Facebook Users Flee to Ello Despite Clarification in ‘Real Name’ Policy
After Facebook decided to start enforcing the “real name” policy, demanding many members of the LGBT community to out themselves, many people in the LGBT community have decided to start using the new form of social media, Ello.
Ello, which calls itself “a simple, beautiful and ad-free social network,” was founded by Paul Budnitz in the spring. However, it only started gathering lots of momentum after the uproar with Facebook’s name policy, getting about 50,000 signups a day, according to Budnitz.
Ello allows users to follow people as “friends” or as “noise,” and doesn’t let them know which they have been sorted in, “which is a handy feature for folks who know lots of people they don’t really like,” a user wrote.
“We believe social network can be a tool for empowerment,” the Ello founders said. “Not a tool to deceive, coerce, and manipulate – but a place to connect, create and celebrate life.”
Not all are pleased with the site, that requires an invite to join.
“I can to Ello as part of the queer exodus from Facebook (where queens lead, I follow),” writer Olivia Laing said. “I felt very smug about having an early invite and then couldn’t work out how to use the search function. Horrible design, not elegant at all. Within an hour, I’d realized how insane it was to join another social network.”
But, Budnitz is convinced his ad-free site will appeal to all.
“Facebook makes more money if they know exactly who you are,” Budnitz said of the Facebook name policy. “If they read your post, they get to sell a detailed view of you to advertisers. They bullied people who weren’t using their real names, people who are less valuable to them as a platform.”
But, since the first meeting with Facebook, which didn’t go over well, Facebook has since decided to review it’s real-name policy so who knows how well Ello will do.
“The spirit of our policy is that everyone on Facebook uses the authentic name they use in real life,” Facebook’s Chris Cox said. “For Sister Roma, that’s Sister Roma.