Facebook rebuffs drag performers over ‘real name’ crackdown

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Despite refusing to change its policy on “real names”, Facebook has agreed to temporarily reinstate some drag performers’ profiles.

Facebook last week agreed to meet with San Francisco drag performers, after a protest was planned against a crack down on profiles which do not use legal names.

Alongside San Francisco Board of Supervisors member David Campos, drag performers from the city on Wednesday met with Facebook representatives over the controversy.

Campos said the policy was “misguided”, and said they wanted to “work together” with Facebook to ensure that it was fair.

The performers argue that having a stage name unrelated to their legal name helps protect them from issues with employers, family members or unwanted attention. Many said their performer name was part of who they are.

Despite this, Facebook said it would not budge on the policy, and said users would have two weeks to adjust their profiles to display their legal name, or convert the personal page to a fan page, which do allow nicknames to be displayed.

“We had a good discussion with the group about their perspectives on our real name standard, and we stressed how the standard helps prevent bad behavior, while creating a safer and more accountable environment,” a statement from Facebook read.