Today – following a successful launch in the US earlier this year – Facebook has announced a new custom gender option to help people better express their own identity on Facebook.
After collaborating with LGBT advocacy organisations in the US earlier this year, Facebook has now teamed up with UK experts Press For Change and Gendered Intelligence to update the list of ways people can choose to describe themselves – making sure it’s relevant to people in the UK.
In addition, people who select a custom gender will now have the ability to choose the pronoun they’d like to be referred to publicly — male (he/his), female (she/her) or neutral (they/their). People can also control the audience with whom they want to share their custom gender – as some people face challenges sharing their true gender identity with others, this setting gives people the ability to express themselves in an authentic way.
Simon Milner, Policy Director, UK Middle East & Africa at Facebook, said,
‘When you come to Facebook to connect with the people, causes, and organisations you care about, we want you to feel comfortable being your true self. An important part of this is the expression of gender especially when it extends beyond the definitions of just ‘male’ or ‘female.’ Today’s announcement provides significantly more options for people in the UK.’
Jay Stewart, Co-founder and Director at Gendered Intelligence, said,
‘Gendered Intelligence supports the launch of Facebook’s custom gender options. The comprehensive range reflects the diversity of identity among trans people in the UK. We welcome the inclusion of non-binary identities that are so often overlooked or erased. Facebook’s decision to better reflect trans lives online sends a message to young trans people that their identities and concerns are legitimate and that their voices have been listened to.’
The new custom gender option is now available to everyone who uses Facebook in U.K. English. To learn more, visit https://www.facebook.com/help/276177272409629.