Its been about 9 months since I joined Google Plus – I got early entry the week it launched, before the initial rush of excitement was over. I really thought it had potential. There was this great thing called Hangouts and a group texting service called Huddles (later renamed as Messenger) and the threaded conversations were easy to manage and the quality of content seemed higher than Twitter or Facebook – it was almost as though people were trying harder.
Google Plus: Lack of Quality
Unfortunately it didn’t last. The quality of content has declined, the newness has worn off and to be honest the innovations promised by Google have failed to appear. Hangouts on Air, the ability to record and then save a Hangout to Youtube was rolled out to a select few users and it has been indicated that this feature will be eventually rolled out to all users but that hasn’t happened yet – instead Google added animal masks – as a sop to those who wanted something new to happen in the video hangouts.
Google Plus: The Mobile Version that isn’t
The mobile version of Google Plus is at best a hindrance, forcing users back to the web based version because of its lack of features.
While I accept that the common rule is that you are in control of your own stream and therefore if you find your stream boring you must be circling the wrong people – with approx 5,000 people in my circles you would expect to find a higher signal to noise ratio but that isn’t the case. The quality has dropped off, a lot of the content is cross-posted from other sites and to be honest, while I might have originally circled someone because of their content, when that degrades I can’t be bothered to move them to another circle.
I stopped using Google Plus a week ago and I have to say I haven’t missed it. It never did that much for me to be honest in terms of traffic generation, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest send more visitors to my blog than Google Plus ever did and while I did find some interesting people there, they are also on other networks I use.
I’m now using Chime.in, which I wrote about months ago as my alternative to Facebook and Twitter though my use of both of those platforms has increased and subsequently my engagement on them has increased.
So it’s ok if you say “meh” when people mention Google Plus, you aren’t missing the point, you aren’t missing out on some wonderful collaboration network that will change how you think about social media, in fact I would have preferred to see Google develop Youtube Plus and bring the benefits of Hangouts etc to Youtube directly and just get rid of the rest of their attempt at Social Networks. Honestly the guys at Mountain View need to understand that Mathlethes aren’t best placed to run the prom. While it is cool to currently believe that the Nerds are taking over the world, at the end of the day they are still nerds and the only world they are taking over is Silicon Valley – to which they are most definitely welcome.
As for me I’m going back to my old haunts of Facebook, Twitter, Chime.In and Pinterest as well as looking for newer, smaller, interest based networks that provide me the ability to really fine tune my information stream.
What about you – do you Like G+?