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Rushdie Wins Facebook Fight Over Identity [Free registration may be required]http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/15/technology/hiding-or-using-your-name-online-and-who-decides.htmlSir Salman Rushdie claims victory in Facebook name rowhttp://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/facebook/8891136/Sir-Salman-Rushdie-claims-victory-in-Facebook-name-row.html'Nym' wars, part 1/6http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/punctuated-equilibrium/2011/nov/14/5The nym wars: how many identities are enough?http://blog.practicalethics.ox.ac.uk/2011/08/the-nym-wars-how-many-identities-are-enough/Google Plus forces us to discuss identityhttp://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/blog/2011/aug/30/google-plus-discuss-identityCentre for Computing and Social Responsibilityhttp://www.ccsr.cse.dmu.ac.uk/You probably haven't heard of Mary Ann Evans, Richard Bachman, or Eric Blair. These are the actual names of the authors George Sand, Stephen King, and George Orwell, respectively. At different points in their careers they all opted to use pen names for one reason or another. But what about a well-known author who chooses to use his called name as his online identity? This is a question of our modern age, and one that recently came into play regarding one Ahmed Rushdie. Ahmed is more commonly known by his called name, Salman Rushdie, and he is one of the most well known writers in the world. Recently, Rushdie found that his online Facebook profile (which lists his name as Salman Rushdie) was deactivated by the company for violating their policy that all users must sign up with their real names. Facebook is quite insistent on this, referring to it as an "authentic identity". After learning that his account had been deactivated, Rushdie took to the Twitterverse, tweeting "Where are you hiding, Mark? [Referring to Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook] Come out here and give me back my name!" Shortly after sending out his tweets, Rushdie's account was restored. While this particular incident was resolved quickly, it is reflective of a broader debate going on that some are calling the "nym wars". At stake is whether a range of companies and social networking services (including Facebook and Google) will require all users to use their actual legal name as part of their terms of service.The first link will take visitors to a piece from this Monday's New York Times about Mr. Rushdie's recent Facebook encounter. The second link will whisk interested parties away to a another article from the Daily Telegraph which includes some of Rushdie's protest tweets such as "Or, if F. Scott Fitzgerald was on #Facebook, would they force him to be Francis Fitzgerald? What about F. Murray Abraham?" The third link leads to a nice series of commentaries on the "nym wars" from Joseph Hewitt, writing in the Guardian. The fourth link leads to another fine set of meditations from Oxford University's "Practical Ethics" blog on the "nym wars". The fifth link leads to an article by Cory Doctorow on how Google Plus' identity policy "embodies a theory that states the way to maximize civility is to abolish anonymity." The last link leads to the homepage for the Center for Computing and Social Responsibility. Here visitors can learn about their research on online identities and related matters.
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