Facebook is making sweeping changes to its ‘real name’ policy in the U.S., in the wake of criticism from the transgender, drag queen and drag king communities, Digital Spy reports.
The social media giant came under fire earlier this year when its attempt to cull bogus accounts resulted in many real users having their Facebook profiles deleted.
On December 15, Facebook vice president Justin Osofsky and product manager Todd Gage have unveiled a revamped ‘real names’ system that they call “more compassionate and easier to navigate”.
They explained: “Today, we will begin to test new tools that address two key goals. First, we want to reduce the number of people who are asked to verify their name on Facebook when they are already using the name people know them by.
“Second, we want to make it easier for people to confirm their name if necessary. These tools have been built based on many conversations with community leaders and safety organizations around the world.”
The first of these new tools will require anyone reporting a fake name to go through extra steps to explain why they are calling for an account deletion.
Secondly, anyone being asked to verify their name will be allowed to provide more information about their “special circumstances”.
This new ‘real names’ roll-out is currently only being trialled on a limited basis in the U.S. on desktop and mobile versions of Facebook.