Should we have multiple online identities?

With the development of the internet over the past few years, having a social media account has become the norm for most people in society. Most people will have a Facebook or Twitter account as a way of keeping in the loop, as well as having this personal account it is now common that people will also have a professional online identity more appropriate for a professional lifestyle. Therefore providing the opportunity for multiple online identities.


For some having an online identity could play a large role in their life, both personally and professionally. Many people will create a personal account whereby they have characteristics of their ‘authentic’ personality, interests and hobbies. For example, a snapchat account is more private, mainly showing the aspects of people’s personal lives and can only be accessed by those who have requested to follow. As well as a snapchat account a person may also have a LinkedIn account where they will show their professional qualities when trying to improve their professional identity.

In some cases, people will argue that having an online identity means that you are creating an “authentic” identity (Krotoski, 2017) whereby you are your true self online and therefore only need to have the one online identity. .“Allan believes the benefits of authentic identity outweigh the costs” this argument could be used to go against the idea of having multiple online identities because if we were truly ‘authentic’ online there would be no need to have more than one identity.

Here is a video on how to build your online identity.

In the video, it says that “anonymity sometimes doesn’t transfer into real world opportunities like jobs”. This is a disadvantage of having multiple online identities as you do not always know who a person is. A very well-known version of this risk is cat-fishing, which has been made famous by a documentary, which was then developed into a television programme.

Having an online identity has its risks,  privacy management is becoming harder to manage for everyone (Costa and Torres, 2017)  as more people are publishing online. When you are online there are traces that you leave behind, this is known as your digital foot print. This could be as simple as shopping online, tracker cookies provide information to third parties, meaning that something that you were looking at on amazon may pop up on your Facebook or Twitter page. This is leaving some people to question if there is any privacy left online?

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Costa, C. and Torres, R. (2017). To be or not to be, the importance of Digital Identity in the networked society.[Accessed 23 Feb. 2017]. (2017). Your Digital Footprint Matters | Internet Society. [Accessed 24 Feb. 2017].

Krotoski, A. (2017). Online identity: is authenticity or anonymity more important?. the Guardian.  [Accessed 22 Feb. 2017].

The Sun. (2017). What is catfishing and how do you know if it’s happening to you?.  [Accessed 24 Feb. 2017].

YouTube. (2017). 7 Steps To Building Your Online Identity. [Accessed 23 Feb. 2017].

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5 thoughts on “Should we have multiple online identities?

  1. Mary

    Hi Charley,

    Well done on topic 2 I enjoyed reading it! I was very interested in your exploration of a creation of an “authentic” identity and how one might go about creating one. Additionally, you have included all of the recommended references in the main body. On the other hand, it would be interesting to see more variety in the sources, for example, you could have used the post to enquire what your own digital identity is, and how you can relate or critique the theoretical viewpoints.

    I also used Piktochart in this week post however, I didn’t feel that the design of the site allowed for an easy editing process. What are your thoughts?

    Here’s a link to my Piktochart creation is you want to take a look:

    Happy Reading!


    Word Count: 133

    1. Charley Ridgers Post author

      Hi Mary,
      thank you for reading my blog and enjoying it, i will take on your points thank you.
      Piktochart wasn’t the easiest thing to use at first and did take some getting used to i had to watch the tutorial video a few times to get the hang of it.
      Thank you for leaving a link to your work, i will be sure to go and read it now and comment on it.
      Many thanks

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