User id for dating site
And of course there is the birth year suffix -- cuteguy1975, for example.” Rudder is right. Unlike gender or income level, there are limitless options and combinations of traits.
But, another data-driven researcher I spoke with, Susan Herring, a professor of information science and linguistics at Indiana University, found the question intriguing.
A whopping 42 percent of the usernames surveyed by Herring included users' real names, be it first names, last names, or initials.
"My impression is that many of the real names on these platforms are used out of a lack of imagination, since real names aren’t required or expected," Herring said. "Several male names and one female name incorporated nonstandard orthography characteristic of casual Internet communication," Herring said.
I don’t attribute this to an alignment of stars, to the mercy of the web gods and goddesses, or even to OKC’s algorithm, which supposedly uses questions such as “What’s worse, book burning or flag burning? Instead, I chalk up my positive online dating experiences -- which, with the exception of a brazen date who rudely shushed fellow theatergoers (referred to amongst my friends henceforth as “the shusher”), has been without horror stories -- to my careful evaluation of a potential match’s username before arranging a date.
Puns and hyper-masculine references were mostly no-gos.
For OKC, I chose my initials punctuated by underscores, and tended to prefer equally minimalistic, cryptic self-representations, as opposed to, say, song lyrics or anything with “Brooklyn” affixed to it.
I was curious about whether my tendency to critique usernames more harshly than photos was universal, and decided to speak with a linguist about whether or not the language of our online dating avatars says something about who we are.
Age, after all, is just a number -- a number that's listed prominently on OKC user pages, so displaying it in a username is a little redundant.
She conducted a small study to determine whether there are trends in username choice, and whether the way we choose usernames has changed since Internet’s nascent days.
She surveyed over 300 usernames on OKCupid, coding them for information relating to the following categories: gendered, real name, numbers, trying to be funny, geographical reference, hobby/interest, profession, sex/love, physical attributes, nonphysical attributes, sentential, “random” words, meaning unclear.
This can of course be explained by the sheer number of users on OKCupid, but also the fact that, as opposed to IRC, the site is transparent, and allows users to see names, photos, ages, and other information by scrolling through a profile.
This frees up users to get inventive; names now include "profession, interests, personal attributes and attitudes, and what the user is seeking or promising," according to Herring."Most numbers seemed to have been included to differentiate the username from other similar usernames in the system," Herring said.