A couple of days ago, Google released one of the most amazing products I have ever seen into the world of limited Beta. After much anticipation, a colleague of mine gave me an invitation to Google’s newest attempt at a social service. After using it for a couple of days, I think I am ready to express my thoughts on what Google+ means now, and what I think it will mean in the near and not-so-near future.
Amit, one of the other authors here at Techie Buzz, has posted the technical aspects of what Google+ is and how it works already. As such, I won’t be covering that. If you are looking for any sort of help getting started with Google+, I recommend that you read Amit’s other article, Google+ For Dummies.
Within this post, I will be sharing what I think makes Google+ a real game changer in the social space. I will talk about the features that make it, in my opinion, the best social network available. I will cover that I think makes Google+ great, from the sharing to the feedback. After all that, I will make my predications for the future as it pertains to Google+.
Google+: Circles Changes Everything
As long as I have been using social networks, I have run into one consistent complaint. With every network I have joined, they have told me who I could share with. Twitter made everything I tweeted publicly available. While that’s fine, I wasn’t ever completely satisfied. With Facebook, they told me I could limit it, but if I did, then only the people who were my friends would see it. There was no going back to Public. While I understood the idea, I still wasn’t satisfied.
Then came Google+, with its fantastic management tool known as Circles. Thanks to Circles, G+ has given me what I have been wishing for: the ability to selectively share. What I mean is that I can choose to share certain things with certain circles. If I have a piece of family related news, I can share that with only my family. If I have a great piece of public news, then everyone can see it.
I feel like the beauty of circles works both ways. If people use it as it was intended, we will create a social space where over sharing is less of a problem. We won’t be put off by people telling us about their doctor’s appointment like they do on Twitter. Thanks to the selective Streams, you can catch up with your family and friends without having to read every update from active users like Chris Pirillo or Robert Scoble.