Google Plus relaxing real name policy

October 20, 2011

Google Plus is stepping back from its policy requiring users to register with their real names. The policy, which caused no small amount of controversy in the months following the social network’s limited debut, will be relaxed, Mashable reported Wednesday.

Google’s social lead Vic Gundrota told audience members at the Web 2.0 summit in San Francisco that the now-open network will “support other forms of identity” in the next few months. The report said that while the company wanted to set a real-name standard for the network at first but has come around on the issue and recognized that there are legitimate reasons to use an online pseudonym.

The requirement had prompted some backlash from users who argued that requiring real names can put political dissidents, domestic violence victims and others in danger.

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Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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