I can only get health insurance by breaking the law
I wrote an updated version of this blog post in 2016, and keep the list of f*ckups up to date there: My Name in the Modern World.
My last name is Stüvel. Apparently, this is very difficult for many programmers and testers to understand. Here are a few of the ways that my name is displayed by various applications:
- … for more, see the link above. I keep that one up to date. The story below is still relevant though, and I didn’t repeat that in the 2016 post:
Nowadays it gets so bad that I’m having trouble applying for health insurance! When applying, I have to fill in my name and other personal information on the insurer’s website. There is much money (and fraud) involved in health insurance, so they stress that you are obliged by law to correctly fill in your personal information. This is something I cannot do. When I give them “Stüvel”, they ask me to confirm that my name is “Stüvel”, which I cannot do by law. Then again, I am not allowed to give any other name than my real name, so “Stuvel” is out of the question - it is forbidden by law. In other words: I can only get health insurance by breaking the law.
Pretty please with sugar on top, accept that we live in a world that is made up of more than A-Z and design your systems for it. Unicode has been a published standard since 1991. Perhaps it’s a good idea to start using it.