You might have begun your Facebook account with a name you liked previously. You might have even used your first name along with a last name that you thought was cool in the past. Remember the time when you thought typing with a mix of capital and small letters was really awesome? Well people used to do that with their names on Facebook as well. But times have changed and naming yourself that way might just make you appear socially unacceptable. However, adding a funny word within your name makes your Facebook page or any other social media page creative, silly and comical; a combination that can really help you with expanding your social circle if that is what you have been looking for. Now if you want to change your name on Facebook you do not have to delete your Facebook account. So if you are in the middle of hitting that delete button right now, brace yourself because changing your Facebook name is very easy but it might be a little harder than you would like to think and that depends from case to case. On Facebook you will come across an important policy that will ask you to use your legal name; the name that you have on your birth certificate and all your legal documents. You might find this policy very ridiculous because not a lot of social media applications restrict your freedom to name yourself whatever you wish for. This policy attracted a lot of negative press when it was introduced. However, it helps with identifying fake accounts that use names of someone you know to create a way to spam others. In any case, in the following sections you will learn how to change your Facebook name effectively!
Before that, here is a fun case from 2011 that will show you how strict Facebook’s policy regarding your legal name is. Back in 2011 a worldwide famous author by the name of Salman Rushdie had his account deactivated by Facebook’s team because they asked him to prove his identity and get the account back. Because Rushdie’s legal first name is Ahmed, the account was re-activated but under the condition that the first name was changed to Ahmed. Even though Salman is his middle name, Salman Rushdie is popularly known in both personal and professional life by his middle name. And so Salman Rushdie faced a lot of trouble due to this sudden name change. And only when Facebook received a lot of backlash by the public, they acted upon Salman Rushdie’s request and reinstated his name from Ahmed Rushdie to Salman Rushdie. Even after such an incident however, Facebook will still require for you to use your legal name with very minor exceptions that you can test. However, Facebook only aims at fostering a friendly environment in its community where people act and speak in accordance with their real identity because other users need to feel secure on this platform. This change was probably made as a result of a huge number of fake accounts that had been emerging on Facebook and caused a lot of controversy as well. Anyway the point here now is that in the future you might just find your account blocked due to this policy and so you need to learn how to change your name on Facebook. There could be plenty of other personal reasons for changing your name on Facebook as well. You might want to change your legal name after getting married or even after getting separated or divorced by your partner. Another reason why you might consider changing your name on Facebook can include gender reassignment and so that process can also include a change in your current name too. Many people change their names later in life using the legal procedure and so they might need to change their name on Facebook into the new one. Other than that, if you were not using a true name before you might find the need to do so now. Either way, the path that you need to take in order to change your name on Facebook is the same.
In order to change your name on Facebook, the steps you need to take are very similar and simply. In their FAQ, Facebook itself guides you which steps to take in order to change your name effectively. But we have still listed them down for you:
- The first thing you need to do in order to change your name is very obvious; you just need to open the application or the website and log in to your account!
- Now the second thing you need to do in order to change your name on Facebook is clicking an arrow symbol that you can locate next to your Help icon at the top menu bar from your main News Feed Page. This will be a downward arrow symbol.
- From the popup list or drop menu you just need to select Settings.
- A new window will open for your Settings and from this page you need to select the General column from the left side of the page.
- From this new section, you should look for basic account information and here your name will appear. Just click on your name from the top of the section.
- This will allow you to edit your name in the field that will be provided to you.
- After changing your name, you will click on the Review Change button.
- This new window that will be opened will ask you to enter your password again to confirm that it is really you who has changed the name. So, just enter your usual password.
- After doing this, you will be able to save the changes you have made so just click on the Save Changes button. And so your name will be changed. But first, Facebook will have to approve of this change and this process usually takes about twenty-four hours.
If Facebook gets back to you after twenty-four hours and does not prove your name change process, there are a variety of reasons that you can consider in order to explain the rejection even after making sure that your name change was according to the latest policy:
- If you have changed your name more times than you should then Facebook will need at least sixty days’ maximum to process each name change regardless of how valid each name that you have used, is.
- If the previous time you changed your name and you were asked to provide Facebook with your ID and you failed to do so, Facebook will suspect your account and look for proof that proves of your identity and this will take time.
- If you have already provided them with a ID but it does not match with the list they have created then your identification will be questioned by the Facebook team.
Out of this, it can be any reason but do not worry, Facebook will not fish you out of your home. They are just trying to create a safe and accurate environment for everyone else and you as well. You have more chances of getting this issue resolved on time!
When you change your name on Facebook there are certain guidelines that you can follow in order to avoid such delay issues:
- When you change your name on Facebook your name should not include special characters like @, # or $ and so on.
- When you change your name on Facebook do not use unusual capitalization of words, spaces or punctuation. This is not your username but your display name.
- When you change your name on Facebook do not use a lot of characters from another language. You must only use one and that should be it.
- Facebook apparently does not approve of titles that you put before your name. Even if you are a doctor and it is legitimate, titles like Prof., Sir, Dr, Mr, Mrs and so on are unnecessary.
- Now if you make use of some catchy phrases or dictionary words that are clearly not names then your name change might not be approved.
- If in case, you have used words that are very clearly offensive then you cannot expect your name change to get approved by Facebook.
- Now you should also know that two people on Facebook cannot share a profile which means that joint names is not a thing. So if your name is familiar to another profile and it is legal, Facebook will take more time and might also confirm this by the other account holder before they get back to you.
- If you have a name where you have removed all the vowels to give it an informal tone, it will not be approved by Facebook.
- Lastly, if you are repeating characters such as “Johnnnn” then the letter repetition for an unusual amount of time might not sit well with Facebook’s policy.
It is always safe to pick a name that your friends use to call you. You can use nicknames but just be sure they are not completely different from your legal name. And lastly name sure the last name that you use is full instead of shortened.
Hopefully Facebook will make it easy for you to change your name now.