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Rob Gordon
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Attends Entrepreneur Strategy & Acceleration
Lives in San Diego, California
64,048 followers|39,215,934 views


Is the Google+ Communities API Worthless?

Let me preface this by saying I am not a programmer, but I do know a few things about community management and have several here - public and private.  

One thing I have always noticed about communities is how useless the member directory is.  Every community has one of these - on this community just go to the "see all" member link.  Even with just a few thousand members, it is already impossible to scroll through all of them - even if you could tell anything about these members through their  pictures or hovercards.  When you go to the search function you learn that the only thing you can search on is the users name - which is all but worthless.  

If you already know the person's name you don't need to do a search for their profile - you could just go to it directly - that is not something you need to search for on communities.  For business, it is much more likely that you would want to search for things like location, interests, industry and interests - and if those things aren't overtly stated in the profile, then at least a full keyword search.

As I have a business community that just hit 50,000 members, I have known for some time that i would need to dig into the API for communities.  Like I said, I am not a programmer but I always assumed was at the very least i would be able to download a Cdl file of my membership data - but I hoped there were some cool things I could do beyond that.  

Since i couldn't understand the attached API instructions, I asked a programmer friend of mine from here to look into it, but he seemed to already be familiar with the issue and said that the API had almost no useful functionality, and that Google didn't want us to have information about our members.  

He is the only one I have asked so far, but rather than ask around covertly I thought I would just mention this issue here since this community is about using Google in business.  Could someone let me know - what if anything can we do with that Communities Api and is there some way to get access to our members data for communities?
Florence LAURENT's profile photoRob Gordon's profile photoMichael Johnston's profile photo
+Michael Johnston I am totally not buying it buddy, and I take some offence you saying I am doing my communities because I want 'just a marketing database".  My community has 50,000 people and I have worked my ASS OFF to make it a good community, and the last thing I need is still another Google consultant running interference to make sure we can't get the help we need.    I don't need or want your "advice" even though you are  branding yourself as a "communities" expert.  I posted here for a reason - so this would not happen and I would have a chance to hear directly from Google.
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Rob Gordon

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Meanwhile, on Facebook. 
fan tai's profile photoJohn Krueger's profile photoMike Clancy's profile photowilliam gordon's profile photo
Third one like this in my G+ feed from you. Thanks for the laughter. 
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Dear Google,

I am very annoyed with you - especially since people on your social network Google+ keep posting about the cool devices they have - like your Nexus smartphones and tablets.  

I consider being constantly reminded of these things that I don't have on your networks to be a technical defect so I wanted to complain.  I usually buy your products, but I find this to be unsatisfactory
Stephen Dickson's profile photoLisa V.'s profile photoDean Barnett's profile photoLaurie Hoyler Schumann's profile photo
<~~live in area where google device does not work, requires an expensive 3rd party that never updates google device via their network.  FREE ME!
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I know it's not #womenwednesday  or anything, but she's pretty don't you think?
Desiree Hahn's profile photoChristian Ahumada's profile photoJimmy Ford's profile photoJustin FU's profile photo
very deadly
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Rob Gordon

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Hey look - a squirrel! 
Rugger Ducky's profile photoTara Lyn's profile photoCoach Marsha Tally's profile photoSy Bernot's profile photo
Someone is going to need rabies shots lol
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Rob Gordon

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Still more from Facebook - last one - I can't take many of these. 
Joel C's profile photoCoach Marsha Tally's profile photoJordan Henderson's profile photoPeg Sheridan's profile photo
Hey, I'm a human bean too!  Lovely.  Did any of you hear about the IBM employee who shot a text from Diego Garcia saying that they were being held in cells?  The metadata points to Diego Garcia.
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More from our Facebook friends
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Cuted is a word
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Rob Gordon

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Ready. . .  1. . 2. . 3
My friends & I in a group project when someone else suggests we should get to work:
•  #LegendaryYouyo65  •
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Rob Gordon

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Goodness this is creepy
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in the shadow you can see the true
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Rob Gordon

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Trolling the stock photo sites.
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There are some really dumb stock photos out there. Wearing all black in broad daylight? Great idea burglar.
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Have him in circles
64,048 people
Aspiring Entrepreneur
Program Management, Community Management, Entrepreneurship, Startup Acceleration, Content Creation, Content Automation, Small Business Strategy, International Business, Economic Development
    Founder, 2011 - present
    This is an community platform designed to enhance collaboration among early stage startups and entrepreneurs. While still under development, it is fully operational and provides a sophisticated matching service that can link entrepreneurs seeking partners and co-founders, as well as match them with the needs of larger organizations. Please see link on this profile for registration or contact me if you would like more information.
  • Project Acceleration Services
    Owner, 2011 - 2014
    Professional service that uses the latest generation of project management and scheduling applications along with collaborative brainstorming to help startups, small business and entrepreneurs accomplish their objectives much more rapidly. This service is an ideal match with my skill set and I would like to do everything I can to help you succeed. Please request a capabilities statement or schedule a Google+ hangout with me if you would like more information There is no charge for any initial consultation.
  • Content Creation Services
    Owner, 2011 - 2014
    Professional service that helps business with their content management, content marketing and content automation needs. I can supply customized content to your blog or website on a regular basis at low cost and with little involvement on your part. Ongoing market research is provided as part of this service and it is ideal as an adjunct to the regular content creation activities of you or your organization. Technical writing and documentation services are also available. Please request a capabilities statement or schedule a Google+ hangout with me f you would like more information There is no charge for any initial consultation.
  • California Trade Network
    Co-Founder, 2000 - 2014
    This is a business portal for exporters and internationally oriented entrepreneurs in the state of California. While this project went dormant for several years, it is currently being relaunched with a new partner at a time of renewed interest.
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
San Diego, California
Lagos, Nigeria - Cairo, Egypt - Lansing, Michigan - Detroit, Michigan
Small Business Community Organizer
I'm a friendly and outgoing guy, currently single, living near the beach area of San Diego.    I like meeting smart and creative people and want as much positive energy in my life as I can possibly get.  

There probably won't be much rhyme or reason to the posts I make here.  Sometimes I write about things going on in my life, other times I post business or political material, and sometimes I like things that are spiritual or related to self  improvement and personal growth - and I almost always like things that are funny or off beat.

I grew up in the American Midwest - Michigan, so I have the common attribute of being a little slow to make friends but then doing my best to hang onto them as long as I can.  I am an open book, but it still takes a while to get to know me  Once you have my trust though I will have your back.  I am fiercely loyal to my friends. 

My nationality is Irish so I like a good stiff drink now and again, and have a penchant for dive bars.   At the same time, I am also trying to get more health and fitness oriented and am working on my own personal growth.  I don't think we should ever stop growing.

Politically, I am a progressive libertarian - figure that one out.  I like yoga but also martial arts.  I am shy but outgoing - open minded but skeptical - tough but sensitive.  I am a patriotic American who considers himself to be a world citizen,  I am nonbeliever on a spiritual path.   Yes, I am a contradiction. 

Business Interests

I have a several different business interests, ventures and practice areas.  Since I am self-employed, I have used the "employment" section of this profile to describe my two major practice areas: Project Acceleration Services and Content Creation Services, as well as two of my ventures: World Startups and the California Trade Network.  These are active and current so contact me if any interest you.or if you see a way we might work together.   My other business interests include:
  • Entrepreneurial Collaboration
  • Small Business Development
  • Startup Venture Acceleration
  • Open Source Development
  • Collaborative Technologies
  • International Business & Trade
  • New Economy / Self-Employed
  • California Economy and Politics


I run several different communities here on Google+ - some are large and well established, some are small and experimental - all are intended to get people working together for mutual benefit.

Entrepreneurs, Self-Employed, and Small Business.  This is a large and growing public community - almost 50,000 members now -  that I founded for entrepreneurs, small business owners, startup founders and the self employed  It provides a platform where entrepreneurs from all around the world can meet, share information, engage in discussions and sometimes cooperate for mutual benefit.   Some have told me it is the best managed business community on Google+. All are welcome no matter how small or humble the business or venture. 

Virtual Brain Trust Cooperative.  We recently relaunched an initiative here on Google+ called the "Virtual Brain Trust Cooperative" where we each volunteer of offer a small amount of our extra "brain power" to help each other advance in our lives, business or careers.  This is being done mostly through the facilitation of small private teams, each dedicated to the success of an individual member.  This initiative is still new, but the response has been really amazing and almost 2000 people are now following our Google+ page where we make our major announcements

Personal Growth, Self-Improvement & Life Balance.  An open discussion of personal growth and self improvement in all its aspects, from the pragmatic, to the ethereal.  Includes discussions about self improvement, personal effectiveness, psychology, philosophy, neuroscience and even spirituality - anything that involves growing to our full potential and leading better lives.  This is a private community so you have to request an invitation but all we really ask is that you be your authentic self and not try to impress anyone.  

Favorite Quotes

"He attacked everything in in life with a mixture of extraordinary genius and naive incompetence and it was often difficult to tell which was which".
Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy"

"All the world will be your enemy, Prince with a Thousand Enemies, and whenever they catch you, they will kill you... But first, they must catch you"
Richard Adams, Watership Down

"Your mind. Your slow, plodding, tenacious mind. There has never been one quite like it, in all the history of the world. Perhaps in the history of creation." 
Stephen King - the Gunslinger.

DISCLAIMER:  I use Google+ as my personal micro-blog to post "whatever I want".   If you are offended by unconventional political and business ideas, unpopular opinions that sometimes go against the crowd, irreverent views about religion and morality, or a lack of respect for the status quo, I suggest that you not follow me.  While I am not totally insensitive to cultural norms, I will not "self censor" to accommodate anyone here.  In addition, I occasionally post material that is only appropriate for adults here so don't follow me if you are underage or might be offended by such materials.  See also: photo and image sharing policy:

Tags / Keywords / Circles
Bragging rights
Seeing what isn't there
  • Entrepreneur Strategy & Acceleration
    Business Strategy, 2012 - present
  • Michigan State University
  • San Diego State University
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December 22
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Rob Gordon's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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