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Dublin: 12 °C Saturday 8 August, 2020

Trolls beware: YouTube want you to comment using your real name

Video site YouTube has started asking users to provide their real names when commenting. Some of the reasons they allow you to give for declining prove interesting.

Google bought YouTube for $1.65 billion in 2006
Google bought YouTube for $1.65 billion in 2006
Image: Steve White/The Canadian Press/Press Association Images via AP

IT’S YOUTUBE, JIM, but not as we know it (kinda).

If you’re an avid commenter on the global video sharing site, you may have noticed some changes in the last few days.

When attempting to comment on a video, having logged in, YouTube will now prompt you to start using your full name.

Good news for those who are sick of the weird and wonderful (but mostly weird) anonymous comments, but bad news for the trolls who have so far been footloose and fancy-free where commenting has been concerned.

For those who decline to link their existing YouTube account with their associated Google+ account (assuming you have one), a plethora of reasons for declining are presented.


Best of the options is – cue YouTube video playing a drum roll – “My channel is for personal use, but I cannot use my real name.”

Coming a close second is the wildly ambiguous “My channel name is well-known for other reasons.”

Hmm, so there we have it.

Do you leave comments on YouTube and if so, are you going to reveal your true identity?

Watch: Weird Wide Web: the week in online oddities >

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About the author:

Paul Hyland

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