Google+ will fit some people really well, and is certainly bringing some fresh ideas to the table to keep Facebook on its toes. That said, here’s why I kinda hope it doesn’t take off, and why I’m seriously considering leaving the party early.
- There were compelling reasons to abandon Friendster and MySpace at their peaks; frustrating performance, bugs, spam, bad UIs, visual nonsense, etc. Facebook seems to be scaling quite gracefully and they seem to constantly improve rather than frustrate.
- My main issue with Facebook would be privacy, but I find it highly unlikely that, in the long run, Google+ or any other ad-supported social network will be a better steward of our personal information. That train goes in one direction.
- Establishing yet another silo of social network identities will cost us a huge amount of collective time.
- Since Google+ “circles” nearly remove all social cost from forming weak relationships (“just dump them in acquaintances”) we could be talking about a lot more time spent managing relationships. Circles may be the killer feature that we later really regret embracing.
- Prominent Google+ notifications appear at the top of all Google tools, and I couldn’t find a way to hide them without, say, keeping a separate account. With social networks being brilliant delivery mechanisms for dopamine; offering that hit while in Gmail, Docs, Calendar, and Search is going to be a disaster for a lot of people’s productivity.