Wow, what news around the “authority” sites lately! Vic Gundotra announced he will leave Google, so the speculators started to speculate, and they haven’t stopped to do just that, the dogs jumped at Google’s neck, from Times, to Business Insider and Search Engine Watch, but the most vicious was TechCrunch, who came up with titles like “Google Plus Is Walking Dead”. The venom came actually from Alexia Tsotsis, co-Editor at TechCrunch. She “breaks news, hearts”.
I liked that article, it was well rounded, explaining from an “insider’s” point of view, what’s going out there, and giving lead directions for all the others to quote it, and quote from it even without saying that, offering an opportunity for all Google Plus haters to spread their own venom, but not offering any piece of news from Thursday on. Thing is that I liked it so much, that I borrowed the pic and put it here, so you have the link to the article in the “[source]” above.
What made all haters to hate Google Plus more, is that after juggling with users’ numbers (integrating all gmail accounts and youtube accounts into G+), every newcomer to a Google service has been forced to make an account, and if he/she didn’t make it, the account was created anyway. I have friends who never realized they have a Google Plus account already… and all that, after the “scarcity policy” marketing method, which they pull out every time. The same policy applied when they started gmail on April 1 (what a coincidence), 2004, as an invitation-only beta release, and became available to the general public on February 7, 2007, though still in beta status even at that time. It became a whole product integrated in Google Apps, only on July 7, 2009. They did the same with Google Plus, which started on June 28, 2011 (invitation-only, of course) with another restriction, every beta user could send only one hundred and fifty invitations, not more. I still don’t realize how they did it, they had the only advantage that users could manage their privacy settings better than everywhere, better than any other Social Media site. Just you and NSA, nobody else could know your peculiarities, and the people you wanted to know about you, of course. On Facebook (for sample), your privacy was open to a lot of other structures besides NSA, so G+ was better, right? Actually not, and it’s pure logic. While on Facebook you can find now friends and colleagues you have never heard of in years, Google Plus initially restricted anyone’s access to the site. Fortunately just up to September 20, so they restricted it for less than three months.
I know, it was better, it was purer than water, but it came too late. Now, they push everything inside, photo-sharing, video-sharing (the youtube somehow forced comments integration into G+ streams was another bad move), chatting (through hangouts), and many more, creating a surrealistic mix (of course the haters call it “monster”) which clutches your browser when you are there. Lazy to load, if you integrate its codes with your site (like I did in my unlimited aloofness), you’re done with speed.
So, instead of launching it freely, instead of persuading everybody around to “connect through google plus”, they restricted it’s access to a Steve Jobs model “elite”, which is bad for business. I still am an evangelist (whatever that means), but the difference between a Jobs’ style launched product and G+ is that an iPhone and a MacBook Air, for sample, are the best products in their range available on the market. Google Plus still doesn’t make the difference, it captured Facebook haters, curious people and others who doesn’t know yet they were captured. After awhile, they started that “authorship” crap which doesn’t even work for anybody anymore. That’s not high quality, I’m sorry. I’m also sure you know that I’m on G+’s side, I considered it “the future”. There are still persons who consider it “yet another site where I have to log in”, so they don’t make an account, and so on.
In the mean time, Facebook is praised even when it’s criticized. It’s general. Check out for sample, this article on Slate, beginning with the phrase: “We all know by now that Facebook isn’t cool”. I’m not a Facebook hater either, I don’t even have an account :).
Relevant or not, Google Plus wanted to be “heavy” and “serious”, offering a fair competition for Facebook in Social Media arena, and with MacIntosh evangelists writing books for it, still stand a chance. But it seems that its creators forgot its scope, so now, they have officially ended competition with other Social Media sites (meaning Twitter and Facebook), and that is an idea taken from @alexia (btw, you may follow her on Twitter). Vic Gundotra’s leaving the project is perceived by people knowing him as a blow.
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