News

Man? Woman? Facebook gives you 50 more options

Man? Woman? Facebook gives you 50 more options

FACEBOOK CHANGES: Until now, Facebook's 1.23 billion members could only select male or female for their genders, which Facebook requires users to state in their profiles. Users of rival Google Inc's Google+ social network already had an "other" option for gender. Photo: Reuters

By Alexei Oreskovic

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – For the first time, Facebook Inc is letting users of its online social network identify themselves as a gender other than male and female.

The basic user profile for members in the United States now includes a customizable category among the gender types that users must select, the world’s No.1 Internet social network announced on Thursday, the day the feature became available for U.S. members using the site’s English-language version.

Those who select that option can select up to 10 gender identifications, including “transgender,” “intersex” and “fluid.”

The company said it worked with a leading group of gay and transgender advocacy organizations to come up with the selection of identity options.

Until now, Facebook’s 1.23 billion members could only select male or female for their genders, which Facebook requires users to state in their profiles. Users of rival Google Inc’s Google+ social network already had an “other” option for gender.

Facebook said users also can control the audience who can view a custom choice, noting the challenges that some people may face in publicly sharing their gender identity.

Users can also choose the personal pronoun to which they are referred publicly. A message on Facebook might now invite a user’s friend to write a birthday message on “their” wall, instead of “his” or “her” wall.

“We want you to feel comfortable being your true, authentic self,” Facebook said.

(Reporting by Alexei Oreskovic; Editing by Amanda Kwan)

(In 2nd paragraph, this story corrects date of announcement to Thursday, not Wednesday)

Recent Headlines

now in Local Sports

Turf being put on Robert S. Harrington Field at Western Washington University

Fresh
WWU Turf Field Construction 1

WWU multipurpose field scheduled for completion this summer

today in Entertainment

This weekend in entertainment history

elvis

A look back on the Hollywood headlines of days gone by.

yesterday in Local Sports

Stanton’s slam sends Marlins past Mariners 8-4

seattle mariners logo generic

The Mariners lost their fourth game in a row, while the Marlins won for only the second time in the past 11 games.

yesterday in Local Sports

WWU sweeps NNU to clinch berth in GNAC Tournament

WWU Softball Jenna DeRozier

DeRosier wins ninth straight decision for Vikings in opener, Baker hits seventh home run.

yesterday in Sports

Sportscaster Craig Sager battling leukaemia

craig

The longtime sideline reporter is in the fight of his life.