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Google+ Testing Forced Category Choices for Community Posts

UPDATE 2: Lee Jarratt has now updated the image of his post, making much of my original post below now irrelevant. Here's the real scoop:

Google+ appears to be testing with a limited number of users a feature in communities where someone creating a post in the default "All Posts" category who has not chosen a category for their post gets a pop up warning that they need to choose a category before posting.

UPDATE: According to +Lee Jarratt of +Google Plus Daily I misinterpreted the example image in their post. The text I quoted below is not inserted by Google+, but was text user +Clayton Pritchard had typed into the share box to point out that his post had no auto-category pre-selected. +Google Plus Daily should edit their post to make that more clear to readers.

+Google Plus Daily reports that a small number of users are seeing something new when they go to create a post in a Community. If they are in the default "All Posts" view when they start to create their post, they are seeing a warning in the post box that they have not yet chosen a category. Actually, the "warning" is just a message that says, "There isn't an auto-category!" (referring to the fact that if you post from a category view, the category is automatically chosen in your post).

While I think this could be a step forward in keeping communities better organized, I hope a more clear message is used. Many users probably would have no idea what an "auto-category" even is.
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Clayton Pritchard's profile photoTessa Schlesinger's profile photoLee Jarratt's profile photomega SEO's profile photo
15 comments
 
Oy - Please put that as a comment on their blog. I hate spreading false reports!
 
+Mark Traphagen I'm not sure if it's just me, but there seems to be a general lack of consistency with Google messaging. For instance, we've recently setup a business page, (and can't find a clear way to migrate a Places page to a Local page, but that's another story) and were testing a second page. However when we went to delete the test page, the process started out saying "delete page" and then switched to the message "delete account" towards the end of the process. Which of course is the last thing we wanted to do so  have left the page there for now. Very annoying.
 
Oh wait, so the change is that there is NO auto category choice when posting from All Posts? I don't see that as helpful. . It would only be helpful if the poster was not allowed to share her post until she had selected a category.

This actually breaks an anti-spam technique that many community owners adopted of making the default, first category something like Posts Left Here Will Be Reported As Spam! to alert users they needed to choose a category. 
 
+Chris Sutton I agree that's bad...but regarding this issue please see the comment here from +Lee Jarratt - this isn't a Google+-generated message. I misunderstood the image in their post.
 
I've never liked the categories in communities anyway. Just too lazy to find a category. I like everythin just posted under one bundle.
 
+Tessa Schlesinger if categories are well-planned by the community owner, they should be useful. They are helpful to people who want to take a deeper dive into one aspect of a Community's topic without having to scroll through every post not on that aspect.
 
+Mark Traphagen by not having an auto category, it forces the user to think about which topic would be the most relevant and hopefully leading to better organized communities.
 
But +Clayton Pritchard in the image in the post it appears that the Share button is not grayed out, which means you would be able to share your post without selecting a category. This won't work unless it forces the user to select a category, which is what should have been done from the start.
 
That's exactly how it is. The share button isn't grayed out but you receive a warning message when trying to share. +Lee Jarratt had just added an image of this to the article.
 
Ok now THAT's useful! Makes the post make much more sense. 
 
 +Mark Traphagen there is that. On the other hand, if one is a member of the community, then everything come up on one's stream. Of course, if one has 2000 members that one is following, then it's impossible to find anything. I don't, for precisely that reason. I follow very few people and very few communities. That way, I can see most things as they come up on my stream. That means all the extra bells and whistles are not useful to me, I guess. Just a nuisance.
 
I think that's useful. I liked the idea.
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