23 November 2014

On having facebook "girl" and "boy" profiles

When I've posted about Facebook in the past, I've always been a bit worried about mentioning that I have boy and girl profiles, as I did in the post about auto-unfriending, because I'm aware that it is technically a breach of the Facebook terms and conditions to have more than one profile, and to have a profile that is not in your legal name.

Recently, in spite of what appear to be fairly poor efforts in regards to removing or preventing blatantly fake profiles and pages that have been quite obviously set up for phishing and spamming, Facebook has become quite active at disabling and even converting valid profiles into community pages, merely because the owner has used a name that is not their real name.

There was also quite a significant controversy a few weeks ago, when someone systematically reported hundreds of drag performer's accounts as fake, resulting in Facebook disabling their accounts. Around the same time, at least 2 of my non-LGBT friends were affected by similar disabling of accounts. One was able to get his account re-enabled by having the first name changed from the name that everybody knows him by, to his legal name that most people didn't even know. The other, in spite of providing proper legal ID, had his profile converted to a community page and lost hundreds of photos, private messages, etc..

In this context, I had always feared that Facebook would crack down and delete my girl profile.

When I changed the profile photo on my boy profile to a girl photo on Tuesday, I thought that I'd wimp out and change it back within hours, and probably delete or hide the photo. I haven't, and as a side effect I've come to the realisation that the artificial separation between my male and female personae is probably not really necessary any more. To be honest, in spite of having my nails long and painted all of the time, before Tuesday, I didn't expect to ever break that separation down to the extent that I have done now.

I'm actually giving real consideration to the possibility of deactivating my Facebook girl profile in the near future, and just having my boy profile, which is in my real legal name, and has hundreds of work clients and several of my nominal business competitors amongst my friends.


  1. I eschew facebook, but I can appreciate how daunting it must be to have your profile deleted, or the fear of it being deleted. Facebook has become the corporate bad guy in a lot of ways: play by their rules or else! Despite the illegality of discrimination, it's a difficult step to open yourself up to work colleagues & business competitors. I like to keep all my lives separate: my family know few of my friends, my friends & fam don't meet who I date, & work is for work in my book. But I'm neurotic...
    Good luck Alice! Stay strong! :D

  2. Like you I have two F.B. profiles, and am thinking hard about deleting one of them, the main difference is that it is the boy one that I think may go soon. I keep asking myself, what is the downside? so what if everybody knows?

  3. 2 profiles, linked to 2 separate e mail addresses ect

    1. Yes. It's quite easy to create free email addresses, although most require another email address to be used to confirm creation.