The hazards of common names

I have an gmail account with a permutation of my real name that I setup years ago for job interviews. I have a very common last name in the Check Republic, along with a common first name. I don’t use this email address much anymore. About 2 years ago someone in the Check Republic gave my email to t-mobile for billing. This does not seem to be causing him any problems as he seems to be getting and paying the bills fine. He is charged 459 Koruna a month. This is up from 252 in 2015. Occasionally I am informed that he is reaching his data limits. I am sort of surprised that it is just this one person.
My wife has first initial last name@gmail.com and gets a fair amount of mail for other people.

Nitpick: It’s spelled “Czech” Republic.

When I first signed up on Twitter, I received notifications indicating they took me to be the author of the 4,183,217th best selling book on Amazon at that moment. It didn’t cause me any real hardship, but I did suddenly feel like an underachiever.

Damn spellczech strikes again!

No, it actually is Check Republic. It’s located right between Debitcardia and Moneyorderstan.

My last name has a variety of spellings in the US. I can find families with CH sorts of sound spelled C, Z, CH, CZ. I find a lot of Czech website spelling it with c̄ but also a lot spelling it with c or ch or cz. The sound is supposedly a cross between CH and Z. So basically what I am saying is that it is not my fault that I spelled Czech wrong.

My true name is quite common. There are five of me in my rural county alone. I have an “official” e-mail box and an ISP box using first initial-surname as my handle. I have never received an off-target message. And I have had both boxes for 15+ years.

Being an old man in the tech industry I have a variety of emails based on my real life name on various websites. Yahoo, hotmail, outlook etc. Only gmail has this problem.

13 googlegangers I know way too much about. Sometimes I try to fix errors like the US army me moving from Germany to the US, I was getting all the updates. I was also concerned about the private messages a 13 year old me was getting on a gaming site so I deleted her profile and reported all the skeevy members sending very adult messages to a child with age listed.

I did once have the village newsletter editor knock on the door of one in the UK, that was hilarious but I was getting a scary amount of info about her. Her husband accused me of hacking when I forwarded all their bills after getting a working address.

ETA: I do get some religious glurge now and then, I happily respond I am a lesbian atheist and would like to be left out. I imagine those family gatherings have fun moments.

I am first initial, middle initial, last name. Every couple of years I get group emails for church committees. IIRC it’s never the same church. Often they screw up the middle initial part of the email, similar to confusing a handwritten n as an m.

I am lucky to have a relatively unique country-specific surname, even if my first is very common. I haven’t had any troubles

Though more and more cousins are emerging from the woodwork than I realised had our name. I remember looking up our name back when phone books were the only way and found nobody in the major regions, so to discover more recently, via the interwebz, that actually there’s a bunch in the smaller regions was a surprise. There’s a small risk that a new kid will be born into the family with my first name, Paul, though it is not a very common choice these days so I’ll probably be safe until death.

Email has never been a problem, however, as I have my own domain and don’t use public ones like Gmail.

Not email, but my common name means that at my pharmacy there are THREE Grumpy Bunnys. This caused me to be given another Grumpy Bunny’s medication, which was a drug that would’ve totally counteracted MY medication.

CVS was incredibly apologetic. I bet the staff member who put it into my order without checking DOB got into huge trouble. I assume I don’t have the same first name, middle initial, and last name as the other GB.

I’ve got the same getting-someone-else’s-cellphone-bill issue on my Yahoo account. (Very little use to me, thankfully.)

Tried AT&T’s customer service to get them to stop and send to the right person. They have NO idea what I’m talking about and NO solution.

Mandatory email verification at sign up is a must for any company, no matter how tiny and yet AT&T doesn’t do this. Geniuses.

I thought that was the Cheque Republic.

I work with a guy who has the same name – and not a very common one at that – as a guy who lives somewhat hear him who seems to get frequent visits from the police, often after the guy I work with finally convinces the cops that he’s not the one they’re looking for.

I was just thinking of this today. My father’s first and last name are the same as one of his nephews and a grand nephew as well. Both of his namesakes have had some trouble with law. So, what if an enforcement officer came to my door and asked for my father when, indeed, they should be visiting other relatives several states away? OK, Pops passed away some years ago, so I would show them his death certificate and maybe my mini urn of his ashes but I’d never thought of this situation before and found it a little jarring.

Interestingly, though our surname is not at all common in the U.S., there is yet another person out there with Pop’s name and two of my siblings have name doubles, as well.

I have a very rare last name, and when i went to register first initial last name at gmail, i found i was already registered. Well, i have a terrible memory, so i tried to reset my password multiple times. No recovery message was sent, so finally i sent a message to the email address. And thus i found a 2nd cousin.

Well, there’s another way to look at this–the advantage of a common name.
and the advantage is : anonymity.
Now, me…my name is almost unique.
So any, say, employer who googles my name is going to find…well…ME.
And ALL of my history. On the first page of hits.
So there ain’t no place to hide.
Now, if my name was John Smith…I’d at least have some privacy.

It’s my understanding that gmail ignores punctuation so that firstlast @ gmail.com is really the same as first.last @ gmail.com

I looked all of you up (shhh) one is Grumpy U(pset) Bunny, while the other is Mildly Perturbed Bunny. :stuck_out_tongue:

Academia.edu regularly sends email come-ons trying to get me to log onto their site. About ten days ago I received an email message from them that stated: “A total of 598 papers on Academia mention your name.” According to Google, only 4 of the 598 actually refer to me.