by Amee Bohrer
So I was contemplating joining Google+, to replace facebook as a social networking tool to promote my blog.
A blogger friend told me that the hits on her site are insane when she posts on Google+. I was excited about the possibility.
In 8 months, Google+ has reached the same number of users that it took facebook four years to accumulate: 90 million, according to CNN.
I was leery, but considering it.
And now THIS: Google Search, Plus Your World.
Is there no pretense of privacy –or fair competition— at ALL left on the internet? Now even my private searches will be invaded by what is essentially junk results designed to force a constant social networking experience on me? It’s still new, and subject to change.
Right now, this feature only effects Google+ users, as I understand it. I can avoid it by NOT joining. But will this eventually expand to all Google products? Will even a simple gmail account ensnare us into this mandatory search format?
And I thought the facebook Timeline was manipulative. I had been ambivalent about leaving for years, but the launch of Timeline galvanized me to not just “deactivate,” but begin deleting my entire friends list systematically. I didn’t want my entire facebook history public, for anyone to browse. I didn’t want to prune unwanted statii away to carefully cultivate my facebook image, or choose a “cover shot.”
My original deadline to delete my account was Jan. 6, because I was notified that my Timeline was going live on that date. I failed, but went back to work. This time, I resolved to do it the right way. And I’m almost done. I felt great about it!
There’s also things like this, which freak me out. But that can apply to all social networks.
Except all the problems I thought I would be getting AWAY from by leaving facebook are now infiltrating Google, as a whole. Soon, it seems, the dominant search engine, e-mail brand, and freakishly prolific innovator of new social technology will control the market, period. Google has even merged with Blogger– you need a gmail account now to sign up.
No sir, I don’t like it.
What choice will we have, if we want to participate in social networking? Right now, I have a Twitter. Should I delete that as well?
It’s hard to let go of my one remaining social networking lifeline.
I don’t know if it’s worth it to use social media promote my blog, honestly. Maybe I’ll keep it old-school and just get business cards. Maybe I don’t want this blog to get bigger. Maybe I’ll stay right here, blogging in obscurity– thankyouverymuch.
For now, this blogger is holding out. I’m accelerating my facebook deletion, undecided about Twitter, and will not join an additional network unless something drastic changes. Are there any better options, with more security and control?
Compared to Google+, facebook seems like a paragon of ethics and security.