Facebook broadens gender options

Nowadays, people‘s identities have become way more complicated than simply “˜male or female‘. Many people in the world today identify themselves as transgender, intersex, transsexual and many other terms that some haven‘t even heard of.
One can imagine then that choosing between either “˜male or female‘ on a social network can grieve these individuals. Well, the world‘s largest social network has taken the first step in diversifying their gender options to more than 50 additional options.
Facebook announced yesterday that from now on, users will be able to select a “˜custom gender‘ – rather than the stock standard, male of female.
This provides transgender, transsexual and any other type of person, to reveal their true identities on the social networking site. And what a pleasure it must be for them. 
You can also select a “˜neutral‘ gender identity – meaning, instead of being referred to as “˜his‘ or “˜her‘, users can be referred to as “˜they‘ or “˜their‘. Users can specifically choose the pronoun they would like to be addressed as; say for instance a transsexual man can request to be addressed as “˜her‘ or “˜him‘ or “˜they‘ for that matter.
The changes in gender identity are only available for US users at the moment, however, we‘re pretty sure that these options will be made available for Facebook users worldwide very soon.
A spokesperson for Facebook said that this change is a way to help it‘s users express their true identity, no doubt also encouraging acceptance for all:
“While to many this change may not mean much, for those it affects it means a great deal…[sic] we see this as one more way we can make Facebook a place where people can express their authentic identity.”
The new changes were announced in Facebook‘s Diversity page, and gave users instructions on how to change their gender preferences.
The company also said that they had worked in conjunction with various LGBT advocacy organizations to come up with the correct terms for the (more than 50) new gender identities.
And it seems that both the LGBT and straight community welcomed the change – many saying that it is about time.
Former Vice President of GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation), Allison Palmer, had worked alongside Facebook on the new changes and said:
“Facebook users from across the country have been asking for the ability to reflect their gender accurately, and today Facebook showed they have been listening,”
While a simple change on someone‘s profile might seem small, it was a big step forward for Facebook. With more and more mega-companies stepping up to the plate and standing up for the LGBT community, we can only hope that the world will become more accepting, fast.
Source: CNN