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My nickname on Stack Overflow is codeclimber, while doing an "ego search" on Google, I also found another user of Stack Overflow with the same nickname.

How is this possible? Shouldn't nicknames be unique?

marked as duplicate by psubsee2003, Taryn, hims056, user7116, Lance Roberts Sep 17 '13 at 13:04

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No, names are not unique. Think about it - there's more than one Robert in the world, so why can't there be more than one codeclimber on Stack Overflow?

Click image to enlarge

Also, we don't want to drown in a sea of "codeclimber38" and "codeclimber19", making it harder to tell people apart.

See also, this question

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    So, they are not nicknames, like in all the forums in the world, just another name for the user. I agree in real world people have same names, but it's kind of a change for the internet world, where usernames are uniques. – CodeClimber Sep 18 '13 at 9:03
  • @CodeClimber We have unique IDs here, and by the way Stack Overflow is NOT a forum! – Doorknob Sep 18 '13 at 11:57

Providing people aren't trying to come across as a person they're not (i.e. actually trying to impersonate someone else) then there isn't really a big issue.

Posts are linked to your unique user ID, not your name, so it's easy to see what posts people have actually been making. Plus the avatars are generally different too.

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