This is a pretty common question, enough that I can milk it for some blog
content. The short answer is this, I’ve been
nickelpro for as long as I’ve
been on the internet. My site is
nickel.pro got sniped
by a domain squatter before I
could get to it, back when
.pro TLDs cost waaaay too much money. The domain
has grown on me over the years, since
.pro is supposed to be for
professionals and I’ve never been much of a professional anything.
But why nickelpro?
Well, for starters, I lied! I haven’t always been
nickelpro, my first ever
handle was the much more mature and measured
ioublood. It was the most
intimidating thing my 10-year old mind could come up with back in 2004. That
tag served as my nom de guerre for pwning noobs on
It was also the tag I used when first dipping my toes in less-than-kosher online activities. No one reading this will have been involved with the Xbox 360 hacking scene back around 2009, but I was and for some reason I took pictures!
I mostly spent time hanging out in IRC
channels run by much better hackers than me, but I had a small role in popularizing
a couple hacks and if you Google “
ioublood” today you’ll find some cringey
posts of teenage me trying to pose as someone who knew a lot more than I actually
Neat, but why nickelpro?
Ben Foddy and Zach Gage gave an excellent talk at GDC this year about taking credit for your work, instead of hiding behind a studio or company name. In 2005 I was eleven years old and work attribution was of immense importance to me. Specifically, my best friend Elliot and I had been making state-of-the-art stop motion videos of our shoes walking around on their own. Magnificent stuff.
We intended to present this work to the students and faculty of Northport Middle School via the weekly student run broadcast, internet streaming before it was cool. The question arose, how should we credit ourselves? Come up with a cool production company name, or just throw our names on it? We split the difference.
Nick Elliot Productions.
In 2007 when Gmail went public I registered the username on a whim. When I outgrew
nickelpro became my persona by default.