Woohoo! Fake Name Usage is Now Allowed on Google+

3 years ago

Admit it, you've always wanted your Google+ name to be Blueberry Sunbeam, but you're a good girl and you play by Google+'s rules, so you used your boring, everyday name when you set up your account. Well guess what, average name user? You can finally use that brilliant name that came to you in a drug-induced Burning Man haze! Google+ has lifted their rule about using actual names on your Google profile.

Bruce Clay via Flickr

According to PC World,

Google conceded Tuesday that it has also excluded people who don’t want to use their real name ... Google said Tuesday that on Google+ there were no longer restrictions on the names people could use.

I use my real name on Google because I'm just not that creative, but I know plenty of people who are using pseudonyms in order to remain more anonymous online. I'm sure I'm not the only one who sees people using their blog title as their first name or the pseudonym they use with their blog. In that way, this announcement sort of feels like your parents handing you the keys to their car after months of taking it on joyrides. It's sanctioned now by Google, and you no longer need to fear that they will shut down your account because you clearly used a fake name. But at the same time, how many people followed Google+'s rule and provided their real name when they set up their Gmail account? I would hazard a guess that while the vast majority of people entered at least the correct first name, that many skirted that rule since their account's inception.

Do you use your real name on your Google account? What do you think was the point of the rule change since using your real name has always been on the honour system?

Melissa writes Stirrup Queens and Lost and Found. Her novel about blogging is Life from Scratch.

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