Google+ introduces verified accounts

Google is adding another feature that should guarantee that a Google+ profile corresponds with the actual real-life identity of a user.

“We’re starting to roll out verification badges on profiles so you can be sure the person you’re adding to a circle is who they claim to be,” wrote Google official Wen-Ai Yu. “For now, we’re focused on verifying public figures, celebrities, and people who have been added to a large number of Circles, but we’re working on expanding this to more folks.”

The verification badge will take the form of a grey checkmark positioned next to the profile name and rolling over it with the mouse will reveal the “verified name” status.

The advent of Google+ and of its “real name” requirement has been a matter of great debate on the Internet for a while now.

Google is understandably trying to replicate the model that made Facebook successful, but has been experiencing a lot of criticism from privacy advocates regarding its insistence on it and regarding the deletion on many accounts whose owners failed to provide their real name.

The issue of whether people whose life might be endangered by opening a Google+ profile in their own name should be allowed to set it up under a pseudonym is still being hotly debated online, and presumably at Google as well.

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