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Submitted on
May 17, 2012


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I never believed that name change would exist due to many valid reasons, but yet, they made it. Honestly, I've been wanting to change my name since long time. I'm in no ties or any desire with "Pearl" in any way which I named it when I was quite young. Also that name makes me sick sometimes- so a new name change is going to be a great, refreshing start.

So, yes I do plan to change name yet my icon will remain not changed to keep people to recognize me. And here I want to write a journal about being really careful, be smart and think twice if we decide to change name: to not cause that kind of trend where "Oh I got bored with that name, lemme change onto another" and making a'la Japan's trend of changes known as imeji cheinji.

Firstly, try to imagine, if there is artist (or active watcher, popular artist, active friend or even troller which you dislike etc.) which you admire is known under Crystallox2* (and you probably will notice how many people also call that person as "Crys" as recongizeable person, "here is amazing art which Crys made for me!", "hey Crystie, how are you?") and the whole reputation that she/he has build up as well fanbase and their art is known as Crystallox's. Then she/he suddenly renames onto Darklive (also imagine, they change their icon as well!) that becomes very non-recognizing for most of people, like a totally different person masquaraded.  Think how we all will feel with this. It might be confusing, difficult and so on. Usually very loyal fans or close friends will not have a big issue with recongizing but the all other people.... once dA staff said that, they know me quite well as "Pearl" (they usually dont have time to keep with ties all other people which they know on dA) and if I would change name, for them that would be totally difficult or even won't recongize me at all. And that could the most people feel like that.

Let's say another example. You (for example your username is Divirendai) as a watcher helped a well known artist (or dA staff, whatever!) which that person memorizes your name with something positive and that's a chance to build up a new ties/friendship with someone or positive community example. But when you end changing your name, that chance disappears.

Those are only two examples. But there could be more but you get my idea pretty much how it isn't an easy thing to play with if we care about the community or being recongized (regardless what is your purpose, to make friends, or be well known/have fanbase, be well known troller, just whatever what involves that people can recongize you if you enjoy the interaction within community).

Usually the username change should be preferably directed to people who have the reason of no longer desiring name. Mostly ones who started account at teen age (like me) so usernames usually are pretty dumb or related with your old past where the person after many years becomes a different artist/or more mature/industrial etc. and they want to build up a real name which are satisfacted with themselves and give impression to others. For example KittyPony87 isn't a mature name. Lately, now more artists realize more and more if they want to be known artists to serious industries, the best way and maturiest name is to use real name.

Okay, here is a small guide of Username Change:

1. In order to change the name, you must be subscribed. Only subscribed accounts will allow people to change name.

I like that option and it's done for quite smart reason.

"Hey! It's not fair! Why to discriminate ones who can't afford to pay or have no way to pay? Why everything has to be for money?"

This is actually fair and logical, firstly to reduce that storming trend of imeji cheinji which I said above ( and dA quote: The reason there is a "fee" associated with the change is because switching usernames is a complex technical process that can create confusions for fellow deviants.)

Secondly, think, most of deviantUsers are actual users on dA, serious and most active they tend investing in a subscription and that for sure you know that subscribers are usually serious users and members on dA, not abandoning accounts. Most of newbies usually don't invest in subs because they find out that might sooner or later abandon it in some time. So why to multiply wasted usernames? Yes... one of the biggest and most frustrating issues on dA are wasted/abandoned usernames.
If that would be for free and used in any time of creating account, that would cause multiply wasted username (or think if there would be very spiteful troller that would on purpose waste great usernames on abandoned account and do it every half year?). Think, if you with all happiness found an amazing username for yourself, for example, Shadowflames and been dreaming to create your studio known as Shadow flames... *insert awesome imagining how flames covered in shadows are amazing and portray your awesomeness with art... then you find out that name is already "taken" and apparently wasted in abandoned account! Then you come up with another alternate... you had such hard time to come, ok! Then Whiteflame! Gah, it's taken again! See, a multiply wasted names will cause to create a reasonable/needed/desired username much and much more difficult, frustrating and unfair.
So that's why, to not mindlessly waste, dA tries the best to provide to ones who are serious/active users not abandoners.
Many people whine omg it's a discrimination: but believe me it has nothing with discrimination but a very valid thing to prevent many things.

Because look, if someone would be truly poor: it shouldn't be a big deal, simply will teach to very carefully to create a right username unlike mindlessly. Poor people are actually much smarter in thinking in general and know a valid use of money (it's much more worthy to spend on a food instead on internet dumbness and oh noes i made stupid name) ;) And there is always account change, and I'm just writing here...

... ones, who are known artists/brillant community people/good artist or awesome active people- usually friends/fanbase/people who like you usually are kind to subscribe that person as a gift, I've observed that pretty much. All that poor person has to put a just a good effort into community and be loved by dA and so on.

In general poor people are lucky. They can work in many other better ways which also makes themselves stronger and better than ones who can easily "buy" everything with money.

2. You can change name only once per six month.

basically that means if you come up with a new name, you can't rename in whole half year- that also reduces mindlessly changing names and the risk of trend of imeji cheinji.
But even though, if the six months will pass and you have again opportunity to change the name- but still, try to not change often. Try your best to change your name really ONCE for good. That will be the best for you and others.

3. No returns.

Another reason to think very carefully over. Once you changed the name, your old username is doomed to be never-existing and no one can use it ever. You can't name it back to your old username, neither anyone can create it with your old username.

I'll tell ya my example, I made a secure account with my most important username [Kilaq]. Also because I never believed that change name will exist on dA due to uneasy reasons, but it has happened. If I could, I would def change my existing PearlEden onto Kilaq.... but I took that username already. So I thought to go to that account (to Kilaq's secure account) and change Kilaq onto another different username where I would release Kilaq username in no use and where I could name on my main PearlEden account- unfortunately that doesn't work. Even if I'll release that name, I wouldn't be able to use.

So think carefuly with changing name or recreating different accounts.

4. Merging usernames.

That's the reason why released (old) username will be never used by anyone else. Because for example, if I could change username from PearlEden onto Kilaq- as being under a new website address and name, I'm still merged with pearleden. If someone clicks on a  link to, it will LEAD me to
Basically, your old username is still connected with your new username and merged together to avoid confusion. Which is a reason why it can't be used by anyone or transfered to anyone else.

5. About the Username Change Notify.

Also, that notify about that artist changed username onto different... isn't the most effective/working option at all. There are some people who don't bother to check it, are too lazy, may miss it, skip or have no time. Like me, I usually don't sit on dA often and mostly I wont bother/have time to check that notify. And even if I do, at the first sight, I will probably forget about it. Probably forget that the artist whom I watch has changed username because, I am naturally used to recognize that artist with that name. It's like automatic function within us and it may take some time for us to get used with a new username.
Secondly, there are people who don't watch us but yet like us/or are interested in our creations/whatever so they don't get notified about username change. (for example, I have very little list of people whom I watch since deviantART has been stressful for me, I reduced only to few artists since I don't want too much going on in my message center but I do go to another people's accounts to watch art or chat with people without having them on watchlist).

That's something to bear in mind why we need to be careful with changing usernames.

Edit: I almost forgot, there dA is featuring a notify "formely...." on your main page for a short temporary time, like take a look at: which is also helpful.

6. Be prepared while changing your Username.

If you plan to change an username and if you really care about your community/fanbase/avoid major confusions and whole reputation with art and yourself made on dA:

- Actually, for the most time usually an icon would be only recognize-able way. (as long as you have your original icon). Try to not change name along with the icon. Try to have stable icon where people would recongize you for the most time, while changing username- try to keep your existing icon as long as possible.

- Be active on dA while having your recognizing icon. If the more they see you active, the faster they will get used to your new username.

- If is possible, then you might want to change username onto similar which you had in the past (for example, I could rename onto FallenEden which will be still easily recognized) OR onto your well known nick name or real name+last name thing. Those options are the easiest ways of name changes.
For example if there is artist under Skypillar username and is known as Joanna Elbown person, then changing onto proffessional one as JoannaElbown would be easy for other people as long as we display the real name under nickname.

- Optionally, you can also write down under dA username on your profile "formely known as ...." or something.

In general, just bear in mind to leave something what will be recognizing for people if you can ;).

7. About Creating Usernames- Be Yourself.

Username is a very, very, very important part of us. That's why we get so frustrated if a wasted account has our beloved/signature name taken or if we find out that we are really unhappy with our recent username. Or being unhappy because we constantly change and can't find a stable, real username where we could keep it proudly forever.

Username is like a cover book of us. Or maybe, a main title of us.
We are heroes of our story in the life. We are kind of an amazing book where people read about us.

That's why whole thing is to prevent mindlessly using usernames and always pay attention where we COULD be happy.

There are plenty of usernames which are usually on 90% always changed and hated by the user after some time: a fanbase ones like Naruto98, Suicune11 (or just without numbers) or even MangaLover etc.

We don't need to express a love to something of what we are fans or naming our favourite existing character created by media by marking ourselves that we are naruto or japan lover. Be yourself. That your love and fascination you can always express on artwork or poem. The best artists, like known who draws a fanart from m&a has actually original self-created username yet is recongized as inspiring artist who greatly express her love to m&a- psychologically, with original usernames but express fascination with certain things or fandom are a lot better recognized than ones who named themselves as part of fandom and aren't real themselves.
You dont need to be naruto to express this, be yourself and express it from being yourself. A highly respected naruto creator isn't naruto- but respected one who created it, as well you can be respected YOU who create amazing fanart/fictions.
And secondly, usually fan-phases are going away. If you are naruto88, then after some time you change interests- no longer like any anime at all or wishing to be ichigo11 from anime bleach since of being on that phase. Most of people usually regret a lot for using usernames like that.

Username is something what will express ourselves, if we want to remain to be known under a nickname which require lots of thinking. If anyone wants to create art for serious and be a serious artist, the best way is simply to use real name which is professional form of self naming.

..... unfortunately I do not like mine XD.

In general that journal is addressed as informative [cautious! =p] one from my view to everyone due to sudden news about Username Change which, I hope it will reach to some people where we all would be satisfy with username changes.

If you have any interesting thoughts which arent there, let me know! Any opinions are welcomed but please be respectful to eachother.
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Olessan Featured By Owner May 23, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Very, very well spoken. :)
lakerose Featured By Owner May 21, 2012
I think the only way you can find an unused username these days without tons of numbers in is to make your own word out if a random collection of letters that have a nice pronunciation. Or translate a word you love into an obscure language.
Lupinicious Featured By Owner May 21, 2012   Photographer
I never quite understood why dA decided to never ever release any data associated with any of the accounts even after deleting the account. Renaming, or rather copying the account to a new username (because that's what it really is) will add lots of deactivated usernames to the graveyard and bloat the database with even more junk. I don't get it, honestly. From a technical point of view it's crazy.
Exileden Featured By Owner May 21, 2012
What is strange that after Khaosdog deactivated her account, you still could buy (or still can?) her artwork as prints on dA!

I like how LiveJournal after deactivating the account keeps it in database (and it's story) for 30 days, after that account gets purged. After a month that username becomes free/available and all past database of that username is deleted and purged like never existed. However, dA does not.
Also.... I dearly wish they could purge absolutely unused accounts. (aka "waste account names")

Although that merging two usernames (after renaming, basically you have two different username links) is still fair idea because that would avoid lots of confusion with links and so on. In fact old usernames (after renaming, for example if I renamed from PearlEden onto FallenEden) aren't in "deactivated junk" but are still within existing account with different username, like you have two links (...pearleden.deviantart... and falleneden.deviantart..) with one account. But other than that, I have no idea how it affects in the database XD (besides wasted accounts and deactivated with it's still remaining datas)
Lupinicious Featured By Owner May 21, 2012   Photographer
Yes, who knows. I still hate it, however, that my quick deactivation of my primary account in the very beginning is unrecoverable :) Anyone could block an arbitrary number of account names just by registering and deactivating all the time. I don't like that...

What's the deal with not being able to re-activate a deactivated account? Ah well.
TzikiiWolf Featured By Owner May 20, 2012  Student Filmographer
Wow, very helpful :3
You made some very good points, and Im glad because I probably wont want to change my username for a veeeeery long time XD
Firequill Featured By Owner May 18, 2012   Digital Artist
It's nice to see someone address the Premium Membership Required issue...! I saw the news article announcing the name change feature and when I got to the point in the comments where I was seeing people express disgust at deviantART for being something along the lines of the incarnation of evil itself for catering to paying members (because, I don't know, people who pay to use a site shouldn't receive any better service anyway, right? @_@), I just couldn't go any further.

I can understand that it's a bit of a bummer to not be able to have access to things, but like you said, it does help to prevent problems and to make sure you're serious about your decision to change your name. Some things you just can't get for free! :c

It's a shame you can't just voluntarily free up the Kilaq name by deactivating the account or something! It is a bit frustrating thinking of all the names that will never be able to be used again because of abandoned and deactivated accounts.

I feel sort of 'ehhh' about my own name. It's meant to be a Harry Potter 'The Marauders' style name (like Padfoot, Wormtail, etc.) representative of phoenixes. Fire bird, 'Firequill'. I like the 'quill' part, but the 'fire' part feels cartoony or overdone or something. I'm really reluctant to change it though and don't know what else I'd even use or if I'd feel comfortable using my real name! I hate my last name since it sounds like an icky slang term whether it's pronounced correctly or not, and my first name - despite being made up by my parents - is already taken by an account that's never been used in the two years of its existence. I do like the idea of feeling a bit more 'professional' though, but don't think I could part with 'Firequill' too easily.
elexti Featured By Owner May 18, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
So is merging actually an option? I haven't seen anything on it, is all... maybe I missed something?

Well written though, heaps of good points!
GensouRyuu Featured By Owner May 18, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Your right. I had the same thoughts about it when I heard they might make it an option. Everyone on just about everything I go on anymore knows me by this name I'm using now. I have no plans to change it in the future. I would like to point out, however, that when everyone started changing their names, the change was often quite minimal. For example, some fixed some capitalization errors, and some fixed some spelling errors. Only one or two on my list made any more significant changes than that.
Aliz-Seraphim Featured By Owner May 18, 2012
wow thanks for this. this is very useful and informative. this is why i took some time to pick my user name so it was something i knew no one else would have and some thing i like. i also like the way u describe what a user name is, as
"Username is like a cover book of us. Or maybe, a main title of us.
We are heroes of our story in the life. We are kind of an amazing book where people read about us."
i really like that :)
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