Google+ to allow users to keep gender in profiles private

Users of Google's new social networking service Google+ have so far been asked to reveal their gender as part of their public profiles. But it seems that privacy concerns from its users have made Google take a second look at that stance. Late on Tuesday night, a Google+ post from Google team member Frances Haugen announced that sometime later this week Google+ users will be able to keep their gender private if they choose to do so.

In announcing the decision on Tuesday Haugen said that Google felt that having users announce their gender would make communicating to those users easier. However if users still wish to keep their gender private they would be addressed differently by Google than if their gender became public. More info about Google's thoughts about gender and its use in Google+ can be seen in the video shown below this news post.

One big thing about having a Google+ page keep its gender info private is that it allows businesses and organizations to establish Google+ pages without having to deal with the somewhat awkward establishment of a gender for that business. So far businesses like Ford have indeed established Google+ pages even though Google itself has warned that the current set up is for individuals. Google has promised to launch a version of Google+ specifically for businesses and organizations later this year.

In related news Google has announced that it will add an address book uploader feature to Google+ sometime "over the next few days".

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