There’s way too much noise in social networking. It’s the reason we started thefacelift.co, and it’s the reason that Google+ is going to succeed. Or already is succeeding; unconfirmed reports suggest that Google+ already has over ten million users, just two weeks after Google threw the switch on their better-than-Facebook social network.
Social Networking is supposed to be about engagement. And as I told you yesterday, Google+ goes farther in this regard than, say, Facebook, or Twitter. But in the course of rolling out Google+, Google has made a couple of mistakes that it would be great to see them recover from.
I’m not ready to address the security and privacy issues that exist in the so-far version of Google+. Today’s topic is the way the Google+ social graph sees and redistributes information.
Robert Scoble, a man who’s known mostly for being way too active on Twitter, is already overwhelming the Google+ streams of his followers. So much so, Google+ users have started unfollowing Scoble, just as they’re unfollowing Chris Pirillo, a technology guru of some note whose work and Lockergnome persona were owned by a business of mine once upon a time.
This is a function of the way Google+ populates your social “stream”, which at this point is by showing you every post by every one of the people you connect to as well as every post on posts written by those people. Which is way too much information if you follow Robert Scoble or Chris Pirillo.
Though it wasn’t patent-worthy, and while I still have issues with Facebook deciding what’s important for me, at least Facebook’s US Patent 7,669,123 is one way of regulating a too-powerful fire hose. So Far, Google+ just throws everything at you. This will change. It has to.
But it also illustrates why (so far) social networking is so much of a disappointment. Social Networking can’t be about numbers. After all, if social networking is to be of any social value, you have to be more important than Ashton Kutcher.
I’m not done with Google+. Stay tuned …