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  • Gerrit Eicker 16:43 on 8. July 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Google Services, , , Google+ Project, , , , , , Pen Name, , , , , , , ,   

    Google Plus Identities 

    Google and the freedom to be who you want to be, at least if it is not on Google Plus; http://eicker.at/GooglePlusIdentities @oobscure

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    • Gerrit Eicker 16:44 on 8. July 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Google: “When it comes to Google services, we support three types of use: unidentified, pseudonymous and identified. And each mode has its own particular user benefits. – Unidentified. Sometimes you want to use the web without having your online activity tied to your identity, or even a pseudonym… – Pseudonymous. Using a pseudonym has been one of the great benefits of the Internet, because it has enabled people to express themselves freely… – Identified. There are many times you want to share information with people and have them know who you really are. … Equally as important as giving users the freedom to be who they want to be is ensuring they know exactly what mode they’re in when using Google’s services. So recently we updated the top navigation bar on many of our Google services to make this even clearer. … We’re also looking at other ways to make this more transparent for users. While some of our products will be better suited to just one or two of those modes, depending on what they’re designed to do, we believe all three modes have a home at Google.”

      Google Community Standards: “Impersonation – Your profile should represent you. We don’t allow impersonation of others or other behavior that is misleading or intended to be misleading. … Display Name – To help fight spam and prevent fake profiles, use the name your friends, family, or co-workers usually call you. For example, if your full legal name is Charles Jones Jr. but you normally use Chuck Jones or Junior Jones, either of these would be acceptable.”

      Thinq_: “Google may still be throttling sign-ups to its social networking service Google+, but it’s also thinning out the ranks of its current members as it struggles to meet demand. – Businesses were the first to go, and they’ve now been joined by those who value their privacy or have other reasons to use a pseudonym. – Various tech publications have found their corporate accounts unceremoniously booted, with Google claiming that it’s trying to keep the service for individuals at present. While this has been met with stoic understanding by the people involved, the company’s next step in the cull might cause a bigger stir: the advertising giant is focusing on those who prefer to be known by an avatar. – Opensource Obscure, a Second Life user who prefers to be identified by his/her avatar rather than by his/her real-world identity, is one of the first to be have been selected for removal from the service. While the account is still present on Google+, it is listed as ‘suspended’.”

      TN: “Officially as of 24 February, Google’s public policy position (‘The freedom to be who you want to be’) was that pseudonymous use of a number of Google products was fine. Even to go so far as implicitly encouraging it. – Someone at Google clearly didn’t get that memo, or maybe it’s just that Google+ (or anything tied to a Google Profile) is exempt from that policy. – Google profiles are becoming somewhat pervasive, increasingly interconnecting the various Google products, and the pseudonymity that Google supports in some products is inherently undermined if it starts whacking connected profiles based on a suspicion that a name isn’t what people ‘usually call you’. – Pseudonymous usage is apparently just fine, until Google decides it wants you to pony up a photo ID. This isn’t about Opensource Obscure specifically, but his suspension devalues Google+ for me just a little bit.

      Update from Opensource Obscure: “Confirmation from Google Profiles Support Team: ‘Opensource Obscure’ name violates Community Standards.”

    • Gerrit Eicker 21:51 on 13. July 2011 Permalink | Reply

      NWW: “For the last couple years, it’s been a mantra in Silicon Valley that ‘Google doesn’t get social.’ The introduction of Google Profiles and its truly impressive Circles feature strongly suggested that the company had made a massive shift in corporate culture to compete with Facebook and other social networking systems. However, the fact that Google hasn’t crafted a coherent Profiles policy that’s more in line with how people actually use their identity in the digital age… well, to me that shows they are still abundantly full of Not Getting Social.

      RWW: “As political activists and dissidents have increasingly turned to social networks in order to build their communities and spread their messages, many have balked at Facebook’s policy that requires people use their real names in their profiles, arguing that doing so puts them and their families at risk. It isn’t just activists, however, who argue that pseudonymity may be necessary. There are lots of reasons why people may opt to utilize other names online: you’re changing your real world name and identity, using your real world name puts you at risk at work or at home, or simply that people know you by your pseudonym, not by your real name. – Some have been surprised and disappointed then to see that Google’s new social network, Google Plus, much like its rival Facebook, will also require real names.Allowing pseudonyms could be a way that Google Plus could distinguish itself from Facebook, particularly since Google contends that Google Plus emphasizes personal control over information and sharing. But as it stands, that control is limited to those who choose to go by real names.”

      NWW: “Google is squandering a vast opportunity that Facebook has ignored: The desire of people whose daily activity centers around online community to easily connect in that context as well.”

    • Gerrit Eicker 09:39 on 16. July 2011 Permalink | Reply

      NYT: “Allowing pseudonyms could be a way that Google Plus could distinguish itself from Facebook, particularly since Google contends that Google Plus emphasizes personal control over information and sharing. But as it stands, that control is limited to those who choose to go by real names.

      Weinstein: “It is clearly the case that users need to fully understand what names are or are not acceptable for their use. When other than ‘legal’ names are permitted, users need to know that a logical and fair process is in place to determine which other names will be permitted, how these users can demonstrate that their usage of those names are legitimate, and that when names are rejected, be assured that users are fully informed as to why rejections took place. Additionally, there should be a formal appeals procedure that users may invoke if they feel that a name was unreasonably rejected.

      Vierling: “Google, you’re seriously messing it up. Your own experience with LGBT political causes should be enough to make you know better, but this obvious attack on pseudonymity will result in you shooting yourself in the foot even before Google+ is standing on its own. Here you have an opportunity to stand out, but you’re just doing exactly what “the other guy” is doing.”

      Greene: “Fact is, Google’s ‘no-privacy’ approach to social networking runs the risk of alienating a lot of potential users. And as I’ve said before, you’d be stupid not to think Facebook isn’t going to capitalize on that fact.”

      SEW, Korman: “Facebook’s TOS claims that you are required to use your wallet name in order to use their service.Google+ was, in theory a little different. Their rules state that you should sign up using ‘the name your friends, family, or co-workers usually call you.’ … It seems that Google has a very narrow definition of identity. … I’ve been hearing a lot about how ‘this is how the world is now’, and that ‘if you don’t join up you’ll be forgotten.’, where it comes to Facebook and Google+. I think both statements are patently nonsense, primarily because unless multiplicity of identity is embraced as time goes on, more and more people will reject the single identity model for any number of reasons. All that will remain are, ironically, companies and brand names, selling things to each other, where people who actually want to truly interact will be wherever they are allowed to be their real selves – whatever that might entail.”

      ST: “SL Avatars, Time to Fight for Your Rights at Google+ – A Google engineer named Andrew Bunner (I don’t think he’s with the Ozimal people!) has started an outright witch-hunt, using the power of his office and his visibility on this new, rapidly growing social media platform to call on people to abuse-report fake names. … Google engineers should stick to software production and leave governance to a separate department and not be inciting witch-hunts. It’s unethical. It’s like a police state. … Second Life avatars should be admitted for registration on the principle that it is ‘the name by which people know you’.

    • Gerrit Eicker 10:47 on 25. July 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Scoble: “I talked with Google VP Vic Gundotra tonight (disclaimer, he used to be my boss at Microsoft). He is reading everything we have written about names, and such. Both pro and con. … He says it isn’t about real names. He says he isn’t using his legal name here. He says, instead, it is about having common names and removing people who spell their names in weird ways, like using upside-down characters, or who are using obviously fake names, like ‘god’ or worse. – He says they have made some mistakes while doing the first pass at this and they are learning. He also says the team will change how they communicate with people. IE, let them know what they are doing wrong, etc. … He also says they are working on ways to handle pseudonyms, but that will be a while before the team can turn on those features (everyone is working hard on a raft of different things and can’t just react overnight to community needs).”

  • Gerrit Eicker 08:11 on 4. July 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , Google+ Project, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   

    Google Plus Stream 

    The Google Plus Stream needs fixes: it’s like Twitter without clients or Facebook without EdgeRank; http://eicker.at/GooglePlusStream

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  • Gerrit Eicker 09:06 on 29. June 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Google+ Project, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   

    Google Plus: Circles, Sparks, Hangouts, Mobile, Huddle 

    Google starts its own social network Google Plus finally, the nuance and richness of real-life sharing; http://eicker.at/GooglePlus

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    • Gerrit Eicker 09:07 on 29. June 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Google: “Among the most basic of human needs is the need to connect with others. … Today, the connections between people increasingly happen online. Yet the subtlety and substance of real-world interactions are lost in the rigidness of our online tools. – In this basic, human way, online sharing is awkward. Even broken. And we aim to fix it. – We’d like to bring the nuance and richness of real-life sharing to software. We want to make Google better by including you, your relationships, and your interests. And so begins the Google+ project.

      Google+: “Google+ is in limited Field Trial – Right now, we’re testing with a small number of people, but it won’t be long before the Google+ project is ready for everyone. Leave us your email address and we’ll make sure you’re the first to know when we’re ready to invite more people.” … +Circles: “You share different things with different people. … Circles makes it easy to put your friends from Saturday night in one circle, your parents in another, and your boss in a circle by himself, just like real life.” +Sparks: “…looks for videos and articles it thinks you’ll like, so when you’re free, there’s always something to watch, read, and share.” +Hangouts: “With Hangouts, the unplanned meet-up comes to the web for the first time. Let buddies know you’re hanging out and see who drops by for a face-to-face-to-face chat.” +Mobile: “…Your photos upload themselves. +Huddle: “Huddle takes care of it by turning all those different conversations into one simple group chat…”

      RWW: “The fundamental value proposition is around privacy: it’s the opposite of Facebook and Twitter’s universal broadcast paradigm. Google Plus is based on the Google Circles feature, which lets you share and view content to and from explicitly identified groups of your contacts, and no one else. It’s really easy to use and a great feature – but even if you’re communicating out in public, the rest of the service is very well designed, too. This is a smart, attractive, very strong social offering from Google. … Anything that can increase the percentage of social software users who are actively curating dynamic, topical sources is a net win for the web and for the people who use it.”

      TC: “The reality is that Google is in a better position to organize all of the social signals we broadcast online rather than to organize all of the individuals making those signals. – Instead of building another social network, I’d like to see Google focus on helping us search through all the user-generated signals and content and to help us with our search, much of which is done offline through social questions, not keyword-speak. (Although, the threaded comments approach Google+ is using in the main stream it presents to users does lend itself to friends asking each other questions and answering them). This approach would let Google focus on what it excels at, helping us find information online, especially information created by our friends and friends of friends, perhaps even in an instant. Now, that would be a huge plus.”

      Mashable: “Google+ is a bold and dramatic attempt at social. There’s a reason why Google calls this a ‘project’ rather than a ‘product’ — they don’t want people to think of this as the final product, but as a constantly-evolving entity that permeates every corner of the Google empire. – Overall, Google+ is solid. But I’m not going to call it a Facebook killer or a game-changer. The last Google product I said that about was the ill-fated Google Buzz. Perhaps that’s why Google’s rolling this out slowly via invites, the same style Gmail used to release itself to the world. – If Google can persuade users to come back every day, it has a winner. But the company will have to do even more to provide a truly compelling alternative to Facebook. At the moment, Google+ cannot compete with the king of social, but Google doesn’t seem to be in a hurry to take on Mark Zuckerberg’s giant quite yet.

      pC: “It’s going to be a while before we find out whether or not this is something that will resonate with the public, and that’s actually a good thing: by launching the service in an invitation-only mode, Google will have time to discover flaws and fix bugs among a group of early adopters who are likely to be much more understanding when problems arise than the general public, which freaked out about the mistakes Google made when launching Google Buzz. Google’s taking a risk that Google+ won’t have enough users on board in its early days to facilitate connections, but it seems to have decided that erring on the side of getting privacy features right is more important than building a Facebook killer on Day 1.

      TNW: “A complete video tour of Google+ featuring Mobile, Sparks and Circles

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