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Google+ finally allows for nicknames, maiden names on profiles

A slight, yet relevant change to G+

VP of Product at Google+, Bradley Horowitz announced today that Google+ has slightly reversed their decision to only allow peoples’ real life names to be used as their profile name, excluding people who go by pseudonyms or single names (poor Cher).

Google’s social network is designed to function just like offline interactions where people use real names, and transparency reigns and while only 0.1 percent of users have submitted name appeals, the company has made some exceptions to their hardline stance against using anything but a person’s real first and last name. They have changed the policy because users either want to add a nickname (as is the case in 60 percent of name appeals), switch their name as they accidentally set up their business as a Profile rather than a Page (in 20 percent of cases), or users simply want to use a pseudonym or an unconventional name (20 percent of the time).

A common problem

In the coming week, to solve the most common problem, they will be adding support for alternative names like nicknames, maiden names or pseudonyms to be featured alongside users’ common names, using Dwane “The Rock” Johnson as an example.

To add a nickname (“The Rock”), maiden name, or pseudonym (“Jackson Real Estate Gal”), click “Edit Profile” from your Google+ options, select your name and click “More Options.”

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Google warns, however, that changing this information on Google+, it is changed across all services that require a Google Profile, so think carefully about adding additional names to your profile as they will appear across all Google services (Gmail, Google Docs, GCal, etc.) and name appeals are not instant, they can take days. Click here for the full Google+ Names Policy for questions.

Written By

Marti Trewe reports on business and technology news, chasing his passion for helping entrepreneurs and small businesses to stay well informed in the fast paced 140-character world. Marti rarely sleeps and thrives on reader news tips, especially about startups and big moves in leadership.



  1. MBR

    January 25, 2012 at 3:52 am

    Okay…so, BIG WHOOP!

    Do they allow vanity URLs yet? NO? Pointless.

    Do they allow you to solely use your nickname? NO? Pointless.

    Google. Why do you market your social network like you're on to something, when you can't make the most basic and desirable public requests a reality. Seriously, Google+…it ain't lookin' good for ya.

    And let's not even get started with your asinine YouTube user name policy!

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