Website Income

Alias – What Are Your Thoughts?

In 2012 I decided to document my journey of building up one of my online businesses and this site was born.

At the time I was working hard as an Engineer/Manager at a large Oil and Gas company and I didn’t want anyone there knowing I was grinding 3-4hrs/night building up my online businesses.

So I had a problem…use my real name or an alias.

I would be interested to hear feedback from the many long-time readers… apologies if anyone feels tricked!

Until I was 0% in my career I wanted to give and appear to be 110% there.

As my wife likes to remind me… I suck at lying because my memory is so bad I forget even the simplest of white lies. I almost revealed twice I was about to propose to her the day I did…I moved up the timeline so I didn’t reveal it.  

So I needed a simple solution to an alias that had everything about me being true but not as easily traced back to my employer.

So everything I have ever shared is accurate with the exception of my last name.

Haver no more… real name is Jon Gillham… but everything else is the exact same!

An Alias – NOT Alter Ego

If you haven’t seen Terry Gene Bollea talk about his alter-ego/alias Hulk Hogan it is pretty hilarious and recommended. I am sure if I had planned to create an alter-ego/alias it would have been a more exciting mystery man then a spreadsheet and systems loving family man who builds online businesses!  My point is it is not an alter-ego only a last name change.

Alias (everything but my passwords shared)…

Not Alter Ego…

So… Why Share Now?

I have my most ambitious project ever underway which has been going on behind the scenes for a while involving 5 new in house staff/co-founders including one who co-founded and sold a Digital Advertising Network which sold to Google for $xx,xxx,xxx!

My plans for a long time have been to untangle the alias as I have always had some anxiousness about having the alias and explaining to people in person my last name is Gillham not Haver.

Now is as good a time as any to make this change!

What is the new project?

I have eluded to it a few times throughout the year about a bigger project in the online space and we are very close to being able to share more details. Blockchain technology is one of those things that once you grasp it you realize it is going to change everything (especially disrupt middle-men).

A team has come together around a unique application of blockchain technology and applying some business model innovation to take a GIANT swing at the most interesting problem I have ever tackled. Our development team is working away and the alpha version is closing in on being done with more details to follow.

There are few times in life where the idea/team/resources/skill-set & opportunity all align and I am excited to see what we can do!

If you are interested in projects in the crypto/blockchain space feel free to contact me and I can share more details.


Does this change anything here?

Nope – same spreadsheet, data, systems and online business building focus moving forward!  AuthorityWebsiteIncome (although I am not a fan of the name) is a ton of fun to geek out on projects and try to provide some useful guides to people building online businesses.

About the Author Jon

I am a 33 year old husband, father of 3, engineer and a huge fan of developing systems to build useful and profitable websites. The reason I build online businesses is to provide financial independence for my family and yours AND so I can spend time outside skiing and biking with my family.
Jon Gillham, Online Entrepreneur

Leave a Comment:

Nick says October 10, 2017

Long time reader and follower here, using an alias doesn’t change anything for me, I actually think it’s the smart thing to do if you are employed somewhere else, as it allows you more freedom to speak your mind and share things without worrying how that would be perceived by your employer or other colleagues.

Best of luck with your crypto-project, curious to see what that will be when you decide to make it public.

    Jon says October 10, 2017

    Thanks Nick, again especially coming from someone who I have done business with (purchased Ferzy to bring in-house for for now). Yah I am glad I did it at the time but also happy to be untangling the mess and being done with it. Yah excited to share more details!

Ray says October 10, 2017

John, I’ve struggled with the same thing too. Knowing you real last name doesn’t change anything. A good person is always a good person no matter what the last name is. Best of luck on your new project.

    Jon says October 10, 2017

    Thanks Ray, appreciate that especially coming from someone who we have done some business together (I purchased one of Ray’s sites).

Ray says October 11, 2017

Yes, John did and I highly recommend selling to him if you have an asset that he may be interested in. Great communication, and simply awesome to deal with.

Clare says October 11, 2017

Hi Jon, what’s in a name, as Shakespeare once wrote 🙂 An alias is a smart move, moonlighting worries most companies – even if it’s okayed in their contracts. Looking forward to updates on the crypto project. Cheers

    Jon says October 11, 2017

    Thanks Clare, excited to share details there… some big stuff is happening and the team working it is very impressive.

Loretta says October 11, 2017

Your reason for using an alias is totally understandable. I think it’s even common these days. A lot of people have online side gigs that they want to keep separate from their day job life or sometimes even from their family life. Everything is so searchable and public all the time, it’s hard to get that little bit of privacy otherwise.

    Jon says October 11, 2017

    yah especially with the monthly reports I share that is info I don’t really feel comfortable friends I am going for a bike road with knowing…I hope there will still be some seperatioin from online world to real world or I might change my monthly reports.

Max says October 11, 2017

Long time reader here too. Your email brought me here.
I want to comment because this post caught my attention. For me it’s the opposite thing, I’m using my real name on my blog for years and I’m thinking about switching to an alias.

You explained that your reason was the anxiousness about explaining to people what your real name is.
I start to feel anxious too, but for the opposite reason: my real name is now fully tied to my website and to my niche. Its now difficult to change it, and to update all the online profiles. Also, people may feel I am not that “expert” in the niche since I am doing different things (having nothing in common). I can still use an alias for the new blogs, but the company info and other online profiles cannot be aliased easily. Even more when many websites I do not own already tied my name to my niche…Would love to read your opinion on this.

With that being said, it also looks a little suspicious to me that you change your name publicly just because of anxiousness with real life people. To me it looks normal to tell real life people you use an alias. Now it makes me also wonder if ‘Jon’ is your real first name or ‘John’?

    Jon says October 11, 2017

    Hi Max, yah I get that and if I was to start a brand new site in a random niche I might consider an alias again and definitely if it was going to not be “me” like it is here. haha yah its Jon not John.

Vince says October 11, 2017

Totally understand and I do the same thing. Curious if anyone you knew ever stumbled across your site and recognized the picture?

    Jon says October 11, 2017

    Hi Vince, it happened 3 times over the 5 years (that I know of). Once after I had left someone contacted me saying they stumbled onto me.

Terry says October 12, 2017

Hey Jon, I reckon if the last name is all you changed for your alias, thats pretty good going, I don’t have a problem with it!
I’ve been trying to do stuff online, mainly on Amazon, for the last 1.5 years whilst doing a day job and I just use my first name only at the moment.
I’m at a point now on my next step where I really need to get into a much better web presence and I’m thinking I use my wife’s family name as my last name and keep the photo and content as me anyhow… Reading you announce this makes me feel this is a good path to go.
So I guess the curious question from me is, how did you land on Haver and what do you (and others) think of using a name that is very closely related to who you actually are?

    Jon says October 24, 2017

    Hi Terry, I picked Haver because there was no other Jon Haver that I could find online as I didn’t want to impact anyone… for example if there was an author “Jon Haver” and I started using that alias then it would have potentially hurt their business a tiny amount which wouldn’t have been cool. Regarding why pick a name that is so close to mine…I did that to keep it easy to remember.

Filip Zafirovski says October 17, 2017

Thanks for the share Jon!

Which business would be an exception to alias’?

Dave says October 22, 2017

I kind of liked the Haver dude, but I guess you’ll do.

You may have some unique insights on this, but I’d guess several of the other ‘names’ in this space doe the same thing… and all for good reasons.

Thanks for your candor and best of luck moving forward. And yeah, I’d love to learn more about the new opps


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