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Robyhn Stevenson
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Leave remarks on theoriginal for continuity

Robert Scoble - 9:18 AM (edited) - Public

I'm staying out of the real-names arguments here on Google+, but I do find watching the comments entertaining. Go visit NPR's +Andy Carvin today and you'll see the debate continues.

I'll wait to comment after Google makes changes. The policy, as it stands, isn't defensible, so we need to wait for Google to make some changes in the policy.

As for Google+ being an identity service. Well, I think you all are misunderstanding what Eric Schmidt really meant. If he wasn't an executive at Google he would have called it "a Facebook competitor." (That's what most of us call it, after all).

Since Facebook is an identity service Google wants to own one of those too.

I wish Google had real social leadership, but the execs there really don't grok social and you're seeing the lack of clarity of their understanding social seeping out from under the door.

I'm actually far more worried about the coming API. If Google turns that on before giving us filtering (that's the rumor I'm hearing) that will push lots of people away from here. Noise levels will go up as developers do stuff like figure out how to bring Instagram photos or Tweets from Twitter into here and if there isn't a way to get rid of them the utility of this place will go way down.

Anyway, I'm uploading videos this morning (I have a ton!). Hope you are having a good one!
I'm at the Edinburgh Intl TV Festival and just got to ask a question to Google CEO Eric Schmidt regarding real names on G+. I asked him how Google justifies the policy given that real identities could put people at risk.

He replied by saying that G+ was build primarily as an identity service, so fundamentally, it depends on people using their real names if they're going to build future products that leverage that information.

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.

He also said the internet would be better if we knew you were a real person rather than a dog or a fake person. Some people are just evil and we should be able to ID them and rank them downward.

These aren't exact quotes, but I did my best to paraphrase the gist of what he was saying.

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