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Facebook Tells Msgr. Charles Pope to Change His Title on His Profile

WIKIMEDIA Commons

Zoe Romanowsky - published on 08/21/15

Washington, D.C priest says he thought it was a scam at first

Msgr. Charles Pope, a Catholic priest in the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. assigned to Holy Comforter St. Cyprian Parish, was told by Facebook this past week that he couldn’t use his title on his Facebook page anymore.

Pope, who has held the title of Monsignor for ten years and used it on Facebook for six, told FoxNews.com on Thursday that “more people call me ‘Monsignor’ than call me ‘Charles.’ ”

Facebook claims they thought his title was fake; Msgr. Pope thought their notice to him was a scam.

According to The Washington Times, a spokesman told FoxNews.com that Facebook’s policy is to not allow titles on personal site profiles. However, Facebook’s request doesn’t make sense, given the company’s emphasis on allowing users “to express their individual identities however they chose.”
Summary

Msgr. Charles Pope, a Catholic priest in the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. assigned to Holy Comforter St. Cyprian Parish, was told by Facebook this past week that he couldn’t use his title on his Facebook page anymore.

Pope, who has held the title of Monsignor for ten years and used it on Facebook for six, told FoxNews.com on Thursday that “more people call me ‘Monsignor’ than call me ‘Charles.’ ”

Facebook claims they thought his title was fake; Msgr. Pope thought their notice to him was a scam.

According to The Washington Times, a spokesman told FoxNews.com that Facebook’s policy is to not allow titles on personal site profiles. However, Facebook’s request doesn’t make sense, given the company’s emphasis on allowing users “to express their individual identities however they chose.”

Msgr. Charles Pope, a Catholic priest in the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. assigned to Holy Comforter St. Cyprian Parish, was told by Facebook this past week that he couldn’t use his title on his Facebook page anymore.

Pope, who has held the title of Monsignor for ten years and used it on Facebook for six, told FoxNews.com on Thursday that “more people call me ‘Monsignor’ than call me ‘Charles.’ ”

Facebook claims they thought his title was fake; Msgr. Pope thought their notice to him was a scam.

According to The Washington Times, a spokesman told FoxNews.com that Facebook’s policy is to not allow titles on personal site profiles. However, Facebook’s request doesn’t make sense, given the company’s emphasis on allowing users “to express their individual identities however they chose.”

Facebook’s Chief Product Officer, Chris Cox, wrote this in an apology last year to “drag queens, drag kings, transgender” and other members of the LGBT community who had not been allowed to use their stage names on the site:

“Our policy has never been to require everyone on Facebook to user their legal names … The spirit of our policy is that everyone on Facebook uses the authentic name they use in real life … For Sister Roma, that’s Sister Roma. For Lil Miss Hot Mess, that’s Lil Miss Hot Mess.”

But, according to Fox, when asked whether Facebook’s “inclusive spirit” could be applied toward people with religious titles, a Facebook spokesperson said the current policy stood and was not up for review.

Other religious figures use their titles on their personal Facebook pages. Pope told Fox that he doesn’t believe he’s being singled out, but that someone probably personally flagged his profile to bring it to Facebook’s attention.

“‘Monsignor Charles Pope’ is the name I routinely go by. I’m a priest and I’m always called ‘Monsignor‘ or ‘Father.’ This is the name I go by.”… “I just think it’s incredibly foolish on their part to try and treat people this way. I can understand if people have something ugly or nefarious or scurrilous in their name.”

After supplying several forms of identification to Facebook, Msgr Pope’s account was restored on Wednesday, but he now logs in as “Charles Pope” and he has posted a cover photo depicting the inside of a church with the caption “Msgr. Charles Pope.”

The priest told Fox, “I’m going to stay in this conversation. I’m not going to go away quietly.”
Zoe Romanowskyis lifestyle editor and video content producer of Aleteia.

Tags:
Social MediaTechnologyVocations
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