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Real Names as an ACP option for Display Names

KT Walrus

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I suggested this a couple years back, but nothing was really done to improve support for sites that want to use real names instead of aliases.

I think it is time for IPS to implement first class support for Real Names as an ACP option in the suite. Sites like Facebook have made it acceptable to use your real name on many sites that offer to publish posts or send messages to others on the site. In fact, encouraging users to use real names on a site often results in a more civil discussion where users can't hide behind an anonymous alias to post.

IPS4 probably can't enforce real names, but a site's admin could require real names at sign up and challenge any names they think might be false (e.g. Mickey Mouse).

So, I am requesting the following changes:

  1. Option in ACP to interpret Display Names as Real Names.
  2. The Display Name entered on the registration page would not have to be unique. Therefore, login pages should only support login by email address if Real Names are enabled.
  3. The Display Name entered should be a full name which is parsed into first name, last name, and name suffix parts (using a PHP name parser along the lines of this github project).
  4. The members record should be extended for the various name parts and a column for sorting names ("last, first" in most western countries). If you want to support sorting by geolocation (some countries sort by a different order of the name parts), that would be okay to but not necessary for my sites.
  5. Over time, the various templates in the suite, especially the email templates and other pages meant to be seen by only the user, would use the user's first name instead of their Display Name (e.g. "Hello Kevin!").
  6. User advanced searches could have separate fields for first name and last name searching (in addition to the Display Name field searches) so users could list all members that have the last name "Smith" or first name "Kevin".

I have already made some of these changes for my site, but it would be better if Real Names (as an ACP option) where supported throughout the suite (including core modules/templates). I don't think full builtin support for Real Names would be that complicated for IPS devs to add to IPS4.

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