When the "preferred name" is used, can we drop the middle initial? [closed]

+11 votes
My name is Robert Keith Hathaway but I go by Keith so it is indicated as preferred.  This looks nice in most places showing just "Keith Hathaway", but on my profile page it says "Keith K Hathaway" in public view.  Outsiders searching might have a harder time finding me or think it's not me when they do.

Can we fix it so that when a preferred name is chosen the middle initial is dropped from display?

Thank you for your consideration and efforts...very appreciated!
WikiTree profile: Keith Hathaway
closed with the note: Was a misunderstanding, clarification received :)
in WikiTree Tech by Keith Hathaway G2G6 Pilot (608k points)
closed by Keith Hathaway
Keith, that's a long-standing problem, and I thought it had been fixed a year or so ago.  I have a number of ancestors whose middle name is the preferred name, and I haven't seen the problem in a while.  I can find you by searching for either Keith or Robert, and I'm not seeing "Keith K." in the search results.  I don't know if there could be some glitch in the way the data is entered on your profile, but double-check that.
One work-around is to put both first and middle name in the first name field.
Putting the first and middle name in the first name field is NOT the correct thing to do.

1 Answer

+5 votes
Best answer
Hi Keith,

There's a little information about this on https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Help:Name_Displays

You can see the way any person's name will display in various contexts by clicking "Name Displays" in the profile pull-down menu. Yours is https://www.wikitree.com/treewidget/Hathaway-1200/1001

The headline of your profile should be displaying the way you like, but yes, the "long name - private" version that appears at the top of the left column does include the middle initial. I think in most cases it helps, even though in some cases it hurts. It's a compromise.

Note that this problem should just be on private profiles. On public profiles we can show the full middle name.

by Chris Whitten G2G Astronaut (1.4m points)
selected by Keith Hathaway
Chris, in a case where middle name is the preferred name, why couldn't he simply be shown as "R. Keith Hathaway"?  It doesn't seem that it would be hard to do, and I can't see any privacy conventions or rules that are being violated.

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