After almost three years of launching Google+, Google has now announced that it lifts restrictions on the usernames. Earlier when you had to create a Google+ account you have to use your real name. Google+ had the so-called “real name policy” where pseudo-names were not allowed for Google+ profiles.
While it is still a good thing to use real identity in your Google+ profile, some users might not want to use their real names – when participating in controversial or NSFW discussions, real names could be a concern for some users. In this case, you can now take advantage of the fake user names.
In an announcement blog post, Google has apologised for “unnecessary difficult experiences” caused by the real name policy that was in effect earlier.
“When we launched Google+ over three years ago, we had a lot of restrictions on what name you could use on your profile. This helped create a community made up of real people, but it also excluded a number of people who wanted to be part of it without using their real names… we hope that today’s change is a step toward making Google+ the welcoming and inclusive place that we want it to be.”
The real name policy was put in place to ensure the quality of the platform. Spam, duplicate accounts and fake accounts can be totally eliminated right off the bat (unlike Facebook!).
Also when it comes to discussion, trolls and spam comments remained very minimal since people would hesitate to spam the platform and ruin their reputation if their profile has their real name. Now, lifting this could mean more spam.
In fact, I am not sure if this will really benefit real users since it is almost 3 years and those who wanted to have presence in Google+ will already have an established “real” profile. Those who found it difficult could have established themselves elsewhere! This move by Google could therefore open doors to spam users. Let’s wait and see.