Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Facebook hates my name

A lot of people have been bugging me to get on Facebook, and for a long time I've ignored them. In a moment of weakness the other night, however, I decided to sign up. I went to the Facebook home page, clicked the option to join, filled in its form, and with resentment at having to give my birthday, I pressed the final button.

Facebook rejected me. It claimed my last name

Van Name
was not legal.

At this point, I could have cheated. Others in my family have. We're familiar with this problem. You just change the last name to
and then you're good to go.

I, however, refuse to do that. If I'm going to be on a site that insists in accurate personal data, I refuse to compromise on my name. Surely a site with hundreds of millions of users must have thousands of last names with spaces in them; keeping my real last name must be possible.

Sure enough, after reading various help pages, I found a potential answer: I could upload to them a picture or scan of my government-approved ID (driver's license or passport), and then once they verified my name, they would contact me. Never mind the data available on my Web site, or my blog, or the books in stores, or the information retrievable via Google, or my Wikipedia entry; no, none of that is good enough for Facebook. I have to give them my freaking driver's license.

At that point, I gave up. To appease those who want me on Facebook, I may one day soon capitulate to this stupid demand, but not right now. Right now, I want to tell the Facebook programmers to learn to take multi-word last names.

Really, I want to say other things to them, but I'm trying to be nice.

1 comment:

Cameron Moccari said...

Too bad your name isn't Stifler's Mom. You would be able to make a Facebook account. No, I'm not kidding:


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