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Facebook Allows New Gender Options on Profiles

Facebook Rolls Out New, LGBT-Friendly Gender Options

As of Thursday, US Facebook users are now able to customize their gender from nearly 50 options in addition to choosing which pronoun appears with the use of their names on the site. Previously, a Facebook profile only had two gender options — Male and Female — and this distinction had one share option: to appear on a Timeline or not. Now, in a profile's Basic Information field within the About category, users can select Custom, which will populate an open field to write up to 10 gender descriptors including options like Trans, Agender, Genderqueer, and Male to Female, among dozens of others.

Pronouns, which can now be changed to "she," "him," or "them," are primarily used in interactions with Facebook friends. For example, "Wish her a happy birthday."

Share options were added to the gender category, because Facebook recognized "that some people face challenges sharing their true gender identity with others, and this setting gives people the ability to express themselves in an authentic way."

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The GLAAD acknowledged today that though the gender terms are "not comprehensive," this is a step forward in ensuring the social network "is safe and accessible to all of its LGBT users."

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