Since its earliest days, Facebook has closely followed the policy of requiring from its users to register with their real names. This, Facebook says, is to help keep the community safe. However, German regulatory authorities have now ordered the social network to stop enforcing this requirement.
German laws permit users to make use of nicknames and thus, guard their original identity online. This essentially lets the users be anonymous and yield their right to freedom of speech without any backlash or repercussions.
However, Facebook doesn’t seem to agree to this derision The social network has clamped down on anonymity right from its first day. It continues to purge any such accounts from Facebook which make use of a fake name and asks users to provide their real names, as mentioned on their credit cards.
Now, the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (ULD) has issued a decree, demanding from Facebook to immediately start allowing the use of pseudonyms for Facebook users. The jurisdiction of ULD is limited only to the state of Schleswig-Holstein. But it has cited that it is in contact with the regulatory authorities in other German cities and they tend to agree with its stance.
Facebook, on the other hand, seems unrelenting on the issue. According to a Facebook spokesperson, “We believe the orders are without merit, a waste of German taxpayers’ money and we will fight it vigorously.” The social network further said that the decision as to whether or not it should allow the use of anonymity remains exclusively with an individual service, such as Facebook.
Courtesy: IT World