A quick apology, not as much content recently, I’m working on developing a related side project. More to come if we can get our act together.
Before I rant, you can find me here on Google+: http://gplus.to/iamreff
Okay, 3 quick reasons why Google+ is driving me nuts.
1. Stalled Network Effect
It’s great that I can create context circles, but for the most part it’s the SoMe rockstar show. Now, I love the rockstars, but I already have multiple outlets to benefit from their wisdom. As people have written before, the real-time nature of Google+ makes it a better platform for engagement (as opposed to Twitter), but the lack of large network of users really limits the conversation. The conversation on Google+ seems very natural and organic, but there’s too little of it. Perhaps 10% of my Facebook friends are on Google+ and for the most part those are my SoMe friends who I see everyday on Twitter. Until more people join Google+, it’s not much of a draw for me, just another thing to weed and feed. How can Google get more users on Google+? More and better features.
2. The “What’s Your Favorite Color?” Syndrome
So although this is a rant post I want to be particularly careful not to blame Google+ users. It’s a new platform and people are poking and prodding it, trying to see how to best use it. HOWEVER, right now it feels like it’s missing the conversation starter. As a user, you create the groups based on the topic, but you’re the only one that knows the context of the circle. For example, I created a Babson circle where I put all my friends from our MBA program. However, I can’t use the circle as a group to share context related stories. I want to create groups within the circles and have discussions there on specific topics, but it just doesn’t work that way.
Google+ users are left to start their own conversations. As a result many post questions. Since we are lacking the context of a group, it seems most are left asking very broad questions that may come across as a bit silly and not as interesting as the author might desire. I wish there better integration with Sparks providing the needed conversation starters. Or perhaps a Quora like capability to do Q&A.
3. Autoposting Pictures
Out of the box the pictures you take are automatically uploaded to your Google+ profile (at least it does with my DroidX). Perhaps it’s nice functionality, but for a number of reasons, I want creative control. I frequently take multiple pictures and only post the best. I take pictures of my kids and friends kids and I want to decide what to share. Of course Google gives you a couple ways out of this. You can disable the upload feature in your Google+ app and remove photos from your profile.
I haven’t spent a ton of time in Google+ and it’s totally possible that I’m missing some critical piece of the puzzle. If so, let me know in the comments.