By John P. Mello Jr. | PCWorld
Google is trying to clean up YouTube’s comments section by encouraging users to post their real names.
When a YouTube user now tries to comment on a video, a box pops up asking that person to start using their “full name” at the video sharing site. The “full name” is taken from the person’s Google+ account since Google requires the real nameof someone signing up for a Google+ account.
After the “start using your full name” box appears, you can refuse to start using your real name. If you do that, another pop up appears asking you to justify your decision. Choices offered by Google include:
- My channel is for show or character.
- My channel is for a music artist of group.
- My channel is for a product, business or organization.
- My channel is well-known for other reasons.
- My channel is for personal use, but I cannot use my real name.
- I’m not sure, I’ll decide later.
Google offers to help you review your YouTube content before your full name begins to be displayed on the service. It also makes clear that you can switch back to your username at any time.
Whether this step will improve the discourse in YouTube’s comments section remains to be seen. People who leave constructive comments are likely to embrace the new policy, but others will continue to hide behind anonymity and revel in their vile comments.