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From the Grumpier Old Man: My name is NOT Bond, James Bond

It seems to be a never ending story. Despite several forum posts by various other people, as well as remarks from yours truly, people think that SDN is a large kindergarten. Not that people have to listen to me, which would be giving me too much credit.  The only thing I can dare to hope is that people will reflect upon their childish behaviour. That’s the only term I can give to people that see the need to hide themselves behind (dubious) aliases. I might be getting old and not ‘open’ to new things, but I still don’t see any reason to justify this behaviour. As Gali mentioned in one of the forums threads, SDN is a professional site and I would like to see some members of this community having a more mature attitude. Professionalism is, in my eyes, not a synonym for boring and lacking in fun, but that doesn’t need to happen anonymously while showing a white feather.

Why hide?  Is the quality of your contribution so low or the content so questionable that you don’t want to link your name to it? Are you ashamed to be an SDN member or to contribute? Why are you a member/contributor in the first place? Doesn’t your boss (or whomever) allow you to contribute (during business hours)?  Well then do it outside these hours. I also write my weblogs in my private time. There’s no reason to hide though.

Part of the problem is the registration process. All that one needs to do is to fill in a name, first name, e-mail, password and password hint in order to become an SDN member. All of these could be false. No verification at all – with direct access as bonus.

I prefer the idea used at the Service Marketplace where registration is more fraud proof  since you need to provide a customer or installation number, and generation of an userid might take up to 2 hours. Hit and run (anonymous) users are therefore less likely.  The argument is that only SAP customers and Partners can create SDN users then and others can’t reach the information.  Well that’s only true if you want to contribute. I did the test and logged off. I could access any info I wanted.

It has been said before, but why isn’t SDN adopting a Service Marketplace type of registration process? My idea is that only people with proven identity should receive a userid, although I know that this request might be a bit too expensive. At the very least one should make more contact info mandatory. One can indicate if one wants to share data or not, for privacy reasons. The fact that one doesn’t need to reregister on the SDN world map is certainly a benefit.

 Sure the hurdle might seem a bit steeper with possibly fewer members as a result. But is the focus of SDN to make converts? And is quantity more important than quality? What’s the point of having  X (non traceable) users, other than bragging of it, or of that figure being used by the afore-mentioned others?

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  • This reminds me of something which happened during the last SDN Day (or Community Day as it is called now) at Bangalore. One of my friends from a different company who was just starting to explore SAP Applications asked me “Some of my seniors have multiple SDN accounts and they have also advised me to create more than one. Do you know why?” . I didn’t know then and I still don’t know why. It beats all sane logic.
    • Hi Santosh:

      Multiple SDN accounts? To cheat maybe…Point hunters like to create fake SDN accounts so they can play that nasty game…

      Why people choose to hide they’re identity? I have heard many reasons…Not that I agree with them…

      * “My boss browses the SDN…I don’t want him to catch me”…Ok…My former boss forbids me to participate on the SDN…I didn’t pay attention to him…After some time of that…I quit…The company not SDN -:D

      * “I’m a female, so I think people is going to take me serious”…Why? There’s a lot of women here on SDN, and I haven’t seen any proof of racism…We’re are first of all “Consultants”, no matter if you are Male of Female…

      It’s time for people to get real and start using Real names…Or maybe it’s time for SDN to take some serious actions…



    • Hi Santosh,

      I can think of two reasons…
      1)If you really like the orange 1/4k T-shirt(That’s a really big “if” actually! ;-)), and if you already have one, there’s only one way to get another one… Re-register !
      2)Your senior just joined SDN, and he wants his team to help him earn some referral points, its appraisal season and his team wants to keep him happy, but they’re already on SDN… Solution? you guessed it !



      • Hi Dushyant,

        The purpose of SDN is to share information and knowledge and NOT to receive T-shirts (you can buy those things in shops) and keep your senior happy with referral points (there are more professional ways).


        • Hi Eddy,
          I agree, I just forgot the tags in my comment 🙂

          The misuse of the forums(including pseudonyms) has been a source of irritation for me, for a long time, even when there was no ABAP forum here, and when I WAS a regular poster on you can say I used to be “the grumpy old man” out there ;-)…

          I quit posting on eventually, but not before I posted this:
          Solution for a Thorny democracy
          You’ll need a membership on to read this, but not surprisingly, getting it is quick, free and easy :-p

          Dushyant Shetty

          • Yes, Dushyant, I do remember those pre-SDN days.. there used to be so many ‘Yes, I agree’ replies on those community fourms.. all to accumulate points for the monthly goodies (unlimited at that!).. eventually, the rewards program had to be stopped on account of the gross misuse.


  • There are a variety of reasons that people may wish to conceal their identity and not all of them bad. There is a long tradition in literature of using an alias – a nom de plume.

    If you think about the difficulties people have in communicating- or how that communication is perceived, it is easy to see how some people prefer a nom de plume.

    While it is true that people hide their identity in order to make ad hominem attacks, you have to consider allowing people to voice unpopular or controversial points of view without worrying how it may affect their relationships and career.

    How else do you expect Henning to be able to comment on some of these on-going discussion?

    • Bob,

      Anonymous, sneaky comments are acts that doesn’t show much courage. Is this what one wants? Ventilating to voice unpopular or controversial points of view bearing the author’s name is in my eyes a sign of maturity.


  • Hi Eddy,
    I think the registration like in the Service Marketplace is not a good idea. There are lots of people working in the SAP area without own installations. For example there are freelancer (like me), working for different customers. Why it should not be allowed for me to contribute?

    I agree if you say that contributers should use thier real name, but if you use the same registration like in the service marketplace lock out a huge group of people.

    Best regards

    • Renald,

      And how do you connect to the service marketplace then? Doesn’t SAP allow registration for partners/freelancers where an installation isn’t needed? How do you get the important info from the market place then? An installation is as such not important as long as one can prevent a registration where only a (fake) name and e-mail address is needed.


      • Eddy,
        I have access to the SAP service marketplace because one of my customers was so friendly to register me.
        I checked it again, if you want to register at the service marketplace you need a Customer or Installation Number. I don’t like the idea to ask customers if I can use their Installation Number, only to join a community like SDN. I like the idea of an open community.

        Best regards

        • Renald,

          An open community only works when the members ‘behave’ properly. Full registration can be effective means for this. The service marketplace registration can act as an example. Again, an install number is NOT a must for this.


  • Hi Eddy,

    Somewhere I have a second account, have not used it in ages tested the point system with it.

    I don’t know about my colleagues in the community  team, but when one of us posts it has a lot more weight than a member that just joined. It is also looked at more closely as to setting the tone and the rules for what is O.K. where.

    I think I would post more goofy things and be more playful if there wouldn’t be an SAP flag next to my name and a moderator M.

    Would SDN and BPX be more enjoyable, I would hope so. Would some people take it too serious? Probably. Would it make a big difference? Probably not.

    Therefor I don’t take the time, as I am behind with a couple of things already. Yes Michal, the top three per area is in the making, but first some BOF session Community Day Las Vegas information needs to get out, we have some great sessions lines up. Watch this space for the details, Mark.

    • Mark,

      As said in the weblog, there is nothing against goofy and playful things, but that doesn’t need to happen anonymously while showing a white feather. Posting things anonymously shows a lack of responsibility towards their acts.