Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Jury is Still Out

I like to think of myself as an early adopter of technology. My teenage daughters think I am a bit of a technology geek and I have to admit they may be right. So when Google launched the Google + Project I was one of the first in line to get in.

Perhaps I have not spent enough time there, or maybe I need to give it a few more months. I am struggling to make Google + a part of my online life. The reasons for me are simple and may just apply to you too.

I already have a social profile that is extensive, by my standards anyway. I use Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Blogger. I have a Tumblr account that I have yet to use and I check in on FourSquare semi-regularly. I have tried many different tools to post content and I like things to be simple. Adding what has appeared so far to be a redundant social network has been far from simple for me.

Admittedly, my biggest challenge is my own, Google + has not yet become a habit for me. Facebook is easy to start using, it is simple and I connect with my family and friends here. LinkedIn is great as it allows me to connect with colleagues in a professional way and share business/professional content that person friends may not be that interested in. Twitter has a different role in that I follow people I have never met and learn from their content.

I get the feeling that Google has tried to bring the features and uses of these three networks together in Google +. I can group my connections in to “circles” that define how I know them and what content I want to share with them. The challenge I have is that I have no family members using Google + so that “circle” is empty. I have a large number of co-workers, a few friends and many twitter followees. All of the people in my circles are in a twitter list (or two).

Maybe with the first API release earlier this month to developers there will eventually be third party applications to push content and I will have more success embracing the new network. Until then I will continue to look for the value in Google + and hope that it does not turn out to be Google -.

In the mean time feel free to connect with me on any of the social networks I frequent, especially Google +. Let me know if you need an invite and I will be happy to send you one!

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