Google+ Nymwars – On How to Fear a Name

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If you are using the Google+ social network, then you probably have heard the stories of people having their Google+ accounts, along with all their other Google accounts, locked. This has caused quite a stir throughout the internet as well as causing a lot of fear and speculation.

I’m one of those people who is afraid. I have a secret you see. Mandy isn’t really my name. Legally it is Amanda. But I’m not very fond of that name and I hardly use it at all. I did think about changing it legally to Mandy when I changed my name after I was married, but opted not to. And obviously the Chaos part of my name is also not a legal name.

When I first joined Google+, I had my Chaos in front of my real name. There are a lot of people who just know me as Chaos Mandy, and I figured that it would be an easy way to let people know it is me. After the news came out of people having name issues, I quickly changed it. I’m not so concerned about getting blocked out of Google+, but I am concerned that it would translate to my Gmail account which is my main email.

There is a lot of concern due to pen names, using maiden names and even using common nicknames like my Mandy. Google did put out a statement that they would going to warn people and then give them four days to fix their name in Google+. Despite this, there are still reports of people getting banned from their Google services without a grace period.

For me, it’s really disappointing because Google+ is really a great social networking site. But I think all of this name drama is going to make people be wary about even trying it.

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