Better Look Elsewhere If You Want to Be a Creepy Stalker on Google+

It looks like Google is attempting to make users honest on the Internet, or at least with its emerging Google+ social networking service. The company says that users are obliged to use their real names when signing up for the service, and pseudonyms, avatars, and aliases can only be used in the secondary position when signing up for a profile on Google+.

News of Google forcing a user to use their real name comes shortly after the search giant had issued a mandate requiring Google+ profiles to be public as no private profiles are allowed. Google is maintaining its position with the real name situation, as it had with public profiles, that the move was made to make it easier to find people online. As a nascent social network where discovery is important, Google probably wants it to be one where users are trusted, social, and will add value, hence attracting more users.

According to Business Insider, a Second Life user had tried to use his Second Life pseudonym, but Google had cancelled his account when he attempted to do so and then asked him to create a profile using his real name in the primary position, while allowing him to add his pseudonym in the secondary position.

If you’re looking to leverage the Google+ network for nefarious activities, you better look elsewhere because Google will know who you really are!

Comments

  1. Udge says

    “Nefarious activities” is a red herring. There are plenty of legitimate reasons for using a pseudonym, for example because it’s the name you are known under (e.g. Christo or Mark Twain) or because you are hiding from a RL stalker who has threatened your childrens’ lives. Think again, please, google.

  2. Randall Jacques says

    So according to your title and the last sentence you are implying that anyone who uses a pseudonym, specifically a Second Life avatar name, is a creepy stalker looking to pursue nefarious activities? Mr. Nguyen you seem ignorant of the facts. Please do investigating yourself instead of regurgitating someone else’s news stories and adding your own negative bias.

  3. Randall Jacques says

    So according to your title and the last sentence you are implying that anyone who uses a pseudonym, specifically a Second Life avatar name, is a creepy stalker looking to pursue nefarious activities? Mr. Nguyen you seem ignorant of the facts. Please do investigating yourself instead of regurgitating someone else’s news stories and adding your own negative bias.

  4. Anonymous says

    How cute! Nevermind that anyone can be a “creepy stalker” by simply setting a name that looks “normal enough” to straightlaced, average, boring geeks.

    Google does not do anything to verify or authenticate *anyone* by default. They won’t be paying any attention to the legions of John Smiths and Sally Mays on G+, even though there’s nothing at all to say those are actually real people. They just *sound* more normal than what the unthinking would presume was one ‘o them “Internet Screen Names I dun heard about from the Americas Onlines.”

    Authenticity and accountability are measured in social capital, not in whether a name matches that on a government issued ID. Facebook was not geared towards this because Facebook’s average customer were naive people who could barely turn a computer on, much less had or would ever take control of their personal information or identity on the Internet. (It worked out great for all the people who’s lives Facebook helped destroy. Stalkers ahoy! Thar be easy marks ahead!)

  5. Anonymous says

    How cute! Nevermind that anyone can be a “creepy stalker” by simply setting a name that looks “normal enough” to straightlaced, average, boring geeks.

    Google does not do anything to verify or authenticate *anyone* by default. They won’t be paying any attention to the legions of John Smiths and Sally Mays on G+, even though there’s nothing at all to say those are actually real people. They just *sound* more normal than what the unthinking would presume was one ‘o them “Internet Screen Names I dun heard about from the Americas Onlines.”

    Authenticity and accountability are measured in social capital, not in whether a name matches that on a government issued ID. Facebook was not geared towards this because Facebook’s average customer were naive people who could barely turn a computer on, much less had or would ever take control of their personal information or identity on the Internet. (It worked out great for all the people who’s lives Facebook helped destroy. Stalkers ahoy! Thar be easy marks ahead!)

  6. Bill Humphries says

    Hey Nguyen, you just completed a row on your bingo card, http://geekfeminism.org/2011/07/08/anti-pseudonym-bingo/, please go up front to collect your prize. 

  7. Nomad of Norad says

    The irony is, a good way to stop cyberstalkers is to use a nick rather than your given name, because it makes it harder for those who want to cyberstalk you to find you in meatspace.

  8. Paul Johnson says

    Never mind Facebook expects and enforces this, too, as does any other site that doesn’t want to be infested with trolls and go into the wasteland of forgotten websites.  LiveJournal and MySpace didn’t do this, and look where they are today!

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