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

in Entertainment

CBS: Rihanna out of NFL telecast

Fresh
In this Sept. 24 photo, Rihanna performs in Perth, Australia during the first concert of the Australian leg of her Diamonds World Tour. Photo: Associated Press

CBS and Rihanna are splitting up after more fallout from the Ray Rice incident.

in Local Sports

UW basketball TV schedule released

Fresh
uw university of washington huskies new court

The University of Washington and the PAC-12 have released the television broadcast schedule for the 2014-15 basketball season.

in Sports

Sacramento Kings to retire Stojakovic’s jersey

Fresh
Sacramento Kings' Vlade Divac, left, and Peja Stojakovic chat on the bench during the first quarter of Sacramento's preseason game against the Cleveland Cavaliers in Los Angeles, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2002. The Kings won 115-94.

The Kings announced Tuesday that Stojakovic's jersey will be retired when they host Oklahoma City on Dec. 16

in Sports

Anheuser-Busch ‘disappointed’ in NFL

Fresh
A large image of the Anheuser-Busch Clydesdales adorns the side of the company's headquarters and primary brewery Tuesday, May 27, 2008, in St. Louis. Reports that the company might be purchased by Belgium-based brewer InBev have residents worried they might lose a company as closely identified with St. Louis as the iconic Gateway Arch downtown.

The beer giant issued a statement on Tuesday saying it was "disappointed and increasingly concerned" by recent incidents with the NFL.

in Local Sports

Senator ties NFL tax status to Redskins name

Fresh
District of Columbia Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, center left, and Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., center right, is applauded as they join native Americans and other lawmakers and civil rights leaders to pressure the Washington Redskins football team to change their name during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2014.

Democrat Maria Cantwell says she will introduce a bill to eliminate the NFL's tax-exempt status because of the non-action over the Washington Redskins name.