Look Who’s a Google+ Pioneer

by Cathy Miller on July 13, 2011

in Social Media

Who would believe I am a Google+ pioneer? Okay, along with 10 million other people.

But, it’s really surprising that I am in so early.

  • I’m still trying to figure out if I want to stay on Facebook
  • I am never an early adopter

I think I was the last person on the earth to buy a cell phone.

But, you probably don’t want to hear about my technology procrastination. So, let’s talk Google+.

Look Out Facebook

Facebook is accustomed to being in someone’s crosshairs.

Will Google+ succeed where others failed?

I have not spent a great deal of time on the new social media platform, but here is a quick rundown.

Profile

Google grabs the information from your Google profile. Right now there are tabs for Posts, About, Photos, Videos and +1 recommendations.

Circles

Similar to Facebook’s Friends, Circles categorizes your associations with users. Google+ starts you off with the following categories:

  • Friends – according to the platform, your “real” friends
  • Family – your “close and extended family”
  • Following – “people you don’t know personally but whose posts you find interesting”
  • Acquaintances – ” a good place to stick people you’ve met but aren’t particularly close to” – doesn’t that leave the door wide open?

You can rename any of the Circles and use a drag and drop technique to add users to your Circles. Those in your Circles must add you to theirs for access to their postings.

 Stream

This is what you think it is – the news feed/postings. It’s very similar to Facebook. Unless there is a way that I am unaware of, you cannot view Streams from a specific Circles category.

Hangouts

I have not tried this feature yet. It allows for video chats that you can join. The thought can be frightening for freelancers in standard freelance attire.

Sparks

This feature allows you to identify and receive information about your various interests.

Again, Google+ gets you started with a collection of interests –

  • Cycling
  • Fashion
  • Movies
  • Recipes
  • Soccer
  • Sports Cars
  • Gardening
  • Android
  • Games
  • Robotics

There is a search toolbar for adding other interests.

Huddle

Yet another feature I have not used. It’s a group chat for everyone in a specific Circle. I am not sure if it is restricted to text messaging. If you know, please let us know in Comments.

It’s clear that this is definitely a “project.” As I become more familiar with the platform, I’ll share my impressions. After all, that’s why I’m a pioneer.

How about you? Are you in the crowd of Google+ users? What do you think?

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Sherrie Koretke July 13, 2011 at 8:16 am

So far I am loving Google Plus. I was losing my enchantment with Facebook and then this came along! I’m following you now. :)

Sherrie

Reply

Cathy July 13, 2011 at 8:24 am

Hi Sherrie: I’ll have to follow back (if I haven’t already). :-)

It’s much too early for me to make an assessment, but one thing that drives me crazy on both Facebook and Google+ is how you can’t filter the streams. Sometimes, I’d just like to look at the business side and other times family or friends.

It’s a microcosm of what is bad about social media – being overwhelmed by the sheer volume. I sometimes wish I could shut off the noise.

Thanks, Sherrie, for sharing your POV. :-)

Reply

Sharon Hurley Hall July 13, 2011 at 9:45 am

Hi Cathy, you can filter the streams by clicking on a circle name on the left; that’s one of the things I like. :) So far, I think G+ is excellent, and I know it will get better. I’m worried that it will get noisier as more people join, but so far, so good.

Reply

Michelle Shaeffer July 13, 2011 at 11:26 am

Way to go Cathy! :) I’m on there, but haven’t done much yet. I need to schedule some time to dig in and figure it out. I think it’s got a lot of potential.

Reply

Cathy July 13, 2011 at 11:37 am

Sharon-yay!!! That deserves the ‘+’ in its name right there. :-) I knew I should have gone to the Master-you are always so up on things, unlike *ahem* someone else. :-)

Thanks for sharing that info, Sharon. Now, I have to check it out.

Reply

Cathy July 13, 2011 at 11:39 am

Michelle-if I hadn’t been invited I never would have done it. :-) I’m like you and need to get some serious review time in with it to get up to speed.

Thanks for stopping by, Michelle.

Reply

Leanne Chesser July 13, 2011 at 4:43 pm

Hi, Cathy. I’m there and I appreciate the circles and the ease of posting to select groups, if I choose. So far, that’s the biggest benefit for me, but I’m still playing around and learning.

Reply

Cathy July 13, 2011 at 5:05 pm

Hi Leanne: I haven’t even gotten to the playing stage, but plan to. I appreciate you sharing your initial reaction. See you around Google+ soon. :-)

Reply

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