Facebook tries pretty hard to stay away from controversy that could mar its good name. When there is controversy, they do everything they can to fix it. One of the things they have fixed? The controversial policy that requires users to use their real names on the website has gotten a bit of an update.
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While the social media giant won't change its policy, according to a statement, they will allow users to explain why they aren't using their own name. They can flag down the Facebook review team so that they can look at each case individually. It will also require anyone who submits a report about a fake name to explain why they believe the name to be fake - they used to be able to just report the profile.
The policy was put in place so that people could "feel safe and be confident they know who they are communicating with," according to the statement. It also makes it more difficult for users to anonymously bully and harass others.
However, the policy ran into problems when transgender people and drag performers, among others, wanted to use names that reflected their gender identity but didn't match with their given or legal names.
There were other people who didn't want to be found - victims of stalking and domestic abuse that didn't want to risk being found on Facebook, no matter what privacy settings they used.
Facebook has issued an apology and lengthy statement from the company's chief product officer, Chris Cox, promising to "fix the way this policy gets handled" but didn't provide specifics on how it would do so.
The aim of the new system is to make the experience more "compassionate and easier to navigate," for people who do have to use it, but the name policy itself will remain in place.
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"We’re firmly committed to this policy, and it is not changing," said Justin Osofsky, vice president of global operations, and Todd Gage, product manager, in the statement issued Tuesday. "However, after hearing feedback from our community, we recognize that it’s also important that this policy works for everyone, especially for communities who are marginalized or face discrimination."