How to Create a Bad Impression on Google+

Many people do things that create a really bad impression on Google+ by mistake. Below are some of the ways people make other Google+ users want to uncircle, mute, or even block them.

Steal other people's material. There is lots of great material on Google+. Resharing people's posts (providing they are not private) can be very well-received, but copying their material as if it was your own original work is plagiarism. It not only creates a bad impression on the person whose work was stolen but also on anyone who recognizes what was done. Really great material is heavily shared so the odds of it being recognized are high.

Share "link litter" posts. Posts that contain only links or links with short comments like "interesting post" or "must read" are called "link litter." Link litter posts are completely uninteresting in people's streams so they make the posters' look dull. That can be avoided by adding a summary of what is in the link or providing your views on the material.

Add circles, Your Circles, or Extended Circles to Public Posts. Depending on your audience's settings, this can cause notification the people do not want. You are very likely to get muted if you do this regularly, which means you would have no way to notify those people when it is appropriate. 

+1 lots of someone's posts at one time. When people discover someone interesting, they often read through their posts and +1 lots of them believing it to be a nice gesture and possibly a way of getting recognized. The impact on the person involved, however, can be very negative because it can generate a notification for each +1 (again, depending on their Google+ settings). The person therefore is likely to mute or block the individual rather than appreciate the +1s. 

Add off-topic posts in communities. Communities are generally focused around specific topics. You might have a really great post but sharing it with the wrong community makes it spam in that community, which creates a bad impression on the regular members of the community. For example, the Google+ Discuss community is for discussing Google+. Posts about anything else -- even other Google products or Google itself -- are therefore viewed as spam in that community. You can find what is appropriate in a community by reading its About this community card.

Share old news. Some people share information that was interesting at the time well after it was relevant without saying it is old information. The Internet is a fast-changing world. Studies and announcements become meaningless or obsolete very quickly. Sharing such material months, weeks, and in some cases even days after it was released makes the posts look really foolish. The only exception, of course, would be if the posts reflect on the implications of old news or discuss the outcome of predictions made. 

Use images that have nothing to do with the content of your posts. Using images tends to increase the visual appeal of the posts. If the images are not relevant to the content of a post, however, people often feel that they have been taken advantage of by the person who created the post. Alternatively, they might be turned off by the picture itself and not bother looking at the post. Either way, the off-topic picture has a negative effect.

For more of my tips like this about Google+, check:   #jmstipsGooglePlus  
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