Yoda Blocked From Facebook

    August 28, 2008
    Chris Crum

If your name is Yoda, you may have trouble getting a Facebook account. At least one woman has had that problem.

A Japanese woman named Hiroko Yoda tried multiple times to sign up for Facebook, but her requests were rejected. Why? According to Telegraph, Facebook says that the name "Yoda" is blacklisted to prevent users from pretending to be people they are not. In this case, it would obviously be Yoda of Star Wars fame.

Interestingly enough, there are a lot of people already on Facebook with Yoda in their names (some even with profile pictures of the little green son of a gun himself). Note that there are 73 people and three pages of search results for Yoda.

Apart from that, as Aaron Sorkin, who is trying to get the rights to write a movie about Facebook, noted that several other members had profiles claiming to be him.  "I understand there are a few other people using Facebook pages under my name–which I find more flattering than creepy–but this is me. I don’t know how I can prove that but feel free to test me."

Frankly, it doesn’t sound like Facebook is doing a very good job of enforcing their policy. Perhaps this is only a new policy, and they have not yet had a chance to clean up existing members. I wonder if these profiles will be shut down or their users sent notices that they must change their names.

This will probably be a hard policy to enforce anyway given the fact that lots of people have the same names. Something tells me they’re going to have to change it. How can you even keep track of what is a real name anymore? Chad Johnson is changing his name to Chad Ocho Cinco for Pete’s sake. And what about people with symbols for names?