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I've seen questions regarding Adding real name to user profile and Why does the “Real Name” field not appear on the user profile page?, but this doesn't tell me why this field exists in the first place.

Do any internal processes use it, or are there any future plans for using it?

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so they can come and –  Pëkka Jan 30 '13 at 22:44
9  
take your korean character? –  Frédéric Hamidi Jan 30 '13 at 22:46

1 Answer 1

up vote 14 down vote accepted

I don't know why it was there originally (that was a decision made well before my time :)), but one of the things where it comes into play now is account ownership verification.

It's not the only thing that goes into it of course, but if we get an email from somebody and they claim to have lost access to an account, it helps if they can provide us the information that is set but not publicly visible (such as the real name).

We also occasionally use it when contacting folks by email about things like moderator pro tem positions.

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Thanks! I was hoping for some insider knowledge, and you didn't let me down. Might be worth adding some of these details next to the field on the Profile Edit page---or a link to this page. –  Dolan Antenucci Jan 30 '13 at 23:44
    
@dolan That's not a bad idea. I don't make any promises, but I will make a note. :) –  Anna Lear Jan 30 '13 at 23:58

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