Dec 182012
 December 18, 2012  Posted by  Business, Featured News, Laws, Non-U.S.

Loek Essers reports:

A German privacy regulator ordered Facebook to stop enforcing its real name policy because it violates a German law that gives users the right to use nicknames online.

Facebook refused to permit the use of pseudonyms on its platform as required by the German Telemedia Act, Thilo Weichert, privacy commissioner and head of the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (ULD) Schleswig-Holstein said on Monday. The ULD issued a decree forcing Facebook to start allowing pseudonyms immediately, he said.

Facebook doesn’t seem particularly conciliatory on this:

“We believe the orders are without merit, a waste of German taxpayers’ money and we will fight it vigorously,” a Facebook spokeswoman said in an emailed statement. It is the role of individual services to determine their own policies about anonymity within the governing law, she added. Facebook’s real name policy complies with European data protection principles and Irish law, according to the social network.

That should go over really well there.  ;^)

Read more on ITworld.

h/t, Adam Shostack

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