Google + Impressions

I was excited when I heard about Google +.  I was even more excited when I was able to start using it.  I usually like when Google introduces a new product, so I was looking forward to being able to use this new social network.

After a week, I have to admit that I’m disappointed.  Google+ is no Facebook killer.  It doesn’t really even have the features to compete with Facebook.  No groups, no pages, no wall, no direct message.  Its more like twitter than anything else.  And I already have twitter.

I keep seeing messages saying “You’re using Google+ wrong” or “Stop trying to use Google+ like Facebook”. I see an inherent problem with statements like that.  You can’t tell people how to use a social network.  People need to be able to use it the way they want to use it.  You can direct your users through design to use it the way you might want them, but you can’t tell people that they are using it “wrong”.  They have to find how they want to use it.  And I don’t know yet how I want to use it, or if I want to use it.

So what did I want?  I guess I wanted something along the lines of Facebook, but without the games and a better privacy policy.  But that’s not what I got.  But I can’t really tell you what I got, because I don’t know what its supposed to be. I haven’t figured out a way to use it that benefits me, or even really interests me.  Its certainly no facebook killer.

What do you think of Google +?

3 Comments

  1. I was really hesitant and I had practically made up my mind to ignore (just as I had ignored My Space) but curiousity got the better of me. I still don’t know what to think because frankly if I am going to just have circles with the same people that are my friends on Facebook, well then I might as well just stick to Facebook. Oh, and since we’re being honest, I was kind of hoping that it might be a way to promote my site, but I haven’t figured out how. Oh well, if nothing else I can say that I tried it – something that I never did with My Space!

  2. I completely agree. Fail. 🙁

  3. Hello Phil,

    I think there’s a lot of confusion about what Google+ was supposed to be. It’s definitely not Facebook, nor is it Twitter. Since I don’t know much about you I don’t really know why you write your blog or engage in any kind of social media, so what I’ll do is quickly go into what makes G+ a social network of caliber:

    1. Content management — Whereas with other networks every contact receives every message you send with G+ allows you to create groups (circles) of people to receive information relevant to them.

    2. SEO — Public posts on G+ are rated higher on Google, whereas they may not be visible at all using other social networks, even if posted publicly.

    3. Better conversation — this one is a big one for me… people on G+ seem far more willing to have a conversation, rather than give monosyllabic answers to posts.

    4. Search functionality — Something new since your post here… Type anything into the top search bar in G+ and see what people are talking about, whether as public G+ posts, users who may be interested that subject or news stories relating to the subject. It’s really quite dynamic.

    5. Hangouts — Video conferencing for up to 10 people at once. It’s being used for a variety of educational purposes now and people will soon have the ability to broadcast live on youtube so that larger groups can listen in.

    I’d urge you to give G+ another look. If you were an early adopter of Facebook I’m sure you remember how feature bare it was at the time… keep in mind that for G+ private messages have always been a part of it (just start typing their name in the “Add circles or people” area) and business pages are only “weeks” away (which should function as groups as well).

    Derek

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