…now that’s my kind of thesis! πŸ™‚ Thanks for your point of view Carly…it makes a lot of sense! Introducing myself with my pseudonym! Why in the world didn’t I think of that option?! The only place though it would be a problem is when people who know me already as me read my blog, well, that’s another problem. But in the mean time, I’m going to stick to introducing myself as Psych Babbler at blogging events and stuff! Thanks for that… πŸ™‚

  • Reply Marielle Green September 25, 2013 at 4:42 PM

    My name is pretty common, so I changed it up a bit. And the doman [my actual name].com is pretty expensive. I also like knowing prospective employers can’t find my blog by Googling my email, and it’s definitely freeing to not be recognized/talk about my writing in real life. It’ll be weird if I break into freelancing stuff and I constantly have to write that awkward query letter. . .but oh well. I like keeping my writing life separate from my work and private lives.

    • Reply Psych Babbler September 26, 2013 at 10:47 PM

      Welcome here Marielle! Thanks for sharing your views. I agree about wanting to keep the blog separate from work and that’s why I’m going to continue with the pseudonym as well. Even if I do end up doing some freelance work (which I’d love to). I have come out only last week with my photo and I’m going to leave it at that. Good to know there are others out there in a similar position! πŸ™‚

  • Reply Groovy October 16, 2013 at 8:26 AM

    I’m a little late to the party on this discussion, but this is a question I’ve be wrestling with myself. I like the idea of anonymity, but it does make it harder for you to be able to promote your blog, use it as a writing example, maybe even use it as a springboard for a publishing deal (dare to dream!). When the Internet was new and I was a green print newspaper reporter, I had a personal site where I sometimes put articles I had written (this was way before newspaper websites were a common thing; the newspaper where I worked didn’t even have Internet access in the office at the time). These articles included my name and the name of the newspaper. All was well until a nutjob went off on me for waiting a couple of days to respond to his email. He threatened to come harm me, and he could’ve found me had he wanted. I immediately took my name down and have been skittish and private ever since. I’m about to start a new blog and still not entirely sure what to do about the name thing this go round (I am anonymous on my current blog). It’s interesting to see how other people approach the problem, but I’ve got some more thinking to do. I’m leaning toward being anon, though.
    Groovy recently posted…Europe’s love/hate relationship with America — it’s not just for breakfast anymoreMy Profile

  • Reply Ash December 27, 2013 at 5:49 AM

    Hi,

    I’m so glad I’ve found your post!

    This is a subject I can closely relate to also. I am writing under pen name because I am working for an employer, and I do not want them to know about my other interests. I agree with one of the comments about employers looking you up on Google, especially if you are invited to a job interview!

    However, I am hoping eventually to work for myself when I can ‘come out’ also. But it might be tricky by then, as you say you’ve built up this second persona and can be difficult to explain to other bloggers/marketers your situations.

    It’s also easy to slip up, I have emailed someone as my pen name, but sent from my personal email address. Now that caused some confusion.

    On another note, I think of all the great writers who used pen names (George Orwell and George Eliot for example), and makes me wonder how did they manage social events?

    Great blog by the way,
    Ash πŸ™‚
    Ash recently posted…Gain Self Esteem Quickly by these Self Empowerment TipsMy Profile

  • Reply Cora January 11, 2014 at 11:43 PM

    Great reasoning behind the pseudonym. Psych Babbler is pretty memorable! Mine is a pseudonym as well, but not nearly as fun!! =) ~Cora
    Cora recently posted…Memrise – Free Online App Friendly Language CoursesMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler January 12, 2014 at 7:16 PM

      Haha…but at least yours sounds like a name! πŸ˜€ Mine may be memorable but it’s certainly not a name…

  • Reply Jyotsna Bhatia February 28, 2014 at 12:26 AM

    I blog under my own name as you would have known by now. I know its totally the blogger’s decision to blog in their own name or a pseudonym, but as a reader there are times when I really like a blog and totally want to know who they are as a person, connect to them on a personal level, know them a little bit more. Because, if I love their blog and their writings I am sure to like them to them too, after all, our blogs are just an extension of us, isn’t it? Just my thoughts.
    Jyotsna Bhatia recently posted…That wasn’t what I meant – 33 wordsMy Profile

    • Reply Psych Babbler February 28, 2014 at 6:05 AM

      True Jyotsna…I think after this post, some months after, I finally showed my picture on the blog. I think that really helped in terms of the connection you talk about more than the name. I think people like having a face they can attach the blog to for sure! πŸ™‚

  • Reply simple girl April 15, 2014 at 6:29 PM

    I blog with a pseudo name because I do not want every body I know to read my blog.. I tried creating an fb account with my pseudo name to interact with bloggers but the authentication didn’t allow . If possible can you explain me how to do it?
    simple girl recently posted…AtoZchallenge – M for ..MangoMy Profile

  • Reply Rajlakshmi April 20, 2014 at 1:36 AM

    I totally understand why you use your pseudo name. Although I have never thought about it. Or never realized that for some professions it might be necessary. On a different note, does it feel kind of mysterious to be a mysterious girl πŸ™‚
    Rajlakshmi recently posted…The Quad BikersMy Profile

  • Reply Pseudokat April 21, 2014 at 11:38 PM

    I’m sort of in the same boat- similar circumstances with clientele, college regulatory bodies etc. would like to blog but anonymously as I have some unconventional thoughts to some of life’s issues. It would be wonderful if you could provide some guidance n how to set this up!
    Thanks,
    Pseudokat

  • Reply Mavis August 6, 2014 at 7:37 AM

    Can I still make money if I’m blogging anonymously? It’s not essential but it would be nice. I plan on launching my blog soon and the material is sensitive. I can’t reveal my real identity until I retire.

    • Reply Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life August 6, 2014 at 8:51 PM

      I did get some offers for sponsored posts Mavis in spite of my pseudonym. I think at the end of the day, it’s your content and how you connect with others that will have sponsors approach you. The pseudonym shouldn’t really matter. πŸ™‚

  • Reply Nikole August 29, 2014 at 7:26 PM

    Hi, One thing I didn’t see mentioned is ID theft. I am new to blogging and will be using a pen name for that reason alone. I think it’s a great reason. Safety is a concern online.

    • Reply Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life January 12, 2015 at 9:03 PM

      I am with you Nikole…that is definitely a concern and a possibility I hadn’t thought about at the time I wrote the post!

  • Reply HeartinHawaiiSue January 11, 2015 at 3:02 PM

    Hi Sanch, I am having a difficult time with this myself. Actually the opposite issue. I have just let my name be my real name and there are times I just want to post what I want to post anonymously. I hear time and again how people get out of hand when someone posts something on say fb that others don’t agree with and then feel they get verbally beat up. The other thing is my profession – I’m a realtor and I don’t want anyone to not work with me due to my personal thoughts/feelings. So now I wish I had a pseudonym. I joined instagram thinking I can post whatever pictures I like and I won’t be judged (and I want to post tons of photos of Hawaii (at this point) because I had to leave before I was ready to) then people started following me on both sides of the ocean. Well I guess they would probably figure out it was me anyway when I posted a photo of myself but well… you know. Now I’m trying to figure out a new name. LOL!

    • Reply Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life January 12, 2015 at 9:01 PM

      Oh Sue…that can be hard. I must admit when I wrote this post, I was torn between the pseudonym and my real name. I eventually decided to use part of my real name and mentioned about the blog to people I know in real life. I now have to watch what I say sometimes on this space because I don’t want to offend some people! I think personally, the best thing would be to have a pseudonym that sounds like a real name!

  • Reply Jaina May 28, 2015 at 3:33 AM

    Sorry to be such a latecomer to the post! I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, and this was one of the first posts that came up when I googled blogging under a pseudonym. I actually use the name Jaina because my name is very unusual, and could be an identifier for hackers (or at least, that’s the reasoning). Jaina is nothing like my real name, but I’ve come to love it. My main dilemma now is how to approach conventions like BEA (which I would love to go to next year!) in a way that is both honest about my real name but doesn’t completely wreck my online security. When I google my real name nothing at all comes up, and I’d prefer to keep it that way.
    It also makes it really awkward for me to tell people in real life about my blog, because I’m always afraid they’ll think I’m pointing them to someone else’s blog and taking credit for it.
    Jaina recently posted…Top Ten Books I’m Going to Read This Summer (Not Necessarily on a Beach)My Profile

  • Reply CC Bea September 12, 2015 at 10:07 AM

    Hi Sanch, I noticed that your picture is on your blog and throughout your social media and you use a pen name for the sake of your professional life. I’ve started a blog with a pen name and I have been hesitant to post pictures of myself. I’d like to post pictures, especially in my social media outlets to make them more personal since I am writing about a very personal topic, but I’m afraid to do this. I use a pen name because I do not want my family to find my blog or social media accounts since I’m writing about a sensitive topic. What are your thoughts on this?
    CC Bea recently posted…The Last TimeMy Profile

    • Reply Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life September 12, 2015 at 10:18 AM

      Hi Bea, it took me a while to post my picture and I admit it’s still possible for clients to find me. But so far, when I google my full name, nothing blog related has popped up. In your situation given you don’t want your family to find it either, you may need to go with an avatar as a picture and have separate social media accounts that are under the pseudonym’s name. It’s a very dicey thing and I think I’ve come to realise you can’t get 100% privacy online.

      • Reply CC Bea September 13, 2015 at 3:17 AM

        Hi Sanch, thank you! Since you’ve been doing this for years, I figured you would have a good perspective on this. I think I may throw caution to the online wind and include some self-portraits here and there. By the way, I am so glad to have stumbled upon your blog. It’s inspiring!

  • Reply SoftwareJourney November 1, 2015 at 1:01 AM

    I blog under a complete pseudonym, but then again I also just started blogging so I’m a bit “internet shy”.

    I have a question, though, as someone who blogs under partial anonymity what made you decide to use a real image of yourself for your blog (as opposed to a random one).

    Secondly, would you advise new bloggers to blog under an obviously fake name or a real-sounding pseudnym (like you do now)?

  • Reply Mary December 28, 2015 at 12:14 PM

    This is great! I just have a question. If I want to earn money some day from my blogs, how would Google for example, pay me, you know for Google Adsense program? Will the pseudonym be connected to my real identity? Many thanks.
    Mary recently posted…Goodbye 2015My Profile

  • Reply Emma Spellman January 11, 2016 at 4:53 PM

    I used to blog under my real name and then after watching too many Law and Order episodes I started to worry for my kids. It took me a week to edit my blog. I only explained myself to long term fans and no one else seem to notice. I changed my name going with Emma Spellman from my favorite show Once upon a time. Spellman is my maiden name so I feel I still have a piece of myself on the blog. I changed my kids names to Adam and Henry. Companies so far have been understanding. The hardest thing so far has been working with Nutrisystem. Everytime the counsler called she called me Emma. I wanted to tell her my real name so bad, but I went with it. πŸ™‚

  • Reply Seeya January 16, 2016 at 4:10 PM

    It’s your own choice whether to blog anonymously or publicly. Interested in reading your work. Whether to reveal info or not is upto the person.
    Seeya recently posted…TurbulenceMy Profile

  • Reply peregrinationgourmande February 11, 2016 at 1:22 PM

    Oh dear!!! I have the same problem!!!! I never solved it!!! same about pics and pics of the kids. Which I use, telling myself that i’m anonymous! Would love to chat with you about that! And your work here in Sydney! there must be a lot of differnce! xx cathy

  • Reply No name March 15, 2016 at 12:02 PM

    Do you think people will understand that your are not trying to be fake? But that you are already opening up your life to them and you just want to keep your name private?

  • Reply Debbie Nutley May 12, 2016 at 1:33 AM

    I have struggled with this same issue. I use a pseudonym and created a somewhat biographical blog character with a husband and children, rather than expose the everyday life of my real family. I also wanted more creative freedom as a writer. My mother had a close friend growing up named Salvatore Lombino who went on to become a prolific American writer of best-selling fiction. He wrote under separate pen names – Ed McBain and Evan Hunter. I interviewed him before he died and he told me that using different names helped him establish and market himself as a writer with different types of literary work. The problem with a blog is that when you comment as a character you have created you have to stay in character. I find that to be very tricky. I’m not quite as wacky as my character, although I do have my days. There aren’t many fictional blogs so people may not even understand what you’re doing. Thanks for this great post!
    Debbie Nutley recently posted…Comment on No More β€˜Mrs. Nice Guy’ for Me: Why You Shouldn’t Be Your Kid’s Friend by DebbieMy Profile

  • Reply Runwright June 25, 2016 at 12:49 PM

    It’s interesting reading this post now since you’ve obviously changed your position on this. So since I dunno if I’ll find the post where you explain why, can you just tell me why you opted to reveal your identity on the blog?
    Runwright recently posted…Strokes Of GeniusMy Profile

    • Reply Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life June 25, 2016 at 12:54 PM

      I actually don’t still use my full name…it’s only a part of my name. πŸ™‚ I just wanted it to sound more like a name I suppose and also, trying to become a writer in other avenues. The post about changing the name of the blog includes the bit about changing my name on it too. It was written in July 2014 and is called A new dawn

  • Reply Bks June 26, 2016 at 5:40 AM

    Hmm… I want to write… I have so many stories to tell.. And people who piss me off… That’s why I’m thinking of using an alias… My inner critic needs to expel a lot of junk.. But you know what they say… One mans trash is another mans treasure !!

  • Reply TeresaS July 25, 2016 at 3:44 AM

    Glad to have found this! I am struggling with whether or not to use a pseudonym. Part of me says – you should be brave enough to blog under your real name! But like you, I’m a medical professional and I have some concerns about patients and others! I am wondering why when you go to blog events, you feel the need to explain the whole name thing or give them your real name? Are you talking about the audience or the people who are maybe paying you for coming and talking/posting/whatever you do? Thanks!!

  • Reply Anne July 29, 2016 at 8:48 AM

    Hey,

    Thank you so much for posting this. I have been wracking my brain trying to figure out how to break out into the blogging world with a pseudonym. You see, I come from a religiously conservative background, but now host a blog for people in spiritual transitions, and I don’t want my friends from home panicking or trying to “convert” me.

    For awhile I just consigned to being invisible, but the whole point of this blog is to draw people in and make connections.

    Thanks for the wisdom on the pros and cons. I have a lot more ideas to work with now.

  • Reply J.Gi Federizo December 7, 2016 at 7:50 PM

    I used to blog using a pseudonym and it was kind of a private blog (although when you start accepting contacts, it stops actually being that private). I used an alias because I was talking about more private stuff. But I’m over that. My new one at WordPress uses my actual name…well, nom de plume, but it’s still my name. Why? Because I want people to know it’s about me, J.Gi, the writer.

    I would have abandoned the other blog altogether when Multiply folded up, but it’s part of my history, a lot of what went on in my life were shared there. So I transferred the contents to Blogspot, just so I’d have something to go back to. Then I just almost recently made it public, going through past posts, making some of them public.

    There’s no law that says you can’t use your real name or an alias when it comes to blogging. It all depends on your intent. If you want to keep things private or, at least, away from the prying eyes of people you actually know, it’s okay to not say your real name. As long as the intent is to not hurt anyone, why not?
    J.Gi Federizo recently posted…How to Properly Use Sitelink Extensions #ThursdayTipsMy Profile

  • Reply SARA December 12, 2016 at 7:21 PM

    i have recently decided to start blogging and have started out with an assumed name, which by the way i have no idea why i picked. I guess i am an introvert and keep a lot to myself and feel blogging under another name would give me the freedom to be myself without being judged. The anonymity of it really appeals to me but your points do make sense and there are pros and cons to every aspect lets just hope it works out for the best.

  • Reply Ruth (Fruitful Today) January 10, 2017 at 10:26 AM

    I’m so glad I found this post. I found the comments to be quite enlightening too! I’m having the same issue.

    I write under a pen name because my content is quite personal. I don’t want people I know to find my blog by Googling my name, because I bear my soul in my blog. I’m happy to bear my soul, because it’s who I am… but this is not type of stuff I’d be talking about at the dinner table during Christmas get-togethers! I have told my close friends about the blog, and they are understanding about the pseudonym.

    I guess I was just wondering whether or not to tell my subscribers that my pen name is not actually my real name. Seems more authentic… And I guess I can show a photo of myself to them too? I don’t know… Still trying to work that one out. But thank you for your blog post on the topic – it was just what I needed!

  • Reply Cheryl February 2, 2017 at 7:16 AM

    My number one problem is that I want to become a blogger, but I have absolutely no idea how to begin. Frankly, I don’t have the time to figure it out on my own. But, I have already started writing and can plug that writing into my blog once I actually begin. Question: I see multiple posts about FB being linked to a blog. Is there a way to begin a blog without linking it to a FB account? I changed my name years ago due to a crazy ex and I know the headache that comes with being yourself and holding yourself out publicly using another name, but I can’t imagine that I would be able to freely post about my life without a using a pseudonym. The crux, as you and several others have pointed out, is being true to yourself and allowing yourself to be completely transparent without harming yourself personally and professionally. From my experience, people are very easily offended and like the famous movie quote, “…can’t handle the truth!”

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