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back to article Nowhere to hide for Google users as Play is given Plus treatment

Google is continuing its efforts to make anonymous posts on its services a thing of the past by forcing customers wishing to leave product reviews on its recently overhauled Android Marketplace online shop - now dubbed Play - to do so with their real name. When punters attempt to leave reviews for individual products on the site …

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Good that I wasn't stupid enough...

...to sign up for Plus then, isn't it?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Good that I wasn't stupid enough...

There's no need. Google have already done it for you with your personal information they've collected.

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Anonymous Coward

Porn Apps

There goes the reviews on porn apps then?

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JDX
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Re: Porn Apps

Do they even allow porn apps?

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FAIL

I have not left any reviews yet, now I know I never will. I don't have Google+ and got no need for Google+. i know that Google want more people to use Google+, but the way they are going about it may get less people using other services.

The only reason i have a Gmail account is so I can sync my contacts to my phone, but if I go for a different Os in my phone next year I will cancel all my google accounts.

Not sure what you mean about you tube mind you, I use You Tube and got a you tube account, but I still don't have a google+ account.

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Anonymous Coward

You think Microsoft do anything less. ... or are you going for an iphone?

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Anonymous Coward

You think Apple do anything less. ... or are you going for a Windows Phone?

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Meh

Youtube are pestering users to use their real name instead of screenname in certain areas.

You can still tell them to sod off for a number of reasons, such as your channel representing an organisation or being known primarily by your screenname (your tobuscuses, pewdiepies - shudder - and such). There is an option to decline but I'm not sure how long this'll remain a choice given this news.

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Windows

@AC

Microsoft is also trying from time to time to persuade you to use your real name in their Live services (now "Microsoft ID") but are much less intrusive.

So far the major change is that you can no longer have single word names, you need 2. So instead of being ShelLuser I'm now ShelLuser on MSN. Simple and to the point ;-)

Apart from that MS only sends you an email sometimes. Google otoh... Every once in a while they come up with annoying popup banners the very moment I try to comment on a video.. "ARE you sure you don't rather want to use your own name?". time and time again.

Google is much more oppressive and intrusive here.

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Anonymous Coward

Wallet

Yes, I must remember to cancel the credit card I have on Google wallet, which I had to add when I paid a few pence for an Android application. This one password/one username game is NOT for me, and breaks all sane rules on financial security.

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Re: @AC

Microsoft will only let you comment on stuff in the Microsoft store using your live credentials. I just installed windows 8 and wanted to comment/rate/slam some of the TIFKAM apps. As soon as it wanted me to log in I stopped.

By the way, TIFKAM sucks, but it was easy to bypass all that. After a few hours of tweaking, I am starting to like 8.

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They do...

While they do have Game Center and iMessage, neither are full social networks. They did have Ping, which was a full social network, but this did not succeed and was shut down. However, in all three cases, signing up for them is optional.

You do not have to sign up for any of those services to be able to write reviews (or access other Apple services). You do need an Apple ID, and while this does need an email address, you do not have to sign up for an Apple email address.

So, in short, yes, they do considerably less of this sort of thing than Google.

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May have a look at the new Blackberry next year when I can renew my contract or I may just go back to a normal mobile.

Less hassle

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Anonymous Coward

Yes, they made several attempts to bully or confuse me into abandoning my YouTube ID. I think that, at least for now, I managed to click the right places to keep it.

I don't use Google+. I do think that I, not Google, should decide when I want to be anonymous.

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Facepalm

"I think that, at least for now, I managed to click the right places to keep it."

You want the button labelled "I don't want to use my full name". It appears on a large dialog which asks you (not Google) to decide if you want to be anonymous or use your real name. There are only 2 buttons to press, so they could hardly be accused of making it difficult for you.

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Anonymous Coward

Forcing Google+

It seems that more and more Google products are trying to push people into Google+

Every time I login to Youtube it bugs me about setting up a Google+ account and it seems like the same for the play store and who knows what else.

Google are not good at making services. They're good at buying existing well-performing services and giving them away for free with ads pushed on people. Google+ sucks.

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Windows

@AC

Bit of ironic isn't it ?

In the beginning Microsoft also weren't very good at doing stuff themselves, instead they used their money to purchase other firms and incorporated them into their own products. Sometimes these others were competitors which also provided commercial based solutions, so the 'damage' for the public was minimal. Other times they ended firms which did provide stuff for free, that used to suck pretty bad.

Google claimed to do "no evil" and somewhat show how it "should be done". Now look where we are....

Personally I'd rather have Microsoft in comparison to Google. Not because they're less evil or such than Google, but because they never made it a secret about it how they operated. Google otoh...

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JDX
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Up to them really...

If they decide the potential loss of data quantity is countered by perceived improvement in data quality, then it's their call. I'll just choose not to write reviews or use their services if I think the cost outweighs the value.

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Gav
Big Brother

Re: Up to them really...

"perceived" improvement being the important difference. The more organisations like Google insist of sucking data off me that is none of their business, the more I will oblige them with crap data. The skill is in making the data plausible enough for it not to attract attention, or be worth ferreting out.

So all Google are doing here is making sure what decent data they have is bulked up with garbage, and they'll never be able to separate the two.

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Big Brother

Re: Up to them really...

I have so many IDs and credentials, I have a secure program just to manage them all; so they'll have fun tracking me, he he.

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It's a pain in the ass; I have to maintain three Google accounts (none under my real name) just to do fairly basic stuff.

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FAIL

It's not as if..

It's not as if I don't already have a Google Account because you need one to download apps!

What next? You have to sign up to Google+ to use Gmail so that it can share the contents of your mailbox with all your contacts?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It's not as if..

You have to sign up to Google+ to use Gmail so that it can share the contents of your mailbox with all your contacts?

Now there's an idea, thanks for sharing!

Larry

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Re: It's not as if..

"You have to sign up to Google+ to use Gmail"

Err no you don't. I use gmail but don't have a G+ account/profile so at least for existing users they aren't forcing it...

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Trollface

Further to previous post

This requires a concerted trolling effort.

"John Smith" is a real name, right? Quite a popular name in the UK, too.

I think it could be rather amusing to see Google kicking people out for calling themself "John Smith" when their real name is, err, "John Smith".

That is unless anybody else has any better trolls?

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Re: Further to previous post

But even if you use a fake nonsensical name Google can link your real name, address etc from the payment card you use when you buy an app. If Google decide to force user's linked real names to reviews to screw more profit out of its user base I will delete all of my google accounts and either go direct to the dev or do without.

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Re: Further to previous post

That would be the prepaid Mastercards and Visas that I routinely register under such names as "Kara Buckwheat" or "Mickey Mouse", right?

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Re: Further to previous post

That, and who says the card you use to pay is your card?

Trying to infer your real name from that will be mighty tricky and a bit stupid.

So yes. Concerted trolling effort required.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Further to previous post

How do you do that?! Could come in very handy.

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Re: Further to previous post

Not sure about other countries, but in the UK it's very easy to visit the gift card section of Tesco or similar and buy either a Visa or Mastercard. You're then prompted to activate the card via a site like this, or via an 0870 number, and they don't seem to be too particular about what details you give them.

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Anonymous Coward

details from payment card ?

Not if they're PCI-DSS compliant.

They *are* aren't they ?

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FAIL

Re: Further to previous post

http://support.google.com/googleplay/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=2651410

Smart ass poster busted by reality.

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Re: Further to previous post

Prepaid Mastercards and Visas work with the vast majority of all paid apps in the Play store, at least in the UK.

You should try it yourself, instead of failing hard at being a smart arse. I have at least £100 of paid apps here that says you are wrong.

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Re: Further to previous post

You must be either very lucky or making it up. And £100's worth of apps?

I'll opt for making it up.

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Re: Further to previous post

"http://support.google.com/googleplay/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=2651410

Smart ass poster busted by reality."

From that link:

"If you’re having trouble making a purchase on Google Play with a gift/prepaid card, contact the entity that issued the card to ensure that it’s enabled for use to purchase digital goods."

So there are prepaid cards that you can use, but not necessarily all of them. If his card is enabled to purchase digital goods that link says he could very well have used it to buy stuff on google play.

Might be a good idea to prevent google linking to your real details (too late for me unfortunately).

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Re: Further to previous post

I'll opt for making it up.

*sigh*

My motives for doing so? I've already been accused of being a Google shill before. Perhaps I'm also on Mastercard's payroll?

Dammit, I could do with the money as well. Bastards still haven't paid me.

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h3
Bronze badge

Re : M Gale

Hopefully you are right. Unfortunately I think it is more likely they transparantly sign you up somehow.

(All it will do for me is just I won't write any reviews.)

They are getting more and more annoying by the day. (Needing a credit card to get Google Music was the last irritation prior to this).

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No more reviews then

Sod that, I'm not interested in G+, Wave or any other "social" cr*p, however I will continue to emaild devs directly if I spot any issues with their apps. Seems only fair to spend a few mins finding their email address after the work they put in developing stuff.

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FAIL

Massive fail, this will stop people reviewing.....

Anonymity when reviewing is important, and REAL names? i may have google plus, but I am quite private and use it only for work, I don't +1 things, I don't do anything publicly visible using it...

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JDX
Gold badge

On the other hand, people leaving fake bad/good reviews for whatever reason is also important. In some cases (say Tripadvisor) it could potentially sink your business if a few people decided you were their target for the week.

A real review of a real product by a real person is not too bad IMO - reviews are not the same as YouTube comments.

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Google+ NOT!

This is Google-

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FAIL

So now app authors that get negative reviews can attack the people who left the reviews? How in any way is this a good idea? There have been numerous occasions where organisations that have had negative reviews go after the reviewers. This just encourages the practice, and will decrease the quality of the reviews as people are going to be less likely to be critical.

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Anonymous Coward

This is what happens when marketing people

are involved in software/service design.

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JDX
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Re: This is what happens when marketing people

Um, that's a pretty silly point. The whole point is that software people are good at making software, not good at making business decisions or doing marketing or customer service or UX design...

Software created only by software people with no input from anyone else is one of the reasons open-source retains a bad reputation... applications which are tremendously powerful but entirely unintuitive!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: This is what happens when marketing people

@jdk - i think the point being made is that marketing people are generally clueless in any domain. I can attest from personal experience that marketing people have an almost pathalogical desire to collect information on customers/users irrespective of any plausible use and in defiance of common sense. On the occasions where I have challenged this, the reponse is that they want to build a relationship with the customer - this is (in our specific case) almost certainly a desire not shared by the customer.

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And what if you don't have a G+ account?

Are they forcing us to sign up in order to comment? The article fails to say.

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Re: And what if you don't have a G+ account?

Yes, Google now require you need a Plus account, to leave an app review.

You will be taken through the sign-up procedure when you try to review an app. There is no option to bypass.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: And what if you don't have a G+ account?

What if you're a Google Apps user, and the admin (who may or may not be yourself) has disabled G+ for the domain?

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Re: And what if you don't have a G+ account?

"Yes, Google now require you need a Plus account, to leave an app review."

Not in Australia (at this point anyhow) - I left a review after I read your comment to test it...

I hope it stays that way, otherwise google are gonna have a G+ profile full of utter garbage!

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Good News for end users then

Bad news for people employed by Microsoft and Apple to write shit reviews hiding under anonymous cloaks.

Surely ALL reviews should have real names against them (be it Hotel, Movie or App) , as you woud have to be a fuckin idiot to believe what some random anonymous person on the internet said.

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