What is meta? ×
Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 122 Stack Exchange communities.

There are, on SO, more an more users with names such as user220755, user281482, user198729, ...

This is better than the "unknown (google)" kind of stuff we had before, but it's becoming quite confusing, with so many names that all look quite the same.

And some users with such names have already been on SO for quite some time -- for instance, the third one I linked to currently has more than 3k reputation, and has been a member for 3 months.


Would it be possible to suggest some of those users that they should choose a better display name, pointing them to the edit-profile page?

This might not be necessary for users who come, ask a couple of questions, and never come again ; but maybe this could be suggested to user with more than, say, 200 reputation?
(i.e. users who have been on SO for a while, and might stay longer)

By "suggest", I'm thinking about the orange bar that's dislayed when we get a badge, or have new comments.

share|improve this question
1  
They do look all the same in the general case (haven't noticed many of these users). –  Paul Nathan Feb 25 '10 at 23:24
6  
As an incentive, the auto-generated names assigned to users who haven't yet given themselves a name should be embarrassing. How long would you put up with being called ugly_dumbass, cretin_breath or visual_basic? –  j_random_hacker Jan 18 '11 at 16:52
1  
I also don't like user names like that. If they can't even bother to type in a user name, once, why should we bother answering their questions? –  Mr Lister Jul 7 '12 at 13:24
add comment

3 Answers

Please.

I find it very awkward addressing @user in the comments. I don't know why it bothers me---odd, un-pronouncable, and "not real" names don't---but it really does.

share|improve this answer
add comment

We already do this -- a topbar reminder to fill in your account info -- at the time users register.

share|improve this answer
2  
Have you hi-jacked someone else account? :P –  YOU Mar 1 '10 at 9:36
    
@S.Mark - given the high user id (243745) my guess is that Jeff has just created a new user to take the screen shot. –  ChrisF Mar 1 '10 at 11:27
5  
Oh, I did absolutly not remember that one ; thanks for the answer ! But, still : would it be possible to re-display that message when the user has a bit more reputation ? (For instance, when registering, one might think he won't stay, and not fill in those informations -- and a couple of days after... He's become addicted) –  Pascal MARTIN Mar 1 '10 at 11:54
    
+1 to a topbar reminder periodically, no less than a week apart to avoid nagging, up to (say) three times in total (including the registration one). After that, if they haven't changed it, they're not going to. –  T.J. Crowder Jul 12 '11 at 10:15
add comment

Meh - what's the difference between user12345 and OMG Ponies? Less to type, but otherwise arbitrary. We can change the username at will, and comments would be the only thing to break.

Reminding people about acceptance rating I can get behind, because it has a quantifiable impact, but not usernames. Some are annoyed enough about acceptance rates, so I say "pick your battles" and don't believe this one to be worth anything.

share|improve this answer
7  
I think it's much harder when you see user267825 to know it's someone you already answered to than when you see OMG Ponies ;;; and it's also harder to type @user263745 than it is to type @OMG Ponies. –  Pascal MARTIN Feb 25 '10 at 21:58
6  
I may have clocked user232332 as an idiot, but was it user233232 who gave that good answer? At least with "OMG Ponies" I know I can safely ignore you with minimal effort... –  gbn Feb 25 '10 at 22:26
    
@Pascal MARTIN: Type?! What happened to copy'n'pasting? If I'm unsure, I check the users questions - the hyperlink to the name displaying with a "used" colour is a tip. –  OMG Ponies Feb 26 '10 at 1:48
    
@gbn: So that was a moment of weakness? :) I'll endeavour to change it, just to keep you on your toes. –  OMG Ponies Feb 26 '10 at 1:51
4  
When typing a comment, it find it much easier/faster (when the user has a name that's easy to identify, that is) to also type the login of the user than to move my hand to the mouse, find the cursor, move the cursor to the name of the user, select, ctrl+C, re-click inside the comment's textarea, ctrl+V –  Pascal MARTIN Feb 26 '10 at 5:17
    
Not so "at will" –  jmfsg Feb 26 '10 at 21:16
add comment

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .