- 15 Jun 06, 11:02 AM
We're making some changes to the way users' names and locations appear in Action Network.
We've always asked people to contribute to the site using their real names. We think this gives more credibility to whatever they're trying to achieve using Action Network. We've also found it gives the additional benefit of reducing offensive or spamming contributions as users are more accountable for what they say.
When iCan relaunched as Action Network last year, we made a small change which had a big impact. We started displaying the names of registered users on the location page for the council area in which they live. Here's an example. Our intention here was to make users more visible to each other in their neighbourhoods, and for the most part the change was well received. But a small number of people did not like to be exposed in this way.
So we're planning some changes which will allow you to choose whether or not to display your name and/or location. By default, we'll continue to include members names in the lists of registered members on local authority location pages. But, in future, you will be able to opt out of appearing on that list. If you don't want to use your real name on Action Network, you'll have the option of using what we call the "U number" which is associated with your account. This is the number our system generates automatically when you create a new membership in Action Network. It can be seen in the URL when you click on "My Network" at the top of any Action Network page. For example, my "U number" is U517448.
We also received some emails from people who were concerned that their Action Network profiles were coming up when they typed their name in to internet search engines. This was a mistake on our part, and we've now changed the computer code behind the member profile pages so that search engines won't include them when they scan our site.
If you have any thoughts on these changes, we would be very happy to hear from you.