Google had the novel idea that if your real name was attached to a comment you were making, you were less likely to be belligerent (or violent). It turns out, more than a few people are still willing to make awful comments, even with their real name attached.
The restriction hurt users that had to use other names for safety reasons, and many commentators, especially on YouTube, just stopped commenting. Google has heard the complaints for years and has now decided to drop any name restrictions for Google+.
Reads the Google+ post:
When we launched Google+ over three years ago, we had a lot of restrictions on what name you could use on your profile. This helped create a community made up of real people, but it also excluded a number of people who wanted to be part of it without using their real names.
Over the years, as Google+ grew and its community became established, we steadily opened up this policy, from allowing +Page owners to use any name of their choosing to letting YouTube users bring their usernames into Google+. Today, we are taking the last step: there are no more restrictions on what name you can use.
We know you've been calling for this change for a while. We know that our names policy has been unclear, and this has led to some unnecessarily difficult experiences for some of our users. For this we apologize, and we hope that today's change is a step toward making Google+ the welcoming and inclusive place that we want it to be. Thank you for expressing your opinions so passionately, and thanks for continuing to make Google+ the thoughtful community that it is.
Written by: Andre Yoskowitz @ 16 Jul 2014 12:06