Doing Something About Twitter User Name Conflict

January 9th, 2009

I have recently lamented the lack of clarity around user name ownership on Twitter and other social networks.  My friend Erik Heels has a proposal to do something about it- namely to create a uniform username dispute resolution policy promoted by the major social networking sites.

One of his main points is that trying to differentiate user name conflict from domain name conflict is wrong.  Companies have brands and use those brand names as domain names and user names.  E.g. yahoo.com is also twitter.com/yahoo.

User name policies have a Wild West feeling right now.  Businesses are just figuring out how to work with lightweight social networks.  It won’t take too long for them to get tired of fighting the same user name battles over and over.  Erik has a great proposal.  Heavyweight advertisers everywhere take note: start leaning on the social networks to get their acts together and set some clear rules for the game.

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