Why can't I have the same display name as someone else? RRS feed

  • Question

  • I kinda understand the reasons for this, it acts as sort of a username where everyone registered in a forums must have a different username. But on these forums, our username is the live ID, which is based on everyone's e-mail.

    Most people on these forums use the profile "Display Name" field to put their first and last name. I wanted to do that too but I can't because there's already someone named "Ricardo Amaral" (what are the odds) but it's not my fault that I have the same name as someone else. At the moment, I add a dot between "Ricardo" and "Amaral" but it's kinda weird...

    Can something about this be done?

    Why not let everyone have the "Display Name" they want? The avatar will tell equal names apart...
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 1:39 PM

All replies

  • The display name is not the Live ID name. Every display name must be unique.

    But this happened to me too (my name was taken), so I put my name in my signature instead.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 1:57 PM
  • Yes, but they could probably change that. I'm sure every user on this forum probably has an ID, a numeric number, associated with the profile.
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 6:22 PM
  • Two similar Display Names can cause more conflicts than just this profile url/display issue.

    Display Name is what every user is known by among other users. Tomorrow if 5 more 'Ricardo Amaral' come to forum with same display name, it will surely create some confusion, right ?


    - Omie
    • Proposed as answer by vtortola Monday, May 18, 2009 2:55 PM
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 6:56 PM
  • Yeah, but I don't see that happening... :P
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 8:19 PM
  • Yeah, but I don't see that happening... :P

    But didn't you say it had already happened to you? And David Wilkinson also said it happened to him.  There are many people with the same name, and I think it would be useful to be able to tell them apart.  Not to mention the possibility that someone might decide to impersonate another user.
    Friday, May 15, 2009 2:30 AM
  • It happened once... What I mean was that I don't see it happening 5 more times.
    Friday, May 15, 2009 4:56 AM
  • Not maybe with your name, but with many other names it would easily happen five times and the forum people need to cover those cases not just yours.

    In my case there are actually two MVPs with my name (and there were even when there was an MVP population of only around a thousand) - admittedly slightly different forms of the name (Michel Walsh and Mike Walsh) but the same basic name). So you can imagine how many there would be with a total forum population that is many, many times that thousand.

    WSS FAQ sites: and
    Total list of WSS 3.0 / MOSS 2007 Books (including foreign language)
    Friday, May 15, 2009 5:46 AM