Tag Archives: diaspora

Google+ open to all

And Facebook goes the way of Yahoo (Dodo)

The Google+ project has been in field trial for just under 90 days, and in that time we’ve made 91 different improvements (many of which are posted here). Google+ is still in its infancy, of course, but we’re more excited than ever to bring the nuance and richness of real-life sharing to software. Today we’re releasing nine more features that get us that much closer.

Read the full blog post

Google+ opened it’s doors to all yesterday and considering they already have 25 million users just in the closed “testing” stage… Facebook should be (and seems they are) worried.

Just last week Silicon Valley expert Mike Elgan labeled Facebook as “the new Yahoo”.  He wrote;

“Yahoo has no vision. It has no purpose. It’s dispensable. Yahoo continues like a zombie, animated by the life it once had.”

Implying this is what Facebook is becoming.

(Here is a comedy piece on the same subject: http://technorati.com/business/article/facebook-is-new-yahoo-rumor-flips/#ixzz1YZuRS2gK)

I love Google+

And so should you!

Why?

  1. Privacy first (FB privacy history)
  2. I choose who sees what (Circles)
  3. I can take my data out at any stage with Google’s Data Liberation Front. (Ever tried to download pictures in Facebook…)
  4. The interface is fantastic and the mobile app (Android) is great too
  5. No spam from games

What I’m not so happy about
It’s a proprietyclosed source product. This means we have no way of making sure the code is secure and safe. We just have to trust Google that it is. We also have to use their platform if we want to use the service. I.e I have to give my data to Google if I want to use the Google+ social network.

It’s “sister” product (I use that term very loosely as there is no tie between the two), where some ideas came from, like circles, is Diaspora and it’s an open source alternative. It’s also a distributed social network, which means that various other networks can talk to each other (think Hotmail email address able to send to Google email address for social networks).

It’s what we all been waiting for (even if you don’t know it). The ability to use any instance of the network, so you could even host your own if you wanted, and still be able to connect to your friends on any other platform (again think the Hotmail <-> Gmail analogy). However it’s not open for mainstream use yet, being only at “alpha” stage in development, and the question is how widespread will the take up be when it is. I.e. will your mum be on it?

Identi.ca (Status.net platform) is a Twitter style open source and distributed social network. However it has the same limitations Twitter does, 140 characters etc. and does not have the features Diaspora, Google+ or Facebook have.

So my recommendation is this, dump Facebook for Google+ as quickly as you can. Delete your account, make sure they don’t have anything left. Because I tell you now, as the Google+ market share grows, the more desperate Facebook will become. And considering their previous record on privacy, I’d be very concerned how they use your personal information going forward. Get out while you can.

Business users

You may be tied to Facebook for business. This is unavoidable sometimes, your customers may choose to use Facebook and you want to interact with them. This is all fine and well, just keep a few things in mind;

  • Facebook is not the Internet, neither is Google+ or Twitter for that matter!
  • Use a website for your product/service/business first, FB second when you have to.
  • If you post stuff to Facebook, make sure you are completely happy with it being shared publicly (that’s good advice for the Internet in general really)
You can find me on Google+ here
Edit 22/09: Just yesterday Diaspora* posted this update worth a read - Diaspora* means a brighter future for all of us

Update 27/09
There is a real strorm brewing about yet more changes Facebook have implemented that seriously affect privacy. There are also serious questions being asked about the “tracking” of users across the web, monitoring your browser habits and how this information is being used/sold.