Wednesday, if you signed up as a new Facebook user, the gender options you were given were two: male and female. But Thursday, Facebook revealed its new 50 ways to identify gender and some local college kids are already making changes."Like I don't really identify as a girl and I don't really identify as a guy but um... normally I would identify as neither... I don't know I'm just myself," said Stacey Stark, who now identifies as "genderqueer" on her profile. The Morningside junior and many others users are part of the reason the social media site has decided to offer untraditional ways to express your identity
The custom options range from terms like "transgender", "intersex" and "neither."
Nick Van de Berg, who identifies as male on Facebook, says even if the expressions don't apply to you, the new identifications are still a step in the right direction. "It's allowing other people to realize that people are becoming more and more open minded than just the strict male and female and that they are... that the movement, the LGBT movement, is actually making a difference," said Van de Berg, who is leader in the Gay and Straight Alliance on campus with Stark. Facebook users will also be able to choose the pronoun they'd like to be identified as, rather than using they and their, which the site has been using for 10 years.
For Stark, whose happy with her new identification, she said her profile now truly reflects who she is. "I like, I understand that it can be confusing for some people, like it's even confusing for me sort of still, but-- but I just think that it's important to recognize that even though someone was born with a certain gender that's not how they want people to see them and how they want to be perceived," she said.
Facebook has also changed some privacy settings that will now allow users to control who can see their custom gender settings.
To edit your gender status, follow these Facebook instructionsGo to your Timeline (which we sometimes refer to as your profile)Click Update Info at the bottom of your cover photoClick Edit in the top right of the section you'd like to changeEnter your new info and click SaveIf you have a story you want to tell or an incident you think needs to be investigated, our reporter Beairshelle Edmé wants to hear about it.BEdme@siouxlandnews.comfacebook.com/beairshelle.edme OR twitter.com/BeairshelleKMEG