Meta Platforms Inc META.O said on Thursday its flagship social network Facebook is introducing ways for users to maintain up to five profiles, a major shift from the “real name” requirement the company has maintained since its inception.
The product change would “help people tailor their experience based on interests and relationships,” like posting different types of content aimed at family versus friends, Meta said in a statement.
The company will continue to require that each user have only one Facebook account, with a main profile that continues to use the person’s real name. People will be able to access any additional profiles they create after logging in to that account.
The change grants users formal leeway to semi-anonymize their identity on the world’s biggest social network, in keeping with options offered by competitors like TikTok and Twitter, as well as Meta’s own photo and video app Instagram.
In its statement, Meta said its rules against impersonation and other types of misleading representations of identity would continue to apply to all profiles.
A Meta spokesperson said the company was testing the new approach in certain countries, but declined to specify which ones.
—Reporting by Chavi Mehta in Bengaluru and Katie Paul in Palo Alto, Calif.Editing by Jonathan Oatis and Matthew Lewis