Do you know what shits me most about the end of Google+? Aside from losing a really terrific forum, and an introduction to some awesome people? It’s the way “tech journalism” has maintained a “campaign” against this platform over a number of years.
This article describes Google+ as having a “few loyal fans”. WTF? What’s the definition of “a few”? By any reasonable definition, Google+ had many, many, more readers than Wired.
Sadly, “tech journalism” consists of many, many people on little more than a “public relations gravy train” of free lunches and mobile phones in exchange for positive reviews. On top of that, lots of people with limited understanding of engagement beyond “numbers”, have under-estimated the impact of this platform. All of this has added up to a common view that Google+ is a “waste of time” because “nobody is there”. And when you say “nobody is there”, nobody goes there. And yet, I’ve had heaps of active engagement with a lot of terrific people.
Sadly, Alphabet has spent too much time reading the views of the “technorati”, and not enough time keeping an eye on the lots of wonderful, passionate people on this platform.
It’s also much deeper issue about Google’s relationship with the audience. A friend, who is an active user of Gmail and Google Photos, who has been receiving the updates said to me the other day, “But aren’t they closing down Google Photos?” She’s smart, but she couldn’t differentiate. It’s reputational damage that’s broader than the “technorati” estimates, I think.
In Lady Windemere’s Fan, Oscar Wilde had Lord Darlington quip that a cynic was ‘a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.’ This is surely the case which applies to this awesome platform. Best wishes to everyone I’ve met there.