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Facebook announces update to its “real name” policy


December 22, 2015

Recently, there has been a great deal of controversy around Facebook requiring users to use their real names for their profiles. According to a statement from Facebook, users will now be able to explain a special circumstance in which they would not use their real name. The policy, as Facebook says, it meant to make people feel safe in their communication on the platform.

The criticism began last year with the argument that transgender people and drag performers, who used names that reflected their identity and not their legal name, were discriminated against. Activists took to social media using the #mynameis hashtag, saying that the policy also endangered victims of domestic violence who were keeping their legal names hidden for protection.

At the time, Facebook issued an apology saying they would fix the policy. In the past year, Facebook has given users seven days to verify or update their name if their account is reported as fake, as opposed to having their accounts deactivated on the spot. The options to verify names have also been expanded.

Read here for the full article.