facebook, google, networks, plus, social, socialnetworking, Twitter
I’ve been trying Google Plus for a few weeks, and I think it has promise. It gets right all the things that Facebook got wrong, in terms of controlling which groups of people you interact with and share content with. Add to that the awesome Hangout feature which gives easy access to video conferencing.
My gripes with it is the +1 system, which seems to be a confused mix between the Facebook like button and the Twitter favourite function. I’m still trying to work out exactly the benefit of the +1 one button in terms of interaction on Google Plus. Of course, the +1 button serves to tailor search results for you, based on your social graph. Whether that is a good thing or an evil thing is a debate for another day!
The thing I’m really missing from Google Plus is an easy way to share content with my Plus followers. At the moment, if I want to share a link with my Google Plus circles, I have to go to the site and manually post the link. Instead, I want to have sharing buttons (or at least a browser plugin) to have a one-click share, like we have with Facebook and Twitter.
The only social buttons for Google that are appearing on blogs are the +1 buttons, which do not send content to your Google Plus feed! Of course, the +1 button can’t do this because you have to tell Plus which circles each of your posts are going to. Therein lies the rub.
Still though, if you’d like to try out Google Plus for yourself, I have 150 invites. All you need to do is click this link. If you’ve read this far, a Flattr wouldn’t go amiss either
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buzz, e-mail, email, filtering, gmail, google, privacy, socialnetworking, Twitter
Google Buzz was released last week, and a positive spin on it would be that it could succeed where FriendFeed didn’t quite succeed, because of Google’s ready-made user base. A negative spin would be - we don’t need this. Certainly, I personally think that it’s naive to try replacing Twitter at this point. Twitter is not perfect, but we’re stuck with it, and there’s a great ecosystem of web services built up around it.
Sure, Google Buzz can take posts from Twitter and therefore work along side it, just like Facebook can. Although, Google Buzz is just going to be another place for replication of links. E.g. my blog posts updates to Twitter, and my Buzz account takes updates from both – I can see that it wouldn’t take many more steps to create a painful recursion here. To be fair, this is what the mute button is for, but why should we have to start playing whack-a-mole with all this? Duplication is also going to happen for committed Google users, who are likely to see the same updates appearing in their Google Reader as they are on their Buzz feed; unless they’re very strict about who they follow. Which reminds me, I had better unfollow most of those people Google automatically made me follow on day one …
In the interests of fairness, I should report that Google have responded, saying that they have replaced auto-follow with auto-suggestions. They’ll also make it easier to hide who you’re following, and to opt-out of Buzz completely; all via your GMail settings. At the time the writing though, none of these options were available in my GMail settings. Fortunately, there are other ways to get to these options, so here’s a round up of blog posts showing you how to protect yourself with Google Buzz.
Continue reading …
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applications, facebook, filter, social, socialnetworking, socialnetworks, status
Pretty much everyone I know on Facebook has had enough of seeing inane stories from their friends running the multitude of pointless Facebook applications. Well I’m glad to say that I was told how to filter all of this out from the Facebook home page, by fellow blogger, Mike Davies.
I’m posting this guide as I discovered that when I tried to explain to friends on Facebook how to do this, I couldn’t quite get the message across. So, like the old saying goes, a picture paints a thousand words!
Cleaning up Facebook - Click to Enlarge
All of the following instructions refer to the left hand column of the Facebook site.
- Expand the column by clicking “More”
- Notice the little grips that appear on the right of every item in the column.
- Using these, drag all the the types of post you are interested in (e.g. Statuses and photos) to the top, making sure that they all rank above “News Feed”.
- Once you have dragged up all the types of posts you want to see, click “News Feed” (this will then re-display all post types rather than just the last one you clicked on).
- We are done! So click “Less” to close up the patient.
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aggregation, Buchheit, facebook, friendfeed, social, socialnetworking, socialnetworks, Zuckerberg
On first impressions, I feel kind of sad about Friendfeed being swallowed up by Facebook, although let’s look past this.
First – Friendfeed and Facebook overlap on an area that is at least of use to bloggers. That being a aggregation and resyndication for tonnes of social networks (and RSS feeds). The key thing here is that this is the core of Friendfeed’s site, and you’d have to be crazy to not think Friendfeed do this better than Facebook. They certainly support more sites.
Second – Friendfeed can be private, but is like Twitter in that it is at its best when public. Whereas Facebook, imho, doesn’t work that well as a public profile site. I have always considered Facebook to be everyone’s own walled garden (have you checked your privacy settings lately?). So there is a dissonance here, assuming the two sites are going to eventually become one site.
Now, it could justifiably be said that Facebook has just bought itself a big heap of talent, seeing as Friendfeed was founded by notable ex-Google employees. However, that’s not of a great deal of interest to me, what is of interest to me, is how this affects me as an end user. At this very moment, the whole thing seems very mixed up. On one hand, while I do resyndicate all of my content to Friendfeed, I don’t actively participate on the site (but it was on my list of things to learn). On the other hand, it would seem a great waste on Facebook’s part if they didn’t add the functionality of Friendfeed into their own site. However, doing the latter would suggest the powers that be at Facebook want more public facing profiles, so as to attract even more users. Well, I’m sure that would be great for the shareholders, but thta’s not why most of us are with Facebook. See the news stories of people getting fired from their jobs because of some off the cuff comment they made on Facebook. This strongly suggests that, apart from that some people are idiots, people come to Facebook with the expectation of a closed environment. In short, Facebook is not Myspace!
A question which interests me, and only time will tell, is will anyone miss Friendfeed once it has been fully assimilated?
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davidgilson, follow, followers, socialnetworking, social_networking, Twitter
If you didn’t kow, I use Twitter. You’ll find me on there as @davidgilson. For those of you who don’t know Twitter, think of Facebook or Myspace status updates. If you still don’t know what I’m talking about, well, it’s tricky to describe. Imagine a site where you answer the question “what are you doing?” in 140 characters or less. You then “follow” other people so you get a stream of their updates, and those who follow you will get your updates included in their stream of updates.
With me so far?
Okay good, now let me tell you that Twitter works best when you try to forget about that question and realise that you can ask all these lovely people who follow you questions, and that you can all direct posts at other members using the “@” symbol and their name. Are you seeing where I’m going with this? This whole “what are you doing” site starts to become one mass public instant messaging platform.
My amazing follower increase
I’ve been slowly trying to gain more followers by following people I found interesting, hoping they’d follow me too. My current efforts were spurred on by Twitter somehow cutting off a good number of many people’s followers. I had been making slow but steady progress. I’ve also been reading a few sites about ways in which you can increase your following.
Well, over the weekend, I don’t know what happened, but from gainging maybe one follower every day or two, I gained 40 in two days. I honestly have no idea what spiked my follower rate. Although I went from 105 to currently 149. Sure, 149 is a micro-particle compared to the likes of Stephen Fry and Barack Obama who have 100,000 and 225,000 followers, respectively. Although proportionaly, had a 50% increase in two days.
Below is a list of links I’ve been reading, I’m going to follow up on all the tips contained within those pages, and I’m setting myself a tentative target of reaching 1000 followers by the end of this year.
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