A list ranking the top users on Google’s invite-only social sharing platform Google+ turned up some interesting results. Mark Zuckerberg topped the list, but his profile is almost entirely inactive — that is, if the profile is actually his to begin with.
We’ve scoured the profiles, Twitter accounts and blogs of the top Google+ users that aren’t Google employees or Mr. Zuckerberg. You might be surprised to read their thoughts and reviews of the recent social networking phenomenon.
Do you agree with what they have to say, standing atop their invitation-only soapboxes? Let us know in the comments below.
Tech blogger Robert Scoble ranks #5 on the most-followed Google+ list. This week he posted a link to Cinch in which he interviews his wife Maryam about her hesitations to join Google+.
She says: "I have only so many minutes during the day, and the minutes that I choose to waste I like to waste on Facebook. Why do I have to go somewhere else, be lonely by myself and waste time when I can be on Facebook like everybody else? ... If within a year, I see that a lot of family and friends are there, and they're doing things I cannot do on Facebook...then I'll probably get on Google+, but that's far away from now."
Robert Scoble himself posted some thoughts to his Google+ profile:
"Google+ sometimes removes me from following someone that I know I already followed. This has happened dozens of times now, so I think it's a bug but I haven't figured out a pattern to it."
"Even with all of its noise, Google+'s feed is 600x more interesting than my Google Buzz feed. Why? No Tweets. All organically added stuff."
"I'm getting more engagement here than anywhere else."
"The speed of notifications and new items here doesn't match Twitter, yet, but blows away Facebook's speed."
"The Google+ mobile experience on web is quite nice. I am using Google+ exclusively this weekend on Safari on iPhone. Yes, it is missing lots, like I dont see a way to upload photos. But the UI and your posts are great looking ... This week I will be using G+ on Android, which is a lot better."
Twit.tv technology broadcaster and author Leo Laporte reserves precious space on his phone's home screen for a Google+ widget. Here are some reviews Leo Laporte posted on his Google+ profile:
"Add TWiT (and BBC, Al Jazeera, and more) to your Google+ toolbar. Perfect for people who live in G+. Freaking awesome."
"It's really hard to remember that G+ is still in closed beta. I was going to talk about it on KFI this morning, but I don't think it's a good idea to sing the praises of something most people can't access."
"Dear Google+, I want to be able to have public circles that people can join. That way, I can post to the "wants to know about Minecraft" circle when I want to talk about Minecraft without having to invite every single fan out there manually."
"Holy moly, I have like 2200 followers! (but my profile page seems to be stuck at 191)."
"just started using Google+, i get it.. just not sure if I need it.."
"liking Google plus, hoping the Sparks get better / more news integration, those could be powerful"
The TechCrunch writer shares his reactions to Google+ on both the site itself and his Twitter:
"If only Google+ had search..."
"The Google+ photo uploader is pretty great. Fast."
"Yep, the G+ realtime comment sections are pretty great."
"All I know for sure is that Google+ needs to figure out a way not to have comments boost an old story back to the top of the stream. Makes everything feel very stale, even though it makes some sense to do this. FriendFeed battled with this issue as well, but there was more data constantly flowing in due to Twitter imports, etc."
"Whether or not Google+ succeeds remains to be seen, obviously. But they're adding a sh*t ton amount of users like I've never seen before."
"Whereas previously 90% of the talk on Google+ was about Google+, now it looks like only 75% or so is. That's good, but it needs to keep dropping fast."
Coder and blogger Gina Trapani is the most-followed woman on Google+. She shares her thoughts via the site and her blog.
"I'm fine with comments from strangers on public posts (though I'm a blogger first, so very used to that). However, the fact that strangers can start Huddles render that feature useless for me. Otherwise, an interesting take on Google's social effort from a Facebooker."
"Is it possible to enjoy the Circles interface TOO much?"
"I've been been watching Google flail around social web apps for a few years now, so what I appreciate most about Google+ is that it's a well-thought out product informed by past experience. The more I use Google+, the more I see just how many lessons Google learned from Wave and Buzz..."
Tom Anderson, creator of MySpace, uses his Google+ profile to pose questions about the product. He's generated thought-provoking discussions about the features of the site and released his own views as well:
"Analyst video about Google+ — suggests Google won't disrupt FB or Twitter, that the cost to build/retain engineers has been a big hit to Google's bottom line, and monetization is unclear. Suggests Facebook gets social search ... He seems to be missing that Google+ has already integrated +1 and Twitter into search ..."
"I've also noticed that my own 'circle' count is quite different than what I see on my circles page (like it's showing I'm 3,000 and I actually have 6,000). Guess there's some lag between counts/dbs."
"If you're following a huge user (like MG [Siegler]) and he chooses to upload 500 photos (go MG!) then you're stream is going to be inundated till the end of time with people commenting on his photos. You can "mute" the sharing of his album, but each photo is its own item, and thus you'd have to mute each photo as it comes up with its first comment, right? Am I missing something here? I know the potential for feed noise is crazy on Google+ right now, but this example seems nuts. It really seems like Google+ will have to provide a "sort by post date," at the very least."
"Google+ does seem like it could take a bite out of Twitter - it seems to let you do what Twitter does (but maybe better), and it definitely lets you commmunicate with your followers in a more normal fashion (not stuck with 140 character DMs)."
CUNY professor and blogger Jeff Jarvis sounded off on Google+ pros and cons on his blog:
"To paraphrase Mark Zuckerberg, it is too soon to know what Google+ is. But I've been trying to imagine how it will and won't be useful to news. You should add rock salt to anything I say, as I thought Google Wave would be an important journalistic tool."
"Note this good news: Google+ made 'ranking changes ... that demote such comments if the commenter is not in your circles.' That's a good start. I still want the option of a feed of only latest posts, regardless of comment timing."
"RWW looks at how Google+ could be useful in teaching. +Rebecca MacKinnon sees potential. So do I."
"I REALLY want to be able to embed links in posts here. That alone makes this far inferior to blogs and even Twitter for writing pieces with responsible linking."
"This whole notion that one can/should be able to "disable reshare" is setting a treacherous precedent for the rest of the web. Will news organizations tell me I can't share their story? We never had the expectation until G+ gave it to us. Don't go too far with it, friends."
Founder of Seesmic and LeWeb conference, Loic Le Meur reviews Google+ on his Twitter account:
"I wish google did circles for just gmail contacts too, I would totally use them, wouldn't you?"
"Testing the google plus app on samsung tab honeycomb, not optimized but it works"
"What's my incoming stream? Anyone who added me in a circle? I don't get it"
"So, if I do a circle "assholes" and add people in them, they won't even be able to know I tagged them that way? That's disappointing :-)"
"Google+ is entirely streaming, no delay, all push, no reloading a page or clicking anywhere, that's way cool."
"Google+ might hit Twitter more than Facebook, it's so clean..."
"okay, I'm more and more impressed by Google+, I think it's a real competitor to Facebook in the making."
"One thing that frustrates me with G+ is that I don't have a stream of every feedback I get: plusses and comments, see all interactions only. Do you not?"
Actress and gamer Felicia Day uses some humor to review Google+ on the site and her Twitter account:
"Lots of appealing features in Google+. Can't wait to see what Twitter updates next to counter."
"WHOAH when can you collapse comments? The train gets crazy-sauce long in the feed!"
"This service is confusing! I'm part of people's circles but I didn't agree to be in them, I don't know who I'm sharing with and how ... eeep! Trying to figure out how to use it more like Twitter than involuntary Facebook groups. #1: Email notifications OFF!"
Image courtesy of Flickr, halilgokdal
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