Google+ looks promising to this introvert

I don’t like or use Facebook, even though 600 million other people do.

Not surprising really. I’m an introvert (which doesn’t mean I am a ‘party-pooper’; just that I am ‘pooped by parties’). Being on Facebook to me is like being in a crowded room with lots of noise and smoke. Everyone is talking and joking about inane stuff and every now and then, someone taps me on the shoulder and wants to sell me something I’m not interested in.

Now for the gregarious extrovert, this scenario is probably a description of something approaching heaven. That’s exactly the sort of place extroverts like to go to as soon as they can get away from work.

It’s not that I don’t like people. I just don’t like noise and I don’t like to have to compete – both serious shortcomiongs if you are at a party. So, no Facebook for me. But, just this week, Google announced they are conducting ‘field trials’ on what they are calling Google+ and I’m interested.

I would never have heard of it, by the way, if not for my 15 year old, computer-geek son who often shakes his head sadly at his luddite old man, but who has made considerable headway in his quest to drag me kicking and screaming into the world of electric computers and the interweb thingy. (I’m actually writing this on an iPad, can you believe it.)

Google+ seems smart and socially savvy. It has been designed by people who don’t just know computers, they know people. They know. for example, that nobody in the real world has a LIST of ‘friends’ with whom they always want to hang out, ala Facebook. People have CIRCLES of friends, family and acquaintances and they interact with each other in those circles. Google+ lets you relate to others in circles – the things you might want to chat about with your work mates are in all likelihood not be the things you chat about with the mums at playgroup, or your family, or your fellow students, etc. Google+ is set up to cater to this.

Also, most people have pretty clear social conventions about private space and public space. We might be rightly reluctant to barge in on the neighbours at home in the evening, but, if you see your neighbour sitting on his front verandah, you are likely to get into at least the beginnings of a conversation. Google+ has a facility to ‘hang out’ – to be seen by others in the circle who will know that you might be interested in a chat.

These and many other features seem to be in the offing and will be made available soon. No advertising either! That’s the word anyway.

So perhaps, in the near future, on those rare occasions when I have the time and the energy to talk to someone, I might find myself ‘hanging out’ on the front verandah in cyberspace.

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~ by Garry on July 2, 2011.

2 Responses to “Google+ looks promising to this introvert”

  1. the circles thing looks cool but my other introvert friends won’t be on it as they’re satisfied with the occasional pop on facebook :(. the most annoying thing i found there was the chat which was like being naked in a large open space, anyone even people you don’t really know or like much can ambush you and start a really awkward tiresome conversation thats difficult to get out of.

    have a nice day gwl
    a fellow introvert S.A

  2. Thanks SA. I agree about the chat on FB. I also was ambushed there once.
    Just seems to me that FB has simply been Zuckerberg recreating the college dormitory lifestyle – even down to writing on someone’s ‘wall’. I did enjoy 4 years of dorm living while I was in college, but I was also pleased to move on from it!
    cheers

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