So I was invited to Google + and I checked it out a little. The first thing I did was go through my regular commentators and add all of you to circles. I assume you were notified, G+ did not make it clear. Then, I was lucky enough to be included on a list started by RK Charron called Authors+ on Google+, which was widely linked. It led a lot of people to include me in circles that otherwise might not have done so.
Here’s a screenshot. Click to enbiggen.
But to be blunt, Google + is leaving me cold. Other than some interesting people sorting features, it looks like a Facebook clone. And it is a comfortable bet that Facebook is working even now for their own answers to that sorting feature, which is called Circles. There are also video hangouts, which don’t appeal to me. I have never used the webcam that is built into my laptop. There’s a chat feature, which resembles the chat feature in Facebook, which I have also only rarely used, and then, I only used it with family.
One much-touted aspect of G+ is the circle system. It’s sort of like following on Twitter via Twitter follow lists. You can add anyone to a circle, even a world-famous celebrity. No friending. Which was a problem that Facebook already solved via its Facebook pages. Initially, G+ presented me with a list of about 400 people that it would think I was interested in, based on what Google already knew about me. It was very accurate. It now has a list of about 180 people, mostly science fiction and fantasy authors and publishing folk. One problem with using a product in beta testing: this feature mostly disappeared for the past three days. Must have been a glitch.
Really, though–I wish Google had invented something new. I really liked Google Wave, but the problem was that no one I knew was on it, and Google couldn’t seem to handle the traffic it did have. I’ve never been nuts about the Facebook system, and I’m more of a Twitter user than a Facebook user. G+ seems to be aimed rather squarely at Facebook. I don’t see this pulling me away from Twitter. I can send a tweet via my text messaging feature on my cellphone, and you really can’t get much easier than that.
But it’s more than that. I have social networking fatigue. Here is a list of all the places that people think I should be on:
- Romance Divas
- RWA Yahoo Groups
- Various other Yahoo groups
- My website
- And now Google+
I can’t do it. I’m spread too thin. So I’ll continue to use all the automated tools I can. Facebook sucks in both my tweets and my blog posts. Goodreads sucks in my blog posts, as does Amazon. The Feedburner feature that tweets my blog posts seems to be broken, but I’ll get it fixed. Whenever Google + opens up its API and tools are developed for it, I’ll pull my blog posts into there as well. And I’ll answer comments wherever they turn up.
But other than manually reposting select posts to eHarlequin, I’ll concentrate my efforts on my site and this blog. It’s still the top result when I search for my name, after all. I’ll find a tool that will allow me to use text messages or emails to send posts, so posting is as easy as tweeting.
And I’ll stop spreading myself so thin.