In the Meet the Media segment of our e-magazine, Queentessentials, the lovely Amanda Bachmann, Producer at Sunrise on the Seven Network posed an interesting question about Google+ She pondered aloud, wondering who was on there, and what was its potential.
This is reflective of many water-cooler conversations, not just at Seven, or in the media, but around the country and around the world.
Part of the difficulty is, I think, that these new platforms are being produced at a rate that is faster than most of us (er, ahem… should I say I) can possibly absorb or come to terms with. We have only just got to grips with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and now there’s a new kid on the block.
So, how is Google+ different, and what is its functionality and capability?
Some feel that it’s got nothing on Facebook.
Although, it is early days, but I think the strategy with this was for Google to introduce a rival for Facebook but one that offers additional features, particularly those that allow us all to segment our social activity into spheres (circles, actually) that need not necessarily intersect. Anyone guilty of ‘oversharing’ pictures of a night out, which have been met with bemusement by our elderly relatives or even our children, can relate.
So the key elements, in a nutshell, are…
Circles: As mentioned above, ‘circles’ are about sharing information with key groups of people. You can create circles of people meaning that your work colleagues do not have to hear about Saturday night’s escapades!
Hangouts: Video conferencing for friends, like Skype video calling, but more advanced.
Instant upload: Photo uploads and videos upload automatically from your phone to a private area in Google +.
Sparks: Sparks is a way of getting snippets information on the things that you like. You type in ‘fashion’, ‘music’, ‘food’ and related blogs, stories, news features pop up. Like Wikipedia search but more intuitive.
Huddle: Huddle is a way you to instant message groups of people all at once – the conversation will be seen by all.
So, to sum up, the jury is still out about Google+ but for now, I feel it is worth accepting an invitation and trying it out, if nothing else.