Google Plus

by Henry Farrell on July 5, 2011

I’m at the beach and kid-wrangling, so not in any position to write long blog-posts. But I am intrigued by this “James Fallows post”: suggesting that Google Plus is reasonably non-privacy invasive (for values of non-privacy invasive that include all your search data etc are belong to us).

bq. One of the immediate appeals is how quick, ergonomically easy, and aesthetically nice it is to set up “circles” that match the natural patterns of your real life. One for immediate family, one for “friends you actually know,” another for “professional acquaintances who are sort of friends,” etc. Or by interest. In my case: airplane people, beer people, China people, tech people, Atlantic people, NPR people, etc. …. The other immediate appeal is that the privacy bias seems set in your favor, rather than constantly playing hide-the-ball with you, as Facebook does. The reason I hate and mistrust Facebook is its constant record of changing the privacy terms, not saying it’s done so until it’s caught, and always setting the default in the least private and most advertiser-exploitable way.

This suggests that Google Plus doesn’t have the deficiencies that “drove me away”: from Facebook (which is not to say that it doesn’t have others). I’d be interested to hear from those who are better connected than I am, and have Google Plus accounts, whether this is true, how they find the experience, etc etc.