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Remember that if you ran afoul of Google’s incomprehensibly capricious policy application for Google Profiles – the same policies that appear to be punishing more people using their real names than people using pseudonyms – you had an opportunity to appeal? Well, say good-bye to that option, because the administrative sanction chute has now been greased.

I’m going to talk about names. The same is also true for service infractions, I understand, so fill in the blanks.

If challenged you now have four days to satisfy Google with a name that whoever is handling your case likes. A name you have documentation for. A name that fits into the ‘First Name/Last Name’ model (even if you’re from a culture whose names don’t work that way). A name that Google doesn’t think infringes on the name of a famous person. A name that Google doesn’t think is unlikely or silly (even if your parents ‘blessed’ you with something really quite awful).

Four days to pick a name – whether or not it is the name you are commonly known by – that makes Google happy. Until the next time they challenge you, when you might have to change it again. Apparently there’s no limitation on the number of times Google might decide to take a disliking to your name, even if Google previously approved it, and you showed it government ID with that name on it.

Four days, with no opportunity to appeal. Then you lose these services:

  • Google Plus
  • Google Plus One
  • Google Profile
  • Google Reader
  • Feedburner
  • Picasa
  • Google Buzz

Why do you lose access to all of these services? Because they’ve all been reworked to operate around Google Profile – and once your Google Profile is shut down or deleted, you lose all of the others. There’s unconfirmed talk that you’ll also lose access to your Android apps, including the ones you paid for.

Hands up everyone who thinks that Google isn’t intending to make Google Profile an integral part of its other services. This list is just what you lose in four days time if you cannot satisfy Google.

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Categories: Opinion, Social Media.

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