General Security Tips For Posting On The SPARC Site
Some important do's and don't when posting on message boards and chat rooms.
DO NOT use your *REAL* name as your Bulletin Board or Chat Room nickname. You wouldn't believe the number of people who have sensitive ongoing legal issues that use their first and last names as their "nickname". Dumb, dumb, dumb! Don't use a nickname that your ex might recognize, either. If your name is Ted, and your friends call you "Butch", *DON'T* use "Butch" as your nickname. Pick a nickname totally unrelated to you, your real name and your life.
Don't reveal specific geographic data, ESPECIALLY if you live in a small town or sparsely populated area. There is almost NEVER a need to do this. Be suspicious if anyone seems unusually interested in the specifics of where you live. Usually all you need to let people know is what State you live in.
Don't use the real names of your friends, your ex, your children or the 'players' in your legal world. For example, how many divorcing parents do you think there are in Arizona named 'Roger' and 'Patricia' who have a 6-year old daughter named "Casey"? Darn few, that's how many. Get the idea? You'd be surprised at just how few specific details it takes to allow someone who knows you to figure out it's you.
Don't post your telephone number, address or ICQ number. Ever. Period. If you're dumb enough to post your phone number or address, you might as well post a few of your credit card numbers and PIN numbers as well. That way, when you're brought before the Court Of People Who Do Really Stupid Things, you might, just might, be able to plead a "diminished capacity" or "retard" defense and make it stick.
Be careful just how much information you disclose and how specific it is. If an ex spouse (or a friend of theirs) happens to read your post where you're telling about how you "accidentally hit a Police car and knocked it into an Exxon station, setting it on fire...", do you think he or she might recognize you? I mean, just how often do you think something like that happens? If you were to blithely blab something that out, don't be shocked if somebody recognizes you from it.
E-Mail: All the moderators on the SPARC site have e-mail accounts that you can use to reach them privately. We suggest you make yourself a free HotMail or BigFoot account to use instead of your actual personal e-mail address. If you want someone else's email address, just ask politely. The other participants on the Bulletin Boards and Chat Rooms may or may not give you their e-mail address; that decision is up to them.
Confidentiality: Be aware that all postings, chat sessions, and any other form of communication on the SPARC site is by its very nature in the public domain as an Internet web site. Although we take reasonable steps to preserve privacy, we can not guarantee the absolute confidentiality of communication or identity on the SPARC site. Communications over or through the SPARC site are not privileged, nor should they be considered so.
Finally, keep in mind that there are tens of thousands of divorces in process all the time (just in the U.S. alone). If you're reasonably careful with what you say, you shouldn't have to worry about anyone figuring out who you are. It does happen, but not often.
If you have sensitive ongoing legal issues, we suggest that you talk it over with your attorney and make sure he or she doesn't have a problem with any information you may choose to reveal.