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Users Spend More Time On Myspace Than Google+ 310

Posted by Soulskill
from the never-underestimate-the-power-of-shiny-flashing-objects dept.
pigrabbitbear writes "Google is boasting that more than 90 million people have signed up for its Google+. Those are pretty impressive numbers. I mean, if you had 90 million people at your disposal, you could do anything. You'd rule the Internet. Except there's one little problem: No one is using the site. The Wall Street Journal has the hard, unfiltered truth: According to comScore numbers, users spent an average of 3 minutes on G+ in the entire month of January. Facebook users spent 405 minutes, or nearly 7 hours, on the site. People managed to find 17 minutes to spare to add connections on LinkedIn. Heck, even Myspace users — many of whom are probably ghost accounts — surfed for eight minutes over the month."
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Users Spend More Time On Myspace Than Google+

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  • LOL ... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by gstoddart (321705) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:05PM (#39188597) Homepage

    Wow, nobody has posted yet. Apparently nobody cares about Google + enough to even try for a first post.

    I know I've seen no incentive whatsoever to use Google+, and I have a gmail account that I've had for years which doesn't correspond to a real name -- so their whole "thou shalt have a real name" as an ID thing is a non-starter for me.

    In all honesty, I'm not even sure of what Google + is meant to be used for, or why I'd even care.

    • by WillgasM (1646719) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:10PM (#39188675) Homepage
      G+ is used solely for following Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day when they have something to say beyond Twitter's 140 characters. They both have FB accounts now, however, so I imagine G+ will soon fade out of existence.
      • Re:LOL ... (Score:2, Insightful)

        by tripleevenfall (1990004) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:12PM (#39188709)

        Google isn't going to let its foray into the most profitable market... possibly ever (sales of personal information of others), just fade off into obscurity.

        Personally, I wish they'd all go away. Failing that, the more competition the better.

        • by WillgasM (1646719) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:15PM (#39188751) Homepage
          You should add me on Google Wave then.
        • Re:LOL ... (Score:5, Interesting)

          by dward90 (1813520) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:21PM (#39188809)

          Google isn't going to let its foray into the most profitable market... possibly ever (sales of personal information of others), just fade off into obscurity.

          Can you provide a single example where Google has ever sold personal information to any third party ever? I get that privacy is important and Google might be pushing the boundaries on it, but spreading FUD like this isn't helping your cause.

          • Re:LOL ... (Score:5, Interesting)

            by SomePgmr (2021234) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:36PM (#39189021) Homepage

            Of course not, and neither does Facebook or they wouldn't be worth anything.

            Which brings it all back to the merits of the two services to the end users. I'm sorry to say it, but Facebook is very well done and already has everyone you know, while G+ brings nothing to the table.

            On rare occasions I pull G+ up, and it's the same thing... people I don't know saying crap I don't care about, and no obvious way to change that. I'd wager that's where the 3 minute figure comes from... people occasionally looking to see if it sucks less.

            So why would I use it? And why isn't anyone at Google asking themselves that question?

            • evil and EVIL (Score:5, Insightful)

              by AliasMarlowe (1042386) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:51PM (#39189199) Journal

              Which brings it all back to the merits of the two services to the end users.

              Well, that's about a zero for G+, by the looks of things. However, FB is unequivocally heavily into negative territory in terms of merit to end users (even attempting to track non-users?). This is one reason why my router blocks all access to all of FB's IP ranges, thus rendering all those "like" buttons polluting other pages utterly harmless. These stupid "like" buttons are shown, but it's actually impressive or astonishing how much other stuff around the web is replaced by "denied" messages by the router.

              I've an open mind about Google, but Facebook is definitely at the wrong end of the good-evil axis.

            • by PhilHibbs (4537) <snarks@gmail.com> on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @06:46AM (#39195425) Homepage Journal

              I guess you're talking about the "What's hot" thing, I turned that all the way down to zero. I find the G+ user interface (circles are a great idea) much more pleasant to use than Facebook, which makes me feel dirty every time I load it up.

              But, the real test of a social network is the social network. The people on it. I don't think most of my friends are interested in switching away from Facebook, so my Google+ network will be smaller than the Facebook one for a long time yet. I think that's inevitable with a product like this. Once a social network catches the wave of popularity, the others will have an almost impossible task to catch up. Myspace may have ruled the social network scene, but Facebook arrived at the time that social networks were about to explode and they overtook Myspace. Now, Facebook seems to be unbeatable.

              But that doesn't mean that it isn't worth trying, and playing the long game.

          • Re:LOL ... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by FooAtWFU (699187) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:40PM (#39189061) Homepage
            Google and Facebook are more about renting your personal information - as in, here, let us send this ad to someone whose personal information matches your desired profile. No way they're going to sell their core business. :)
          • Re:LOL ... (Score:3, Interesting)

            by samkass (174571) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:49PM (#39189165) Homepage Journal

            Google isn't going to let its foray into the most profitable market... possibly ever (sales of personal information of others), just fade off into obscurity.

            Can you provide a single example where Google has ever sold personal information to any third party ever? I get that privacy is important and Google might be pushing the boundaries on it, but spreading FUD like this isn't helping your cause.

            They don't sell the data directly, they sell *you* as targets to advertisers (96% of their revenue). And when Google controls your search, email, IM, social, video, phone, map, documents, and site analytics, them "selling" the information to different business areas within Google is just as bad. Facebook may have had their privacy issues in the past, but they're just one company that does one site (and does it well). With Google's new anti-privacy policy, they are explicitly reserving the right to take all that information and do whatever they want with it internally.

            • Re:LOL ... (Score:5, Interesting)

              by Anthony Mouse (1927662) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @06:30PM (#39190523)

              With Google's new anti-privacy policy, they are explicitly reserving the right to take all that information and do whatever they want with it internally.

              Can you explain what it is that causes such alarm about the new privacy policy (other than that the WSJ keeps writing negative stories about Google)?

              As far as I can tell there are two primary privacy questions when someone is using a web service:

              (1) What data do they collect? This is important because eve if they don't intend to do anything objectionable, they could still be forced to turn it over to a totalitarian government or someone could break in and steal it and you would then see the problems like you see in (2). The trouble with this is that it's a losing battle -- everybody collects everything they can get their hands on, so unless you want to be like Richard Stallman and read the internet by having people print it out on paper for you, there isn't much you can do. Plus, especially in the case of the totalitarian government, there is no way to actually verify that they aren't being forced to collect more data than they say they are. More importantly, this isn't the thing that changed in the new privacy policy, so if you were OK with this before then nothing has changed.

              Which leads to:
              (2) What do they use it for? The things to be worried about are that they provide it to insurance companies who use it to raise your rates or deny coverage, or provide it to governments who use it to silence dissidents, or that they're just loose with distributing it to anyone and it ends up in the hands of insurance companies and governments. But according to the privacy policy, that isn't what they're doing. They're using it internally, obviously to target ads. If you refrain from reading the ads, the effect on you is inconsequential. If you read them, you see ads that are somewhat more relevant... which doesn't seem like a particular cause for outrage.

              So where is the path that leads to something bad happening? What terrible end result is enabled by the new privacy policy that was not possible under the old one?

        • by walterbyrd (182728) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @06:13PM (#39190273)

          When did Google start selling personal information? Care to cite your source on that?

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:12PM (#39188705)

      This reminds me of an image my boss has taped to her desk. (http://www.geek.com/articles/geek-cetera/social-media-explained-with-donuts-20120210/)
      If you don't wan to click, it says:
      Social Media Explained
      Twitter: I'm eating a #donut
      Facebook: I Like donuts
      Foursquare: This is where I eat donuts
      Instagram: Here's a vintage photo of my donut
      YouTube: Here I am eating a donut
      Pinterest: Here's a donut recipe
      Last FM: Now Listening to "Donuts"
      G+: I'm a Google employee who eats donuts.

    • Re:LOL ... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by P-niiice (1703362) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:22PM (#39188821)
      I agreed, there was no reason to use Google + - but I clicked in this week and people are actually posting and they are people I care about because my list isn't bloated.

      So I'm going to start looking at plus now. I stopped using Facebook months ago.
      • Re:LOL ... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Riceballsan (816702) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:27PM (#39188889)
        Seconded here. There is 1/8th as much content on my G+ then there ever was on facebook. However that 1/8th is actually things that I either find amusing, actual posts by the friends I give a darn about (compared to 80% of my facebook contacts... which were mostly people I barely knew in person that looked me up and added me, and it was less work to add them then to explain why I don't want to add someone.
      • by mjwx (966435) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @08:44PM (#39191991)

        I agreed, there was no reason to use Google + - but I clicked in this week and people are actually posting and they are people I care about because my list isn't bloated.

        So I'm going to start looking at plus now. I stopped using Facebook months ago.

        Plus the time discrepancy is easily explained by the fact G+ is easy to navigate and shows relevant info, Myspace is an absolute mess.

        Hell, you waste more time waiting for MySapce to load then you do reading G+

    • Re:LOL ... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by artor3 (1344997) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:35PM (#39189007)

      My friends and I use G+, but not the way people use Facebook. It's more like an enhanced group email. We always used to have these email chains where someone would send out something interesting to everyone on the list, and people would just reply-all to that, either chatting or planning a party or whatever. Now we do the same thing on G+ since it makes it a bit easier. But I'd never "hang out" on the site (nor do I understand why people hang out on Facebook). I just log in from my phone, see if anything's happening, maybe fire off a reply, and log back off.

    • by forkfail (228161) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:38PM (#39189043)

      Does posting this count against my three minutes?

    • by cybersquid (24605) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:42PM (#39189087) Homepage

      Specifically, google emailed me last night that they will suspend my account if I don't use me real name.

      Apparently their desire for new users is less than their need to be dicks to the ones they have.

      Too bad. I liked G+.

    • by Kamiza Ikioi (893310) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:49PM (#39189169) Homepage

      Sorry, we were too busy on G+ to worry about first post....

      "The Wall Street Journal has the hard, unfiltered truth"

      Yeah, except it doesn't count mobile users. G+ is mostly cutting edge geeks who are using the app at least as much as the website. It doesn't define which users it is counting. Is this counting active users, signed up and never returned users, who? Considering anyone with a Google account now has a G+ account, the numbers can easily be far off what the active user numbers would be. If they were testing me, and testing mobile, I'd easily clock in about 8 hours average a day (always checking on phone, commenting in discussions, on tablet, on at work, etc.)

      Also, many of us geeks got family to join. We all but boycott Facebook, so they have to log in every once in a while just to check on us, but never interact.

      From personal experience, I have 1000+ followers, follow 200+, and it take me more than 3 minutes a day just to get through the first page of posts. Also, I hyper share with G+, because it's people I share interests, not genes, with.

      Compared to Slashdot: I've posted more interesting stories than Slashdot had today. I've read more interesting stories separately as well. I've had better discussions that on Slashdot. Millions of users, only a couple thousand posts per day... Maybe the Slashdot crowd shouldn't be throwing stones. Reading all the blurbs, I could easily fit Slashdot into 3 minutes a day or less.

      Besides, many posted this story before it was on Slashdot. Became old news quick, already fully parsed, dissected, and discussed. Glad to see /. catch up to G+, and then poo-poo it, lol.

    • by samkass (174571) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:53PM (#39189211) Homepage Journal

      I cancelled my G+ account today. The few things that get posted there aren't worth Google's new privacy policy.

    • Re:LOL ... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Darinbob (1142669) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:57PM (#39189273)

      Google+ is just not the same as Facebook and never will be. People don't go there as part of a social popularity contest. I just don't get all this bashing of Google+ about stuff that its users don't even care about. Next up people will bash Linux for not having as many users as Windows?

    • Re:LOL ... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by slyrat (1143997) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @05:31PM (#39189701)

      Wow, nobody has posted yet. Apparently nobody cares about Google + enough to even try for a first post.

      I know I've seen no incentive whatsoever to use Google+, and I have a gmail account that I've had for years which doesn't correspond to a real name -- so their whole "thou shalt have a real name" as an ID thing is a non-starter for me.

      In all honesty, I'm not even sure of what Google + is meant to be used for, or why I'd even care.

      This isn't true anymore. You can easily set up accounts or use accounts with not real names for google plus. admittedly this was a policy of theirs but it has been fixed.

    • Re:LOL ... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @08:32PM (#39191893)

      In all honesty, I'm not even sure of what Google + is meant to be used for, or why I'd even care.

      On my G+ stream today, a shared article on the economic impact of allowing gay marriage, a discussion of the effects of some changes to local laws, photos from a friend who has moved to another country showing things the tourists don't usually see.

      On my Facebook feed, an in-law threw up in his car today, someone saw somebody in shopping mall who looked just like a celebrity, somebody got drunk at somebody elses birthday and said something cutting, and 6 'inspirational' image macros I'm supposed to share that all basically say "I'm a precious snowflake and everybody else is a mindless sheep."

      Facebook may be more popular, but quantity is not quality.

    • by AmberBlackCat (829689) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @10:12PM (#39192741)
      Google+ was created because Facebook is incredibly good at getting information from people, and spewing ads, and Google wants that too.
  • by Immostlyharmless (1311531) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:06PM (#39188611)
    Simple reason is that facebook is already a working hub for all of my friends, there are those who have switched to google plus, but as long as all my friends, all my co-workers and all of my family, is already in one place? Why go someplace else? Google needs to blow some capital to get people to move. Offer incentives to switch, that's how business works.
    • by Tharsman (1364603) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:10PM (#39188677)

      Only reason I find to use a social network other than Facebook is privacy concerns. But lets be honest, Google is not the first company you look at when you ask yourself "who will take my privacy more seriously?"

      Only alternative for social networking, in my eyes, is Twitter since (to my knowledge, they may be very good at hiding it) they only care about my posts and hash tags, not about tracking my every move in the web.

    • by GameboyRMH (1153867) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {hmryobemag}> on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:13PM (#39188713) Journal

      Yep, users are locked into Facebook nice and tight, tighter than any lock-in any OS ever had because there is zero compatibility of any kind between Facebook and G+...or anything else for that matter. At least most of your files would work with different apps on different OSes.

      Users will get off of Facebook once something much better comes along and Facebook stagnates, the same thing that got people off of MySpace and onto Facebook in the first place, and the same with Geocities before that...

      • by mcgrew (92797) * on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:24PM (#39188853) Homepage Journal

        I've been to MySpace more in the last week than G+. Actually it's been a while since I went to G+, although I may use it for video conferencing with my daughter in Ohio if she ever gets her smartphone to work with it.

        Why have I been to MySpace? I've been re-ripping CDs, and quite a few are from local indie bands that aren't on wikipedia or Amazon, and the only place I can find cover art for the rips is MySpace.

      • by Riceballsan (816702) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:32PM (#39188967)
        Actually i think the myspace stagnation isn't quite as true as people think. Facebook overtook myspace, because they competed in a different arena and gathered a different crowd. Facebook timed it so that they didn't have to focus on converting myspace's X million users, they grabbed a few million people that did not use social networking and pulled them in first, then once facebooks userbase outgrew myspace, then they got people to switch.
    • by tripleevenfall (1990004) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:14PM (#39188729)

      Google should advertise that if you switch to G+, your grandmother, talkative aunt, and your mother probably wont find you again for at least another year or two.

      • by vlm (69642) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:31PM (#39188957)

        Seriously that might work. The journalist / media assumption is social media is only grannie auntie and the creep from middle school talking about nothing. Its even embedded into the language as "friend" and "friending". G+ seems to be going another direction into something like world wide/online/hobby clubs...

        • by formfeed (703859) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @05:13PM (#39189467)

          \ G+ seems to be going another direction into something like world wide/online/hobby clubs...

          That would be a nice reason to use it. But my dirty little secret: My real name isn't formfeed

          If you're in high school your teachers don't need to know that you are preparing for the zombie apocalypse. And if you're a teacher, the parents shouldn't be able to find out that your favorite sport is tethercat.

          And there are a million more reasons I don't need an identity services or want my hobbies connected to my CV

      • by swillden (191260) <shawn-ds@willden.org> on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:42PM (#39189093) Homepage Journal

        Google should advertise that if you switch to G+, your grandmother, talkative aunt, and your mother probably wont find you again for at least another year or two.

        Heh. Even better, when your grandmother, talkative aunt and mother do find Google+, you can add them to your "ignore" circle, which is one on which you've set the "how much to show" slider to "show nothing". Then they'll get a nice message saying that you've circled them but you'll never see any of their posts unless you specifically go look. Oh, and they'll never see your non-public posts, either.

      • by q-the-impaler (708563) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:55PM (#39189249)

        So true. I gave up on Facebook because of them, and now I can easily find people who are interesting. Maybe Google+ isn't a Facebook killer, but I find lots of good content on Google+. I deactivated my FB account months ago and will never look back. The cool thing about Google+ IMO is I have more people in my circles I do not know than people I do. These people are way more interesting than the people I knew in high school 15 years ago. The straw that broke the Facebook camel's back was when I ran into someone from high school who said, "${casual_acquaintance_classmate} thinks you are mad because you didn't friend them on Facebook."

        If Google+ ever becomes Facebook, I'm done with social networking.

    • by Danathar (267989) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:19PM (#39188781) Journal

      There is an easy way to get people to move. When somebody asks and wants to see your photos, streams, etc and they ask you to stick it on facebook you simply say "sorry, I don't use facebook. I use Google Plus".

      If they want to see your stuff then they will make the effort to see it.

      This is how I got my family to use (or at least try) google plus. Sure, they use facebook. I don't.

      If on the other hand it's IMPORTANT to GET people to see stuff they did not ask you to see then you have to go the other way.

    • by brunes69 (86786) <slashdot@nOsPAm.keirstead.org> on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:26PM (#39188881) Homepage

      The incentive for me is to have proper control of my privacy settings and sane sharing defaults. Zuckerberg's whole "everyone should share their whole lives with the world" mantra just does not fit with me and that is why Facebook does not fit with me. I had 200+ friends on facebook and only a tiny fraction of that on G+ - yet I spend way more time on G+ than I ever did on Facebook.

    • by Riceballsan (816702) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:45PM (#39189125)
      What capital or incentives can google throw? They did launch with several features that facebook lacked (or at least had buried so deep they may as well have lacked them for all practical purposes). The problem... google isn't a patent troll, virtually every feature they focused on, was mimiced by facebook within days. I do have to say though google's hangouts are extremely useful, 5 person video chats works wonders for my D&D games.
  • nice. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jzuccaro (1234644) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:09PM (#39188653)
    Nice, now get rid of it and return the + operator to the search engine please.
  • that's on purpose (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Unordained (262962) <unordained_slash ... @pseudotheos.com> on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:10PM (#39188661) Homepage

    G+ fits my desire for social-networking perfectly: I hardly have to spend any time on it to get what I want out of it. I spend no time whatsoever on the other systems, because they're more cumbersome and demand my time in ways I'm not comfortable with. G+ is the only system that lets me contribute the little amount of time I'm willing to contribute, without being useless. So maybe its users *do* use it for fewer minutes a month -- but isn't that okay? Is there not a market for that? Lots of people probably watch crappy TV -- should we judge other channels based on the fact that they have a few, well-targeted shows, that a segment of the population watches (but nothing else)? Maybe it should be our goal to use these systems less, not more! In that respect, G+ represents an increase in efficiency -- which is a driver of GNP. So it's a good thing. Go G+!

    • Re:that's on purpose (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:19PM (#39188775)

      I agree. I rarely use it, but when I do, it's indispensable. Top use: pushing out notifications to various circles. I know that the people in these circles get the information, and if it's important enough for them to comment, they do. Unlike most FB users I know, I'm not that terribly self-involved, and so don't feel the need to keep the world apprised of all of my actions. I see that G+ fits a completely different niche than FB, and that's completely fine with me.

    • by Zemplar (764598) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:24PM (#39188843) Journal

      G+ fits my desire for social-networking perfectly: I hardly have to spend any time on it to get what I want out of it. I spend no time whatsoever on the other systems, because they're more cumbersome and demand my time in ways I'm not comfortable with. G+ is the only system that lets me contribute the little amount of time I'm willing to contribute, without being useless. So maybe its users *do* use it for fewer minutes a month -- but isn't that okay? Is there not a market for that? Lots of people probably watch crappy TV -- should we judge other channels based on the fact that they have a few, well-targeted shows, that a segment of the population watches (but nothing else)? Maybe it should be our goal to use these systems less, not more! In that respect, G+ represents an increase in efficiency -- which is a driver of GNP. So it's a good thing. Go G+!

      Right on. Just measuring time spent on something doesn't determine it's value, that's the wrong metric.

    • Re:that's on purpose (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Tharsman (1364603) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:25PM (#39188861)

      So maybe its users *do* use it for fewer minutes a month -- but isn't that okay? Is there not a market for that?

      Not really. Social networks are not cheap to run, and they barely can gain any ad revenue if all you do is go in and out once a day.

      I know Qudora is not the best source of info but this Q&A seems to have some logic behind it (and the numbers match):

      http://www.quora.com/How-much-money-does-Facebook-make-from-a-single-user-using-the-site-for-1-hour [quora.com]
      How much money does Facebook make from a single user using the site for 1 hour?
      4 cents/user per hour of usage, with the following assumptions:
      $2b in revenue in 2010, 540m unique monthly users, average usage of 7 hours per month per user.

      IF we are talking the same profit ratios, this means 90 million users * (3/60) * 4c = 180,000 a month.

      Thats absolutely nothing for a company like Google.

      Also keep in mind Facebook is capitalizing heavily on in-game currency for games like FarmVille, something I dont think Google is doing, so the average may be even lower than 4 cents for Google.
      This means that G+ is running at..

    • by painandgreed (692585) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:47PM (#39189143)

      G+ fits my desire for social-networking perfectly:...

      Not for me nor my friends. Until G+ integrates with my Gmail calendar so I can organize events, it's a non-starter. Even friends of mine who hate FB have had to go back to it because all social activity and events are being planned and have invitations from there. I'm sort of surprised that it didn't launch with that feature as they already include non Gmail emails into circles so even nonG+ people could be included to events and respond.

      • by slyrat (1143997) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @05:48PM (#39189927)

        G+ fits my desire for social-networking perfectly:...

        Not for me nor my friends. Until G+ integrates with my Gmail calendar so I can organize events, it's a non-starter. Even friends of mine who hate FB have had to go back to it because all social activity and events are being planned and have invitations from there. I'm sort of surprised that it didn't launch with that feature as they already include non Gmail emails into circles so even nonG+ people could be included to events and respond.

        This is the number one reason I have seen my tech friends still use fb. I still prefer g+ since I like the ease of circle use but I do wish a good event system would get going for use in g+.

  • by Dan667 (564390) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:10PM (#39188663)
    the problem with social networking is the is very low barrier to entry. If someone comes up with a shiny new widget then people will dump facebook just like they dumped myspace.
  • by Monoman (8745) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:10PM (#39188679) Homepage

    3 minutes on G+ because they like it but most of their friends on family are still using Facebook. However, MySpace is still getting 7 hours per user each month because they still can't figure out how to cancel their account. ... it really is that hard for some folks. ;-)

  • by sideslash (1865434) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:13PM (#39188711)
    So an optimist might say that maybe the more intelligent and self disciplined of the population have switched to G+, and are spending less time there because they use it intelligently, i.e. a lot less. It turns out that nobody cares that you cleaned the lint from between your toes, and also that Facebook, G+, and other social networking sites are parasitic honeypots designed to turn your private life into an advertising asset. So, good for G+ users!

    A pessimist would say that G+ just hasn't caught on much -- and they would probably be right.
  • Niche market (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sqrt(2) (786011) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:14PM (#39188733) Journal

    Google could do well if they pivoted to the niche market of academics, science, engineering, technology, and journalists. Some of the discussions on Google+ for those areas of interest are actually very high quality. Certainly better than anything you get on Facebook.

    It's highly subjective and a matter of personal taste, but I find the interface and presentation of Google+ to be superb, it really blows FB out of the water. I can't stand how cluttered and busy it's become while G+ is clean and just feels right. The "circles" metaphor and interface is a pretty good step forward for social networking, it doesn't get the credit it deserves for at least being the easiest to use and understand way to bring some granularity to what you share and who you share it with.

    I don't want to see Facebook unseated, but I would love to see Google light a fire under them. Competition is good for users of both sites.

  • the fine print... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sjwt (161428) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:18PM (#39188769)

    Mr. Horowitz declined to share data about how much time people spend on Google+ but said "we're growing by every metric we care about." ...
    When asked what metrics Google+ cared about, the answer was a straight faced "Any metric that is growing"

  • by McLoud (92118) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:19PM (#39188779)

    Nerds spend more time on /. than any other use spend time on G+. Or MySpace. Or both added up together.

  • by deweyhewson (1323623) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:19PM (#39188795)

    What Google failed to understand is that superior technology or features does not attract people to something; the culture, meaning the people, do. Everyone who cared about social networking was already on Facebook, or at least everybody they knew was, so what incentive was there to suddenly make the switch to Google+? Switching for switching's sake? People don't operate that way.

    There are really only three types of people: those who go where everyone else goes, the smaller group who specifically want to go where everybody else does not go, and those few types who consistently keep believing that superior technologies (whether in operating systems, phones, media players, or gaming devices) are what dictate the market.

    Google+ attracted much of the second and third groups, but almost none of the first. And why? Because it's as though Google+ was a party at a huge, new mansion, and Facebook was a party at a slightly smaller, older mansion. Sure, Google+ had more stuff, and their house was maybe built a little better, but everybody was already at Facebook's party. And Google failed to understand that promises of toys don't win people over; everyone else having those toys does.

    • by vlm (69642) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:41PM (#39189077)

      or at least everybody they knew was

      Ah that seems to be the key. FB is for people you know, however tenuously distant like that kid who sat next to you at lunch hour 20 years ago. G+ is for people who share interests with you. I've "met" some freaking amazing photographers, a couple decent hardware hackers, a couple decent cooks/chefs, some decent programmers, hundreds of ham radio operators...

      Has anyone had any luck meeting and conversing with people in the hobbiest/interest type groups on FB or linkedin or whatever else? seems to be a spammy empty wasteland, but G+ actually more or less works for that.

      Before I deleted FB years ago, 90% was people I knew and 10% was people I found. G+ seems to have flipped that ratio, which no one seems to be talking about. Yes there are exceptions, if you work at GOOG probably everyone you work with is there, but otherwise its the land of hobbies.

    • by Endo13 (1000782) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:56PM (#39189263)

      That's not true at all. It ultimately starts due to superior technology and/or features, and then the snowball effect kicks in and then it's the people that take it to critical mass. Why do you think the first few waves of people switched from MySpace to Facebook? It sure the hell wasn't because all their friends were there, because at that point their friends were all on MySpace. No, it's because at the time, Facebook was a huge improvement over the clusterfuck that MySpace was. You didn't have to design your home page, didn't have to write a fucking pararaph, didn't have to worry about if your music you picked was just right, none of that shit. You just log in, post a sentence or two, upload a photo when you fee like it. The tech and features of Facebook compared to MySpace was absolutely revolutionary. That's what caused the mass switching.

  • by atari2600a (1892574) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:20PM (#39188797)
    Was spent loading 200 5-minute GIFs & 12 youtube embeds all autoplaying at the same time
  • Could it be that those that use G+ don't allow ads/cookies/widgets et cetera to track them?

  • by icebike (68054) * on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:23PM (#39188837)

    The article is very light on specifics of where this data was obtained, other than pointing at Comscore.

    I suspect the original source was this ComScore blog article. [comscore.com] Even that article is very light on methodology.

    Quoting:

    While Google Plus nearly matches Tumblr from an audience standpoint in the U.S., it does not yet attract similar levels of user engagement on its primary web pages. Importantly, these figures account for activity on plus.google.com and [but] do not include engagement with the Google Plus toolbar or other distributed content throughout the Google network of sites.

    Right there seems to be an admission that ComScore isn't able to measure the total engagement, because they can't see it, and nobody needs to access plus.google.com once they are signed up. All the links you need appear on pages protected by https.

    The very nature of Google+, with its circles of friends may work against any outsiders having any real access to the amount of time spent there by the average user. and, google's use of https makes this harder still.

    These guys are shooting in the dark.

    Still, I tend to agree, I only know of a few bloggers who think its cool to hang the little G+ symbol behind their names.

  • by vlm (69642) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:27PM (#39188901)

    Does G+ have ads? I only use browsers with an ad blocker so I'm not sure. About a third of the article was fixation on advertisers interest, or lack thereof, WRT G+, which I thought was strange because I could swear they don't even have ads.

    G+ is pretty popular in the ham radio and technical community. Linus makes posts worth reading. It seems like "technology podcaster" types use G+ heavily. Seems to be a lot of maker/hardware hacker type people on G+. Theres an interesting crowd of weather-freaks who like to second guess the NWS forecasters and do their own NAM and GFS analysis (I'm into it enough to know what they're talking about, but its not really my thing)

    As far as news I circle Perl Weekly, Anonymous, and a software engineer named Margaret Leber who seems to share about 3 zerohedge articles per day.

    Mike Elgan and Dan McDermott/Steve Mayne had some pretty insightful G+ posts WRT this whole "non-issue". Maynes post pretty much summarize the whole topic, a typical FB post results in 300 mostly idiot comments and G+ only has 20 comments but the average IQ level in the G+ posts is around 40 points higher. Its not as intelligent as /. is, at least when I'm posting, but G+ is up there (smile that was a joke)

    Its not all good. G+ has way too many chicks who post hot-ish G to PG-13 rated pics of themselves (playboy models, strippers) and babble. It was entertaining for a bit but I can get better pics for free elsewhere, so bye bye ladies. Theres always some political moron who bellows loudly but doesn't know much.

    Seems like GOOG needs to do a bit of product differentiation. FB is for the kid you sat next to in study hall in 8th grade, grind casual games, chicks gossiping and fighting with each other, spammy company fan pages (chose your own selection of free spam!) and sharing pics with granny. In contrast, G+ seems to be interesting people.

  • by Xphile101361 (1017774) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:28PM (#39188903)
    So it takes me 7 hours to do everything on Facebook that it takes me only 3 minutes to do on Google+? I like the efficiency rating.
  • by T-Bone-T (1048702) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:31PM (#39188955)

    You know those rating systems are flawed. They don't take in account houses that have, uh, more than two computers, and other things of that nature.

  • by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland@@@yahoo...com> on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:34PM (#39188993) Homepage Journal

    people with lives use G+

  • The conversations I enjoy having are on Google+. I've never enjoyed the way people interact on Facebook, and I've never wanted to be there. I have an account there that I pay attention to as little as I can manage.

    LJ used to have those kinds of conversations. But that petered out after Six Apart bought them. Now it's Google+. And if it never becomes 'popular', I don't care, as long as it is popular enough that Google considers it worth having around. And of course, that's the rub.

    I don't like this whole cloud business at all. It's a broken model.

  • by forkfail (228161) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:39PM (#39189053)

    ... to keep Yahoo from suing them.

  • by Gnaythan1 (214245) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:39PM (#39189055)

    Most of the stories here I've already read on google+ or Reddit

    And the conversations tend to have more signal than noise.

    I wonder, did facebook hire a PR agency to smear google again?

  • by DrFalkyn (102068) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:40PM (#39189069)

    That was my biggest disappointment with Google+. They had a golden opportunity to integrate social networking, chat, and email, and all they did was throw up a knockoff of Facebook. I have gmail up nearly constantly, not so much with Facebook

  • by Maltheus (248271) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:43PM (#39189105)

    I definitely prefer google+ and it made me dislike facebook even more than I had before. But since no one you know is on it, you end up follow a lot of strangers (did find some interesting people). The problem is that the filter controls are so awful (the last I looked) that I never want to use it. The circles concept is great, but they never got it out of the early development stage. Your stream consists of everybody or one circle. They released a beta and moved on to focusing on auto-sharing everything you do with your circles and a whole lot of other things that nobody wanted.

    At the end of the day, I just don't have time for it. With sensible noise controls, that could change. But with everything else going so wrong with google this past year, I don't really want to use their products anymore anyway.

    So I went back to facebook, sort of. It was such a sorry experience compared to g+ that I find I hardly visit there anymore either. I'll do a quick check in once in a while and then get out.

    • by vlm (69642) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:59PM (#39189301)

      Your stream consists of everybody or one circle

      The slider man, the slider. You need to crank your circles slider. I was overwhelmed until I cranked the slider to the "correct" levels for each of my hobby groups to match their posting volumes with my interest levels, just like tweaking a stereo equalizer... I also wish they had a slider for individuals not just circles.

  • by cnvandev (1538055) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @04:54PM (#39189243) Homepage
    Average user time is the wrong metric to look at for a developing social network, because the engagement across users isn't flat, and shouldn't be modeled that way. Think of it this way - if I'm a Google+ user who actively uses the product, I have a whole network of friends to engage with and post back and forth, so the average time spent by my network is probably fairly high. If I'm a user who signed up for Google+ because of the hype, then never bothered to post anything, it's probably because my network of friends is filled with people who act similarly. This means you'll have networks that are full of engaged users and networks that are completely barren - and the average will probably be something meaningless like three minutes a month. What's the distribution look like? Of the people who're posting more than three minutesper month, are they checking it every day for an hour? Is it just the rest of the users who are dragging down the metrics, ultimately leading everyone to believe Google+ is dead when there are pockets of vibrant user communities? This is the information they should look into.
  • Stupid Metrics (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mseeger (40923) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @05:05PM (#39189367)

    <SARCASM=ON> OK, the average visitor spends about 1 hour at Walmart while the average buyer at Amazon leaves the site after 3min. So drop your Amazon shares and buy Walmarts....</SARCASM>

    This is such a 20th century metric ;-)

    In earnest: Perhaps FB ist usefull to people who don't know what to do else. I am perfectly happy to be up-to-date with most of my contacts in 10min on G+. Time is the most valuable stuff i have.

  • by Trax3001BBS (2368736) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @05:06PM (#39189385) Homepage Journal
    Having comScore in their HOST file. :) I didn't know who comScore was but it's in my HOSTS file under a few different addresses. I go through my cookies before I delete them, trackers or such I'll add to my rather huge HOSTS file. Myself, I don't do "social" sites.
  • by DragonWriter (970822) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @05:40PM (#39189825)

    Google is boasting that more than 90 million people have signed up for its Google+. Those are pretty impressive numbers. I mean, if you had 90 million people at your disposal, you could do anything. You'd rule the Internet. Except there's one little problem: No one is using the site.

    Google+ isn't a distinct site, its a pervasive social layer integrated across a variety of Google services. Insofar as + is designed for stickiness at all, its designed to increase stickiness across the whole set of Google pages, not just the handful of + specific pages. (Though I'm not sure that + is designed for stickiness at all, as Google seems more to design to be a place people come back to rather than a place people stay.)

  • by Jim Hall (2985) on Tuesday February 28, 2012 @05:52PM (#39189993) Homepage

    I'm not sure where the article gets their numbers, so I can't comment on that.

    However, I will say that Google missed their real window in launching Google+. It seems Google just doesn't have the "knack" of advertising and seizing on opportunity, despite being an advertising company. Don't get me wrong, I like Google and all that. I just think they need to hire some PR folks, rather than letting the engineers run things.

    IIRC, about a week after Google+ started in "invite-only beta", there was yet another security fiasco with Facebook. But this one was big, really huge. It was all over the news, it was all I heard about, and it seemed like everyone I knew was threatening to jump off Facebook because of it. I thought, "Someone at Google is watching this, and is going to open up the beta to everyone." But no one ever did.

    That would have been the perfect time to really open up Google+, when everyone wanted an alternative to their ongoing security woes at Facebook. Never happened. Google continued their sloooooooooow rollout of the "invite-only" beta. Finally, months later, Google finally opened Google+ to everyone who wanted to join.

    But it was too late. Google+ was a ghost town. Only a few people I knew were on Google+. The rest of my friends eventually "got over" whatever the Facebook security problem-of-the-day was, and stayed on Facebook. Since my friends are on Facebook, I stayed on Facebook.

    For all that, Google+ does have a killer feature: Hangouts. I wish they'd made a big deal out of this when Google+ launched - like, showed it in action or something, ads on TV, whatever. It's like Skype or any other video chat, except you can have up to 10 people on at the same time (you + 9 others.) We have a hosted domain for work, and we use Hangouts all the time to talk to people at different locations within the organization. It's really freed us from having to share a single video conference room at our location.

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