what’s in a name?

A lot of people ask me why I choose to write my full name, david wolfpaw, in all lowercase. I kind of ramble through various thoughts when it is brought up, and I figured it’s time to have a short page devoted to that question.

There are several reasons that I choose to lowercase my full name. I first came to the concept from several writers whose work that I appreciate, including danah boyd and bell hooks.

Like them, I want to de-center myself a bit. It is simply a name, and it holds no special power over me directly (sorry fae folk!) It is not valuable to me in a way that I need to cherish or treasure it as Very Important through capital letters.

I want to remain informal and accessible. And I already enjoy breaking conventions when it feels right, like starting a sentence with a conjunction. removing that capitalization, both from my name and the start of some sentences just feels more stream-of-conscious and digital to me. Most platforms still only store usernames lowercase, even if they allow display names to be capitalized.

If you haven’t noticed, my identity and myself are very queer. Good! I like that. I want to emphasize that all of us, behind URLs, social accounts, profile photos, and one-off posts are individuals. individuals in a vast, weird, expansive world.

Honestly, it also just looks nice to me. It is very aesthetically pleasing to see a d followed by another d, with the often symmetric v right in the middle book-ended by vowels.