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Several people have been asking me, and I can confirm that +Dave Besbris  is indeed going to be taking over as head of Google+. Bez has been with the project since its very beginning, and he and +Bradley Horowitz  have both been Vic's top lieutenants: if Google+ were its own company, Bez would have been its COO. He's also an amazing leader: someone who profoundly understands the subtleties of social, of apps, of engineering, of product, and of how to run an organization. Even though you haven't seen him talking in public as much as you've seen Vic, I expect that you'll be very pleasantly surprised when you see what happens with him at the helm. +Bradley Horowitz, in the meantime, will continue his role as the head of product -- where he will presumably continue to be one of the most thoughtful and intelligent men I've worked with.

A big leadership change like this is always a shock, but I'm very glad to see that we're maintaining core continuity, and that our new leader is someone I trust so deeply. Every hail and farewell is bittersweet, but I couldn't have hoped for better people.

You can also learn more at the Re/Code article ( which I think does a great job. (Although they slightly got wrong that Bez was somehow a surprise choice; I would have described him as the obvious successor)
The head of Google+ and Google’s social efforts, Vic Gundotra, announced that he’s stepping down today. Google has confirmed that his replacement will be, as Re/code sources speculated, the current vice president of engineering for Google+, David Besbris. Re/code broke the news of Besbris taking over according to its sources, but Google itself didn’t confirm […]
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Maybe next time for Yonatan ! It was "my first choice" :)
Actually pretty psyched about seeing +Dave Besbris move into that spot!  I know he likes photography!  Congrats & good luck :)
Congratulations, +Dave Besbris. And yes, it's good to see that continuity seems to be important for Google and Google+.
Awww, thanks everyone. And +Yonatan Zunger, we need to discuss changing your title to "grumpy master sergeant" :)
+Yonatan Zunger Tss tss :) Seargeant(s) can surpass lieutenant(s) !

In history we even had un 'petit caporal' who made history ... Napoleon (bad or good, you can choose).

The other known caporaI ... uhhhh I prefer not mention :)
Awyeah! Dave is monica. Congrats man.
Anyone who has ever been in the military knows that a "grumpy Master Sergeant" can get more done than any equivalent weight in officers once he puts his mind to it.
+John VanRoekel Depends on the officer. In this particular case, I'm pretty confident in his ability to get things done.  
That's why you are my first choice. Just seeing articles you wrote till now.

It is just not Google (Plus or not, ofc you work in and for Google) or not just programming or some technical stuff I can't understand ..

We are in a social network it seems so ... I had some discoveries  so thank you from Belgium for this :)
Great news!  I was wondering why Google so seldom has management shakeups - at least ones we know about - and this is an area where it was desperately needed.   Hopefully Mr.  Besbris will more closely follow the values of this community, and the values that made Google great.
You will be sticking around, though right? I like your posts... :)
Now we just need to make volume controls meaningful (remember "All") and allow users to decline having +spamming appear in their streams ; )
Right +Dave Besbris?
+Lori Priebe I've got no plans to go anywhere. Except possibly to bed -- it's been a long week. :)
What I respect is that +Dave Besbris has been laying low today, letting it be about Vic and folks appreciating what he has done.  This is a big day for Dave as well, but he is allowing Vic to have the spotlight to himself right now.  
Dear +Dave Besbris , all the best wishes for your new position!
Looking forward to new additions and twists that you and your great team will add in the future.
Enjoy and stay strong!
I guess I was surprised; I thought Dave managed the squirrel conservation program at Google.
Drunk with power, +Dave Besbris issues new rules for plussers:

Everyone must change their underwear every 20 minutes. Underwear will now be worn on the outside, so we can check.
+Aaron Gilliland I love that I saw the first paragraph of your comment, and before hitting "expand comment," I immediately auto-completed it in my head -- correctly.
+Raphaël Vinet actually Hitler only ever made Lance Corporal (Gefreiter), not Corporal (Unteroffizier) He was a regimental runner some distance behind the front line, and had more contact with officers, and his 2 decorations for bravery probably relate to that.

By contrast Napoleon first became famous as "the Little Corporal" for his victories on the Italian border But he had lots of other military promotions for merit thereafter.

So no particular reason for +Yonatan Zunger to avoid being a Little Colonel. Even if he is really sensitive about his height (which apparently Napoleon wasn't at 5 foot 7 inches. The French called him "Little" because he was an unknown who was winning famous victories)
+Matt Schofield I don't know for other armies but here (in Belgium) caporals (corporals) are and were not (not the good word in english) underofficieren. It began / begins with sergent ( sergeants)
The presence of a grumpy master sergeant clearly implies the possibility of other sergeants major. No judgments about those people filling the roles of dopey master sergeant and sleepy sergeant major or their futures with the organization, of course.
I imagine the rest of the photo would see Dave's fingers steepled as he patiently thinks to himself, "Good. Goooood."

Well, either that or he's thinking, "That's right. All the squirrels." 

Congratulations, +Dave Besbris!  =D
+Matt Schofield , so I can still make it to the CEO level.
I had one very good colleague who was 6'75" nearly and a triathlete.
He quit to severe back pain, but that may be an exemption. No empirical data available from my side.

Beside that, we have a nice ambiguous meaning here for little.
It may be the physical size or the cognitive horizon.
+Joachim Kessel It isn't all roses being tall either, from what I understand. In English we have a saying, "the taller they come, the harder they fall". Immortalized and transformed by Jimmy Cliff  "The Harder They Come" Jimmy Cliff

The height of the armor attributed to Alexander the Great was 5 foot 7 too. He was noted as short among Macedonians, who fought on foot with long pikes, and to which he added irresistible cavalry wings. Tall in the saddle, another English saying  Joan Armatrading - Tall In The Saddle
Congrats to the team & best of luck moving forward!
Best of luck to you in your new ventures, +Vic Gundotra, and best of luck to you, +Dave Besbris on suddenly having your daily plus-mentions jump from 10 to 2 Million over night...

(Speaking of... I almost never get mine any longer.  I sure hope you gave better luck... ;-) )

Congratulations +Dave Besbris and all the best wishes to +Vic Gundotra for his new endeavor.
+Yonatan Zunger your height must've serve you well in so many ways in the past and in the future. :) stay as lively as you are.
+Yonatan Zunger land wars in Asia are avoidable, with reasonable care, although they didn't phase Alexander the Great, Atilla or Genghiz, all chaps who were tall in the saddle. But what man by thinking can add an inch to his stature, as Proverbs has it?
I hope finally this time G+ reaches higher level  and develops even more! x
I'm seeing a lot of hand-waving and panic that G+ will die like Buzz, so I'm glad you addressed that the core team is still intact.

And here's to hoping +Dave Besbris will enact some of the social policies that many of us (including you, I believe, +Yonatan Zunger) would really like to see.  I shall remain hopeful.
+Kimberly Chapman though the same crowd doing the hand-waving are also muttering "ghost town" so... you know... grain of salt.
Hello grumpy master sergeant er, +Yonatan Zunger. ha! As you're on our +FRIDAY NIGHT SESSIONS team, maybe you can coax some SONG requests out of your new boss +Dave Besbris for tomorrow's show?

We'd like to give him  a great start! Cheers!

(btw my nieces have always called me Sergeant Sean. hehe)
Looking forward. Google+ needs some fresh air now.
+Joe Simon well, the good news is that they probably mostly have Gmail accounts, and the free functionality of Hangouts makes it worthwhile to create a profile. But I agree with you, aside from old work colleagues who happen to work for Google now like +Patrick Pichette, I find very few family members, friends or former colleagues post here. The joke about "I'm a Google employee who likes donuts" holds true.

We're trying an experiment with a dispersed consultancy team of using Google+ to post material which is professionally interesting like recruiting events, mine site or industrial site photos, and industry relevant articles. The company is operating a virtual office covering the whole of Latin America, with only one small physical office , and almost all the engagements are on very remote sites - typically 4 to 6 hours travel from home location. So far it is working very well, precisely because of the utility of Gmail and Hangouts. I suspect it wouldn't work on Facebook because people put up too much family personal or suggestive material there, and I've seen similar initiatives fail on LinkedIn because the visual interface is just lame. 

Another good tip is to follow people who already interact with +Yonatan Zunger anyway, once you've seen people commenting on stuff that interests you. They're generally live wires and come up with content that is interesting.
Can we get rid of all the undertakers from the SUL, please +Yonatan Zunger 
TC has no place there. Neither have many others who write bullshit about the platform.
+Matt Schofield  SUL = Suggested users list. Newcomers get it and you also get user suggestions.
TC is +TechCrunch or a bunch of idiots who only know about link baiting, nothing about tech.
+Jaana Nyström well, sounds like a group who it is better to have inside the tent pissing out, on balance. Idiots who know nothing about tech are just naive enthusiasts you haven't yet flattered enough ;-)
+Jaana Nyström silencing critics always works well.  Especially in tech and Internet circles in general.
+Paul Hosking actually, the best approach is to insult them directly on an open forum, because it is really really hard to forward that on to thousands of other undecided users. Call them a troll. That works every time, completely undermines their credibility because nobody is capable of reading rational argument and forming their own opinion ;-)
+Paul Hosking Critics I don't mind.  Ass kissers and tech writers with no clue, that's another matter.
+Jaana Nyström it would be super helpful if you could identify specifically where you think someone kissed ass or illustrated how little clue they have. These things can be subjective, right? I presume you're reacting to specific behavior you've seen elsewhere than this thread and can simply refer us to that, right?
+Jaana Nyström sometimes that's called "critics you don't agree with."  I mean - who do you think we're dealing with here?  Apple?
+Matt Schofield exactly.  The best approach on the Internet is dialog.  And sarcasm.  Uh.  The best approach on the Internet is dialog and sarcasm.  And a list.  Wait.  Among the best approaches on the Internet is:

1. Dialog
2. Sarcasm
3. A list

And Monty Python references.  Dammit.  Let me start over....
+Paul Hosking actually, the best approach on a +Yonatan Zunger is just to START with a quote from LOTR, Monty Python, the Bible or another key text. It really doesn't matter if it is exactly pertinent to the matter being discussed, if people enjoy it they will +1 it anyhow. Dialog, sarcasm and lists will then ensue as people try to top the specific quote with one which is more obscure and cult.
Last I looked, the SUL is full of stuff/people/sites I don't care about.  If I was a newbie to G+ it would be unhelpful to me.  And for the few friends on mine who are on it, a) it's a curse the same way WH is because it only floods your posts with trolls, and b) it shoves them into a single-category so they get crap when they post outside that category.

I think directing newbies to moderated communities by interest would make more sense.  And then bump up moderation tools.  I really wish as a manager of several communities that we had a feature like Yahoo Groups used to have, where new people in the community are auto-moderated until a moderator turns that off for that person.  Cuts the spam and trolling big-time.
Thanks so much for this straightforward, sane post, +Yonatan Zunger. Sharing it with my private Bookmarks circle so I can find it for the next person I run into going "the sky is falling! the sky is falling!"
Thanks +Yonatan Zunger, for clarifying things. People are freaking out a bit, and even if there might be changes coming, having this additional context is super reassuring to each of us who have invested so much of our time, energy and passion into helping to build this place with all of you. I always appreciate your candor and transparency. 
+Gideon Rosenblatt I've seen a "G+ is being shut down, glad I've always been more active on Facebook" post from +Robert Scoble

This contrasted a bit with his passionate advocacy for being a Glasshole A descriptive so unfortunate that it is getting people's Glass devices ripped off their faces and dashed to the floor by privacy zealots across SF. Which must have made Vic Gundotra very relieved +Robert Scoble didn't advocate G+ in equivalent terms.

Aside from him, who else is freaking out?
Mostly the media, +Matt Schofield, but I've also seen a lot of jitters here on G+. I'll admit to being a little shaken myself for a bit. 
+Gideon Rosenblatt Maybe I'm being a bit stupid, but with the level of cash being yielded by Google's core business, they could afford about 1,000 G+ type operations just to rain on Facebook's parade indefinitely. If you've got a new upstart competitor going to the markets and telling them that their social graph will improve on search and that they will win the lions share of mobile advertising revenues, absolutely the last thing you would do is kindly surrender and decline to compete with them in their core business. 

And if +Techcrunch are so fricking clever, how come they aren't rich? ;-)
I really hope that Google bosses will form a really strong response against all the rumor mongering that we've seen in the techmunch wide world of speculation.  these things drive public perception even if they are complete nonsense, and I see lots of people swallowing that crud and worrying about the future of G+.  
+Yonatan Zunger , what about all these rumors that G+ is "dead?" I am asking partly out of concern for the platform itself, and partly out of concern for all the work you've put into it... 
I just read an article om Ars claiming that some 1000-1200 G+ engineers will be relocated within Google and that G+ is in limbo as Google is not sure what to do with the social network.

Now I'm a bit worried since I'm about to start a business on a very low budget and chose to use Google Plus Pages instead of Facebook due to FB's maffia like attitude to pages reach.

I really hope that Ars Technica is wrong and that Google doesn't kill off Google Plus. It has already done wonders on the youtube comments. 
+Yonatan Zunger well, it is entirely credible that someone within Google who was pissed off with the Youtube forced integration does want G+ to be walking dead and has spoken optimistically to journalists who would also like their preferred social media pure plays (Facebook, Twitter) to have less competition. That would also explain why they need to stay anonymous.

Shutting Google+ wouldn't make sense for senior management within Google unless they'd done some kind of deal with Twitter and Facebook already that they wouldn't attack mobile ad revenues. In any other scenario being able to hurt Twitter and Facebook by competing in their own core markets makes more sense. 

Anyhow, have a very peaceful weekend. 
And just a few weeks ago even after rumors broke on Secret, Vic G. said he definitely wasn't leaving Google.  Apparently not everything we hear is true.   
Glad to hear that +Google+ are still in safe and capable hands for the foreseeable future :) 
Your last comment just made my day, +Yonatan Zunger; thank you for setting the link-baiters straight! =)
I wish him all the best. Fresh air to G+ (although I'm Sad Vic is departing) may bring up some cool and interesting stuff.
Thanks +Yonatan Zunger for the reply and the link!
Ive always liked G+ much more than facebook, and hoped that G+ would be in it for the long run. So the Ars article scared the crud out of me. nice to have it debunked from a reliable source!

Pleas tell who ever is in charge of the event function on G+ that they are doing a fantastic job, its one of my favourite features here and pretty much makes FB's event function pale in comparison. 
I'm not gonna tell y'all what you should do, but I think this would be a fun time to restart the nym wars.
For the record, HuffPost fully supports Google+ and will be active on it. We do write many pieces and have many people writing, but I have been and will continue to be the HuffPost Voice on G+ & looking forward to the what's to come. I know #BEZ  likes to get Awesome .. in an auto type of way and YZ is always ready for a toast! :) Happy #Caturday  & Weekend!
+Al Remetch first off, could you give a source for Vic Gundotra insisting he would never leave Google 2 weeks ago? It does seem a little improbable that he would have done so, given that people aren't indentured serfs these days and lots of ex-Googlers have gone on to do relatively interesting things elsewhere.

Second, while his personal motivations may well change - the man has a family and other threads to his life - that doesn't necessarily mean that the corporate view of G+ is the cause for him leaving. Unless you've got a source for that too.
+Yonatan Zunger, This is great.
Because you started a real great project here and there's no reason to let the leg off the gas.

Anyhow, 2 small quirks I'd like to see fixed:
1. Handling albums as they are now is wrong. When ever I upload more photos to an existing album I want the post which I shared the photos to be associated with the album as well. Otherwise this post loses the context of the album.
2. The history logs of the Google Hangout messages in Gmail are a mess. It should be very easy - Each contact has a one long thread. Every conversation (You put "Line" between messages which are far apart in time) is a sub thread. Just like "Replies" in Gmail.

By the way, if you add more advanced options in the Text Editor you'll be able to make it a better Micro Blogging Platform which could be amazing (Like embedding photos from the albums within the text).

Thank You.
Actually this ridiculous controversy, generated by techcrunch, will help Google+ to become stronger. The terrifying idea of the imminent demise of Google+ had only the imminent effect to galvanize the countless millions of its satisfied users to support it more passionately. The blowback is much stronger than the initial blow! 
CONGRATZ TO BEZ !!!! No man will do it better!!! 
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