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I'm here in Hawaii right now and I haven't been able to get online much. I feel like I'm missing so much here on G+. Just wanted to share some some notes on this piece, which I wrote several days ago, and just published on TheNextWeb.com.

Since writing it, I saw +Robert Scoble express some similar opinions that the G+ community and the content being posted is the most important feature of G+ right now (http://bit.ly/pELqxq). That's really one of the key points of my article. Robert and I are thinking alike.

Then yesterday Robert posted again and argued that G+ needs to stop following Facebook and come up with its own philosophy to succeed (http://bit.ly/pYnGYD). This is where Robert and I probably disagree somewhat, and implicitly this article (though written before both his posts) does answer his main points.

To my way of thinking, I think Google has already recognized that it's not going to get people to "do the Facebook" thing here. Instead, they're going to let them "do the Twitter thing," and people will gradually be pulled into the "FB thing." (Robert draws this distinction with social graph vs. interest graph.)

But talking about it this way is kinda shorthand / trying to be quick, really. Because I think G+ really is trying to think about how to be its own thing. So Robert and I may only disagree on how far along G+'s thinking is on this topic. Maybe he thinks they haven't accepted it, I'm thinking they figured that out over a month ago. So anyway... here's the text of the article. Read it here, or check it out on TheNextWeb.com. Thanks +Sherilynn Macale and +Zee M Kane from TheNextWeb.

OK. Here's the article:

There's been more than a few "Google+ is doomed" articles as of late. After the initial rush of delighted surprise that G+ didn't suck, the second wave of journalists have arrived. This group -- who mostly don't understand G+ -- have indicated that they see no future for Google's new baby. Mostly, these critics don't understand that G+ has a public, Twitter-like component to it. This new school of G+ critic seems to only see one side of G+ -- its private side -- and then concludes that because "their friends" aren't rushing to join G+, no one ever will. When forced to confront the facts (i.e. the number of G+ users), one Forbes writer even opines "Google Plus is a failure no matter what the numbers may say."

These writers are really missing something crucial. Unlike, every other competitor in the social networking space, G+ has a unique advantage: google.com, youtube.com, blogger.com, and gmail.com. These four domains are some of the most trafficked in the world. Everyday, they're accessed by roughly 80% of all Internet users. (Ok, I made that up, I'm to do the research, but you get the point.)

Why does this matter? Because at the top of these four humongous websites there is, or will be, a little black bar and a little red notification indicator.

Like many folks, you may have signed up for G+, poked around, didn't see much, and went on your merry way. Your friends weren't using it, so why bother? You had the typical second-wave journalist experience. If we were talking about socialnetworkxyz.com, that was designed to unseat Facebook, that would be a good point -- you may never return, end of story. But with G+ that's not likely to happen. First of all, Google does want to take market share from Facebook, of course. But it also wants to take market share from Twitter. G+'s Twitter-like aspirations combined with their big-4 domain / notification-reach makes all the difference.

Let's go back in social networking history a bit, to 2006 when MySpace was dominant and Facebook was small. Did Facebook launch to the world and try to take away MySpace's audience all at once? No. FB grew by capturing one small market at a time. At first, it was one University at a time. Once they'd cornered that market, they moved to community colleges. Next was high schools. Then they invited companies to create company-specific networks -- all Apple employees, or all Google employees. This strategy did a few things for FB -- it allowed them to create small, tightly networked groups of fanatical users that became evangelists. Those users "stuck with the program" because all their friends were there. That's necessary, of course, in a social network that's about communication with just your friends.

Now take Twitter. When the 140 character wunderkind launched in 2006, it was only used by tech nerds. Just one community, that knew each other by name, if not in person. Then John Mayer signed up. Now there was two communities. The tech nerds, and the John Mayer fan club. Then there was Diddy. Suddenly Twitter was of interest to people who liked hiphop & rap. One celebrity at a time started to build sub-communities on Twitter. And make no mistake, Twitter went out and recruited them. Like Facebook, they realized that to gain scale in the social networking space and take mindshare from others, they needed to target sub-communities. But unlike Facebook, these communities were not built around your friends. In fact, it doesn't really matter if your friends are using Twitter at first, because the communities there are largely built around interests.

Now back to Google. Like Twitter, G+ is going to keep growing as it attracts one niche community after another. Perhaps by happenstance, G+ has currently gathered together a network of three kinds of tech nerds: early adopters (general nerds), Google fanboys (who knew there were so many?!), and "Facebook fed-ups" (people that don't like Facebook for one reason or another). (Note: Because the media seemed to portray G+ as a Facebook replacement, the Facebook Fed-Ups joined G+, but from what I can tell, they're really using G+ like Twitter and hoping some day they can use it like Facebook.) And of course these three examples aren't the only communities on G+. A nascent photographer community is already forming -- G+ is on the way to becoming a place for serious photographers to engage with "regular folks," taking away market share from Flickr and other smaller photo sites. Gradually, we're starting to see a group of people who like Twitter in theory, but are less satisfied about the way it works in practice (no in-line media shares, 140 character limit, no easy discussion framework). Robert Scoble and Mike Elgan are the most vocal of these types of users. And of course just like Twitter, we're going to see certain celebrities choose G+ as their platform of choice, and they'll bring their audience with them. Rose McGowan did a Hangout (video chat) on G+ this week. Can you imagine what pandemonium would break loose if Justin Bieber did that? OK, that's too mindblowing. (And at present, G+ is limited to users over 18.) Let's say Taylor Swift does a Hangout (and she is, already, a G+ user). The point is, G+ is going to attract small subgroups. And that will continue to happen as long as the G+ platform is differentiated from Facebook Fan Pages and Twitter.

Now why do these subgroups matter so much? Because unlike a private-oriented social network (Facebook), a public network like G+ (with its Twitter side) doesn't require that your friends join for it to be useful and engagin. All it requires are frequent posters or "content creators." Right now, the most important "feature" of G+ is the community itself -- people like Robert Scoble, Guy Kawasaki and Trey Ratcliff who are posting interest content there. (Have you ever heard the stat that 5% of Twitter users create 75% of the content?) G+ doesn't need you to have a critical mass of your friends or users in a certain area to be interesting (the problem for color.com). And Google doesn't have to do what many other competitors in this space would or will do, which is make direct, concerted attempts to capture small niches/subgroups of users all at once. (Take One.com, which is presumably going to learn from Color's mistakes.) Because G+ is a potential "Facebook replacement" that also has a Twitter side, G+ will continue to grow & grow and as a critical mass of your friends start using it, you'll then be able to use it in a more Facebook-y fashion.

Put another way, G+ basically is a combination of Facebook & Twitter. That's what makes it different. It serves both purposes: private communication among friends, and public shouting to the world. Right now, most pundits declaring G+ dead seem to think that if their Facebook friends aren't on it, then its game over for G+. It's easy to see why they think that. The truth is, as a private network, G+ is greatly lacking. It's no surprise that people aren't leaving Facebook to hang out with their close friends on G+ right now. G+ just isn't designed very well for friend-to-friend communication. And in the beginning phases, that's not really a weakness. There's little chance entire networks of friends are going to jump ship from Facebook and join G+ all at once. That's why G+ is concentrated on the "Twitter side" of its service. In fact, I've seen many people say they've left Twitter behind in favor of G+.

While perhaps all social networks need to capture subgroups of people to chew away at the core of more dominant players, Google's massive scale -- both the attention the brand receives -- and the domains it owns: google.com, youtube.com, blogger.com, and gmail.com -- have given Google a weapon no one else has: the accretive power of that little black bar and red notification. The constant reminder this black bar/red notification provides, means that Google+ doesn't need to have high engagement numbers from all its users in the beginning. Day by day, one key person after another will find that they enjoy teh G+ platform more than its competitors. They'll start posting and then the ball starts rolling.

You may not use G+ today. But someone you know is. It may be your friend from work, it may be your favorite photographer, blogger, or rock star. You may not think to go G+ to share a funny news story or photo. But someone you know will. And when you're minding your own business checking your Gmail or doing a Google search, you'll see that little red notification box. You may choose to send an email to share something with your five closest friends, but one of your friends won't. Your friend will use G+ and you'll be forced to visit the G+ site to look at the content. While you're there on G+, you may just notice that your notification bar shows there's even more posts & content waiting for you. It may take you 2 months or 2 years, but gradually you're going to get pulled into this site, whether you want to be a user or not.

That's why Google+ doesn't have its own distinct domain like "Orkut.com" -- Google's growth strategy and master plan is that Google+ will just be a part of everything you do on Google's collective websites, which means it's connected to more than half the things you do on the Internet. And if the black bar & red notification across the world's most popular websites weren't enough, remember also that G+ is part of everything Google does as a company -- which includes Android phones (now bigger than iPhone), GoogleTV (which I'm guessing Google is going to double-down on) and maybe, someday, even Google self-driving cars. If the cars drive themselves, that leaves you more time to play on Google+. Now of course I'm a joking a bit here, but keep in mind, when Steven Levy asked Vic Gundotra if G+ was a "bet the company project," Vic answered, "I don’t know how you can look at it any other way." I think that means going forward we should expect to see G+ as part of everything that Google does, or ever will do.
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194 comments
 
Ya but +Madonna . is not posting herself, her staff does it (mostly). Not the point. If I wanted a news feed I could look at her Facebook page or Twitter feed.
 
"I'm here in Hawaii and can't get online much." Although I feel your pain a LITTLE, it's hard to feel very sorry for ya. ;-)
 
Good point +Tom Anderson but I think that +Robert Scoble is "more" right than you... ;)
To have G+ à la Twitter they need to open fast the API and let grow a G+deck with collapsing posts and comments, smaller pics, column for each stream, ;.. (a good starting point is the G+me extension by +Huy Zing )
 
i keep reading how boring G+ is because of limited access (as if 25m is limited). It needs to be made more attractive to join. I cant GIVE my invites away.
 
Good lord thank you for writing something sensible on this issue - finally!
 
Get off the computer and enjoy the island :)
 
Where are you in Hawaii? I live on the island of Maui.
 
I really like the twitter aspect of G+, and I'm looking for some interesting folks to follow.
 
The best and the brightest are in Google+ and the rest is coming this way!
 
+Michael Houston Agreed. Though losing the internet here in England would be like losing an arm to me, in Hawaii it wouldn't be anywhere near as bad :)
 
+Tom Anderson - I want you and the ones your with to scrawl "Google+" in the sand as big as possible! At least a quarter of a mile long!
 
Speaking of musicians + nerds, can someone force Jonathan Coulton to join G+ soon please? Even if it's just reposting his tweets (since I have G+ open more often than twitter.)
 
So tired of Facebook. So not tired of G+.
 
With a slight tweak, G+ can be a nice replacement to FB and not just be a twitter replacement. G+ should allow people to choose which circles should appear in their feed by default.

Most people would like their feed to default to family, friends, and acquaintances. Right now, I would have to either:

A) Scroll through a zillion posts from strangers to find their posts from friends and family.

B) Click on the friends circle, scroll down. Click on the family circle, scroll down, click on the acquaintances circle, etc...

Or

C) Google+ can let me just choose which circles I want to show in my stream by default.

A lot of my G+ friends have uncircled many fascinating thought leaders because their posts were drowning out the posts from their friends and family. This slight tweak will allow people to use G+ like Twitter AND FB.
 
+Tom Anderson I agree with you totally regarding this. Google+ has been simply a perfect tool for me in the last 2 months, I just want to use it more and more.
 
Great points here. I got invited by an early adopter (general nerd) but am not a Google Fangirl (well I love Google, just not a groupie) and still use/like Facebook for groups/games/events)...so I wonder, what does that make me?
 
I find G+ is my new Twitter+Tumblr. They just have to fix "reshare" like how Tumblr handles reblog.
 
Aloha +Tom Anderson and have a nice time in Hawai'i!

G+ is totally something else: Not FB, not Twitter but a platform that we have a possibility to mold to our liking. Only imagination limits the future.

+Robert Scoble and you are both right but just looking at the thing from different angles. Like we all are.

This is why we should wait and see what G+ is when it's 'readier' than now, like +Bradley Horowitz put it in his interview so aptly, exciting things lie ahead.
Google Plus is still in trial stage or so the company thinks, what are we to argue no matter how many people are in. :-)
 
Content is still too tech heavy. If we want the masses to adopt g+ we should encourage discussion in varied topics. Www.kenego.com I cover all sorts of topics on my blog.
 
I was one that jumped early. At first I had little pangs to check my facebook, but I got lucky enough to have a good base of friends jump on as well. Most of them are duel users, but most like the function of G+ over fb and are just waiting for a larger user base. RIght now though, I am kind of enjoying the low noise factor.
 
+Bobbi Jo Woods THANK YOU! They need to make the extension a standard part of G+. That is exactly what I was looking for.
 
+Tom Anderson I honestly did not use FB much and Twitter even less. I find G+ to be more interesting and, right now, more engaging.

Because I am not worrying about privacy or the lack of it, I feel more comfortable engaging people either through circles or posts. There are only a few flamers and I've learned how to block them. Yes, everyone has an opinion, but everyone should feel safe to express it. On G= you can.

Are there things I would like to see here? Yes, but most of the are technical or aesthetic and I have faith enough in the Google engineers and production managers that these will appear soon.
 
The Google Plus launch is more successful that the Facebook or Twitter launch by orders of magnitude. It is more successful than the Chrome launch. Chrome now has a 22% market share and it the only browser that is growing its market share. How can anyone claim that Google Plus is a failure? What were their expectations?
 
We need to archive all these naysayers' articles so we can point and laugh a year from now.
 
Honestly, I like that G+ isn't like facebook. And it disappoints when I see facebook-like updates and I usually remove them from my circle. 
 
Speaking of great content and great differentiators ("I saw +Robert Scoble express some similar opinions that the G+ community and the content being posted is the most important feature of G+ right now"), +Tom Anderson have you seen Christina Trapolino's new project, The Great Google+ Art Experiment? Over 20-30 artists from around the world used only G+ and Google products to collaborate to make a 100% original artistic video centered around the theme, "Circles" -- something I don't think would come to fruition on any other "social network". I think it is a great example of what you talk about in your article. The clip is less than 5 minutes and worth checking out!

https://plus.google.com/u/0/102615863344410467759/posts/QBbFJN65omb
 
Tom, G+ has been dead without your presence, please come by more often! :p (so no, you're not missing much, you're our party!)
 
Fantastic article! I've been thinking along those same lines as well, but you put it into words fantastically. Time for a reshare.
 
+Kendra Potts
I agree.
My only disappointment is that the vast majority of my friends are inactive on G+
The view of the teens I have talked to is that they find G+ boring.
However, I enjoy the serious discussion and deeper engagement we see here from the committed G+ users.
I should also add that I got the same feeling while using wave as well but unlike wave which was some thing separate, G+ is not something you can run away from
 
The most important and dead on portion of your article:

"That's why Google+ doesn't have its own distinct domain like "Orkut.com" -- Google's growth strategy and master plan is that Google+ will just be a part of everything you do on Google's collective websites, which means it's connected to more than half the things you do on the Internet."
 
+Tom Anderson. First off, extremely thoughtful and well written insights!

You talked about unique advantages that Google has but you did seem to leave out search itself. In my perspective, this is one the most effective ways that Google can continue to relentlessly pull people into the fold.

First of all, and perhaps most importantly, public Google+ posts will be indexed and searchable just the same as all other web-content. I would imagine that Google will optimize Google+ together with their search engine such that it most effectively reads through the perma-link URL for each public post and ties +1s and other things into search rank. Now, even if you've never used Google+ you will start seeing results through search that lead you there. I know for myself that's how I was first introduced to Wikipedia (through Google search results). This is a huge competitive advantage over the other networks when it comes to obtaining traffic.

While we are on the topic of search it's also good to point out the feature that shows people in your G+ network that have +1'ed a page. These search results stand out loudly when you do a search and make it all too tempting to follow into G+ rather than the link itself.
 
I think you've hit it on the head. It's more like Twitter right now but with better engagement but it will become more Facebook-like with time. The ease of Circles allows G+ to be whatever you want it to be.
 
OK, on a more serious note: these things are sometimes more about advertising.... There are tons of great websites out there with no users because people don't know about it, or is skeptical about trying it, or their friends are not using it, etc...

Google's failure in the past with buzz or wave, or orkut, or whatever trace back to their lack of marketing/advertising And why? They own google.com! Ads should be free (or nearly free). Spam those Google+ ads all over google, make people watch a 10 second video about G+ before any youtube video It'll succeed if they want it badly though. ;p
 
+Tom Anderson As much as I love sharing, it can be too overwhelming seeing it over and over. I want a mute reshares of the same post.
 
G+ will also get a big boost when they roll it out for Google Apps. How many individual users have Google Apps Google accounts? These companies, schools, and non-profit organizations will now have a great internal and secure tool to use for collaboration. And, if Google does this like they have done Docs and other services, those Google Apps users will still be able to share outside of their own company.
 
I Already Read it and can´t agree with you more!!!
thats the cool thing about G+ (Facebook + Twitter)
 
Given the importance of public sharing, I wonder why many encouraged to go private in the early days of Google+, and said that with public you were doing it wrong
 
Note to self: share this later

edit (from my desktop)
ps +Punit Soni can we please have mobile reshares and mentions for people not in our phone book?
 
Great article. You hit the nail on the head. One thing that G+ could do to really differentiate themselves from FB would be if they created brand pages with an integrated web store capability with Google checkout. As a photographer I would consider giving up my personal website for a well designed and integrated brand page where I can sell my photos
 
Good read +Tom Anderson There's an interesting dynamic here with g+ as a mix of twitter and fb features in that the interactions tend to be between people you know fairly well mixed with complete strangers. It's interesting how you value contributions differently. People you know get a higher valuation automatically, strangers have to contribute with good content. I think this is why the content is a bit deeper here, because there is more stranger interaction.
 
nice article!
I would also want to give you a heads up, cause i found a minimal error in the 10th paragraph in the penultimate line where you wrote teh instead of the..i don't want to nitpick, just point it out if you'd want to correct it:)
 
Best article written about Google Plus EVER. Hit the nail right on the head. Haters just don't understand.
 
+Novina Wong Thanks -- hope that's not true :) Just need to add some more interesting sharers :) +Denis Labelle thanks for sharing the story. +Kat Meredith on the 'becoming more like Facebook part' have any of you thought about what G+ doesn't do on the private side that you'd want? For me I wish I could msg people privately, but it seems the Gmail option may be off for default for a lot of people
 
Expectations were too high out of the gate. If it isn't everything to everyone, it'll fail they said. It's not growing as fast as the first few weeks, it'll fail they said. And yet it's still here and I would bet they'll never remove it. Things like this take time and you've basically spelled out exactly how it will grow. Very well written article, please keep up the good content.

There is a minor error in the first word. You've set that up to be singular and articles is plural.
 
I agree with everything you said. I think once really popular Twitter users (like Roger Ebert, RottenTomatoes, even Barack Obama) and other lesser known entities that have a strong following (like music reviewer Anthony Fantano) start to realize how much easier it is to share content on G+ and start using it frequently, the number of active G+ users is really going to skyrocket. I, for one, can't stand having to be linked to Roger Ebert articles on twitter when he could just post them in their entirety right here on G+!
 
G+ fixes the worst thing about the current state of the internet, the lack of meaningful dialogue. You can post a Youtube video here and get a conversation going. You can post a link to a CNN article on politics and have people talk instead of shouting past one another when they can manage to put words into a sentence. That may change as G+ grows but there's something different here that seems to get people to act better towards one another.
 
Great article. I totally agree, and have been saying, that G+'s Twitter like Following circle is currently it's killer feature (perhaps more than Hangouts).
 
That might happen after they roll out google+ for corporates. in a corporate scenario, some freedom will have to be sacrificed for administrative control over groups of people at least in some "roles"
 
I for 1 am a bit of a geek and had been looking forward to joining this and the plus side is that I was able to bring friends along and personally leave FB behind. for me G+ is a winner.
 
I think google + is a winner in the long run... granted all my friends aren't here yet but I still love the concept, reach, and functionality.
 
I have not succeeded in getting too many people over. I am going to work harder by posting group photos and others matters of interest exclusively in G+
I have already removed photo access from Facebook
 
Great article! I don't think I will replace FB or twitter, they have separate uses. But I will certainly be using G+. It is my do-over lol, FB and twitter is cluttered and beyond repair for me. I love the circles and it is much more manageable.
 
A well written post. I agree, G+ will take more share for twitter than facebook, at least in the short run. And that's good enough for now.
 
I gently prod my FB friends - "Hey, I'm posting some great info over on G+ - see you there." But yes - they are slow to adapt. Even folks on both FB and G+ spend more time on FB because it's a little lonely over here - haha
 
Great article. G+ has the chance to not only be a Facebook/Twitter hybrid but somewhere you can build your own personal brand and manage it. I like the idea of being more civilized and discussing issues in a rational manner.

+Matthieu Hausig Agree 100%. For my articles on stocks I want to create a meaningful dialogue with my readers and Twitter/Facebook makes that difficult. When an article is posted the trollish comments are typically from people using fake names. Let's leave that for message boards.

+Scarlett Clark I agree with you on Facebook and Twitter being cluttered. Too much noise in either location to effectively build something although Twitter has some ways to reduce noise, at least for me.

There are so many social media avenues popping up that I prefer someplace that encourages rational discussion over those areas which do not.
 
I've had several friends ask for invites, but when they receive it, they tell me they can't sign up because they don't have a Gmail account. I tell them that they are free and that they just need to create one, but they usually don't want another place to have to check email. Will there ever be a time when G+ doesn't require a Gmail address to sign up?
 
I doubt that +Marshall Moorman such a day will ever come. They dont have to necessarily use gmail. However, google has a single account per user across all services and that is why gmail gets suspended when g+ account is suspended
 
Well, one thing is that pretty much everything you can do on G+ can also be done on FB, just G+ is new, so people are playing around with it to see what's "new", whereas people haven't really done that much with FB for probably a couple years at least. For example, people are all excited about being able to see a particular group of circles. On FB, try clicking the "Most Recent" down arrow and VOILA! Same options as what's on your left on here, just on the top instead - confusing, I know. Also, people were all upset about not being able to view just status updates on FB anymore - wanna guess what else is in that drop down box? ;-p
 
+Marshall Moorman Good point. Kind of a hard line that they're holding. Maybe they think its necessary because of the integration play I'm talking about here, or more specifically because the private msg system for G+ just is Gmail.
 
+Able Lawrence It doesn't bother me because I use Google for everything, but I think that is something that is holding G+ back.
 
@Phillip Laycock: You don't need one, but you get one when you sign-up.
 
I couldn't agree more with +Tom Anderson
Google+ will contine initially as a topic-centric social network. The features and tools are much better than twitter so Google+ will continue to gather traction. As more users join, it will start providing more of the functionality of Facebook. The Google model for communicating is vastly superior to the Facebook experience so I think it is just a question of time. 
 
+Tom Anderson I don't really appreciate hearing about other people being in hawaii :D haha. greatest place on earth. keep your abs tight man.
 
Tom, this was a great article, especially with saying that people will use G+ by default because of the other Google products/ services. Thanks for writing and sharing!
 
My rhetorical question is: Yes, people will use G+ because of the other Google products/services. But, with they go to it for that as much as they simply use it when they happen to be on here for another purpose? Like, I check my e-mail, go "Hey, I have a G+ message", check it, maybe reply to it, then log out to go spend much more time on FB...
 
+Tom Anderson You say that Gmail is the PM system, yet I can't see gmail addresses. As far as I know, the only way to PM back and forth is share something with that individual only.
 
Plus-one to this. At first, when I joined I knew I was the only one of my friends online. A few of my extended family were signed up, but none of them were active. So for a while I merely made status-update posts and did my part to build the community.

Then, later on, I 'discovered' the Follow circle, and learned that there were people like +Tom Anderson and +Mike Elgan actively posting interesting content for public consumption. I began to sense the segregation of the G+ community between content consumers and content creators. The creators are the main reason I'm active these days - there's only so much interest you can have in posting status updates to an empty room, so to speak.
 
+Logan Cate : There's a "Chat" on your left. It actually uses Google Talk, not Gmail.
 
Well, it also uses Gmail if you're not on Talk.
 
Hey +Tom Anderson, I hate to be a grammar nazi but in your third paragraph of the TNW link, you used "everyday" where you should have used "every day". Very great article though, thank you. :)
 
+Ben Kubilus I see that, but I don't have all the people I follow in chat. Those are just my google contacts.
 
Going forward we can not only see the integration of Google products with G+ but Android as well. HTC just launched their Facebook phones with a button allowing you to upload photos and the ability to see the Facebook status of incoming calls. It would not be surprising to see a G+ phone running Android with full Google product integration in the coming years.
 
as they integrate more use of the other google services out there, I think the true G+ edge is that it will be a tool that empowers users to use it in new and better, if unforeseen, ways. the +1 as a poll tool is a small example.
 
+Logan Cate Ah, I see. You're right. Well, I suppose "sharing" with that person on here is pretty much the same thing though. I mean, it's a back and forth conversation that streams as you share, just like on FB.
 
One more little error, +Tom Anderson, "then its game over for G+" should be "then it's game over for G+".
 
We are on the cusp of a major revolution in social media that will bring the world much closer together. Right now people do not realize how quickly brands, media, social media, sharing, and our lives are coming together.
 
"...which means it's connected to more than half the things you do on the Internet."

Hey now, remember the wise words of Avenue Q, and what's the internet for? How would that work into plus?
 
+Kate Rabbitt Incidentally, did you see where porn no longer represents the majority of 'net traffic? A tragedy, really. :p
 
Good article Tom! I have a core group of nerd friends and we use G+ like we used to use Facebook, but we also post things twitter-like. Mainly multimedia that used to be a bit.ly link or something now is in-line content. Random short thoughts still go on twitter, twitter still serves as my quick RSS while at work, and facebook is used (rarely) if I want to communicate with a non-nerdy friend or am bored and want to see people's pictures.
 
Good article Tom. I like the integration of docs, calendars, etc. I tell all my non techie family and friends that already have a google email to just add google plus(my invite) and all the pictures, videos, invites are automatically shared in their gmail account. Circles is just common sense and FB will fail!
 
+Jason Bernal If you click on the down arrow on "Most Recent" (the equivalent of G+'s Stream), you'll see the same feature. People are just playing around and seeing this stuff with G+ because it's new.
 
(It's at the top, rather than on the left side)
 
+Tom Anderson gets it. If you use ANY part of the Google ecosystem, you will AUTOMATICALLY be pulled into G+. Android, Google search, Gmail, Maps, Chrome.... everything will tie into G+. You have no choice, even if you can avoid it for a little while ;) it's a dangerous addition to their arsenal and other social networks SHOULD be worried.
 
Hey Tom, if you're on Maui maybe I'll bump into you by accident. HAHAHAHAHA. I work over at the local college here. Hope you're enjoying your vacation. HANG LOOSE BRADDAH :D
 
Reading this article, was like reading my exact thought on this subject! Great one! Google still needs to be careful, but this is potentially their ticket to dominating the internet!
 
imho, G+ encourages independent thinking and creative expression and facilitates meeting like-minded individuals. Unfortunately not everyone wants to do this - FB users with 100s or 1000s of friends, who have merged their personal and professional lives on their FB page and established their connections on FB. Their needs have been met - why would they want to move?

There's another group of FB users, the transplanted individual who has been able to reconnect with immediate family, extended family and long long lost childhood and school friends, across oceans even, and who just wants to post simple updates of what's happening in their daily busy lives - why would they want to migrate to G+ and re-establish their community of FB friends? What is the added benefit for them that's going to want them to move over? I'm talking about people for whom circles would be a completely new concept and something they would rather not deal with. And Skype would take care of hangouts.

Can G+ and FB not co-exist? Competition is healthy, no?

I used FB actively since May of this year and realized it's limitations in terms of meaningful conversations/interactions very quickly and welcomed G+ but foresee that I'll be updating both for a while yet.
 
+Alex Arcila I guess they didnt want to open people up to spam. Maybe a better default would be that Gmail is "on" for everyone who you have circled.
 
This is a credible analysis. Mostly because you know a thing or two about what it takes for a social network to succeed - or fail. Very insightful and - as far as I can tell - free of spin.
 
+Tom Anderson They quickly need to resolve the name issue to stop the negative press to begin with. Then fix the bugs and add functionality and open it up by removing the test tag.Oh and lets get that age limit down to match FB. It's crucial to get 14-18 age group involved for their parents/mom to get involved with G+.
 
That was about the most astute analysis I've read of G+. You put G+ in perspective vis-à-vis other services in a way that I found very helpful.

Thank you, +Tom Anderson .
 
This is a very well written piece. I will point to it when my friends ask me about G+.
 
Great article Tom. Who knew you were so smart and witty. You must have a lot of friends...
 
Best article on Google+ I've read to date. Balanced, fair, and truly thoughtful. Thank you!
 
TLDR you need a publisher for all these books...

This will be an after work reading for me :)
 
haha +David Machado I do really think I need to work on brevity. :-) Especially in this environment.
 
+Tom Anderson +Alex Arcila They could implement a PM system that just uses gmail on the back end. I think Tom noted why they didn't do it, and that makes sense, but it's still a bit awkward to do.
 
+Tom Anderson I enjoyed the length. It was long... but to really expand on some thoughts, you need the words.

heh... part of the problem with the world today is an impatience with longer (more accurate, often) answers.

It's all good with me!
 
+Tom Anderson you know you in too deep when you're in Hawaii and all you can think about is getting on G+. Poor Tom...
 
+Josh Glover +Greg Lento +Joseph Moosman +Pascal Wallisch thanks guys. it means a lot!
+Abhijit Dhakne I definitely think G+ will be open to under 18 at some point. Not sure where they'll land on the name issue, but Google did indicate that in order to due the psuedoynym thing, they really need to build in the protections so that no one is ever revealed (I think they're talking about potential political dissident issues), so who knows, maybe it will be here some day.
 
+Tom Anderson Actually, I am the one who has to thank. With all the spin out there, it is refreshing to encounter an unbiased perspective. To say nothing of a friendly mind. Very helpful.
 
Great stuff, Tom! "You may choose to send an email to share something with your five closest friends, but one of your friends won’t. Your friend will use G+ and you’ll be forced to visit the G+ site to look at the content." <-- G+ has another neat feature: your friends who are not on G+ can receive your posts in the email. I think it's the feeling of openness and flexibility when using G+ that makes it so great.
 
Dude, U r on vacation I guess. Just take a BREAK & CHILL!!
 
+Tom Anderson I'm hoping that once they've dealt with the real names issue, they'll maintain the lack of words ending in repeats of the last vowel, like thisssssssss. It should do the same thing as the 18+ rule. :P
 
+Alex Arcila There is Search people in chat. You can search people by name or email, and send a chat invitation. :)
 
Very good and interesting article +Tom Anderson ... You left off the Android Fanboys ;)
 
Nice article. Love how everyone noticed the grammatical errors! Haha. 
 
Disagree completely. I'd say attrition has very little appeal to seasoned web goers. If I find something that requires me to sign up to see it, I'm much more likely to leave it alone than to sign up. Facebook sees a lot more engagement than Google+ and I haven't noticed any of my friends dropping it for the alternative.

Also, Facebook is keeping up with new developments in social media, unlike Myspace years ago. Bulletins persisted despite Facebook's status being much more practical. The interface had too much going on at the time whereas Facebook was stripping down.

The new changes we saw yesterday from Facebook just prove that they are aware of their users, it doesn't necessarily imply that they are copying Google+, but if they are, I think that is exactly why they are more likely to stick around.
 
Love the way you think +Tom Anderson. Re: "Because I think G+ really is trying to think about how to be its own thing. So +Robert Scoble and I may only disagree on how far along G+'s thinking is on this topic. Maybe he thinks they haven't accepted it, I'm thinking they figured that out over a month ago." ~ I'm thinking they figured it out at least 6-12 months ago.
 
+André Freixieiro Good points - but a few attenuations. First, the post isn't talking about seasoned web goers. I'm talking about how it'll gradually pull in the average folk. True signup is a hurdle, bug Google+ is already signing people up at a faster pace than any social network in history. There's 25 million signed up accounts already. On top of that, G+ doesn't require you to signup to see the content. That's another way the "attrition" model could work over time. You keep getting things shared with you (via email & links) and eventually you may think its worth joining.
 
Thank you for posting this so I can stop trying to explain it to everyone I know who have so far only posted things along the lines of "google plus is stupid" and "i don't get the point of this". and also for making me realize I don't have to convert people to using G+, but rather, that they will eventually be using it whether by accident or because they have to, due to its integration into everything google does. great post, as always.
 
No sweat. If you do get a chance sometime though, it would be nice if you could check the post I sent you. Just looking for advice on a new website I am developing. If not, I understand. I'm sure you are extremely busy and it was a long shot sending it to you in the first place. You the man Tom!
 
Good post, it's all about creating an well integrated portfolio of services, that create synergy. +1+1=3 
 
Absolutely, Tom. Seriously love your posts here. I was explaining this very thing to my dad a few days ago when he was wondering why Google was such a big deal.
 
Your articles are spot on. Much respect for your insight. Though I do think that it was a strategic decision by google to focus on the 'public' users and pull them away from twitter, which i believe is an excellent concept on a weak platform, gain critical mass and then go after fb. 
 
+Luke Toney, the most important and dead-on portion of +Tom Anderson's article also glosses over one of the platforms with the most potential to rapidly convert a vast number of people into active and engaged Google+ users: Orkut. Orkut is not just Google's forgotten social networking project: it has enjoyed considerable success in India and Brazil: this means it has more than 66 million users worldwide, most of them living and working in two of the world's emerging power-economies.Now, imagine if all of those Orkut users suddenly became Google+ users: if I have thought about this, you can bet your last penny that someone at Google has.
 
Excellent article Tom, you're damn right in so many things!
 
Tom, I appreciate your thoughtful posts. Thank you for sharing your perspective on this. I agree that people will be moving to G+ albeit slowly.

I'd like to see G+ be a mixture of MySpace/Facebook/Twitter/Amazon/Ebay. I know it sounds crazy: I can completely visualize Google incorporating a banking model with their current services.

I just published a piece on my site about it:
http://jeanegan.com/2011/08/24/google-bank/

I realize I'm #179 to post so I'm curious how many posts are actually read by you or other users before or after me, with all of the content being broadcast our way it's easy to become overwhelmed and shut down, but I can see this changing the way we socialize and do business - worldwide, in a sustainable way.

Thanks again for being so open and sharing your perspective, +Tom Anderson
 
What you miss, and so many journalists miss, perhaps because of the way they work, is that G+ is not just replacing Twitter, but also Email and SMS!

In the past month, my emailing and texting has dropped radically. I've responded to some folks who have emailed me that aren't on G+ yet, but predominantly, folks are reaching out to me via G+ instead of email now.

Why? It's faster, more convenient, à la Twitter you don't need a subject line, just @ someone, or a group.

What's more, you can email from any page with the new sharing +1 feature, so you don't even need to switch tabs (if on a computer), or do anything awkward on a phone.

The folks comparing/criticizing (during the weeks old limited field trial) I believe are being small-minded and not imagining the whole big future picture--when email, Twitter, and the like, have gone the way of the fax.

I believe your article, although more insightful than most, is just a stepping stone of the future.
 
+Tom Anderson, I love G+ and recently closed (as much as I can) my FB account. The only thing I'm a little leary of is Google having as much data (or more) than FB. What makes G+ different than Mark Z in that regard?
 
Great insights. I'm looking forward.to seeing what google has in store. My biggest peeve with facebook is the people, I'd prefer to leave the rude and obnoxious mobs there if possible.
 
Hi +Tom Anderson re: "have any of you thought about what G+ doesn't do on the private side that you'd want? For me I wish I could msg people privately, but it seems the Gmail option may be off for default for a lot of people". I think you can do this now by sharing private post/msg with specific individual on G+, unless of course you are talking about emailing people privately. I found myself already using more private posts than emails.

One thing that is lacking (or perhaps I haven't found a way yet) is the ability to track your own comments. I can see all my posts in my profile page, but I can't see all the comments I've made to other people's posts. If this is available, I think I will use email even less.
 
Great article +Tom Anderson In fact I've stop following twitter a lot since I got to g+ because I feel I'm getting more relevant info right here. I have a question, what will happen now FB has adopted a googlier+ "public/private" option whenever you post? How much will google+ be affected? 'Cause it would seem it just lost it's "unique" twitter/fb approach :\
 
Thank you, Tom, for sharing that post! As always, you offer a fantastically unique & highly intelligent perspective :-)
 
I'm already using it far more than I use Facebook.
 
but people are very slowly migrating here.
 
I really liked that article (or should I say post?) made me rethink how I use G+ and now I like it even more (if that is possibe) 
 
"using G+ like Twitter and hoping some day they can use it like Facebook". That struck a chord with me, but in a strange way. I don't like Twitter and never use it - it's far too noisy for me. I would use G+ like FB if I could. In the meantime, I am doing something that I have rarely done before - commenting in public on other people's posts (I don't post much myself, as people who have Circled me will have noticed by now). G+ makes it really easy to do this. Is that 'using G+ like Twitter'? Perhaps those of you who do use that service could tell me.
 
+Colin Wilding the main 'twitter-thing' is that you follow someone who in turn doesn't need to follow you back. As in: celebs have a lot of followers but you shouldn't expect from them to keep up with what all their followers say. So in a way: as you are commenting on this post and say you do that a lot with other posts from people you don't actually know in person - you are doing the 'twitter-thing'
 
And I've found another added value for G+. When using twitter I normaly find myself not interacting a lot. I use it to feel more involved with things like my fav tv series or I use it to keep me updated but I hardly get in conversations. Sometimes celebs aks questions but the only way to keep up with that conversation on twitter is to use hashtags - something I never really liked. Here in Google+ when there is a question you can actually engage in a conversation not just with the person asking it but with everyone who has to say something on the subject. I think thats the main reason comments are used so frequently on G+
 
I stopped reading after Hawai'i... I miss that place. Surfing yet?
 
+Tom Anderson I am noticing that many of my FB friends are requesting invites for G+ now than few weeks before....may be it is getting more interesting to more people.
Mike M.
 
I just got back from Hawaii 3 days ago. I love it. Going back in Oct.
 
wow, this is such an insightful read. great ideas.
 
You nailed it +Tom Anderson , great article !!! G+ has a huge advantage with all their other incredible services which no company can match. FB enjoy your time at the top because you will be knocked off the top of the hill.
 
Great post! I think I'm one of 'fed up with facebook' types. I was disappointed when hardly any of my friends have followed on to G+ (I do still have plans to lure them here of course), but now I love the twitter aspect, despite not really using twitter much in the past. It occurred to me the other day that gradually more of my friends will end up over here as Google sucks them in. In the meantime it's a lot of fun over here, so I'm staying!
 
I like your perspective. You bring up a lot of key points. I agree!!! =p
 
is that you photo bebore u got welthy
 
thats just wrong but hes always on everything that i get like when i first got facebook he tryed to add me and including myspace lol 
 
Thanks for the good read Tom.  
 
googleverificationdept@hotmail.com this Kind of mails also brings me to you....i am bloked because i asked them again and again about Google Award which i won. never came back....shitt after shitt means egit fewwwwwwe
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