Sunday, July 17, 2011

One More Annoying Post About Social Networking and Names

I've been using the automated suggestion list to add people. The problem that I have found -- which wasn't a problem until now -- is that when you take the collection of people that I know together with the collection of people that they know (and so on), you end up with a lot of people with names like Anne Li. Can I always tell if it's the right Anne Li from the picture? No.

I now appreciate the Chinese parents who decide that their children should have really uncommon western given names.

Is this problem better or worse in China? Is there a wider variety of given names in China than there is in the United States? Or are the users of Renren looking at their friend suggestions and wondering if this is the Li Xiao Tian that they know or someone else?