It’s A New Adventure With A New Twitter Handle

Nearly three years ago, I started using the microblogging service known as Twitter and back then I was stuck on the fact that anonymity online played a big role in how “cool” you were. So compromising my need to have my “coolness” plus some recognition of who I was, I came up with the Twitter handle @kyeung808. The 808 is my homage to one of my favorite places in the world: Hawaii. It’s the area code for where I’ve spent many years and where a lot of my friends are.

But during this time of professionalism, I’ve been conflicted whether to lose this Twitter handle which, for so long, has helped create some clever ice-breakers (“What’s the 808 stand for? Oh you’re from Hawaii?”). I’ve been debating for a while about the problems it has inadvertantly created and looked at what people have told me:

  • How do you spell your Twitter handle?
  • I can never remember the number on your Twitter handle. Is it like ‘888’ or something?
  • You have a Twitter handle that’s similar to SPAM accounts.

Of course I’ve been looking at other people’s Twitter handles to find the right one for me to, essentially, “grow up” and once I found one, I looked at whether it was available. To my amusement, I found that it was not available. Any deviation of my full name or even part of my name was unavailable and Twitter’s policy of inactive user names wouldn’t offer me any immediate remedy, just long term. I suppose this is the price I pay for having a name that is probably taken by a small percentage of the Asian population in the world.

As a result of my inability to find a “professional” name, I resigned myself to keeping my existing Twitter handle for a while until I was introduced to someone recently and my handle was given out. I realized that I was embarrassed by it. Why was that? I had no idea. I loved my handle but perhaps it dawned on me that it slowly devolved from a professional handle to one of personal usage. So I decided then and there to switch my Twitter handle. And that’s where this post comes in.

Albeit it’s only for a trial period, I’ve chosen a new Twitter handle and I hope you’ll follow along on my adventures at @thekenyeung. I think it’s a little “cool”, but also gives a clear understanding of who I am when you’re following. I did keep @kyeung808 as a placeholder and should you come across that page, it will give you a message directing you to my new account. I’m hoping that people will like this new handle better than my old one, although it’s not a shnazzy ice-breaker as my old one.

So let me know what you think about my new Twitter handle: @thekenyeung

Look forward to tweeting with you.

By Ken Yeung

Ken Yeung is a journalist fascinated with the stories of the tech industry and internet culture. He's currently the Technology Editor at Flipboard, where he observes what's happening in the space while also identifying new topics of interest. In addition, he co-hosts the weekly internet show "The Created Economy," which focuses on what's happening to creators and influencers. Previously, he was a reporter for VentureBeat and The Next Web, covering tech startups, the industry's innovations and funding. Ken also has a newsletter you should also subscribe to called "Filed."