Why Do We Need to Know Carpe Donktum's Real Name?

I write under a dumb pseudonym, even though my real name hasn’t been a secret for almost a decade. (Seriously. Go look.) This is mainly due to inertia, I suppose. Using a pen name has worked so far, sort of, so why change things now? Plus, it’s always funny when some silly goose decides he doesn’t like me and starts using my real name as a super-sick #own. But mainly, in this era when everybody’s ready to dox each other at the drop of a tweet, there’s no reason to make things any easier for the roaming outrage mob.


So I’m sympathetic to the plight of the man who calls himself Carpe Donktum. While I’m not the world’s biggest Trump fan — sorry, snowflakes! — I have enjoyed some of the resulting memes. Every court needs a jester, and Mr. Donktum is Trump’s.

Here are a few of his recent efforts:

I get a kick out of this stuff. I don’t have to vote for the guy to enjoy the work of his fans, do I? If that makes me a Nazi, I guess I’m a Nazi.

Of course, this is no laughing matter if you’re a Democrat. Hate speech isn’t free speech, and it certainly isn’t satire. Who is this nefarious meme-maker? Why does he think he can get away with mocking Democrats in the United States of America? Where is the (social) justice?

So now we have “news” stories like this, courtesy of Craig Silverman and Jeremy Massler at BuzzFeed:

On Friday, the pro-Trump cable news channel One America News Network aired an interview with a man it identified as Dennis F. Charles, “a conservative social media analyst.” But that wasn’t his real name.

In the segment, he said social media companies were censoring conservatives, echoing a core message of the White House social media summit held the day before, on July 11. In fact, “Charles” was at the summit, attending under his better-known pseudonym: Carpe Donktum.


That’s right: It took two reporters to tell you that the guy who makes the funny Trump memes used a fake name on cable TV.

And according to Mr. Donktum, originally they wanted to do even more:

Now, you might say that this Donktum guy is going on cable TV and visiting the president in the Oval Office, so he’s now a public figure and his identity is fair game. I dunno, I’m struggling with that one. I can’t think of a precedent for this. Banksy is the most famous pseudonymous person I can think of, but has he ever been to the White House?

It’s not as if Mr. Donktum/Charles has a cabinet post or something. He’s just a guy who tweets memes Trump likes, and Trump wanted to meet him. Why do we need to know his real name? What do we gain? What’s the news value there?


If he thinks outing him will put his family in danger because of all the angry people who hate Trump, why shouldn’t we respect his wishes? After all, now we’ve got Antifa guys beating up reporters and trying to blow up ICE facilities. Whether you want to blame anti-Trump rhetoric or not, it’s happening. These people are violent criminals, and the one thing they hate most is being mocked.

If you don’t like this guy’s memes, block him on Twitter. Nobody’s making you consume his work. He’s not hurting anything but your feelings. Lighten up. Let Donktum be Donktum.


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