The new Google is Creepier then ever.

The Washington Post has an article today that talks about what google is doing as of today:

Google’s no-opt-out privacy changes and the end of the anonymous Internet

Google announced Tuesday its plans to integrate data from all its services with your profile for logged-in Google+ users.

She makes this assertion in the early part of the article.

The Internet, nowadays, is overwhelmingly dominated by fora in which you hang out as your actual self. Facebook. Twitter. And now, Google.

 While I understand her assertion that the net is “dominated” by these fora. There are two assumptions one is that the people in those places are being ‘Their actual selves” when the research shows that people are being thoughtful and careful about how they present in different places and what aspects of themselves they share where (see danah boyd’s research about young people and networked publics).  I think in one way she is right the people like her – who went to college and have mainstream white collar jobs are on these fora with their real names but most people who actually do interesting hobbies or have religious lives that they don’t share publically or across all contexts of their lives either are not sharing about these on those fora or they are keeping them contextually separate using different names and handles.
This weekend at She’s Geeky I am going to ask a lot of questions of the women coming about how they do manage their identities and what they want and need out of digital systems to feel safe using them.
Tie actions online to our real identities, and suddenly online activity has real-world consequences.
This is very true and unless we build tools that give people both persona management and context management we are going to be creating a really creepy world.  See my TEDx Talk on Participatory Totalitarianism. 

The new Google+ Names process

Today people were tweeting/writing about the new google+ names policies. Well. I just went through it and it involves many screens and an appeal into the Kafkaesqe googleplex that takes up to 3 days before they approve your name request.  I think they should to this to EVERY user cause how do I know your name “is” David Smith…it just doesn’t trigger their dictionaries prompting inquiry into the legitimacy of your name…Ok but I digress…lets see how this works.

First you are discouraged from changing your name and limited to the frequency you can do so. You have to click “change name” to do anything.

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