Should I make my domain registration private?
When you register a domain, you can choose to make your contact information public or private but what are the advantages and disadvantages to this?
When you register a domain name, whether or not it's a personal or business site, you're asked to provide personal information. You can either publicly register the domain, which is what most people do, or you can privately register it. A public registration allows for anyone on the web to do a WHOIS search for any domain names you own, and the search results will return your street address, e-mail address, name, and any other information you've entered in. A private registration hides all of that information, but it can have certain drawbacks as well.
What is the advantage?
Private registration was designed to protect your personal information, so if you don't want any spam, it's a great way to prevent it.
What are the drawbacks of private domain registration?
Depending upon what you're using the domain name for, there are different pitfalls. If it's a business website, then it's a drawback because that's one less contact point. If you're just using it for a personal page, though, it obviously protects you from spam e-mails and people harassing you to sell your domain to them. For domain resellers, private registration can put you out of business because others will have a hard time getting in contact with you to buy your domain.
Regardless of the use, private registration could have a negative impact on SEO or get your site blacklisted. Combined with other red-flags, you can be labeled as a troublemaker. Also, human-reviewed web directories may be wary of adding you if you're not publicly registered.