Let’s Talk About Google Plus

Namely, how I don’t totally get it.

I mentioned this last week to a dear friend who has fallen for the social network. Her response was: “you’re a smart girl, you can figure it out.” That’s probably true, I thought, so I spent some time last night trying to ingrain myself in the site. Creating “circles,” choosing who belonged where, adding something to my “stream” and then immediately deleting it because I couldn’t tell if I sent it to the right group.

Of course, now it just becomes another online network that I have to keep up with. That shouldn’t be too tough considering I spend most of my life on Google–between my iGoogle page and my Gmail–but adding another social outlet that isn’t face-to-face contact is probably not necessary.

For those of you who haven’t checked it out, Google Plus is Google’s answer to Facebook. It aims to “make connecting with people on the web more like connecting with them in the real world.” To me, this mostly means the ability to set circles. On Facebook when you post a status update you’re pretty much sharing with everyone, barring some very specific privacy settings. On Google Plus, from what I understand (which, I can’t stress enough, isn’t much) it’s easier to control who sees what. If I want to write a note to work friends only or make plans for the weekend with some family, I have circles for both. Not everything has to be public.

So far, Google Plus is interesting–group video chat! hangouts! newsfeeds! oh my! I’m just not sure that adding another social network to my life is the way to make me more social.

Have any of you tried the new network? Love it? Hate it? Too exhausted by current social media to even check it out? If anyone has great Google Plus insight, please share!

11 Comments

Filed under The Search

11 responses to “Let’s Talk About Google Plus

  1. I’ve been getting the invites emailed to me, but I’m not sure I need another online network either. The people I would connect with on that are the same people I connect with via Facebook, email, gchat, and texting. I’m not sure what this would add to those relationships. But like you, I really know very little about it.

  2. Anonymous

    I find the timing of this post perfect! Just a few hours ago I thought to myself “Well, work is slow today, maybe I’ll finally accept the invites and see what this is about.” And I have to say, I’m not sure how I feel about it. Like you, I’ve been trying to avoid it for as long as possible because it really seems unnecessary at this point, but being in Marketing, it’s important that I keep up with all social media (which can get exhausting!). I’m still a bit confused by the whole thing, but I do like that you can selectively post things. Not sure we needed an entirely new platform for that feature but I guess we’ll just have to see how it goes.

  3. Megan

    My boyfriend’s brother works for Google and is intimately involved in this Google+ project. I, for one, haven’t used it much and don’t see the need to – why transfer everything in my real life to the virtual world? I mean, that’s one of the things that’s causing so many social and relational problems in the first place, right?

  4. I am so glad that you don’t get it either. I’ve tried Google+ a few times, I have a very small circle of friends (just one circle — I am too confused by all the other circles). I can’t get used to not having my own “wall” to post my status updates. I can’t get used to the whole “notification” system. I can’t get used to the whole kit and kaboodle! It took me at least 6 months to a year to figure out Facebook, now I have to figure out another one? I’ve decided to just stick with FB; I don’t have the time or energy to figure out another social network that does basically the same thing as FB.

  5. Yeah I don’t quite get it either. And I have been toying with it for a few weeks now. Here’s hoping us “smart girls” can figure it out better soon! :) I will keep you posted…

  6. Brian G.

    I use it and love it! OK so you have to select what circles to send your post to. Well yes, that takes a little bit of thought, but I have seen enough personal messages from brother to sister posted to me and 500 other semi-friends to know that this makes a whole lot more sense. I don’t care that you want to tell your sister you had a wonderful time with her “schmoopy” son at the zoo, for example. Does G+ make me more social? No. Does it bring about more directed, interesting, or useful information from people I care about most? Yes.

    • Thanks Brian! I tried to post a “selective” status last night to two friends. The idea that that is possible is fabulous. However, I have no idea if I did it right! I’m still reserving judgment though…

  7. I need another social media outlet like I need another hole in the head. That is just more time I have to spend behind a computer and not out with actual people. I think we have become too dependent on things like Facebook and Twitter, and have come to the point that we are delusional about the relationships that we have there.

    I say get off of the computer and get out more.

  8. anon

    All these social networks just creep me out. I held out on facebook and a google powered social network is something I’d be even less inclined to sign up for. I must just be to private of a person. Reading this you probably think I’m a 80 year old grandma but I’m not. I’m 22.

  9. Laurie Lee

    I was curious and went over to check it out and they aren’t taking anyone at the moment.

    I’m big on Facebook and already have different friends lists I post to.

  10. openfan@gmail.com

    Hate it. It was definitely more burdensome than useful..

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