Tag: Kade Dworkin

  • How To Legally Change Your Name in Arizona

    What Will Jason's New Last Name Be? (Used with permission from jasonsadler.com)
    What Will Jason’s New Last Name Be? (Used with permission from jasonsadler.com)

    I have two friends who have alter egos: Evo Terra and Kade Dworkin. These are not their real legal names, but they have act as if they could be. I know what both of their legal names are, but I’ve never used them. Funny enough, when they selected their alter egos, neither one gave themselves a middle name so I had to make them up for when I get frustrated with them. As far as I know, Evo and Kade and have no intention of legally changing their names to their alter ego, but how hard would it be if they did?

    We’re given names a birth, but if you’re not happy with it, there’s no reason why you have to be stuck with it. On the documentary Trekkies, they featured a Star Trek fan who legally changed his name to James Tiberius Kirk. Allegedly, there’s a bartender in Tucson who legally changed his name to God. And last year, my friend Jason auctioned off his last name for $45,500 and legally changed his name from Jason Sadler to Jason Headsetsdotcom. And he just announced that he’s doing it again.

    Jason's Driver's License Before and After (Used with permission from jasonsadler.com)
    Jason’s Driver’s License Before and After (Used with permission from jasonsadler.com)

    So what do you do if you want to join the ranks of people who picked their own name. In Arizona the process is pretty simple. All it takes is paperwork, money, and a court hearing.

    The paperwork to legally change your name in Arizona is available online in the court’s Self-Service Center, and it’s super simple. You have to provide your current contact information, your birthdate and birth place, whether you’ve been charged or convicted of a felony, what you want your new name to be, and why you want to change your name.

    Once you complete the forms, you have to file them in a court in your county and pay the $319 filing fee. The clerk will give you a court date for your hearing. Yes, you have to appear before a judge to change your name.  How long you have to wait for a hearing date depends on how busy the court is, so you may want to call the courthouses in your county and file your paperwork at the court that can get you the earliest date. If the court suspects you’re changing your name for fraudulent reasons, they may require you to submit a set of fingerprints for a  background check.

    Your hearing will probably be a straight-forward event. The judge may ask you why you want to change your name, but as long as it sounds like a legitimate reason and you didn’t apply to change your name to something that includes profanity, a name that’s not made up of letters (i.e., the artist formerly known as Prince), or something along those lines, the court will probably approve it. There are many reasons why you might want to change your name – you got divorced and want your maiden name back, you never liked your birth name, changing your name would give you a professional advantage, etc. Since you’re an adult, it’s unlikely that anyone would contest your name change even if they oppose it.

    Given what celebrities are allowed to name their kids, you have a lot of leeway when it comes to selecting your new name. There have been some pretty awesome and pretty ridiculous legal name changes allowed by the courts.

    When the court approves your name change, it will give you a court order for it. With that, the Social Security Office will issue you a new social security card with your new name on it. Once you have your social security card, you can get your new driver’s license. You can use your new social security card and driver’s license to update all your other accounts – bank accounts, credit cards, utilities, loans, gym membership, your employee file at work, etc.

    So that’s how you change your name – pretty simple and straight-forward. If you want to chat with me about this or any other topic, you can connect with me TwitterGoogle+FacebookYouTubeLinkedIn, or you can email me.
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  • Social Media Policies That Every Company Needs

    Texting by Joi Ito
    Texting by Joi Ito

    This post was originally published on The Undeniable Ruth in January 2011. 

    Last weekend I attended a talk by Kade Dworkin to business students on social media strategies for companies. Kade seems to have read every book on this topic and knows the heavy hitters in this area. He suggested that every company have two social media policies.

    Social Media Policy for Employees
    Is an employee allowed to say who their employer is on their blog? What about their Twitter profile? Is there anything wrong with an employee tweeting out, “Grrr…some days I hate my job” or “My clients are making me crazy?” If there are no rules about what employees can and can’t say online when they’re on their own time, you really can’t get mad at them for what they say, unless there is a blatant violation of client confidentiality or a disclosure of a trade secret. It’s disturbing that only 29% of employers have social media policies. Being active on social media sites is part of doing business today, and if you don’t have a social media policy for employees, you’re asking for trouble.

    Social Media Crisis Response Policy
    I had never heard this before, but it makes perfect sense. In the past, a company had more time before a bad review is disseminated via newspapers and word of mouth. Now, a bad review can be spread across the internet in a matter of minutes. While a company should hope and work towards providing exceptional goods and services all the time, there will always be individuals who are not happy. When that happens, it’s critical that the company has a plan in place on how it will respond. The company should already have action plans for dealing with the worst case scenarios that might occur. Additionally, Kade suggested that whoever is in charge of social media should have a strong relationship with the company’s legal department to avoid any major missteps.

    Recall the fiasco that occurred after Amy’s Baking Company got a bad review on Yelp. The main issue wasn’t that a customer was unhappy, but that the owner did a horrible job responding to the bad review. It’s hard for an owner to get a bad review about their staff and service, and it’s critical that the response be one that attempts to resolve the problem privately and show that the company is customer-focused. In this case, the owner’s response caused irreparable harm to their and their restaurant’s reputation. Many people who read the review and the owner’s response said that they will never patronize that restaurant in the future. I have never been to Amy’s and now given the choice, I’ll go somewhere else.

    Kade also suggested that companies never let an intern be in charge of social media because it’s important that whoever is in charge is someone who can make decisions on the fly to resolve problems. This should occur within 30 minutes, not in a few days. A fast and effective response can do as much to bolster a company’s reputation as providing exceptional service.