Feeds

Google+ lets in nicknames, slams door on plebs' pseudonyms

Please, do tell the nice ad giant even more about yourself

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Google has very slightly tweaked its naming policy for Google+ by allowing nicknames to be displayed alongside an individual's real identity on the social network.

But the company is still largely refusing to listen to those users who want to remain anonymous on that service.

The Chocolate Factory's product veep Bradley Horowitz claimed that the ad broker was moving "toward a more inclusive naming policy for Google+" by allowing people to add nicknames to their accounts.

However, the minor change continues to block out many users who want to sign into the network with a pseudonym.

It would seem that the addition of nicknames is intended to somewhat relax the rigidness of Google+ signups. And the timing of the tweak is hardly surprising, given that it comes after the company began slotting "social results" directly into its search engine.

Horowitz reckoned that the "vast majority of users sail through" the process for creating new accounts for Google products.

He claimed that "only about 0.1 per cent [of the internet giant's userbase] submit name appeals."

The Google wonk said that 60 per cent of those users want the ability to add nicknames. Another 20 per cent try to set up Google profiles as a business page. The final 20 per cent want to - as Horowitz puts it - "use a pseudonym or another unconventional name".

That final bunch of users are continuing to be ignored by Google, unless they can prove that their pseudonymous ID is well known.

"Today we’re pleased to be launching features that will address and remedy the majority of these issues. To be clear - our work here isn’t done, but I’m really pleased to be shipping a milestone on our journey," Horowitz added.

His comments are unlikely to silence the critics who oppose Google's stiff naming policy, however.

Users on Google+ can now clumsily add nicknames to be displayed alongside their real identity.

Sadly, my passport does NOT state Vulture in the middle of my name

Horowitz added that "established pseudonyms" such as +trench coat and +Madonna would be supported on Google+.

Google will, of course, police who can use which ID, however.

"If we flag the name you intend to use, you can provide us with information to help confirm your established identity," Horowitz said, who also pointed to an article on Google's support forum.

He added that Google wants proof of that ID being referenced "offline in print media", or via "scanned official documentation" such as a passport or driving licence. "An established identity online with a meaningful following" will also be granted a special pass from the Chocolate Factory. ®

Meanwhile on Twitter: follow kellyfiveash.

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Mighty Blighty broadbanders beg: Let us lay cable in BT's, er, ducts
Complain to Ofcom that telco has 'effective monopoly'
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?