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Did Google Create 'Google+' Just to Amass More Info About You?


"...Google+ is as an 'identity service.'"

Did you try to use a fake name when creating your Google+ account? It's only normal; many people use pseudonyms on social media sites to protect some of their personal information. If you tried this, you know Google cracked down on the practice. But why does Google want your real name so much?

As Andy Carvin from NPR states on his Google+ account (via PC World), in a reported interview with Google chairman Eric Schmidt, Schmidt said to him that Google+ is as an "identity service." Carvin writes further on his interview with Schmidt:

Regarding people who are concerned about their safety, he said G+ is completely optional. No one is forcing you to use it. It's obvious for people at risk if they use their real names, they shouldn't use G+. Regarding countries like Iran and Syria, people there have no expectation of privacy anyway due to their government's own policies, which implies (to me, at least) that Schmidt thinks there's no point of even trying to have a service that allows pseudonyms. Unfortunately, the way the Q&A was conducted, I wasn't in a position to ask him a followup on this particular point.

PC World's blog analyzes Google's tactics and raises some important questions:

Essentially, Google wants you to use your real name because it needs that information for future efforts that are based on your identity. Did Google really just get into the social networking game to amass more information about you?

. . .

Think about it: Your social networking profile is a treasure trove of personal information. It says a lot about who you are and what you may like (or dislike) at any given point. One of Google’s primary businesses is advertising: that information is invaluable in this industry. The more highly targeted the ad, the more likely you’re going to click on it.

Google's policy on use of real names states: "Google Profiles requires you to use the name that you commonly go by in daily life." Which will allow users to "have confidence knowing that there is someone real behind the profile they're checking out."

But what about the company on the other end?

[H/T PC World]

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