+1 on +Danny Sullivan's post. This brand page business has indeed all been quite strange & annoying in many ways.

*The longer I think about it, the less sure I am if there even should be "specialized" brand profiles* with extra possibilities/features. Let them fend for themselves along with everyone else (or give all users improved functionality), i.e. exactly what was already happening during the "field trial" until a few days ago.

In a way it's undemocratic to give them special powers, just as the Twitter "Suggested Users List" (SUL) or whatever its current iteration is now called has always been a thorn of distortion in our eyes over on Twitter.

Nor has it really ever been handled particularly well on Facebook with "Pages". They branched out an entire class of profiles, and there was never even a particularly strong purpose for it. Just allow a second or third account to be set up for someone, categorize the profile as "Business", "Celebrity", or whatever, and be done with it.

That way you don't have to "Like" a brand or other commercial Page, you could have just friended them like everyone else. Simple.

(*Ironically, for FB this could have even solved some of the Social Graph/Interest Graph collision problems that now exist there*, that are among the very rationales for Google+ and its Circles metaphor.)

And that's exactly the kind of simple model that could work here on Google+, where the Circles metaphor is even more apt to handle this, since there is no "weirdness factor" that may arise for some people from the idea of "friending" a business/brand. You don't, you just put e.g. +ChicagoSunTimes in your "Newsbrands" Circle. Done.

In essence, the very idea of creating a separate sort of specialty profile is a tacit admission that the Circles model can't handle all cases. And I for one can't figure out why Google thinks this:

No one on G+ thus far appeared confused as to when a profile was a business/brand (or another assumed name for that matter), and what to do about it: Either not Circle and ignore, or "set the listener" by Circling them. And as long as muting, blocking, and other much needed filters are implemented the right way and working, none of this should be a problem. Period.

The latter is what the G+ team should be concentrating on, because if this service isn't truly workable for all users, then none of this brand profile business is going to matter anyway, is it?
P.S. Most people like Scoble and Chris Brogan are also (personal) brands, what about them? Chris has even already offered up his first paid Webinar on "G+ business strategy"...

I'd say let the service evolve organically from within the user community. That's worked best on Twitter (@ mentions, #hashtags, Old-school Retweets, sending of short-links, all of these came from the community at first...). Don't go all corporatist on us Google, just when you were starting to grow a soul for the G+ launch.
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