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    Yahoo Info Center > Yahoo > Choosing an Online ID with Your Child
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    Choosing an Online ID with Your Child

    Everyone using Yahoo should create a Yahoo ID — a unique user name that provides access to the many useful and fun products that Yahoo offers. Even if you’re under 18, you need an ID.

    You can get creative when you choose your ID. Maybe make a user name out of an inside joke in your family or something only you would know. That's cool – it’s safer when your ID is a little mysterious. Remember, this is how the online community will see you, so let them wonder. You don't want strangers to know too much about you just from seeing your ID.

    Online IDs often say something about the person behind them, so think twice about what you’re willing to share with the world. For example, the name "Butterflyfan" says that the person likes butterflies. No problem! That makes it harder for a random stranger to pick out one fan of butterflies from the millions of others online.But the name "Butterflies4Jane" is less safe. It gives strangers your name, which they could use to start a conversation and fake that they know you.

    Play it safe and leave out the following personal information:

    • First and last name
    • Address
    • Phone numbers
    • School name
    • The names of parents and siblings

    Instead, try IDs with these kinds of words:

    • Colors– blueskies123, greenfrog8
    • Animals– leapinglizard, flyinghorse
    • Musicians– aliciakeysrocks, nomorehanson
    • Sports– soccerchamp, cartwheel44
    • Games– ps3isthebest, chessking

    Think twice about posting a photo of yourself as your online display image, icon, ID, or profile area. Photos can clearly identify people and even their whereabouts. If you have a photo of yourself wearing a school sweatshirt, for example, or showing a favorite hangout, strangers easily find you in real life. For extra caution, why not use an avatar as your online picture.

    An avatar is a custom cartoon character that can represents you on your Yahoo Profile, Messenger, and other Yahoo sites. A Yahoo Avatar is a character you personalize and use when IMing, posting to message boards, and doing other stuff online. By changing hairstyles, clothes, accessories, and backgrounds, you can create your own persona in the place of a real, identifiable photo. This helps you stay more anonymous so not everyone can see into your online life.

    Remember that you want an onilne ID and image that are not too revealing but fun to use on Yahoo.

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