Google+ has decided to ban the use of pseudonyms and nicknames in place of real names. In response to feedback though, users will not be immediately suspended for violating Google’s Common Names Policy.
The change comes weeks after Google came under fire for suspending countless accounts that violated its Common Names Policy. The policy, designed to fight spam and prevent the creation of fake profiles, suspended several high-profile users for using their commonly-known pseudonyms instead of their real names. It resulted in a firestorm of criticism and questions about potential safety issues.
That hasn’t stopped Google from deciding to eliminate the use of pseudonyms on its social network. Google+ Product Manager Saurabh Sharma explained that the decision was made “to make connecting with people on the web more like connecting with people in the real world” on Google+.
Sharma also announced a change though — instead of immediately suspending accounts in violation of the policy, the company will be giving users a four day grace period to fix their profile names before they’re suspended.
“During this period, you can continue to use Google+ as usual,” Sharma said. “We’re hoping that most affected users will be able to quickly fix their profile name while continuing to enjoy all that Google+ has to offer.”