The Core Dump

A strong conviction that something must be done is the parent of many bad measures

[By Nic Lindh on Thursday, 21 July 2011]

Breaking the social back

Nic overanalyzes things again. He has no idea what to do with Google Plus.

I am not a social media expert. I do not leverage the synergies of the global conversation space through Web 2.0 to increase engagement with my brand # hashtag.

I use social media because I like to say things and hear what other people are saying. I know, I know: freak.

It’s been pretty nice and easy up till now, though: Twitter is for random thoughts and casual conversation, and Facebook is where my sister posts pictures of my niece and nephew—pictures I very much want to see. Facebook is what my family and old friends check, so that’s where a certain amount of my updates need to go if I want those people to see them.

So I hold my nose and use Facebook for that.

And now we have Google Plus. Which is like Facebook except not explicitly designed to make it easy for horny teenagers to hook up. (Incidentally, Facebook, when Google comes across as less creepy and privacy-invading than you do, you have a capital-P Problem.)

Google Plus is great. I really like it. The circles are a great concept for managing your privacy levels.

Here’s the problem, though: What am I supposed to share on Google Plus? My mental model for what goes on Facebook and what goes on Twitter works pretty well. Where does Google Plus fit?

If I could, I’d ditch Facebook in a heartbeat and move that activity over to Google Plus and then (sweet relief) my mental model would work again.

(Thanks, Facebook, for randomly making the iPhone app and the Web page switch over to your abominable Top News view, for turning chat back on even though I sure as hell didn’t ask you to do that, and for changing the privacy settings whenever Mark Zuckerberg has a bad bowel movement. Makes me love ya, it really does.)

But the odds of getting my family—and, by extension, their friends—to jump ship are about the same as finding John Boehner in the mosh pit at a Rage Against the Machine concert.

So at this point, what am I supposed to do with Google Plus? I’m not trying to be snarky or facetious here; I genuinely don’t know.

And yes, I’m completely aware of how whiny and first-world of a dilemma this post laments—I have too many ways to share my thoughts and read what people I find interesting have to say, whaaaah! But it is one of those minor annoyances that gets under my skin. The OCD mind needs clarity.

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