Thursday, July 28, 2011

Google+: Why... So... Serious??

I just tried to use Google's +1 feature, but inexplicably saw red, an exclamation point icon appeared instead of the usual cheerful blue +1. Upon clicking this, I was greeted with the following:
Your profile is currently suspended
Until your profile is unsuspended, you will be unable to create +1's.


Initially this smacked of the kind of shit I've experienced on Yahoo Answers, where a profile you might invest a lot of time and effort in gets suspended because you post a controversial answer that a bunch of people dislike and report to indulge their passive aggressive tendencies. A closer look at my profile revealed this additional clarification.
Your profile is suspended

After reviewing your profile, we determined that the name you provided violates our Community Standards.

If you believe that your profile has been suspended in error, please provide us with additional information via this form, and we will review your profile again.

Google's rules provided this additional tidbit:
Display Name
To help fight spam and prevent fake profiles, use the name your friends, family, or co-workers usually call you. For example, if your full legal name is Charles Jones Jr. but you normally use Chuck Jones or Junior Jones, either of these would be acceptable.

Google+ is still being tested so to me this is no biggie, but it is an annoyance. Some people might not want to use their real name, some might want to create a profile with a fake name for their cat, dog, business, narwhal, whatever.

They have provided the option to provide optional verification in the form of a photo ID...

Additional Verification Information (Optional Section)

Attach a copy of your ID with your name and photo clearly visible. You can block out other personal information. Your ID will only be used to verify your name and will be deleted after review.

I chose not to pursue this option, since I know who I am and I feel Google needn't know more than whom I've presented through my online persona. Facebook, certainly, doesn't mind...

Hopefully Google will unclench their social networking buttcheeks and let people have some latitude in terms of naming their profiles.

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