Back when Google first launched Plus, many users—especially iOS hackers like MuscleNerd—were upset to find that their accounts were disabled since they did not register with their real names. About 3 months ago, Google finally buckled and announced that they would soon be supporting the use of “alternative forms of identity“, and today, the company has begun to roll out limited support for pseudonyms.
Listing a nickname alongside your real name is simple enough, just hit “more options” while editing your name, but, users who want to be identified solely by their nickname (for example, Madonna) will need to submit “references to an established identity offline in print media“, to avoid alternate identity theft.
Over the next week, we’ll be adding support for alternate names – be they nicknames, maiden names, or names in another script – alongside your common name. This name will show up on your Google+ profile and in the hovercards which appear over your name. In the next few weeks, we’ll be displaying it more broadly as part of your name in other areas of Google+ as well. So if you’re Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Jane Doe (Smith), or सौरभ शर्मा (Saurabh Sharma), you can now communicate your identity the way you want to.