Facebook may be holding firm to its real-name policy, but at least the social network is giving users more options when it comes to alternative names on their accounts.
The saying, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery,” does not apply in the world of applications, as the Rooms anonymous chatting app Facebook released last week raised the ire of the developers of Room, an iPhone app that debuted last month, as both apps allow users to create chat rooms and invite others to participate, without requiring real names.
How does Facebook’s real-name policy apply to joint accounts shared by both members of couples? According to a recent survey of 2,387 U.K. Internet users 18 and older by Voucher Codes Pro, 11 percent of respondents shared joint Facebook accounts with their partners.
The “anonymous chatting application“ that The New York Times’ Bits blog initially reported on earlier this month is now a reality, as Facebook introduced the latest app from its Facebook Creative Labs initiative, Rooms, a throwback to the Internet’s early days and a nod to anonymity, forums, message boards and chat rooms.
Despite posting an apology and claiming that it will “work on internal procedures,” the ripples caused by Facebook’s real-name policy spread wider and wider. More groups are being affected, and the hubbub has chummed the waters, ending in more accounts suspended in what has become a cultural cyber-war. And real-name policy is targeting the WRONG people in this reporting equation.
Despite extensive efforts by Facebook and other social networks to curb behavior such as cyberbullying and online harassment, a new survey by Pew Research Center found that malicious behavior continues to thrive on the Internet, with 73 percent of respondents having witnessed such activity and 40 percent being on the receiving end of it.
While Facebook has stuck with its policy of requiring its users’ real names, co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg mentioned in a January cover story for Bloomberg Businessweek that the social network would not require real names for the separate, stand-alone applications it was developing. Evidence of this policy shift may rear its head in the next few weeks, according to The New York Times’ Bits blog.
Blue Cross Blue Shield, meet blue thumbs up? According to a report by Reuters, Facebook is eyeing opportunities in the health-care sector, including online communities and applications.
Facebook promised to overhaul its reporting and enforcement process regarding its real-name policy in an effort to quell the controversy that erupted last month, when several drag queens and other members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community saw their accounts suspended for not using their legal names.