Many people hate real life. By that I mean, people create a new identity online to satisfy what “real” life doesn’t provide. For some, it’s purely entertainment, others it’s a sense of community, for yet more it’s escapism. For many, it’s a combination of all that. You’d think that after indexing 6 billion pages, Google would understand that the reasons for creating an identity online is as complex as the identity we create for ourselves in any medium. So why are we limited to connecting via our real name? Security is a common pushback from Google – but there’s many people I only know online, I would like to maybe connect with them using Google+, but I’m not going to be able to. I don’t know their real names. I’m entirely fine with that. Some of these people I’ve “known” for well over a decade. In fact I trust them.
I really liked the article at Boing Boing about pseudonymous posting and why it matters – the comments are even more illustrious of the issue. So inferring what we know about what Google knows, doesn’t it make sense that Google is insisting on real names is based on something else other than security? Perhaps it’s more about data mining – which has been Google’s strength and main asset since day one. It’s also an easy way to validate ranking through what’s being shared on the platform.