Tagged: Google

Google+ Ripples

So Google+ is still there. Yes, I know lots of people really like it but I’m still not there. The main reason? I STILL can’t update from any of my social apps like Yoono and Hootsuite (Google+ API not released yet) and it STILL looks like crap on my iPad (iPhone app makes it a bit better but not much).
If they think I’m going to drop all my other networks and switch over just like that they are dreaming.

But in the mean time they are clearly working on it and this week an interesting new development was the release of Ripples. An option that shows you how your public posts are being shared accross yours as well as others networks. Yes, have to admit. I’m impressed. Will this win me over?? Not yet (see above) but it does make me wish Twitter will copy this one really quick because I’d love to see this kind of detail on my Tweets!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_j0I1a_Aw4g]

Google+ continued

Ok, now the whole Google+ hype has died down a bit and most of my ‘friends’ activities are back to normal (e.g. Twitter & Facebook) they’ve finally officially released it to wider audience. Unofficially everybody could join anyway (simple get an invite from someone already on it), but now it’s open to the bigger community.

As my earlier posts might have already demonstrated I’m still not fully convinced on Google+. Ok, yes I can see they’ve got some really nice things in there and their interface is slick but after two months the main feeling I get from Google+ is:

Who the He.. are all those people adding me to their circles??

I mean I’ve posted only about 20 posts on Google+ in the last two months but had over a 100 people actively adding me to their circles. It took me a lot longer to get even close to these numbers on Twitter or Facebook. The problem is though that out of that 100 a considerable amount of people who added me really don’t seem to be interested in what I am about. They’re just following me so that I follow them back it seems.
On Facebook where you need to actively accept friendships I know or at least can place anyone I befriended and on Twitter, where following someone means their posts show up in your main stream I know or can place at least 80% of my followers. On Google+ however you can add someone and then just park them in a circle. There is no investment it seems. So although Google+ does seem to yield more ‘followers’, I feel less connected to them. And that makes it a lot less ‘social’  to me.

Social Networking for me is all about broadening your community and I would lie if I said I was immune to the joys of seeing my followers list grow. Your social reach (follower base) is more or less the currency in Social networking. It determines how well your message gets around and it allows you to build relations with people you would otherwise never meet. But it’s not just the amount of followers you have that is important but also why those people would want to follow you. Are they genuinely interested in what you have to say or just adding you in the hopes of being followed back?!?
How valuable are followers on Google+ as social contacts if they have the ability to add you and then bury you in a never read circle?? Ok they are ‘following’ you but they might never actually read any of what you are posting. And that is exactly what makes me feel less connected to them and less inclined to actually post on Google+.

A lot of the people that added me on Google+, I feel, were just doing that: Hoping that adding me would mean I add them back (‘I follow you if you follow me‘). When I don’t follow them back a lot of them removed me from their circles just as easily as they added me in the first place.
True, this happens on all social networks, including Facebook & Twitter but with the circles model of Google+ it just becomes so much easier to distinguish between the people you are really interested in and the ones you simply added as ‘social currency’ that it makes it feel impersonal to me. It sort of sucks out the Social aspect of it all.

So on we go. I’m not counting out Google+ yet. I still think it’s a strong contender that will grow significantly. I think a second grow spurt will happen when the full Google+ API’s will be released. Allowing social apps like Tweetdeck, Yoono, Hootsuite, etc to incorporate it. So avid Social users like me can post to it simultaneously with our other social networks (Facebook, Twitter, linkedIn, etc). Until then it will remain something I look at periodically but hardly use I guess…

Google+….. Searching for the plus….

After waiting impatiently for days to get into Google+ I got in. Excited to check out all the new features I started exploring. That took me about 10 minutes. “Is that it?“…. Yep that was it. Than real life caught up with me along with a major workflow project going life and a bunch of support request that buried me up to my armpits. It just lost that ‘WOW!’ factor, that made me jump through hoops to get in, really rapidly.

The one thing I had really high expectations of was the idea of the circles but at the same time it makes me so conscious about what I’m posting to which circle that I find myself hardly posting at all.

The same seems to be going on on the other side and the posts that I do see from my most active Social media connections seem to be mostly on Google+ itself. Another effect is that from certain people I now get only their ‘business’ content. Ok yes, I’m not calling them friends, most not even acquaintances but by reading not just their business content but also their quirky, personal, sometimes funny, sometimes sad messages they become alive to me. Keeping me interested and keeping me reading. Someone that posts just a lot of technical stuff I tend to loose interest in real quickly. Call me a sucker but I just love the ‘social’ in social media.

So am I won for Google+ ? Not exactly yet. Am I going to use it? Definitely! Probably a bit more after it gets picked up by Social Media tools like Tweetdeck, Hootsuite and Yoono. Because for now I don’t see myself being weaned of Twitter and/or Facebook any time soon and updating all those networks separately is just too much of a hassle.

Anyway, if you want to add me to your Google+ circles then please do (Profile) and let me know what your opinion is. I’d love to hear! Who knows. Maybe we can ‘Hangout‘. Haven’t had a chance to test that feature out yet anyway :-)

Still no access to Google+…. Getting frustrated!

Grrr…. Everybody seems to be tweeting and blogging about Google+ and I’m still waiting for my invite to arrive (yes I finally got someone to send me one, it just hasn’t arrived yet!). So I’m left waiting for Google+ to open up or the invite to arrive. And in the mean time all I can do is watch the demo….. Yeah nice.

Does give me the time to do some senseless scrutinizing of the site though… Which of course I did (love senseless scrutinizing!).

So on the demo site you can switch languages, not something I would normally do, prefer English over botched up Dutch anytime, but in this case I tried (for lack of better things to try). And the first thing I notice is that the “You” in the left upper corner is translated into “U” (formal form of ‘you’ in Dutch). But in the screen print on the screen itself it’s called “Jij” (informal form of ‘you’ in Dutch).

So, what does this tell us?!?

1. Google isn’t sure how to address their users in Dutch (formal or informal)

2. I desperately need to get into Google+ before I start writing even more of these idiotic blogs!