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Hiding Real Names--or Not


Guest Starbuck
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Guest Starbuck

A 411 is posted to inquire about a NY escort. Forum participants chime in with praise. I click the link to the man's Rentboy ad, check his reviews and then I do a Google search to see what else I can find: Other ads? Website? Blog? Twitter?

 

For me, the Google search is part of "doing my homework." Most of the time, learning more about a man reinforces my initial interest. Sometimes it changes my mind. And sometimes it leads me to something I wasn't looking for--the guy's real name. That's happened twice in the last two months, three times in the last year. Here's one example:

 

A fellow's Rentboy ad includes a link to another online profile—same pictures, but a different name. I Google that other name and find a few more profiles on other sites and, on one of them, a link to an Amazon wish list that includes the young man's full/real name. I don't see how he can be unaware of that. So is he careless? Indiscreet? Is the internet a great place for business, but a bad one for secrets? Or are some guys getting a lot more casual about personal privacy?

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Same here re discovering a scorts real name simply by researching his pix etc prior to meeting; I think in todays world a scort would literally have to decide to have absolutely NO social media persence outside of his "professional" one in order to assure TOT privacy, including using pre-paid phones etc, and few would want to do that. I AM impressed by the level of respect here where no one ever reveals an (honest non scamming) scort's real name btw. I don't think it's carelessness or indiscretion, I think it's more resignation that once you put yourself "out there" if someone's determined enough to find you they will, and a hope that "most" clients are basically good guys like we are here and will keep it to ourselves. There will always be the spectrum from the (amazing :) ) Tristan Baldwin who will share his med reports w his real name within five minutes of meeting you, to the Leo Giamanni's who threatened litigation when their real names were made public. (I think also being a famous porn star almost ALWAYS tips the odds that your real identity will be out there eventually)

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Funny that Tristan is mentioned above as he was very up front with sharing his info. I really had no need to know his full real name, but he offered it and I was almost not interested in knowing it... His response was that I already knew where he lived and it would only be a hop skip and a jump to figuring things out from there. So why be overly secretive? Just one more of many "amazing" :) sides to the guy!

 

Yet years ago as I was leaving an escort's apartment someone had left a piece of mail for him at his door. It fell to the floor as I opened the door to leave. I instinctively picked it up and handed it to him. The look of horror on his face was palpable as he thought that I might have seen his real name.

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I'm not sure what the sensitivity is. In this age of internet searches it can't be easy to have a stage name and hide your real identity. I have been seeing an escort in Sydney for a few years, usually only about once a year, and just recently he told me his real first name. I don't know why and I hadn't thought about whether his escort name was real or not. I don't think knowing his name changes my opinion of him, or even if it should. I doubt that the interaction of certain parts of our anatomy will change!

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Guest countryboywny
I'm not sure what the sensitivity is. In this age of internet searches it can't be easy to have a stage name and hide your real identity. I have been seeing an escort in Sydney for a few years, usually only about once a year, and just recently he told me his real first name. I don't know why and I hadn't thought about whether his escort name was real or not. I don't think knowing his name changes my opinion of him, or even if it should. I doubt that the interaction of certain parts of our anatomy will change!

 

I agree with this. Further, if an escort cares to share personal information with a client or more publically, it is his choice and ONLY his choice. I think discussing that you are privy to that information in a public forum is non-productive and a violation of the trust the escort has/had in you.

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It's not impossible, but it's very difficult to keep one's name secret in the internet age as some have already posted.

 

If an escort gives you his real name I take it as a sign of trust. It might take him awhile to do it or he may give you his name up front. In either case, if he's willing to share his private life/information with you then he must feel secure enough in whatever bond he's formed with his client, imho. That or he's so open with his life anyway, he doesn't care what you know. :)

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I also often end up seeing escorts' social media profiles, including their real names, as I'm vetting them. What I find a little more unnerving, is that Facebook is now often showing escorts that I've interacted with as "people you may know." Most of the "people you may know" are listed with "12 mutual friends," but when someone shows up without mutual friends, it's usually an escort or masseur that I've contacted. Creepy.

 

On another note, when I'm conversing with an escort, I very rarely refer to them by their stage name in conversation; to me, it feels weird and impersonal, since I know that it isn't their real name. If they've told me their real name, however, it feels nice to call them by it... it confers a little bit of extra trust.

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I also often end up seeing escorts' social media profiles, including their real names, as I'm vetting them. What I find a little more unnerving, is that Facebook is now often showing escorts that I've interacted with as "people you may know." Most of the "people you may know" are listed with "12 mutual friends," but when someone shows up without mutual friends, it's usually an escort or masseur that I've contacted. Creepy.

 

On another note, when I'm conversing with an escort, I very rarely refer to them by their stage name in conversation; to me, it feels weird and impersonal, since I know that it isn't their real name. If they've told me their real name, however, it feels nice to call them by it... it confers a little bit of extra trust.

One reason why I don't do Facebook... and not just as it relates to escorts... I partake simply to preserve my Slotomania winnings and have only one friend. Things tend to explode exponentially and totally out of proportion from what I see happening... So I just totally ignore the whole thing... Plus, I don't see the need to know every time a friend of a friend of a friend burps or has a case of diarrhea. And I reference Montezuma's Revenge both literally and metaphorically!

 

Also, I totally agree that is always easier to talk with a guy when you know the real name.

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So is he careless? Indiscreet? Is the internet a great place for business, but a bad one for secrets? Or are some guys getting a lot more casual about personal privacy?

 

I think it's often carelessness, or a lack of understanding or how many connections there are between data on the Internet. Look at the number of people on this forum that either don't know how to perform a Google search on a picture or don't think to try. Look at how common it is for celebrities, many of whom should at least have handlers or managers advising them on such matters, to expose their private lives. Escorts are fairly normal people, and a lot of normal people don't know even the basics of securing their identities.

 

Most typically I discover a lot of personal information by:

 

  • Googling a phone number and exposing some other activity associated with the number: another business, a classified ad, a tweet...
  • Searching an email address, either posted by the escort or exposed by another search, and turning up classified or personal ads.
  • Sometimes the email address is the basis for a persistent identity. For example, copsgonerogue@hayoo.com might expose a copsgonerogue identity on Bigmuscle, Facebook, gay meetup, bodybuilding or gaming forums.
  • This is happening a lot more lately: A Google image search on an escort profile's g-rated pics, cropped or uncropped, expose uncropped versions on personal Facebook sites or even business sites. I've stumbled pretty deep into escorts' personal lives by finding LinkedIn or Facebook connections within a couple minutes of "doing my homework".

I consider myself to be pretty good at this stuff, and still I find that there are some escorts who have done a good job of shielding their private identities. At a minimum if an escort actually cares about creating separation he should use a dedicated phone number for escort business, use a unique dedicated e-mail address, and not share pictures or photo sessions between escort and personal social media sites.

 

This is basic stuff. It amounts to less than 10 minutes of searching. I've described it to some escorts and the responses have ranged from ambivalence to appreciation for the guidance to accusing me of being some sort of obsessed high-tech stalker.

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...A fellow's Rentboy ad includes a link to another online profile—same pictures, but a different name....

 

Escorts with multiple screen/stage names are never a good sign.

 

One reason why I don't do Facebook... and not just as it relates to escorts... I partake simply to preserve my Slotomania winnings and have only one friend. Things tend to explode exponentially and totally out of proportion from what I see happening... So I just totally ignore the whole thing... Plus, I don't see the need to know every time a friend of a friend of a friend burps or has a case of diarrhea. And I reference Montezuma's Revenge both literally and metaphorically!

 

Also, I totally agree that is always easier to talk with a guy when you know the real name.

 

I don't get this obsession young folks have about tweeting they just had brunch to all their friends and waiting for the "pack" to reply right away to be cool... Get a life, if they want to know what you put in your mouth or if you are on a trip they'll ask about it.

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I do not need an escort to share private information as long as he is willing to share private parts.

I believe this thread should have a corresponding thread to how easy it is to discover information about clients. While it may not be easy to determine who I am by Purplekow, I believe I have revealed here enough personal information that someone with a bit of interest and a few minutes time could determine who I am. Of course, it would be easier to just ask me.

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Guest Starbuck

Sharing a real first name or--less often in my experience--a real full name in private with a client you've gotten to know is one thing, but it's something else when a fellow's identity can be discovered in a 3-minute Google search (I refer to my original example) by anyone at all.

 

And because there are still many men who won't show their faces in their ads, or have other jobs to protect, or don't want family members to know everything about them, or worry about being evicted from their apartments if it's discovered what they are doing there, (etc., etc.)--AND because there are escorts who manage to effectively conceal their true identities--I can't help being surprised by the guys who easily give themselves away to any stranger with internet access.

 

I tend to agree with Nvr2Thick that some guys fail to understand--to use his phrase--"how many connections there are between data on the internet." In the case of my original post, I can't see how that escort doesn’t know he’s revealed himself, so I have to think he doesn’t much care. In other instances, the “cyber trail” to a guy’s true identity looks considerably more accidental. Either way, I hope there are no regrets ten years down the road when these guys are out of the business, but still living in a world in which everything is archived forever.

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For work related legal reasons I am in the process of doing a mass mailing. As usual in such cases certain individuals places of residence and even their last names had changed. Some persons even had moved out of state. The secretary who compiled the list was unable to locate a number of parties. Well, it took me just a couple of minutes to locate all the missing individuals using the incomplete info that I had on each one... and BINGO the list was complete!

 

In any event, we all have a certain comfort zone about our personal info... and by "we" I mean both clients and escorts. Heck when I did my first hire I never even thought about concealing my identity as I used an email account with my full name on it... That was totally irresponsible and possibly risky in retrospect, but that was many years ago when the Internet had not quite gotten totally out of hand. Fortunately the escort was concerned about his own privacy and as such respected mine. At any rate, that was a one time mistake on my part. Interestingly I have a friend that uses an email address that gives the impression that he lives in a completely different state so as to totally attempt to avoid his true identity from being discovered.

 

From what I can ascertain from the above responses some clients really feel a need to know quite a bit about the guys that they intend to hire. Others not so much. With some clients it can almost be a challenge of sorts to try and glean as much info as possible.

 

Still, from my point of view I think PK said it best...

I do not need an escort to share private information as long as he is willing to share private parts.
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We all make our own decisions and there are no right or wrong answers about this. The real problem for escorts though, as Starbucks mentioned above, is what happens when you want to leave the business and there is a massive internet trail about your activities?

 

Here is an example. I am good friends with an escort who retired in November 2014. He had a RentBoy ad and a few older BackPage ads dating back to the time he started out, which was June 2013. The BackPage ads were extremely descriptive of the services he offered to male clients. His escort phone number was exactly the same as his personal phone number. Also, his email address revealed accurately his first and last name. With that, you could verify his true FaceBook account, you could find out who his friends and parents were, where he had gone to school and so on. In addition to escorting ads, he had an active internet presence on Instagram, social and dating websites. One day, a lousy ex-girlfriend got hold of his escort ads, posted them on his Instagram accounts and threatened to post them on the website of his parents' business. It caused him to promptly close down his Instagram account.

 

When he retired he took down all his ads. It took him a long time to do this though, and with mixed success. He contacted the owners of this very website and had his status in the 'review' section changed to 'retired'. Thankfully, all his contact information (email and phone number) were deleted from the reviews on this site. However, if you google his phone number, the link to his reviews on this website still comes up. It makes me believe you can never truly erase your past on the internet. He has since started a successful consulting business but he worries about being 'discovered' by his new clients. At the very least, he has changed his phone number and email address, which seems to help a bit. If anything, he doesn't get harassing phone calls anymore from obnoxious former clients who keep pestering him about scheduling more sessions.

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There are several levels to this discussion, which I had glossed over in my earlier posts. At the simplest level there is the reluctance of both escorts and clients to use their real names. This is more a pre-internet concern for privacy. The more significant concern is the extent to which any information on the internet can be cross-referenced. It is possible to mitigate the risk of exposure but not eliminate it. Conner Habib wrote an interesting blog about how life plays out after being a porn actor, and one of the points he makes is that you need to consider before starting how it would affect your life afterwards. To some extent it would apply to escorting as well.

https://connerhabib.wordpress.com/2015/04/07/how-to-be-an-ex-porn-star-10-tips-on-taking-a-break/

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There are several levels to this discussion, which I had glossed over in my earlier posts. At the simplest level there is the reluctance of both escorts and clients to use their real names. This is more a pre-internet concern for privacy. The more significant concern is the extent to which any information on the internet can be cross-referenced. It is possible to mitigate the risk of exposure but not eliminate it. Conner Habib wrote an interesting blog about how life plays out after being a porn actor, and one of the points he makes is that you need to consider before starting how it would affect your life afterwards. To some extent it would apply to escorting as well.

https://connerhabib.wordpress.com/2015/04/07/how-to-be-an-ex-porn-star-10-tips-on-taking-a-break/

 

I once had a discussion with a porn star about this and he was locked into the business when all his potential employers discovered his past and refused to hire him. So all that college education was probably for naught. He branched into escorting as a way of supplementing his income and it would be something that he could continue doing if the studios decided that he was no longer a marketable property.

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I was recently kidding an escort about his use of fake pics in his ads. At first he denied it, but came clean when I told him a search of one of the pics showed it belonged to some minor celebrity from a reality show. The escort had no idea that one could do an internet image search.

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One Hungarian porn star who did some 50 or 60 films (that have been re-purposed and issued as "new" works, although he retired completely from the industry in 2009) tried to return to a life with a job and career (and he was smart enough to have options). Unfortunately, one of the fly-by-night companies in central Europe started using his real name on the films they re-purposed, and this would lead to photo searches and unearth his 4- or 5-year escorting career. Two years ago he undertook a very serious and difficult path towards a Masters in Accounting and Marketing in a local university (after studying hard to pass equivalency exams since he barely finished secondary school back in the day).

 

Today he is a student nearing the completion of his BS and is also a notable and successful boxer, and lately has found a girl friend who suits his interests (so, my supposition is that he has now moved over from Gay or Bi-curious, to Hetero -- nothing all that unique for guys from central Europe).

 

I do hope he can somehow live without threat of the past ever being exposed, for his own sake. He was one of the best escorts I ever met and hired, and was a wonderful friend too. I wish him well.

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Guest borger1582
Plus, I don't see the need to know every time a friend of a friend of a friend burps or has a case of diarrhea.

 

LOL whipped guy - almost de-friended a grammar school friend because LITERALLY every time her comments popped up on facebook, it was excruciating detail about her dogs' various gastrointestinal issues and the resulting messes at their home . . .

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