Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Social Network Enhancement: Hurray for Google+!

Fans of Google+ (and perhaps future ones after reading this) will be thrilled to hear about a few new features from the social network. It’s almost like an early holiday gift; a far cry from the one that Facebook announced. Oh, you don’t know? Their present is one advert showing up in your newsfeed per day. Hip hip horray!

Starting with Google+ pages, you can now have admins, otherwise known as “managers”! Of course, we knew this was coming; Facebook, as anyone with a page knows, has provided this feature for a long time, but not with the elevated title.

While the number for Facebook pages is unlimited, you can now have up to 50 managers on your Google+ page. Would Ford or McDonald’s run the risk of using all 50? At any rate, newly minted Managers will be informed of activity on the page via notifications. Not sure if that’s different from the notification numbers you see now or not.

And already the “counting” for +1’ing is showing on a page. That’s a count of both those who have +1’d and also added your page to one of their circles. So my example here, for my modlandUSA Google+ page shows 50+, yet only 45 folks have circled the page. That means 5 of those folks have also given the page a +1 …thanks so much!

When I heard about the next feature, I thought of a synthesizer and all that other fun 70’s musical equipment. Yes, long time ago, the word “graphic-equalize” meant something quite different. For Google+ users it means fine-tuning, and you don’t have to be an audiophile to use this feature. It’s simply a slider that can be adjusted, or “slid” to select how much of a particular stream from a circle that you’d like to see in your main stream. Honestly, I don’t know how useful this is going to be, but that remains to be seen after doing some tweaking with it.

There’s new photo tagging features. Personally, I’ve never checked out the old ones, perhaps because most of my friends are on Facebook. That may be the case with you as well. According to Google+, the experience will be “fun and fluid”.  Perhaps the tagging will be more precise than Facebook? How many times have you tagged someone as their arm, and not their face?

Also in regards to photos, Lightbox has received a revamp in several ways.  Lightbox is what you see when you click on any individual photo thumbnail and it bring up a photo with the black background.  It already looks different; if memory serves me right, everything was black, and now there’s a white area for comments and tagging. At any rate, navigation will be smoother and comments easier to read. Okay, so that white background must be new!

And what about those ever popular notifications, officially from what Google+ calls the “red notifications indicator”? They’re adding a feature where you can better preview the information, thus giving you more control as to whether or not you’d like to respond to that post.

Now, here’s the best news…all the new features, if they’re not here already, will be here in the next few days! So, when you want to get away from the twenty plus people making merry in your house, find a quiet corner and check out your Google+ GIFTS!


Lisa Ladrido said...

Great post Gerry! Love the graphics you added too! Had to share! Hope your week is going great! I haven't finished shopping yet...yikes! Lisa

Enlightened Golfer said...

Thanks Gerry, I will have to explore for sure. I've signed up but haven't played enough on Goggle+ are helping me rethink it as a priority.
Merry Christmas to you and yours

Gerry Wendel said...

Lisa, share away! Those are all my original graphics.

Yes, I would recommend getting started with Google+ and beat the crowd, so to speak! Merry Christmas!

Social Network Analysis said...

What does Facebook have to offer today that's unique? For some people, it's a connection with their loved ones: their extended family. It's easier than email. It's not easy however, to convince your family to use Twitter or another social network. Not everyone spends the amount of time connected to the Internet as some of us. Most of my extended family rarely checks their email or can't remember their email password to begin with. It’s not easy to get someone started on "another thing".Social Network Analysis

Gerry Wendel said...

You've got the situation nailed down to a tee. 800 million+ people can't be wrong, right? And I've had 3 people deactivate their FB accounts and jump over to G+; that's 0.00041%!

Meanwhile, someone I know who has resisted FB for a several years now just joined!

Twitter is too public for many people. FB allows you to keep your own little world. G+ allows you to easily keep your posts private as well...which is great IF your friends were on that social network!

Thanks for your have inspired me to explore this subject more and perhaps write about it!