The IdentityGang.org definition of Digital Subject is:
- An Entity represented or existing in the digital realm which is being described or dealt with.
As Used In Higgins
- A Digital Subject has zero or more Identity Attributes
- Some of these Identity Attributes may be what are called Subject Relationships that are references to other Digital Subjects in the same or different Contexts
- Relationship to an Entity: Although any given Digital Subject is relevant to, and exists within a given Context, a single Entity may be represented as one (or more) Digital Subject(s) in one Context and yet other Digital Subjects in another Contexts. By linking or "federating" these disparate Digital Subjects one can gain a more unified view of a given Entity. Contexts representing different systems, organizations and entire enterprises with widely varying storage and trust models are handled using this Digital Subject linking approach. For example the Entity "Bob Smith" could be represented as two Digital Subjects; the first having "bsmith" as an identifier and the second having "bob" as an identifier. These two Digital Subjects may be in the same or in different Contexts.
- Contexts can be nested (e.g. enterprises have sub-organizations, and there are systems within an enterprise/org, etc.) or related through other means (employment/HR system vs. customer system where same person is a customer and an employee). Thus linking the Digital Subjects relevant to those contexts provides an overall view of a Digital Subject (or at least a partial "overall" view to those Contexts).
- The information contained in a Digital Subject is not necessarily a pure subset of the union of all of the information contained in all of the Digital Subjects of an Entity taken together. There is no consistency constraint imposed between the Digital Subjects of an Entity. For example, a person could claim that their name was Joe in one Digital Subject and JoAnn in another.